A professional organization analyzed Nielson data and found that Mariah Carey and Walter Afanasieff’s “All I Want for Christmas is You” topped the list of most popular Christmas songs for the 2017 season.
According to an ASCAP analysis of streaming and terrestrial radio data, 1994’s “All I Want For Christmas Is You,” written by Walter Afanasieff and Mariah Carey, moves to #1, joining enduring Christmas classics like “A Holly Jolly Christmas” (written by Johnny Marks, © 1962) and “Let It Snow, Let It Snow, Let It Snow” (written by Sammy Cahn and Jule Styne, © 1945), at the top of the charts.
Also gaining in popularity is another “recent” holiday song, George Michael’s “Last Christmas” from 1984. The rest of the Top Ten Holiday Songs chart is dominated by old school ASCAP favorites: “Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree” (Johnny Marks, 1958), “Jingle Bell Rock” (Joseph Carleton Beal/James Ross Boothe, 1957), “It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas” (Meredith Willson, 1951), “Sleigh Ride” (Leroy Anderson/Mitchell Parish, 1950), “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” (Johnny Marks, 1949), and the 1960s hit, “It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year,” (Edward Pola/George Wyle, 1963).
“Music is such an essential part of the holiday season, and beloved holiday favorites have lasting appeal across all generations, whether performed by Justin Bieber, Katy Perry and Ariana Grande, or Brenda Lee and Johnny Mathis,” said Paul Williams, ASCAP President and award-winning songwriter. “As time has passed, new classics like ‘All I Want for Christmas Is You’ and ‘Last Christmas’ have evolved in the hearts and minds of music listeners, and taken their rightful place at the top of the today’s holiday songs chart.”
Below is a list of the ASCAP Top 25 Christmas Songs, their writer(s) and the song’s copyright date according to ASCAP records:
- “All I Want for Christmas Is You” by Mariah Carey and Walter Afanasieff (1994)
- “A Holly Jolly Christmas” by Johnny Marks (1962)
- “Let It Snow, Let It Snow, Let It Snow” by Sammy Cahn and Jule Styne (1945)
- “Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree” by Johnny Marks (1958)
- “Last Christmas” by George Michael (1984)
- “Jingle Bell Rock” by Joseph Carleton Beal and James Ross Boothe (1957)
- “It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year” by Edward Pola and George Wyle (1963)
- “It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas” by Meredith Willson (1951)
- “Sleigh Ride” by Leroy Anderson and Mitchell Parish (1951)
- “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” by Johnny Marks (1949)
- “White Christmas” by Irving Berlin (1941)
- “Winter Wonderland” by Felix Bernard and Richard B. Smith (1934)
- “Feliz Navidad” by Jose Feliciano (1970)
- “Santa Claus Is Comin’ to Town” by Fred Coots and Haven Gillespie (1934)
- “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” by Ralph Blane and Hugh Martin (1943)
- “Here Comes Santa Claus (Down Santa Claus Lane)” by Gene Autry and Oakley Haldeman (1947)
- “The Christmas Song” by Mel Tormé and Robert Wells (1946)
- “Frosty the Snowman” by Steve Nelson and Walter E. Rollins (1950)
- “Christmas Eve/Sarajevo 12/24″ by Robert Kinkel, Paul O’Neill and John Oliva (1995)
- “Jingle Bells” by James Lord Pierpont; Frank Sinatra version arranged by Gordon Jenkins (ASCAP, 1958)
- “Baby It’s Cold Outside” by Frank Loesser (1948)
- “Santa Baby” by Joan Javits, Anthony Springer and Philip Springer (1953)
- “Run Rudolph Run” by John Marks and Marvin Broadie (1958)
- “Blue Christmas” by Billy Hayes and Jay Johnson (1948)
- “Wonderful Christmastime” by Paul McCartney (1979)
* Based on an analysis of Nielsen streaming and terrestrial radio data from Aug. 7, 2017, to Nov. 19, 2017.Wake up Right! Subscribe to our Morning Briefing and get the news delivered to your inbox before breakfast!