List of best-selling Christmas/holiday albums in the United States

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This page shows the best-selling Christmas albums in the United States. It includes artists from all over the world, but it only includes sales in the United States of America.

Prior to March 1, 1991, the only means of tracking sales figures for record albums and singles in the United States was via the certification system of the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA), based specifically on shipments (less potential returns) on a long-term basis. According to the most recent record album certifications, the holiday album title that has shipped the most copies in the United States is Elvis Presley's 1957 LP Elvis' Christmas Album, which is certified by the RIAA for shipment of 13 million copies in the U.S. (three million copies of the original 1957 release on RCA Victor Records, plus ten million copies of a "budget" edition first released by RCA Camden in 1970 and then by Pickwick Records in 1975).[1]

From March 1, 1991, through the present day, the Nielsen SoundScan tracking system has been more widely used to accurately track sales of record albums and singles at the point of sale (POS) based on inventory bar code scans.

Best-selling Christmas/holiday albums since Nielsen SoundScan tracking began[edit]

This is a list of the twenty-five best-selling Christmas albums of the SoundScan era in the United States according to the Nielsen Company. Nielsen SoundScan began tracking sales data for Billboard on March 1, 1991. This list includes accumulated SoundScan sales through December 1, 2014.[2]

1991–2014[edit]

  1. Miracles: The Holiday Album / Kenny G ~ 7,310,000[2]
  2. Noël / Josh Groban ~ 5,710,000[2]
  3. Merry Christmas / Mariah Carey ~ 5,370,000[2]
  4. These Are Special Times / Celine Dion ~ 5,310,000[2]
  5. Christmas in the Aire / Mannheim Steamroller ~ 3,740,000[2]
  6. A Fresh Aire Christmas / Mannheim Steamroller ~ 3,660,000[2]
  7. Mannheim Steamroller Christmas / Mannheim Steamroller ~ 3,500,000[2]
  8. Now That's What I Call Christmas! / various artists ~ 3,480,000[2]
  9. Christmas Eve and Other Stories / Trans-Siberian Orchestra ~ 3,430,000[2]
  10. A Charlie Brown Christmas / Vince Guaraldi Trio ~ 3,410,000[2]
  11. Christmas / Michael Bublé ~ 3,390,000[2]
  12. When My Heart Finds Christmas / Harry Connick, Jr. ~ 3,150,000[2]
  13. My Christmas / Andrea Bocelli ~ 3,010,000[2]
  14. Christmas Extraordinaire / Mannheim Steamroller ~ 2,920,000[2]
  15. Home for Christmas / *NSYNC ~ 2,760,000[2]
  16. Faith: A Holiday Album / Kenny G ~ 2,750,000[2]
  17. Beyond the Season / Garth Brooks ~ 2,650,000[2]
  18. Home for Christmas / Amy Grant ~ 2,540,000[2]
  19. A Very Special Christmas / various artists ~ 2,520,000[2]
  20. The Lost Christmas Eve / Trans-Siberian Orchestra ~ 2,380,000[2]
  21. A Very Special Christmas 2 / various artists ~ 2,200,000[2]
  22. The Gift / Susan Boyle ~ 2,180,000[2]
  23. Christmas Portrait / The Carpenters ~ 1,950,000[2]
  24. White Christmas / Bing Crosby ~ 1,950,000[2]
  25. The Christmas Album / Neil Diamond ~ 1,910,000[2]

Best-selling Christmas/holiday albums by RIAA certification[edit]

This is an incomplete list of the best-selling Christmas/holiday albums in the United States based on shipment certification by the RIAA. This list provides a more complete representation of the best-selling Christmas/holiday albums in history, as it includes those released well before the Nielsen/SoundScan era of music sales.

