Music For Every Major Holiday

On the past few Good Fridays, I’ve spent part of the day listening and reading Bach’s St. John’s Passion. I’ve been thinking about other types of music I could also listen to on that day. This also got me thinking music I could play for my kids on other holidays, with the objective of teaching them about the holiday, possibly getting them an appropriate frame of mind, and exposing them to culture and stimulating ideas. Given that context, I’d like to discuss possible music to play on the major holidays. And actually, I’d be open to expanding this to include movies, books, and other art forms. Here are a list of the holidays I’m choosing:

New Year’s Day
Martin Luther King Jr. Day
President’s Day
Good Friday
Memorial Day
Independence Day
Labor Day
Veteran’s Day

7 Responses to “Music For Every Major Holiday”

  1. Reid

    Good Friday

    Movies: Passion of Jeanne D’Arc (Dir. Carl Theodor Dreyer); Trial of Joan of Arc (Dir. Robert Bresson); Passion of the Christ (Dir. Mel Gibson)


    Movies: Jesus of Nazareth (Dir. Franco Zeffirelli)

  2. Reid

    Any recommendations for Independence Day?

  3. Mitchell

    I didn’t pay attention to the Passion of Jeanne D’Arc when we watched it at your place. What’s the connection to Good Friday?

  4. Reid

    The film is essentially a Christian film, and the trial and death in the film parallel what Christ goes through on Good Friday. For me, the film also makes me reflect on my faith and how much I would be willing to sacrifice for that faith–would I, am I, carrying my cross? That seems totally appropriate for Good Friday.

    Re: 4th of July

    I ended up listening to music by Aaron Copland. I also put on some film scores from famous cowboy movies. What struck me is that a lot of the film composers seem to draw on Copland.

    Also: I think Michael Curtiz’s Yankee Doodle DandY is a good 4th of July film.

  5. Reid


    “Zombie Woof” by Frank Zappa

  6. Mitchell

    A great deal of the music I listen to is good Halloween music. It’s a metalhead’s most appropriate holiday.

  7. Reid

    Makes sense. How about listening a few of the most appropriate ones?

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