We don’t usually delve too deeply into radio programming or format specifics, because music is a specialized world of its own within radio. But December is the time of year for “top song” lists, and here’s another fun one.
The American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers released its list of the top 25 ASCAP Holiday Songs, highlighting the work of its member artists.
“Mariah Carey’s “All I Want for Christmas Is You” takes the #1 spot as the most-played holiday hit, according to an ASCAP analysis of streaming and terrestrial radio data,” the organization stated.
The song was written by Carey and Walter Afanasieff and published by Universal Music Group Publishing, Sony/ATV, Kobalt Music and Tamal Vista Music. ASCAP noted that Carey posted a holiday message to fans including a shoutout to radio.
The organization also noted that Johnny Marks has three entries on this list, “A Holly Jolly Christmas,” “Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree” and “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer.”
So below are the year’s top 25 most played ASCAP holiday songs, meaning they were written or co-written by ASCAP songwriters and composers. The ranking is based on an analysis of ASCAP streaming and terrestrial radio data.
- “All I Want for Christmas Is You” by Mariah Carey and Walter Afanasieff (1994)
- “It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas” by Meredith Willson (1951)
- “A Holly Jolly Christmas” by Johnny Marks (1962)
- “Sleigh Ride” by Leroy Anderson and Mitchell Parish (1948)
- “Let It Snow, Let It Snow, Let It Snow” by Sammy Cahn and Jule Styne (1945)
- “Jingle Bell Rock” by Joseph Carleton Beal and James Ross Boothe (1958)
- “Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree” by Johnny Marks (1958)
- “Last Christmas” by George Michael (1984)
- “It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year” by Edward Pola and George Wyle (1963)
- “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” by Ralph Blane and Hugh Martin (1944)
- “Winter Wonderland” by Felix Bernard and Richard B. Smith (1934)
- “Santa Claus Is Comin’ to Town” by Fred Coots and Haven Gillespie (1934)
- “White Christmas” by Irving Berlin (1941)
- “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” by Johnny Marks (1949)
- “The Christmas Song” by Mel Tormé and Robert Wells (1946)
- “Here Comes Santa Claus (Down Santa Claus Lane)” by Oakley Haldeman and Gene Autry (1947)
- “Home for the Holidays” by Robert Allen and Al Stillman (1954)
- “Feliz Navidad” by Jose Feliciano (1970)
- “Happy Holiday/The Holiday Season” by Kay Tompson and Irving Berlin (1942)
- “Santa Baby” by Joan Javits, Anthony Springer and Philip Springer (1953)
- “Frosty the Snowman” by Steve Nelson and Walter E. Rollins (1950)
- “Jingle Bells” by James Lord Pierpont; Frank Sinatra version arranged by Gordon Jenkins (ASCAP, 1958)
- “Underneath the Tree” by Kelly Clarkson and Greg Kurstin (2013)
- “You’re a Mean One, Mr. Grinch” by Dr. Seuss and Albert Hague (1966)
- “Santa Tell Me” by Ariana Grande and Savan Kotecha (2013)