number one on christmas day [UK-r]

vintageinfantsvintageinfants 4,536 Posts
edited December 2010 in Strut Central
i understand that it's a very big deal to have the number one single on christmas day in england, but ive never quite understood WHY it's such a big deal.

anyone care to explain this?

  Comments


  • JusMeJusMe 68 Posts
    The Christmas no1 would usually be the biggest selling single of the year so there has always been a bit of competition between labels/bands etc to top the charts in December. For the last 5 or 6 years the Christmas no1 is always a single by the winner of X Factor which is like a British version of American Idol. People get worked up about that cause they say it takes the mystery out of it or whatever so they always have these campaigns to get other songs to the top spot. Last year it was Rage Against the Machine's killing in the name of, this year (in Ireland anyway) its these guys..
    www.youtube.com/watch?v=ljPFZrRD3J8

  • but WHY?!?!

    having the number one single xmas day is considered a career maker...... but how can ONE day of the year constitute this? i dont see xmas as a day conducive to listening to the radio or watching television, nor do i see families running out to the shops to pick up a pop album......

    is it for no reason at all? does your label give you a huge bonus? where is the REASON here?

  • JusMeJusMe 68 Posts
    Just because the most music (and pretty much everything else) is sold in the run up to Christmas. You probably have to sell twice the CDs to get to no1 in late December than you would in lets say August. The charts are weekly so its not how many cds you sell on Christmas day, its the week leading up to Christmas. Am I making sense here?

  • Big_ChanBig_Chan 5,088 Posts
    Interesting list. How the hell is "Last Christmas" by WHAM! not on this list? LOL!!!!!!


    Christmas #1 Song in the UK
    The Christmas number one songs since 1952 as recorded by the Official UK Singles Chart were:

    # 2009: Rage Against The Machine - "Killing In The Name"
    # 2008: Alexandra Burke - "Hallelujah"
    # 2007: Leon Jackson - "When You Believe"
    # 2006: Leona Lewis - "A Moment Like This"
    # 2005: Shayne Ward - "That's My Goal"
    # 2004: Band Aid 20 - "Do They Know It's Christmas"
    # 2003: Michael Andrews featuring Gary Jules - "Mad World"
    # 2002: Girls Aloud - "Sound Of The Underground"
    # 2001: Robbie Williams & Nicole Kidman - "Somethin' Stupid"
    # 2000: Bob The Builder - "Can We Fix It"
    # 1999: Westlife - "I Have A Dream / Seasons In The Sun"
    # 1998: Spice Girls - "Goodbye"
    # 1997: Spice Girls - "Too Much"
    # 1996: Spice Girls - "2 Become 1"
    # 1995: Michael Jackson - "Earth Song"
    # 1994: East 17 - "Stay Another Day"
    # 1993: Mr. Blobby - "Mr. Blobby"
    # 1992: Whitney Houston - "I Will Always Love You"
    # 1991: Queen - "Bohemian Rhapsody / These Are The Days Of Our Lives"
    # 1990: Cliff Richard - "Saviour's Day"
    # 1989: Band Aid II - "Do They Know It's Christmas"
    # 1988: Cliff Richard - "Mistletoe And Wine"
    # 1987: Pet Shop Boys - "Always On My Mind"
    # 1986: Jackie Wilson - "Reet Petite"
    # 1985: Shakin' Stevens - "Merry Christmas Everyone"
    # 1984: Band Aid - "Do They Know It's Christmas"
    # 1983: Flying Pickets - "Only You"
    # 1982: Renee and Renato - "Save Your Love"
    # 1981: Human League - "Don't You Want Me"
    # 1980: St. Winifred's School Choir - "There's No-One Quite Like Grandma"
    # 1979: Pink Floyd - "Another Brick In The Wall (Part 2)"
    # 1978: Boney M - "Mary's Boy Child / Oh My Lord"
    # 1977: Wings - "Mull Of Kintyre / Girls' School"
    # 1976: Johnny Mathis - "When A Child Is Born"
    # 1975: Queen - "Bohemian Rhapsody"
    # 1974: Mud - "Lonely This Christmas"
    # 1973: Slade - "Merry Xmas Everybody"
    # 1972: Little Jimmy Osmond - "Long Haired Lover From Liverpool"
    # 1971: Benny Hill - "Ernie (The Fastest Milkman In The West)"
    # 1970: Dave Edmunds - "I Hear You Knockin'"
    # 1969: Rolf Harris - "Two Little Boys"
    # 1968: Scaffold - "Lily The Pink"
    # 1967: The Beatles - "Hello Goodbye"
    # 1966: Tom Jones - "Green Green Grass Oh Home"
    # 1965: The Beatles - "Day Tripper / We Can Work It Out"
    # 1964: The Beatles - "I Feel Fine"
    # 1963: The Beatles - "I Want To Hold Your Hand"
    # 1962: Elvis Presley - "Return To Sender"
    # 1961: Danny Williams - "Moon River"
    # 1960: Cliff Richard & The Shadows - "I Love You"
    # 1959: Emile Ford and The Checkmates - "What Do You Want To Make Those Eyes At Me For?"
    # 1958: Conway Twitty - "It's Only Make Believe"
    # 1957: Harry Belafonte - "Mary's Boy Child"
    # 1956: Johnnie Rae - "Just Walking In The Rain"
    # 1955: Dicky Valentine - "Christmas Alphabet"
    # 1954: Winifred Atwell - "Let's Have Another Party"
    # 1953: Frankie Laine 9 - "Answer Me"
    # 1952: Al Martino - "Hear In My Heart"



