The Top 10 best renditions of – ‘O Holy Night’

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“O Holy Night” has to be one of the most frequently covered Holiday classics of all time.

The century-old astounding composition has been time and again brought to life with the profound voices of gospel as well as contemporary artists. Each version serves a different flavor than the other, reminding us of the greatness of this Adolphe Adam timeless composition. 

So without any further ado, we’re going to enlist the 10 finest renditions of our absolute favorite Christmas song.
Here are the Top 10 versions of ‘O Holy Night’:
10) Mariah Carey

Mariah Carey boasts of one of the most popular versions of this song, as was featured on her 1994-released Christmas album. Mimi’s jaw-dropping belts in this pitch perfect rendition makes it one of the most astonishing vocal performances of the song. Where she lacks in emotion, she makes up with her enormous belting abilities, executing each note – from the extreme soft to the extreme strong with equal finesse. 


9) Patti LaBelle

Patti put her staple on this song with her version – as she does with most of her live performances. The little trembles on her delicate notes and the rousing prowess of the climax, is a ride worth taking. Her version is soulful, dramatic – yet beautifully ‘held-back’ – especially going by Patti’s standards. 


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8) Whitney Houston

Although, Whitney Houston’s voice was already declining by the time she stepped in the studio to record her first Christmas album, she still managed to deliver some soul-stirring variations of Holiday classics. Her version of ‘O Holy Night’ does not boast of the high-octane belts, that most female performers of the present era have come to associate the song with, but it has a warmth and profoundness to it – that truly brings out the spirit of the song. 


7) Nat King Cole

The late and legendary Nat King Cole’s tone alone will send shivers down your spine. This haunting rendition, in the too-soulful-for-words voice of Cole will leave an unforgettable impression in your spirit once it passes through your ears. Cole isn’t just singing, he’s telling a story here.

6) Luciano Pavarotti and Placido Domingo

This breathtaking duet between Luciano Pavarotti and Placido Domingo is a powerful, chilling take of the song like we never heard it before. Tears naturally start falling down your face, when the legendary Pavarotti belts out his part in English and the two tenors then shut it down with a quintessential operatic ending. 


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5) David Phelps


Perhaps the most flawless vocal performance of this song – and he sings it LIVE! Gospel artist David Phelps voice isn’t just pitch perfect, as he easily belts out the toughest parts of this tune, but it possesses the little caressing touches and vocal punches that leave you choked-out by the end. Moving. Spell-binding. Goosebumps-inducing.

4) Christina Aguilera

Christina’s version of ‘O Holy Night’ is the most experimental of all the ones mentioned on the list. Her soft falsetto in the beginning, merging with a traditional prayer in-between and leading up to a bombastic climax which eventually concludes with her adlibing with a piano towards the end – this version is utterly satisfying, in so many ways.   


3) Al Green


Al Green didn’t just sing “O Holy Night, he Al Greened it. This version is as adorably joyous and as soulfully deep as any other rendition on this list, mostly thanks to Green’s legendary spine-tingling voice and trademark approach to interpreting a song. Talk about being gifted!


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2) Jennifer Hudson


Amidst all the classic versions we have listed above, Hudson’s version manages to stand on its own for her exquisite, roof-raising vocals. It isn’t just her spectacular belting abilities, but the raw grit and soul she adds to her performance here, that makes it one of the most ‘perfect’ renditions of the song.

1) Mahalia Jackson


If it wasn’t for Mahalia Jackson first covering it back in 1968, we may never have heard most of the versions listed above. The Queen of Gospel music, as usual, poured her heart and soul into this raw and riveting display of her glorious talent, but more so of her devotion and service to the song.

Tell us what you thought of our picks.

Let us know about your favorite versions of the song…