When should I play holiday music? Debate when to start Christmas carols

As of this posting, it is November 1st. We’re all just getting over Halloween, whether it was a party or going out for hours with our kids. Thanksgiving is just around the corner, which means we have menus to start planning

And here’s Mariah Carey, with her annual declaration that IT’S TIME to start playing holiday music (and yes, this is her way of reminding you to play her classics, All I want for Christmas is you).

We here at For The Win immediately started debating this: When is the right time to play holiday music? We were very divided as you can tell:

The only Christmas rule in my house, enforced by my father to protect us all, was that my mother could not start playing Christmas music until Thanksgiving. After that, all holiday recordings were every day until February, when she would switch to Irish music in honor of St. Patrick’s Day. My youth was marked by too much Bing Crosby, but at least I know the lyrics to “A Squirrel’s Christmas Wish” by heart. — Christian D’Andrea

When I was growing up, it became a huge tradition for the family to put up the holiday decorations on Black Friday and blast Mariah Carey (along with Whitney Houston and The preacher’s wife soundtrack) at obnoxious levels. Everyone was trying to hit the high notes as they placed approximately 6,000 mismatched ornaments on the tree. This marked the official start of the holidays. Holiday music should NOT be played until the day after Thanksgiving, and anything before that is blasphemy. I said what I said. – Megan Hall

I started playing it at 12:01am because it’s my damn house AND ANYONE WHO DOESN’T LIKE IT CAN BE USED AND PAY MY BILLS.

I’ve always started listening annoyingly early (usually November 1st), but ever since Mariah started the “It’s Time” videos (I think the first one was like 2017?), I feel like she’s helped normalize it.

Irrationally, I won’t watch holiday movies until after Thanksgiving, except for The holiday. — Alex McDaniel

While I don’t begrudge anyone for playing holiday music throughout November, I usually start in early December. However, this is influenced by other music I’ve been listening to, so there may be more this year 1989 (Taylor Version) than Christmas music. — Caroline Darney

Sorry Mariah, I love your music but… you are wrong. It’s not until after Thanksgiving that you start playing holiday songs. The beginning of November—when I’m thinking more about what to steal from my son’s huge pile of candy, sorry my friend—is too soon. — Charles Curtis

Holiday music is good, but I don’t really want to hear it until Black Friday. I’m just not in the festive spirit before then, and that’s usually when my shopping and traveling starts in earnest. I’m happy blasting OutKast’s “Player’s Ball” or some Chuck Berry while eating a leftover turkey sandwich and browsing online Black Friday deals. — Mitchell Northam

As Mariah likes to say, it’s about time. November 1st is the day I like Christmas music. Will I start playing it on this day? Who knows. But am I good to hear it? Yes, absolutely. Why not? It’s not like there’s any Thanksgiving music to play. We need some vibes, man. — Mike Sykes

I’ve always been Christmas music for November 1st. Why? Because Christmas is one of my favorite times of the year and the earlier I can get into the season the better. I don’t need malls and stores and whatnot to change the whole Christmas thing to November 1st, but as long as I can enjoy some holiday tunes in the comfort of my own home as soon as the calendar turns, I’m happy. — Mary Clarke

After all the remnants of Thanksgiving are gone. Because while I like to touch up my mac and cheese and greens—or any sides for that matter—I don’t need to touch up my holidays. And holiday music is very specifically designed for the Christmas season. “Prince Grimes.”

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