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"All I Want for Christmas Is You" is a song by American singer Mariah Carey and Walter Afanasieff, recorded for Carey's fifth album Merry Christmas (1994). Its protagonist declares that she does not care about Christmas presents or lights; all she wants for Christmas is to be with her lover. It is unrelated to the 1989 Christmas hit single by novelty act Vince Vance & The Valiants. It was released as the album's first single in December 1994 and reached the top ten in several countries.

According to The New Yorker, it is "one of the few worthy modern additions to the holiday canon." Despite the common misconception that Carey covered this song, the track is an original song written by Carey and Walter Afanasieff. It has been covered by singers such as John Mayer, Shania Twain, Samantha Mumba, bands such as My Chemical Romance, girl group The Cheetah Girls, and Miley Cyrus (Hannah Montana). It was performed by Olivia Olson in the film Love Actually (2003). By late 2006, it had become the best-selling holiday ringtone of all time in the U.S. Mariah Carey's "All I Want for Christmas Is You" is U.S. best-selling contemporary holiday ringtone for third consecutive year with cumulative sales topping 1.8 million. Mariah Carey's 1994 recording of "All I Want for Christmas Is You" has become the first holiday song to sell one million digital downloads in U.S.

Chart performance

Because of Billboard magazine rules at the time, the song did not chart on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 during its original release because a commercial single was not issued. It was popular on U.S. radio and peaked at number 12 on the Billboard Hot 100 Airplay, and was also a big hit elsewhere. It reached number 2 in the United Kingdom for three weeks and has been certified for selling over 400,000 copies there, losing out to East 17's "Stay Another Day" for that year's Christmas number-one singles in the UK. The single also peaked at number 2 in Australia and Japan, where it was used as the theme song to the drama 29-sai no Christmas (29才のクリスマス), and was titled Koibito-tachi no Christmas (恋人たちのクリスマス; Lovers' Christmas). It sold 1.1 million units in Japan, and remains her best-selling single there.

In 2000, the song re-entered the Billboard Hot 100 charting at number 83 for its one-week tenure in the chart that year. (After 1998, singles were allowed to chart on the Hot 100 without a commercial release; the song received enough radio airplay that year to appear on the chart.) Billboard magazine has since added restrictions to Christmas songs, but with the growth of all-holiday-music formats in the U.S., the song is played on the radio at the end of every year.

In 2005, it rapidly ascended to number 1 on Billboard's Hot 100 Singles Recurrents chart (for songs no longer eligible for the Hot 100), giving it a new peak. It has since reached that position annually from 2005 through 2008. During the same period it became Carey's first number 1 single on the Billboard Hot Digital Songs chart.

In December 2006, "All I Want for Christmas Is You" became the first holiday ringtone to receive a gold and a platinum certification from the RIAA for sales of over 1 million.

In 2007, due to the inclusion of download into the British charts that year, the song re-entered around the Christmas period, peaking at number 4.

On November 9, 2008, the song re-entered the UK Singles Chart again, this time at number 104 and has peaked at number 12 and re-entered the European Hot 100 at number 68. The Christmas song topped the Portugal Billboard Singles Chart. The song entered the Japan Hot 100 Singles at number 60 and a week later rose to number 10.


When the song was first released as a single, no remixes were commissioned. Carey re-released the song commercially in Japan in 2000, with a new remix known as the So So Def remix. The song features new vocals and is played over a harder, more urban beat complete with rap and spoken parts by Jermaine Dupri and Lil' Bow Wow, respectively. The remix is featured on Carey's compilation album Greatest Hits (2001) as a bonus track on the album.

In 2009 Mariah Carey re-recorded the song, but this time she did a dance mix version to the song that leaked the internet November 16, 2009.

Music videos

There are three music videos for "All I Want for Christmas Is You". The first and most commonly seen is a home video that shows Carey celebrating Christmas with snow, presents, and loved ones. Carey's then-husband, Tommy Mottola, makes a cameo appearance as Santa Claus. In the other video, inspired by Nancy Sinatra, Carey dances around in a 1960s-influenced studio surrounded by go dancers. For a 1960s look, the video was filmed in black and white. It is not clear whether the inclusion of this obvious rough-cut version on the DualDisc was an error. The original song however was written about her high school sweetheart John Miladore.

A video was created for the remix, but it does not feature Carey or the rappers and is animated instead. The style of the animation is based on a scene in the video for Carey's "Heartbreaker" (1999). Besides cartoon cameo appearances by Carey, Jermaine Dupri, and Lil' Bow Wow, the video also features cameos from Luis Miguel (Carey's boyfriend at the time), her dog (Jack), and Santa Claus. The music video director is credited as Kris Kringle.

