Must-see Christmas concerts in NYC this holiday season

If you’re looking to add some holiday pep to your step, check out our list of the best Christmas concerts this season
Winter Solstice Celebration
Photograph: Rhonda Dorsett
By Kristen Zwicker |
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Don’t let the wintry mix snow you in this December. From visiting the Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree to digging into the best pies in NYC, there’s a host of stellar seasonal events to shovel your way down to. As always, NYC hosts some of the best Christmas concerts around (Radio City Christmas Spectacular is always a can’t miss)—so might we suggest taking a break from the cold outdoors to catch one of these awesome shows?

RECOMMENDED: Full guide to Christmas in New York

Best Christmas concerts in NYC

The Blind Boys of Alabama
Photograph: Cameron Witting
Music, Folk, country and blues

Blind Boys of Alabama Christmas Show with Amy Black

icon-location-pin City Winery, West Village
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Formed in 1939 at the Alabama Institute for the Negro Deaf and Blind, the Blind Boys of Alabama have since collected five Grammy Awards, been inducted to the Gospel Hall of Fame, recorded a freaky album with pedal-steel prodigy Robert Randolph and shared bills with Prince (at a club) and Bob Dylan (at the White House). Here, they kick off the Christmas season with the help of singer-songwriter Amy Black.

Mark Kozelek
Photograph: Courtesy Gabriel Shepherd
Music, Folk, country and blues

Mark Kozelek & Kevin Corrigan

icon-location-pin City Winery, West Village
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Mark Kozelek, who writes pensive folk-inflected songs as Sun Kil Moon, is known for collaborating extensively—a surprising fact, considering his combative, beef-starting tendencies (remember his song "War On Drugs, Suck My C***"?). Here, he teams up once again with actor Kevin Corrigan for a set of Christmas songs.

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John Legend
Photograph: Courtesy the artist
Music, Pop

John Legend - A Legendary Christmas

icon-location-pin Hulu Theater at Madison Square Garden, Midtown West
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John Legend is making his first contribution to the wellspring of holiday cheer and easy money otherwise known as the Christmas album and it has us thinking: He hasn't done this already? Could've fooled us. He brings all the classic fireplace jams—and likely some of his secular hits as well—to the stage at the Theater at MSG.

Priests
Photograph: Courtesy Matthew Pandolfe
Music, Punk and metal

A 3rd Stereogum Christmas Show

icon-location-pin Baby’s All Right, Williamsburg
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Music website Stereogum hosts its third annual Christmas hoedown featuring sets from Washington, D.C., postpunk powerhouse Priests, Philly noise-rock fourpiece Empath and Brooklyn pop punks Nervous Dater. Expect tons of racuous, manic energy to be packed in at this show.

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Florence and the Machine
Photograph: Loren Wohl
Music, Rock and indie

Not So Silent Night

icon-location-pin Barclays Center, Prospect Heights
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ALT 92.3 brought alt-rock back to NYC's airwaves last fall, and this winter they're celebrating the season with a stacked lineup at the Barclays Center. Florence and the Machine, Muse, Deathcab for Cutie, Chvrches, AJR, Mike Shinoda, Foster the People and Bastille take the stage for an arena-sized holday bonanza.

Delicate Steve
Photograph: Courtesy Robert Scheuerman
Music, Rock and indie

Christmas Steve & Sam (with Delicate Steve / Sam Evian)

icon-location-pin Elsewhere, Bushwick
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"Delicate" Steve Marion teams up with Celestial Shore guitarist and singer Sam Evian for a holiday outing in Bushwick. Expect a trippy, uplifting evening of layered tropicalia, jazzy bops, patterned post-rock, sinewy guitar jams and wistful indie rock. Oh, and Marion recently released a Christmas album, so count on hearing some standards sprinkled throughout.

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Ween
Photograph: Courtesy Dave Vann
Music, Rock and indie

Ween

icon-location-pin The Capitol Theatre,
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For some three decades, the Pennsylvanian institution helmed by Aaron Freeman and Mickey Melchiondo, a.k.a. Gene and Dean Ween, has maintained its ability to project its virtuosic talent onto virtually any genre and goofily make it its own. The band hits the Capitol Theatre for a pair of holiday dates, though, truth be told, for Ween's sizable fan base, every concert is a holy event. 

Marky Ramone; Mark Weiss
Photographs: Marc Whalen
Music, Punk and metal

Marky Ramone's Holiday Blitzkrieg

icon-location-pin Gramercy Theatre, Flatiron
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Former Ramones stickman Marky Ramone steps out with his anthemic power-pop crew, Blitzkrieg, in celebration of the 40th anniversary of his first album with the Ramones, Road to Ruin. The pasta-sauce impresario has promised forty Ramones hits, all played with the help of former Bad Religion and current Circle Jerks and Red Kross guitarist Greg Hetson. After a romp like that, you're almost certainly going to need to be sedated.

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