Top 5 Christmas Songs of All Time!

William Ortega, Staff Writer

With the holidays around the corner, family and friends will reunite and one of the most important aspects of a great Christmas reunion is… the music. That’s why we’re here to help with a collection of some of the best selling Christmas songs to get everyone into the holiday spirit. These were all ranked in regards to their selling count.

5. Do They Know Its Christmas Time – Band Aid (1984)

This song was written by Bob Geldof and Midge Ure in response to a news report regarding the famine in Ethiopia in 1983-85. They went on to look for a group of high profile musical talent to be featured on the track and bring attention to the cause. The song went on to be the fastest selling single in UK history. It sold over 1 million units in its first week of release and all the way up until the release of “Candle In The Wind” by Sir Elton John, it was the biggest single in the country. The track went No.1 in 13 countries, even inspiring another song which was made for a charity cause. The initial amount the group wanted to hit was $70,000 but the final amount cumulated over 8 million for the famine relief. Ever since its original there’s been many revivals of the song such as Band Aid II, Band Aid 20, Band Aid 30.

4. Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer – Gene Autry (1949)

Johnny Marks composed this song in 1989. He got the idea from the story “Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer,”  written by his brother-in-law. The song was initially composed by Harry Brannon 10 years before Autry’s version but Autry’s version was the one that took over charts and made headlines. Autry originally wasn’t interested in recording the song but the bidding from his wife was enough to convince him. The song eventually went No1 on the US singles chart for a week in 1949. The song since then has hit the charts countless times and  managed to ship over 12million units and if you include the covers it reached the 150million+ mark.

3. All I Want For Christmas Is You – Mariah Carey (1994)

Mariah Carey released this song when she was at the peak of her career, which can be a risky move as it was seen as yet another Christmas song. Many other artists have already released their Christmas album or song, so for Carey to pursue the same route as them could’ve ended in a neutral or unsuccessful delivery. This song was written in about 15 minutes which was just another risk on top of all the others. The track originally was not available for the Billboard Hot 100’s because it was not released as a single. It did summit No6 on the billboard Hot Adult Contemporary and No12 on Hot 100 Air Play. After it was finally considered a single, it reached No83 on the Hot 100 and then a while after it hit No29. Since then, it has only increased more and more even ascending all the way to No1 in 2019, 2020, and 2021. Mariah Carey has broken many records with this song such as having a song No1 longer than anyone else, longest time spent at No1 than any other artist, longest lasting festive song at No1, and more. Goes to show that 15 minutes can be life-changing.

2. Silent Night – Bing Crosby (1935)

This song was composed by Franz Gruber and Joseph Mohr in 1816 in Salzburg, Austria, and it was titled “Stilled Nacht.” Mohr had written the lyrics and reached out to Gruber to compose the song, as he wanted to perform it at the Christmas Eve Mass. It wasn’t until 1839 that the song arrived in the U.S. and it wasn’t until 1859 that there was an English written by John Young. For a long time people did not know Gruber was the initial writer of the song because the original music sheet went missing. It wasn’t until 1995 that a document written by Mohr was found explaining that Gruber wrote the song. The song never reached its full potential till Bing Crosby made a cover making the song even more iconic. His cover peaked No7 and caused a chain of countless covers done since then and shipping over 30 million units all over the world.

1. White Christmas – Bing Crosby (1942)

Irving Berlin is considered as one of the greatest songwriters in US history and writing “White Christmas” was just another piece of evidence to that. Berlin wrote the song when he was in California in 1940. After completing the song Berlin felt really confident in himself claiming that this was the best song he’s ever written and to add even more credence, the best song anyone has ever written. Bing Crosby went on to give the first ever performance of the song on a radio show, “The Kraft Music Hall,” on Christmas day of 1941. Afterwards he performed the song with the trotter orchestra and Ken Darby Singers for Decca. The song was received poorly by the crowd at first but then rose to the top of the charts, making the song No1 for 11 weeks in 1943. The track ended up winning the Academy Award for Best Original Song form a Motion Picture in 1943. It peaked No1 again in 1945 and 1946, making history as being the only song to hit No1 in three different years by the same artist. Bing Crosby’s cover of the song, according to the Guinness Book Of World Records, is the biggest selling single of all time. It has shipped over 50 million units internationally and if you take in consideration the sales of the cover versions, it would reach 100+ million.