What is the Best Christmas Song Ever? The (not very) Scientific Answer

What is the Best Christmas Song Ever?

What is the Best Christmas Song? This very question has divided Christmas dinner tables, chats down the pub, and has separated the Scrooges from the Elf-lovers since Christmas began.

Well, we finally have an objective, scientific* answer. The best Christmas song of all time is, according to science*, All I Want For Christmas Is You, by Mariah Carey.

And if you need proof beyond the fact that it is clearly an absolute banger, read on to see our working…

*This isn’t scientific at all and is purely for fun (or to end the argument you’re having right now).

Woman singing christmas songs

The Christmas Songs with the Most Spotify Plays

We took the top 40 most requested Christmas songs, and searched for them on Spotify. For each song, we took down the total number of plays it has received on the platform (true as of 14 November 2022), and built them into a spreadsheet.

And here’s the result: the Christmas Top 40 Chart like you’ve never seen it before – ranked by Spotify plays and Spotify stream revenue. There’s one clear winner…

Rank Song Artist Spotify Plays Spotify
1 All I Want For Christmas Is You Mariah Carey 1,186,629,933 £3,678,553
2 Last Christmas Wham! 918,151,174 £2,846,269
3 Santa Tell Me Ariana Grande 679,215,031 £2,105,567
4 It’s Beginning To Look A Lot Like Michael Buble 642,944,209 £1,993,127
5 Rockin’ Around The Christmas Tree Brenda Lee 568,718,742 £1,763,028
6 Jingle Bell Rock Bobby Helms 561,008,172 £1,739,125
7 It’s The Most Wonderful Time… Andy Williams 527,683,626 £1,635,819
8 Mistletoe Justin Bieber 525,255,305 £1,628,291
9 Snowman Sia 517,469,687 £1,604,156
10 Do They Know It’s Christmas Band Aid 406,164,136 £1,259,108
11 Let It Snow Let It Snow Let It Snow Frank Sinatra 396,712,252 £1,229,808
12 Feliz Navidad Jose Feliciano 395,577,437 £1,226,290
13 Underneath The Tree Kelly Clarkson 373,430,848 £1,157,636
14 Happy Xmas (War Is Over) John & Yoko 372,130,036 £1,153,603
15 Holly Jolly Christmas Michael Buble 366,535,185 £1,136,259
16 Driving Home For Christmas Chris Rea 356,919,626 £1,106,451
17 Wonderful Christmastime Paul Mccartney 327,656,166 £1,015,734
18 White Christmas Bing Crosby 325,530,886 £1,009,146
19 Let It Snow Let It Snow Let It Snow Dean Martin 316,841,126 £982,207
20 Sleigh Ride Ronettes 311,143,081 £964,543
21 The Christmas Song Nat King Cole 310,906,411 £963,809
22 Fairytale Of New York Pogues/Kirsty Maccoll 282,693,218 £876,348
23 Merry Christmas Everyone Shakin’ Stevens 274,073,002 £849,626
24 Blue Christmas Elvis Presley 245,106,135 £759,829
25 Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas Sam Smith 238,497,475 £739,342
26 Christmas Lights Coldplay 227,985,989 £706,756
27 Santa Claus Is Coming To Town Michael Buble 221,506,274 £686,669
28 Santa Claus Is Coming To Town Jackson Five 197,073,783 £610,928
29 Step Into Christmas Elton John 193,052,274 £598,462
30 Santa Baby Eartha Kitt 180,507,903 £559,574
31 Christmas (Baby Please Come Home) Darlene Love 178,283,021 £552,677
32 One More Sleep Leona Lewis 143,362,325 £444,423
33 Baby It’s Cold Outside Menzel & Buble 125,174,630 £388,041
34 Mary’s Boy Child/Oh My Lord Boney M 102,694,639 £318,353
35 Merry Xmas Everybody Slade 100,898,010 £312,783
36 I Wish It Could Be Christmas Everyday Wizzard 98,801,346 £306,284
37 2000 Miles Pretenders 81,776,145 £253,506
38 Stop The Cavalry Jona Lewie 64,016,533 £198,451
39 Lonely This Christmas Mud 61,235,979 £189,831
40 Christmas Time Darkness 27,579,993 £85,498

Working out the Streaming Revenue of Hit Christmas Songs

According to Music Gateway, it’s estimated that Spotify pays (a pretty measly) £0.0031 per stream. So, we multiplied each play count by 0.0031 to get the streaming revenue for each song.

Producers: Make Your Own Christmas Hit!

Of course, paltry pay per play means that streaming revenue is just one, tiny slice of the total royalty pie. Christmas song royalties outside of streaming platforms (and there are many more besides Spotify) are pretty impressive for the big hits – so if you’re a producer, you’re probably wondering how you can get in on that action.

If you think you could do it, check out this post for advice on making your own Christmas song!

The Music PR Agency for Future Hitmakers

Give yourself the gift of publicity this Christmas, and join Urban Rebel PR. We’re a creative music PR agency that gets results – with inspirational, creative PR for DJs, producers and EDM artists. 

Contact us: call +44 (0) 161 298 6650 or send your message to [email protected]