  • JusMe said:
    Just because the most music (and pretty much everything else) is sold in the run up to Christmas. You probably have to sell twice the CDs to get to no1 in late December than you would in lets say August. The charts are weekly so its not how many cds you sell on Christmas day, its the week leading up to Christmas. Am I making sense here?

    i totally understand what you're saying, i just always thought there was some kind of bonus involved because of the deal made of it.

    i understand that if you outsell everyone during the time of highest sales, you're doing alright for yourself...... i just thought........ there was more to it?

  • Whoa... I watch Love Actually every Christmas Eve while wrapping presents and never knew the #1 single thing was something they really do out there!

  • Herm said:
    Whoa... I watch Love Actually every Christmas Eve while wrapping presents and never knew the #1 single thing was something they really do out there!

    HA! i watched that movie today to stir up some of the ol' Xmas spirit, and that's why i brought it up.

  • vintageinfants said:
    Herm said:
    Whoa... I watch Love Actually every Christmas Eve while wrapping presents and never knew the #1 single thing was something they really do out there!

    HA! i watched that movie today to stir up some of the ol' Xmas spirit, and that's why i brought it up.

    Awesome! I love that movie. It's fun.

  • [pssssst........ your gringo is showing.]

  • [pssssst........ your gringo is showing.]

    Ha! I ain't ashamed!

  • SoulOnIceSoulOnIce 13,027 Posts
    uh, silly question but why was a Rage Against the Machine song from 1992 the #1 song on Christmas Day in the UK in 2009??

  • SoulOnIce said:
    uh, silly question but why was a Rage Against the Machine song from 1992 the #1 song on Christmas Day in the UK in 2009??

    Wasn't there a thread about this? Something about a huge drive by some people to get an old song to win to prove a point of some sort? I remember there being a neat story behind it.

  • JusMeJusMe 68 Posts
    Like i said above, The Xmas no1 is always the single from the winner of X Factor which finishes like 2 wks before Xmas. People think this takes away from the tradition of Xmas no1 by taking the mystery out of it so there are always online campaigns to get songs like "killing in the name of" to the top of the charts instead. Last year was the first time it was successful but i think it came out later that the same label owned the rights to the Rage song so the same people got paid regardless. There was even a theory that it was the label that started the online campaign.

