America’s Top Christmas Songs 2020

Are America’s all-Christmas stations playing the right songs? P1 MEDIA GROUP and MRC ENTERTAINMENT recently tested the appeal of the 40 most-played and 40 most-streamed Christmas songs from the 2019 holiday season, based on the number of spins and detections. P1 Media Group conducted a survey with radio listeners likely to listen to a local all-Christmas music radio station this holiday season. They tested a total of 62 Christmas songs, the 40 most-played songs and the 22 unique songs from the 40 most-streamed list, for a total of 62 songs.

Key Findings

For the fourth straight year “Jingle Bell Rock” by Bobby Helms is America’s #1 testing Christmas song. “Christmas music’s appeal remains as strong as ever amongst American radio listeners whom listen to All Christmas stations ‘frequently’ or ‘sometimes’ and personally enjoy Christmas music on a local radio station during the holiday season,” said P1 Partner/Co-Founder Ken Benson.

“As we often see, there is lots to learn when we compare radio airplay to on-demand streaming data, even with holiday music. In fact, over half of the top 40 most streamed holiday songs were underplayed in radio in 2019. Understanding streaming data can help broaden the appeal of your station,” noted MRC Data Dir./Radio Haley Jones.

A total of nine songs from the Top 40 most-streamed songs list tested better with likely Christmas radio listeners than nine songs from the Top 40 most-played songs list. The data suggests these nine songs can be played more on the radio:

  1. MICHAEL BUBLÉ – Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas (ranked 230 on 2019 airplay chart)
  2. FRANK SINATRA – Jingle Bells (44)
  3. NAT KING COLE – Deck the Halls (562)
  4. PERRY COMO – It’s Beginning to Look a lot like CHRISTMAS (64)
  5. MICHAEL BUBLÉ – It’s Beginning to Look a lot like CHRISTMAS (65)
  6. DARLENE LOVE – CHRISTMAS (Baby, Please Come Home) (57)
  7. PERRY COMO – Home for the Holidays (74)
  8. ANDY WILLIAMS – Silver Bells (119)
  9. THURL RAVENSCROFT – You’re a Mean One, Mr. Grinch (48)

The Holiday Classics rule the Top 10 including “It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year,” “Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree,” “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” and two versions of “Have a Holly Jolly Christmas” and “Jingle Bell Rock.”

The Christmas standards tested higher than their contemporary counterparts. Six of the eight original Christmas songs recorded since 2011 tested at the bottom of the list in appeal. The notable exception is KELLY CLARKSON’s, “Underneath the Tree,” from 2013, tested #28 overall with the total sample and an impressive #11 with 18-24s.

49 of the 62 Christmas songs tested very favorably with an appeal score of 70 or higher on a 100-point scale.

The appeal of all- Christmas music radio stations is broad with nearly 70% of men and women stating they “frequently” listen to Christmas music on a local radio station during the holiday season.


First published by AllAccess. Read original here



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