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Oldies 14/12/2023

What Is The Best-selling UK Christmas No. 1 Single Of All Time?

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What Is The Best-selling UK Christmas No. 1 Single Of All Time?
New York, NY (Top40 Charts) The United Kingdom has a long-standing tradition of Christmas No. 1 singles, and these festive tunes have become an integral part of the holiday season. 

For decades, artists have vied for the top spot on the UK singles chart, hoping to secure the coveted Christmas No. 1 position. But among the countless contenders, which song holds the title of the best-selling UK Christmas No. 1 single of all time? 

In this article, we'll take a trip down memory lane and reveal the iconic track that continues to define British Christmases.

A Time-Honored Tradition

The race for the Christmas No. 1 spot on the UK singles chart has been a cherished tradition since the chart's inception in 1952. Every December, artists from various genres release special holiday-themed songs or compete with their current hits, aiming to capture the hearts of the British public during the festive season.

The competition for the Christmas No. 1 spot has been fierce, and several songs have achieved iconic status over the years. From classic holiday anthems to unexpected chart-toppers, these singles have left an indelible mark on the country's musical landscape.

The Contenders

We must consider chart performance and long-term sales to determine the best-selling UK Christmas No. 1 single of all time. Several songs have enjoyed remarkable chart success during the holiday season, but their enduring popularity throughout the years is equally important.

Here are some notable contenders that have held the Christmas No. 1 spot in the UK:

  1. "Do They Know It's Christmas?" by Band-Aid (1984): This charity single, featuring an ensemble of popular artists of the time, was released to raise funds for famine relief in Ethiopia. It became an instant classic and held the Christmas No. 1 spot in 1984.
  2. "Bohemian Rhapsody" by Queen (1975): Although not a Christmas-themed song, Queen's epic rock opera "Bohemian Rhapsody" achieved the Christmas No. 1 position in 1975 and remains a beloved anthem.
  3. "I Want to Hold Your Hand" by The Beatles (1963): The Fab Four dominated the UK charts in the 1960s, and their catchy hit "I Want to Hold Your Hand" reached No. 1 for Christmas in 1963.
  4. "Merry Xmas Everybody" by Slade (1973): Slade's glam rock anthem "Merry Xmas Everybody" is a holiday staple in the UK and reached the Christmas No. 1 spot in 1973.
  5. "Mary's Boy Child" by Boney M (1978): This reggae-inspired rendition of the classic Christmas carol "Mary's Boy Child" earned the top spot for Christmas in 1978.
  6. "Stay Another Day" by East 17 (1994): The British boy band East 17 delivered an emotional ballad, "Stay Another Day," which secured the Christmas No. 1 spot in 1994.

While these songs left an unforgettable mark on the UK's Christmas music history, one particular track has distinguished itself as the best-selling Christmas No. 1 single of all time.

The Ultimate Christmas No. 1: "Do They Know It's Christmas?"

The title of the best-selling UK Christmas No. 1 single of all time belongs to "Do They Know It's Christmas?" by Band-Aid. This iconic song, released in 1984, brought together some of the biggest British and Irish musical talents of the era to raise funds for famine relief in Ethiopia. The track was written by Bob Geldof and Midge Ure and featured contributions from artists such as Bono, George Michael, Sting, Boy George, and many more.

The success of "Do They Know It's Christmas?" was nothing short of remarkable. Not only did it secure the Christmas No. 1 position in the UK charts in 1984, but it also became the fastest-selling single in British chart history at the time. The song's charitable message and the star-studded ensemble of musicians struck a chord with the public and ignited a massive wave of support.

Beyond its initial chart-topping success, "Do They Know It's Christmas?" has continued to sell well during subsequent holiday seasons. Its enduring popularity and impact on charitable efforts make it the quintessential Christmas No. 1 single in the UK.

The song's lyrics reflect the holiday spirit and the desire to bring hope and relief to those in need. The chorus, sung by the ensemble of artists, includes the poignant lines:

And there won't be snow in Africa this Christmas time

The greatest gift they'll get this year is life

These lyrics encapsulate the charitable mission of the song, emphasising the importance of compassion and generosity during the holiday season.

A Lasting Legacy

"Do They Know It's Christmas?" not only holds the distinction of being the best-selling UK Christmas No. 1 single of all time but also carries a lasting legacy. It paved the way for subsequent charity singles, including "We Are the World" in the United States, and inspired numerous artists to use their platforms for philanthropic endeavours.

Over the years, various versions and adaptations of "Do They Know It's Christmas?" have been released to support charitable causes, showcasing the enduring impact of the original song. You will hear the track played in venues across the UK from a comedy club in Covent Garden to a local pub in Aberdeen. The track's continued success serves as a reminder of the power of music to unite people and make a positive difference in the world, especially during the holiday season.

As Christmas approaches each year, "Do They Know It's Christmas?" continues to resonate with audiences, reminding us of the importance of compassion, solidarity, and generosity. This sentiment embodies the true spirit of the holiday season.

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