  • OkemOkem 4,617 Posts
    The hype is because the Xmas No.1 is just another marketing ploy to get people to buy more records. So they fool the people in to thinking it holds some kind of importance. Then it becomes a 'thing', tradition. And from then on it holds some kind of spurious reward, but mainly just bragging rights. Often because they'll then pit releases against each other, so if your favourite boyband is to reach NO.1 you must buy two copies of the single.

  • JusMe said:
    this year (in Ireland anyway) its these guys..

    are you from Ireland?

  • bluesnagbluesnag 1,285 Posts
    Herm said:
    SoulOnIce said:
    uh, silly question but why was a Rage Against the Machine song from 1992 the #1 song on Christmas Day in the UK in 2009??

    Wasn't there a thread about this? Something about a huge drive by some people to get an old song to win to prove a point of some sort? I remember there being a neat story behind it.

    It was a whole anti-establishment thing. People who thought the whole thing was stupid so they wanted to fuck it up. It's amazing they succeeded, I think. The sarcasm market is underrated.

  • JusMeJusMe 68 Posts
    Risingson said:
    JusMe said:
    this year (in Ireland anyway) its these guys..

    are you from Ireland?

    Yup, Well Ive been here in Cork since 93 anyway. Was born in California. Are you? I know a lot of people from Ireland who lurk here but never see anyone posting..

  • JusMe said:
    Risingson said:
    JusMe said:
    this year (in Ireland anyway) its these guys..

    are you from Ireland?

    Yup, Well Ive been here in Cork since 93 anyway. Was born in California. Are you? I know a lot of people from Ireland who lurk here but never see anyone posting..

    cool, I thought I was the only one on here!!! I'm in Waterford city

  • billbradleybillbradley You want BBQ sauce? Get the fuck out of my house. 2,804 Posts

  • djdazedjdaze 3,099 Posts
    # 2000: Bob The Builder - "Can We Fix It"


    you gotta be fuckin kidding me. I knew the UK charts were a joke but really? well shit, actually when I was there a RINGTONE hit #1 on the charts so I guess a kids show theme song isn't far off.

  • JusMeJusMe 68 Posts
    Risingson said:
    JusMe said:
    Risingson said:
    JusMe said:
    this year (in Ireland anyway) its these guys..

    are you from Ireland?

    Yup, Well Ive been here in Cork since 93 anyway. Was born in California. Are you? I know a lot of people from Ireland who lurk here but never see anyone posting..

    cool, I thought I was the only one on here!!! I'm in Waterford city

    Nice one! Do you know Jay Ru out there? Good guy.

  • JusMe said:


    Nice one! Do you know Jay Ru out there? Good guy.

    I know the name alright, he DJs around here but I don't actually know him....

  • DocMcCoyDocMcCoy "Go and laugh in your own country!" 5,921 Posts
    vintageinfants said:
    i understand that it's a very big deal to have the number one single on christmas day in england, but ive never quite understood WHY it's such a big deal.

    anyone care to explain this?

    A potted history of the UK Christmas number one, for what it's worth;

    Because the music industry shuts down over the Christmas and New Year period, it used to be there were no major new releases in the UK during December, leaving the field open for seasonal and novelty records. If you got a number one single during Christmas week, the likelihood was that it'd carry through into the New Year, perhaps even for the whole of January, because there wouldn't be much competition until the first Q1 releases were in the shops.

    If you look at the list Chan posted, you might notice that, from 1968 through until the early 90s, the Christmas number ones were a pretty even mixture of legit pop hits, seasonal songs and oddball/novelty records. From the mid-90s on, the emphasis changed as record labels began to see landing a Christmas number one not only as a useful marketing tool or a way of boosting singles sales in a declining market, but also as a competitive sport. So you began to have things like boy-band wars, where having the biggest Christmas hit became a measure of one band's popularity relative to their so-called rivals. Then it became a matter of beating the Beatles' record of the most successive Christmas number ones, which the Spice Girls managed to tie, but not before trying to parlay it into some sort of measure of artistic equivalence. The betting industry also got involved around this time, making it even more competitive.

