Ben Rector Gets in the Christmas (and Thanksgiving) Spirit

Check out his holiday headspace before the release of 'A Ben Rector Christmas'!

Written by Chris Parton
Ben Rector Gets in the Christmas (and Thanksgiving) Spirit
Ben Rector; Photo credit: Collin Fatke

Singer-songwriter Ben Rector is feeling the spirit of the season. The piano-playing pop rocker just dropped what may be the world’s first Thanksgiving song (“The Thanksgiving Song”) and he recently unveiled his first Christmas album — A Ben Rector Christmas — and it’s got him thinking about holiday traditions.

A Ben Rector Christmas arrived on November 13 and finds the indie hit maker reflecting on the gifts in his life. 2020 has been a difficult year for everyone, but Rector’s focused on the positives — like spending the holidays with his growing family. He and his wife just welcomed some new members of the Rector household, and the joy of that gift shines brighter than the famous Christmas star.

You can hear the depth of gratitude in tracks like “The Thanksgiving Song,” which is all about family and togetherness, and A Ben Rector Christmas promises to feature even more good vibes. Rector spoke with Sounds Like Nashville about his holiday headspace, and it’s no wonder he was inspired to create a Christmas album.

What does Christmas day look like at the Rector house?

This Christmas day will look a lot different than previous ones as we just had twin boys! It’s the first year we’ll spend the holidays here and not head back to Oklahoma or Texas to see our families, so we’ll have to come up with our own Christmas day traditions!

Do you have any holiday traditions you are looking forward to continuing or starting with your own children?

My parents always made us wait at the top of the stairs Christmas morning for a while to go check out what Santa had brought. It always felt like an eternity but the anticipation was really fun, and I bet we’ll keep that going.

Do you have a favorite holiday song or memory associated with it?

I love all of the classics, but I’d say “White Christmas” is my favorite.

What’s your favorite Nashville holiday tradition?

Every year my wife and I watch It’s a Wonderful Life at the Belcourt! We love seeing movies there and that has become our yearly tradition. It was my wife’s idea because it’s her favorite movie, and initially I resisted but I always end up tearing up at the end.

For anyone spending the holidays in Nashville do you have any recommendations of must sees or dos?

In a non-pandemic year I’d recommend the lights and Santa at Cheekwood, one of many Christmas shows at the Ryman, and maybe a brisk walk at Percy Warner Park if you feel like you’re sitting around too much!