You know that feeling in November or early December when you haven’t heard Christmas music in over ten months and then all of a sudden you hear the opening bars to All I Want For Christmas Is You?
It’s a mixture of joy, excitement, giddiness, anticipation and, essentially, wellbeing. A sense that the season of goodwill is upon us and anything can happen.
But while you might know all the words to the song, do you know how it came about, who actually wrote it or how much it has made over the years?
Sit back and relax as we go behind the lyrics on Mariah Carey’s hit song All I Want For Christmas Is You!
– It was released in 1994 as part of a Christmas album that Columbia Records asked Carey to record. She was not enthused with the idea as holiday collections were considered something of an afterthought at the time.
– Mariah came up with the idea for the song while alone in a house in New York with It’s a Wonderful Life playing in the background. Taking the kernel of the song to her frequent collaborator Walter Afanasieff, the pair collaborated to create the hit that plays in our radios today.
– The song was recorded in the summer with the studio decked out in Christmas decorations to get them in the festive spirit!
– In 2019, following a social media campaign, the song hit No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 for the first time, becoming both the song that took the longest to do so and the first Christmas track to take the top spot since “The Chipmunk Song” 60 years ago.
– The song itself has become something of a cottage industry, spawning a children’s book, an animated film, hours of online content and Carey’s infamous Christmas stage shows.
– Many music critics believe the part of the song’s success is that it eschews traditional Christmas tropes like Santa, reindeer and religion and instead makes the season about love and romance. In an extremely clever move, the gender and name of the lover in question is not specified meaning it’s relatable to everyone who hears it.
– The inclusion of the holiday hit as a pivotal moment in the Christmas film Love Actually propelled Carey’s song to even higher levels. In fact, the film’s writer, Richard Curtis, claimed that the song actually inspired the entire film!
He said that the song “seems to me to completely say how you want to feel about how extraordinary Christmas is. In a way, Love Actually was also a stab at trying to be as good as Mariah… I failed!”
– In 2017, a report from The Economist stated that Carey had made over $60 million from that one song alone. We can only imagine what it has raked in since then but you know what, it’s brought so much joy to so many people that we reckon she’s earned it!