Brenda Lee’s Christmas Classic Tops the Charts After 65 Years

Brenda Lee 1

Brenda Lee, the legendary country and rock and roll singer, has achieved a remarkable feat with her holiday hit “Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree.”. The song, which was released in 1958 when Lee was only 13 years old, has reached the No. 1 spot on the Billboard Hot 100 for the first time, 65 years after its debut.

Brenda Lee 1

A Long Journey to the Top

“Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree” was written by Johnny Marks, who also penned other Christmas classics such as “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” and “A Holly Jolly Christmas.”. The song was recorded by Lee in July 1958 with a studio band that included guitarist Hank Garland and saxophonist Boots Randolph. Lee later recalled that she had to sing with the air conditioning off and a Christmas tree in the studio to create a festive mood.

The song did not become an instant hit, however. It sold only 5,000 copies in its first year and was overshadowed by Lee’s other songs, such as “Sweet Nothin’s” and “I’m Sorry.”. It was not until 1960, when the song was re-released with a more prominent saxophone solo, that it started to gain popularity. It entered the Billboard Hot 100 for the first time on Dec. 12, 1960, and peaked at No. 14.

Since then, the song has become a perennial favorite during the holiday season, thanks to its catchy melody, upbeat lyrics, and Lee’s youthful voice. It has been featured in many movies and TV shows, such as “Home Alone,” “Lethal Weapon,” and “The Simpsons.”. It has also been covered by numerous artists, such as Miley Cyrus, Kelly Clarkson, and Justin Bieber.

Breaking Records and Making History

According to Billboard, “Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree” has reached the No. 1 spot on the Hot 100 dated December 11, 2023, based on streaming, sales, and radio airplay data. The song has amassed 34.4 million U.S. streams, 7,000 downloads, and 34.1 million radio audience impressions in the week ending Dec. 2, 2023.

By topping the chart, Lee has broken several records and made history. She has become:

  • She is the oldest person to top the Hot 100, at 78 years and 10 months old, surpassing Louis Armstrong, who was 62 years and 9 months old when he reached No. 1 with “Hello, Dolly!” in 1964.
  • She was the first artist to top the Hot 100 with a song that was released more than 60 years ago, surpassing Chubby Checker, whose “The Twist” topped the chart in 1960 and 1962, 19 years after its release.
  • The first artist to top the Hot 100 with a song that had previously peaked in the top 20, surpassing The Weeknd, whose “Blinding Lights” topped the chart in 2020 after peaking at No. 11 in 2019.
  • She was the first female artist to top the Hot 100 with a song that she recorded as a teenager, surpassing Olivia Rodrigo, who was 17 years old when she topped the chart with “Drivers License” in 2021.

Celebrating the Milestone with Fans and Friends

Lee has expressed her gratitude and joy for the achievement, saying that she is “very proud” and “very thankful” for the support of her fans and friends. She has also released a new music video for the song, which features cameos by country stars Tanya Tucker and Trisha Yearwood, as well as a special visit by Santa Claus. The video premiered on CMT, CMT Music, and Paramount Times Square Billboards.

In addition, Lee has released a new EP titled “A Rockin’ Christmas with Brenda Lee,” which includes “Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree” and other holiday favorites such as “Santa Claus Is Coming to Town,” “Jingle Bell Rock,” and “A Marshmallow World.”. She has also performed the song on the NBC television special “Christmas at the Opry,” which aired on December 7, 2023.

Lee, who is a member of the Rock and Roll and Country Music Hall of Fame, has had a long and successful career, with more than 100 charting singles, including “I’m Sorry,” “Break It to Me Gently,” and “All Alone Am I.”. She has also received numerous awards and honors, such as the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award, the National Medal of Arts, and the Kennedy Center Honors.

However, none of her songs has been as enduring and beloved as “Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree,” which has become a timeless classic that brings joy and cheer to millions of people every year.

By Kane Wilson

Kane Wilson, founder of this news website, is a seasoned news editor renowned for his analytical skills and meticulous approach to storytelling. His journey in journalism began as a local reporter, and he quickly climbed the ranks due to his talent for unearthing compelling stories. Kane completed his Master’s degree in Media Studies from Northwestern University and spent several years in broadcast journalism prior to co-founding this platform. His dedication to delivering unbiased news and ability to present complex issues in an easily digestible format make him an influential voice in the industry.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Related Posts