In his recent book “The Philosophy of Modern Song,” Bob Dylan describes Perry Como as an “unbelievable” performer who “lived every minute of every song he played … When he got down He stood up and he sang, took ownership of the song and shared it, and we believed every word he said. What more could you ask of an artist?”
So maybe that adds to the reason why Como’s signature song, “It’s Beginning to Look a Lot
Behind “Start,” at No. 2, there is “Sleigh Ride,” the tune that should enjoy the position of the North Pole, as it was on top of the ASCAP chart last year. At No. 3 is “A Holly Jolly Christmas,” first sung by Burl Ives for the television special “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer.” The song “Rudolph” itself is at number 5, and the repetitive “Let It Snow, Let It Snow, Let It Snow” is at No. 4 before.
At this point, a nation of “lambs” may rise up, like angry fanged sheep, discreetly asking: Where is IT “You Are Yourself and You Need Me”? The answer is: No. 9. This may seem counter-intuitive, as Mariah Carey’s ongoing ’90s hit has become more popular than ever in recent years, reaching No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 for the past few years. Back-to-back Christmases, including (for a few days) this one.
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While the performing rights organization doesn’t explain why some songs do better than others in the data it collects, there are a few clear reasons why even songs older than “All I Want” do well in these annual rankings. On the one hand, every version of a song played is recorded. And “It’s Starting to Look Pretty
It may also play a role that the data is collected early in the Christmas season, when a song about how Christmas “begins” seems more thematically appropriate, and may radio programmers who switched to Christmas all on Thanksgiving Thanksgiving. trying not to burn listeners out on Mariah’s ubiquitous seasonal staple too soon. And there’s no doubt that pre-70s classical music is heavily heard on easy listening stations and streaming platforms that aren’t on the Billboard charts, but are on the ASCAP charts.
(As an asterisk, the ASCAP chart equates to terrestrial radio and streaming data, and only includes songs written or co-written by PRO signees, so nothing by BMI writers will appear.)
As expected, modern songs do not fare very well. Apart from Carey’s contribution to the canon, only two other songs in the 25 have a more recent origin than 1970: Paul McCartney’s “Wonder Christmastime” from 1979 and Kelly Clarkson’s “Underneath Tree” from 2013: “Wonderful Christmastime” by Paul McCartney. in 1979 and “Underneath the Tree” by Kelly Clarkson in 2013. “Last Christmas” is often Wham! there as a representative of the modern section, but after being on the list at number 11 last year, it is left out for 2022.
If you’re looking for a writer to crown the King of Christmas, look no further than Johnny Marks, the only person on the list with more than one composition. He has three: “Holly Jolly,” “Rudolph,” and “Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree.”
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- “It’s starting like a lot.
Although a couple of songs are included, “Deck the Halls” and “Jingle Bells,” are popular, special arrangements include writing credits for authors associated with ASCAP.