    When the Idol format and its variants emerged at the start of the last decade, people like Simon Cowell and Pete Waterman saw snagging the Xmas number one as the ideal means of launching a new act (a&r'ed by the viewing audience), gaining maximum publicity for the show, the performer and themselves. From 2005 until 2008, the winner of the Cowell-produced X Factor had the UK number one single at Christmas. Last year, two people came up with the idea of getting RATM to number one for Christmas as a protest against Cowell having commandeered it, and, via a Facebook campaign, managed to pull it off. RATM put on a free gig in London last summer as a thank-you. So, now the Xmas number one has been given an anti-pop/pseudo-political aspect.

    This year, it'll be business as usual with Cowell's latest charge - a young lad named Matt Cardle, who's like a diet Chris Martin - prevailing, after the anti-Cowell protest vote was split between about four or five other candidates.

    To answer Chan's question, Wham's Last Christmas came out in 1984, the same year as the Band Aid single, which swept everything before it.

  • I wonder if the process was/is as corrupt as it was here in Australia & New Zealand, I used to get literally thousands of dollars worth of goods/flights, whatever in bribes at xmas time in exchange for "hyped" chart returns.

  • DocMcCoy said:
    vintageinfants said:
    i understand that it's a very big deal to have the number one single on christmas day in england, but ive never quite understood WHY it's such a big deal.

    anyone care to explain this?

    A potted history of the UK Christmas number one, for what it's worth;

    Because the music industry shuts down over the Christmas and New Year period, it used to be there were no major new releases in the UK during December, leaving the field open for seasonal and novelty records. If you got a number one single during Christmas week, the likelihood was that it'd carry through into the New Year, perhaps even for the whole of January, because there wouldn't be much competition until the first Q1 releases were in the shops.

    If you look at the list Chan posted, you might notice that, from 1968 through until the early 90s, the Christmas number ones were a pretty even mixture of legit pop hits, seasonal songs and oddball/novelty records. From the mid-90s on, the emphasis changed as record labels began to see landing a Christmas number one not only as a useful marketing tool or a way of boosting singles sales in a declining market, but also as a competitive sport. So you began to have things like boy-band wars, where having the biggest Christmas hit became a measure of one band's popularity relative to their so-called rivals. Then it became a matter of beating the Beatles' record of the most successive Christmas number ones, which the Spice Girls managed to tie, but not before trying to parlay it into some sort of measure of artistic equivalence. The betting industry also got involved around this time, making it even more competitive.

    When the Idol format and its variants emerged at the start of the last decade, people like Simon Cowell and Pete Waterman saw snagging the Xmas number one as the ideal means of launching a new act (a&r'ed by the viewing audience), gaining maximum publicity for the show, the performer and themselves. From 2005 until 2008, the winner of the Cowell-produced X Factor had the UK number one single at Christmas. Last year, two people came up with the idea of getting RATM to number one for Christmas as a protest against Cowell having commandeered it, and, via a Facebook campaign, managed to pull it off. RATM put on a free gig in London last summer as a thank-you. So, now the Xmas number one has been given an anti-pop/pseudo-political aspect.

    This year, it'll be business as usual with Cowell's latest charge - a young lad named Matt Cardle, who's like a diet Chris Martin - prevailing, after the anti-Cowell protest vote was split between about four or five other candidates.

    To answer Chan's question, Wham's Last Christmas came out in 1984, the same year as the Band Aid single, which swept everything before it.

    THANK YOU

  • DORDOR Two Ron Toe 9,865 Posts
    They should have pushed the #66 track on the UK Top singles chart... While I haven't heard the song, they got a catchy name and song title.

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