Year of Release Artist(s) Title Label(s) Certification Award[3]
1970 Presley, ElvisElvis Presley Elvis' Christmas Album
(budget reissue of 1957 LP with altered track listing)
RCA Camden/Pickwick Diamond
1994 G, KennyKenny G Miracles: The Holiday Album Arista 8× Platinum
2001 Various Now That's What I Call Christmas! UTV 6× Platinum
1988 Mannheim Steamroller A Fresh Aire Christmas American Gramaphone 6× Platinum
1984 Mannheim Steamroller Mannheim Steamroller Christmas American Gramaphone 6× Platinum
1963 Cole, Nat KingNat King Cole The Christmas Song
(originally released in 1960 under the title The Magic of Christmas)
Capitol 6× Platinum
2007 Groban, JoshJosh Groban Noël WEA/Reprise 5× Platinum
1994 Carey, MariahMariah Carey Merry Christmas Columbia 5× Platinum
1998 Dion, CelineCeline Dion These Are Special Times Epic 5× Platinum
1967 Streisand, BarbraBarbra Streisand A Christmas Album Columbia 5× Platinum
1958 Mathis, JohnnyJohnny Mathis Merry Christmas Columbia 5× Platinum
1995 Crosby, BingBing Crosby White Christmas
(originally released in 1945 under the title Merry Christmas)
Decca 4× Platinum
1995 Mannheim Steamroller Christmas in the Aire American Gramaphone 4× Platinum
1987 Various A Very Special Christmas A&M 4× Platinum
1984 Various Christmas Through the Years Reader's Digest Music 4× Platinum
2010 Boyle, SusanSusan Boyle The Gift Syco/Columbia 3× Platinum
2001 Mannheim Steamroller Christmas Extraordinaire American Gramaphone 3× Platinum
1999 G, KennyKenny G Faith: A Holiday Album Arista Records 3× Platinum
1996 Trans-Siberian Orchestra Christmas Eve and Other Stories Lava 3× Platinum
1993 Connick, Jr., HarryHarry Connick, Jr. When My Heart Finds Christmas Sony/Columbia 3× Platinum
1992 Brooks, GarthGarth Brooks Beyond the Season Liberty 3× Platinum
1992 Grant, AmyAmy Grant Home for Christmas A&M 3× Platinum
1985 Presley, ElvisElvis Presley It's Christmas Time
(retitled reissue of 1970 budget edition of Elvis' Christmas Album)
BMG 3× Platinum
1982 Winston, GeorgeGeorge Winston December Windham Hill 3× Platinum
1971 Presley, ElvisElvis Presley Elvis Sings the Wonderful World of Christmas RCA 3× Platinum
1965 Guaraldi Trio, VinceVince Guaraldi Trio A Charlie Brown Christmas Fantasy 3× Platinum
1957 Presley, ElvisElvis Presley Elvis' Christmas Album
(original release)
RCA Victor 3× Platinum
2009 Bocelli, AndreaAndrea Bocelli My Christmas Decca 2× Platinum
2004 Trans-Siberian Orchestra The Lost Christmas Eve Lava 2× Platinum
2003 Various Now That's What I Call Christmas!: The Signature Collection Capitol 2× Platinum
1998 *NSYNC Home for Christmas RCA 2× Platinum
1993 Boyz II Men Christmas Interpretations Motown 2× Platinum
1993 Gill, VinceVince Gill Let There Be Peace on Earth MCA Nashville 2× Platinum
1992 Diamond, NeilNeil Diamond The Christmas Album Columbia 2× Platinum
1992 Various A Very Special Christmas 2 A&M 2× Platinum
1989 New Kids on the Block Merry, Merry Christmas Columbia 2× Platinum
1987 McEntire, RebaReba McEntire Merry Christmas to You MCA Nashville 2× Platinum
1986 Strait, GeorgeGeorge Strait Merry Christmas Strait to You! MCA Nashville 2× Platinum
1985 Alabama Alabama Christmas RCA 2× Platinum
1984 Rogers, KennyKenny Rogers & Parton, DollyDolly Parton Once Upon a Christmas RCA 2× Platinum
1981 Murray, AnneAnne Murray Christmas Wishes Capitol 2× Platinum
1981 Rogers, KennyKenny Rogers Christmas Liberty 2× Platinum
1979 Various Disney's Christmas Favorites Disneyland 2× Platinum
1975 Denver, JohnJohn Denver Rocky Mountain Christmas RCA 2× Platinum

