This Is How Much Mariah Carey Makes Every Year For ‘All I Want For Christmas Is You’
In this life, they say nothing comes easy — and while that might be true, the near-effortless success behind Mariah Carey’s holiday hit “All I Want For Christmas is You” is undeniable.
Topping the charts back in 1994 and continuing to hit #1 decades after its release, the song keeps breaking barriers as it rises to “Santa riding his sleigh”-level heights (and yes, it definitely makes the singer Mrs. Claus in our books).
As per a study conducted by The Economist, the almost 3-decade-old powerhouse hit “All I Want For Christmas Is You” is banking. Up until 2016, the track had amassed $60 million in total royalties, and it’s only growing in popularity— move over Evian water baths, the “Songbird Supreme” is actually swimming in liquid gold.
Carey and her co-songwriter Walter Afanasieff continue to see massive yearly earnings, with the outlet estimating the song makes $2.5 million every year. That means you can add an extra $15 million to the reported total royalties, adding up to an astonishing, “Fantasy”-level $75 million total.
There is no doubt that Carey’s signature vocals and witty lyrics make this song the perfect banger and a testament to the platinum singer-songwriter’s musical prowess, but did you know that Carey and Afanasieff reportedly took around 15 minutes to write it? That means each of those minutes is worth $5 million. Mind-blown.
The “We Belong Together” singer spoke to Parade about the writing process, which was actually much more intimate than you would expect.
She explained, “I started writing that on a little DX7 or Casio keyboard that was in this little room in the house that I lived in at the time in Upstate New York lifetimes ago.” About the iconic lyrics like “I won’t make a list and send it to the North Pole for Saint Nick,” the singer said she wrote about “all the things that reminded [her] of Christmas that [she] wanted other people to feel.”
Talking about the creation of the song, the chanteuse has said that the whole process of making the song really took more than just a few minutes. “We did take some time doing the record because if you listen to all those background vocals and all that stuff, you can’t do it in five minutes… It’s literally impossible unless you had three choirs.” But who needs choirs when you have a five-octave vocal range, Mariah?
The song was released when Carey was just 24 years old, and she remembers being “very, very early on” in her career and still “thinking about childhood stuff” when she wrote it. Her favorite lyric that brings her back to that time? She explained, “To me in that song it is, ‘I won’t ask for much this Christmas, I won’t even wish for snow,’… [I wrote it] when I did wish for snow every year.”
The success of “All I Want For Christmas Is You” is unstoppable, and it’s become just a s synonymous with the holiday season as Rudolf, aptly giving Carey the very deserved nickname “The Queen of Christmas.”
Last year, it became the first holiday single to be certified Diamond by the RIAA, meaning it has sold more than 10 million units and hit 1 billion streams on Spotify that same year.
Carey might “not want a lot for Christmas,” but there’s no doubt “everyone is singing” the festive track year after year— and that all her musical wishes have come true.
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