Track listings

Japanese CD single (1994)
  1. "All I Want for Christmas Is You"
  2. "Miss You Most (At Christmas Time)"

Japanese CD single (1996)
  1. "All I Want for Christmas Is You"
  2. "Miss You Most (At Christmas Time)"
  3. "Joy to the World" (Club Mix)

Japanese CD single (2000)
  1. "All I Want for Christmas Is You" (album version)
  2. "All I Want for Christmas Is You" (So So Def remix featuring Jermaine Dupri and Lil' Bow Wow)
  3. "O Holy Night 2000"
  4. "Joy to the World" (club mix)


U.S. Billboard charts

Chart (1994) Peak

Hot 100 Airplay 12
Hot Adult Contemporary Songs 6
Mainstream Top 40 9
Rhythmic Top 40 14
Chart (2000) Peak

Billboard Hot 100 83
Chart (2004) Peak

Hot Digital Tracks 6
Chart (2005) Peak
Hot 100 Singles Recurrent's 1
Hot Digital Songs 1
Hot Ringtones 8
Chart (2006) Peak

Hot Holiday Songs 2
Hot Digital Tracks 1
Hot 100 Singles Recurrents 1
Chart (2007) Peak

Hot Digital Songs 8
Hot Digital Tracks 7
Hot 100 Singles Recurrents 1
Hot 100 Singles Airplay Recurrents 1
Hot Holiday Songs 5
Chart (2008) Peak

Hot Digital Songs 16
Hot Digital Tracks 15
Hot 100 Singles Recurrents 1
Hot 100 Singles Airplay Recurrents 1
Hot Holiday Songs 1
Hot Adult Contemporary Recurrents 1
Chart (2009) Peak

Hot Digital Songs 94

Other charts

Chart (1994) Peak

Australian ARIA Singles Chart 2
Japanese Oricon Singles Chart 2
UK Singles Chart 2
Irish Singles Chart 3
Italian Singles Chart 8
Chart (2005) Peak

Russian Airplay Chart 159
Chart (2006) Peak

UK Download Chart 2
Australian Digital Track Chart 30
Slovakia Airplay Chart 24
Chart (2007) Peak

Finland Top Singles 1
UK Download Chart 1
Canadian Top Digital Downloads chart 2
Norway Top 20 Singles 2
Slovakia Airplay Chart 73
UK Singles Chart 4
Denmark Top 40 Singles Chart 6
Ireland Top 50 Singles Chart 8
Swedish Singles Chart 8
Austria Top 75 Singles Chart 11
German Singles Top 100 18
Swiss Singles Top 100 31
Chart (2008) Peak

European Hot 100 19
Finland Singles Chart 10
Netherlands Mega Single Top 100 8
Portugal Singles Chart 1
Euro Digital Songs 11
UK Download Chart 9
Norway Singles Chart 3
Japan Hot 100 Singles 10
Irish Singles Chart 17
Italian Singles Chart 13
UK Singles Chart 12
Danish Singles Chart 4
Danish Airplay Chart 19
Greece Billboard Singles Chart 3
Hot Canadian Digital Singles 21
Austrian Singles Chart 16
Slovakia Airplay Chart 95
Swedish Singles Chart 17
German Singles Chart 27
Hungarian Singles Top 10 5
Swiss Singles Chart 23
Chart (2009) Peak

UK Singles Chart 51

Certifications & Sales

Region Provider Certifications(s) Sales
Australia ARIA Platinum 70,000+
Japan RIOJ Diamond 1,256,000
United Kingdom BPI Gold 400,000+
United States RIAA Platinum 1,250,000+

Cover versions

150 px

See also


  1. Frere-Jones, Sasha. "On Top: Mariah Carey's record-breaking career". The New Yorker. April 3 2006. Retrieved November 14 2006.
  3. "Mariah Carey's 'All I Want For Christmas Is You' Is Best-Selling Holiday Ringtone Ever". PR Newswire. December 13 2006. Retrieved December 14 2006.
  6. Million Plus Sellers In Japan - number 188
  11. Russian Airplay Chart
  15. "Mariah Carey - All I Want for Christmas is You". Retrieved November 29 2007
  18. Dutch Chart Details for All I Want for Christmas Is You
  21. [1]
  25. [2]
  27. Hungarian Singles Chart

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