Mariah Carey’s “All I Want for Christmas is You” can be a polarizing force during the holidays, splitting friend groups and family members along a jingling divide. From around Thanksgiving on, radios, grocery stores, department stores and many public spaces have Christmas or holiday music piped in, an onslaught of familiar tunes that evoke nostalgia or irritation.

But it doesn’t have to be so. The holidays are a time for togetherness, peace and tidings of joy. This well complements music’s ability to bring people closer together in a shared experience, a fact felt best at live concerts and shows.

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