Best-selling Christmas/holiday albums by year[edit]

In 1963, Billboard magazine began publishing a special weekly sales charts for Christmas album sales named "Christmas Albums" for three to four weeks during each holiday season. Titles that appeared on these charts were excluded from the regular Billboard 200 album sales charts. These special, year-end "Christmas Albums" charts were published from 1963 to 1973. The chart was discontinued from 1974 to 1982, when holiday titles were once again included in the regular Billboard 200 chart. "Christmas Albums" started up again in 1983 and appeared each year until 1985 (during these three years, holiday titles were eligible for inclusion on the weekly Billboard 200 chart). It was discontinued in 1986, but resumed in 1987 and continued each year under the "Christmas Albums" name until 1993. In 1994, the chart was renamed to "Holiday Albums" and has been published by Billboard each year since. Billboard's special Christmas/holiday albums sales charts have varied in size over the years, from a low of 5 chart positions to a high of 117 chart positions.[4]

1940s[edit]

1950s[edit]

1960s[edit]

1970s[edit]

1980s[edit]

1990s[edit]

2000s[edit]

2010s[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "RIAA Gold & Platinum". Recording Industry Association of America. Retrieved 2011-11-02. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z Staff, Billboard (2014-12-01). "The Gifts That Keep on Giving: Biggest Radio and Album Hits of the Holidays". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved 2014-12-01. 
  3. ^ "RIAA Gold & Platinum". Recording Industry Association of America. Retrieved 2011-11-02. 
  4. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z aa Whitburn, Joel (2004). Christmas in the Charts (1920–2004). Wisconsin: Record Research Inc. p. 106. ISBN 0-89820-161-6. 
  5. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k "Chart Watch Extra: Bring On Christmas!". Billboard. Retrieved 2009-12-04. 
  6. ^ She, by Harry Conick, Jr., harryconnickjr.com
  7. ^ The Best Selling Christmas Albums of 1997, neosoul.com
  8. ^ The Best Selling Christmas Albums of 1999, neosoul.com
  9. ^ The Major Minor, The New York Times, April 1, 2001
  10. ^ IDT Entertainment's DPS Film Roman and Harry Connick Jr. Team For 3D Animated Christmas Special, Business Wire, findarticles.com September 29, 2004
  11. ^ Clay Aiken Releases New RCA Records Album 'A Thousand Different Ways', emol.org, August 3, 2006
  12. ^ 2009 U.S. Music Purchases up 2.1% over 2008; Music Sales Exceed 1.5 Billion for Second Consecutive Year, Businesswire.com, Jan 7, 2010 article.
  13. ^ Kaulfield, Keith (2011-01-05). "Eminem's 'Recovery' Is 2010's Best-Selling Album; Katy Perry's 'California Gurls' Top Digital Song". Billboard. Billboard.com. Retrieved 2011-12-29. 
  14. ^ Grein, Paul (2011-12-28). "Week Ending Dec. 25, 2011. Albums: A Very Jeezy Christmas". Yahoo! Music. Nielsen Business Media. Retrieved 2011-12-28. 
  15. ^ Grein, Paul (2013-01-03). "Chart Watch Extra: Top Albums of 2012". Yahoo! Music. Nielsen Business Media. Retrieved 2013-01-03. 
  16. ^ Grein, Paul (2014-01-03). "The Top 10 Albums and Songs of 2013". Yahoo! Music. Nielsen Business Media. Retrieved 2014-01-03.