Please Come Home for Christmas

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"Please Come Home for Christmas"
Single by Charles Brown
from the album Charles Brown Sings Christmas Songs
B-side"Christmas (Comes but Once a Year)" by Amos Milburn[1]
RecordedSeptember 21, 1960[2]
GenreR&B, Christmas
LabelKing 45-5405
Songwriter(s)Charles Brown, Gene Redd
Charles Brown singles chronology
"Please Come Home for Christmas"
""Angel Baby" (Charles Brown & Group)"
"Please Come Home for Christmas"
Pleasecomehomeforchristmas(Eagles) coverart.jpg
Single by Eagles
B-side"Funky New Year"
ReleasedNovember 27, 1978
Recorded1978 at Bayshore Recording Studios, Coconut Grove, Florida
GenreRock, rhythm and blues, Christmas music
LabelAsylum 45555
Songwriter(s)Charles Brown, Gene Redd
Producer(s)Bill Szymczyk
Eagles singles chronology
"Life in the Fast Lane"
"Please Come Home for Christmas"
"Heartache Tonight"
"Please Come Home for Christmas"
Please Come Home for Christmas (Bon Jovi) coverart.jpg
Single by Bon Jovi
B-side"I Wish Everyday Could Be Like Christmas" (4:25)
"Back Door Santa" (3:52)
FormatCD single
GenreChristmas, pop rock, blues rock
LabelMercury PHCR-8343
Songwriter(s)Charles Brown, Gene Redd
Producer(s)Jimmy Iovine

"Please Come Home for Christmas" is a Christmas song, written in 1960 and released the same year by American blues singer and pianist Charles Brown.[3] Hitting the Billboard Hot 100 chart in December 1961, the tune Brown co-wrote with Gene Redd[note 1] peaked at position #76. It appeared on the Christmas Singles chart for nine seasons, hitting #1 in 1972.[4][note 2] It includes a number of characteristics of Christmas music, such as multiple references in the lyrics to the Christmas season and Christmas traditions, and the use of a Church bell type sound, created using tubular bells, at the start of the song. It is sometimes referred to by its incipit, "Bells Will Be Ringing".[citation needed]


Eagles version[edit]

In 1978, the rock band Eagles covered and released the song as a holiday single. Their version peaked at #18 on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100, the first Christmas song to reach the Top 20 on that chart since Roy Orbison's "Pretty Paper" in 1963. This was the first Eagles song to feature Timothy B. Schmit on bass (having replaced founding member Randy Meisner the previous year). The lineup features Don Henley (drums/lead vocals), Glenn Frey (piano, backing vocals), Joe Walsh (guitar, backing vocals), Schmit (bass/backing vocals), and Don Felder (lead guitar). Originally released as a vinyl 7" single, it was re-released as a CD single in 1995, reaching #15 on the Billboard Adult Contemporary chart. This version includes the lyrics "bells will be ringing the sad, sad news" (that is, a Christmas alone) as opposed to Brown's original version which references the "glad, glad news" (that is, Christmas in general).

Jon Bon Jovi/Bon Jovi version[edit]

Jon Bon Jovi also covered the song on the 1992 holiday album, A Very Special Christmas 2, in the style of the Eagles. A promo music video that featured supermodel Cindy Crawford was made to accompany that release. In 1994 the same recording was released as a charity single in Europe, but this time instead of being credited as a solo recording by Jon Bon Jovi it was released under the band name Bon Jovi. The 1994 single release made the top ten in both the UK and Ireland.

Chart performance[edit]

Charles Brown[edit]

Chart (1962) Peak
U.S. Billboard Hot 100 76


Chart (1978–1979) Peak
Belgium (Ultratop 50 Flanders)[6] 19
Netherlands (Single Top 100)[7] 5
New Zealand (Recorded Music NZ)[8] 28
Sweden (Sverigetopplistan)[9] 15
UK Singles (Official Charts Company)[10] 30
US Billboard Hot 100[11] 18
Chart (1995) Peak
US Billboard Hot Adult Contemporary Tracks 15
Chart (2005) Peak
US Billboard Hot Digital Songs 74
Chart (2018) Peak
Australia (ARIA)[12] 94
Chart (2019) Peak
US Rolling Stone Top 100[13] 35

Bon Jovi[edit]

Chart (1994) Peak
Finland (Suomen virallinen lista)[14] 20
Ireland (IRMA)[15] 6
Italy (Musica e dischi)[16] 10
Scotland (Official Charts Company)[17] 8
UK Singles (Official Charts Company)[18] 7
Chart (2016) Peak
Poland (Polish Airplay Top 100)[19] 97

Gary Allan[edit]

Chart (1997) Peak
US Hot Country Songs (Billboard)[20] 70

Lee Roy Parnell[edit]

Chart (1997) Peak
US Hot Country Songs (Billboard)[21] 71

Willie Nelson[edit]

Chart (2004) Peak
US Hot Country Songs (Billboard)[22] 50

Josh Gracin[edit]

Chart (2006) Peak
US Hot Country Songs (Billboard)[23] 51

Martina McBride[edit]

Chart (2011–12) Peak
US Hot Country Songs (Billboard)[24] 51

Kelly Clarkson[edit]

Chart (2013–14) Peak
Canada AC (Billboard)[25] 14
South Korea International Singles (GAON)[26] 97
US Adult Contemporary (Billboard)[27] 6
US Holiday Digital Songs (Billboard)[28] 14


  1. ^ Brown claimed to have written the song alone.[3]
  2. ^ Of the many versions Brown recorded and released over the years through various labels,[5] his original 1960 recording was his most popular.[3][4]


  1. ^ Kelly, Red (Dec 19, 2005). "Amos Milburn – Christmas (Comes But Once A Year) (KING 5405)". The B Side. Retrieved April 2, 2010.
  2. ^ "The Top 40 Christmas Oldies Songs and Holiday Music – #4". 1960-09-21. Archived from the original on 2014-04-12. Retrieved 2014-05-24.
  3. ^ a b c "Christmas song has local roots". USA Today Network. 18 December 2014. Archived from the original (Online Newspaper) on 12 December 2019. Retrieved 12 December 2019. ...the original version was recorded in 1960 at Evanston's King Records studio by Charles Brown. [...] In 1960, word of Brown's presence in town reached Syd Nathan of King Records. In [a] 1990 interview, Brown recalled that Nathan asked him, "'Could you write something as good as 'Merry Christmas Baby?' I said, 'I don't know how good it will be, but I'll write.' He said, 'You and [Milburn] Amos go write one apiece and let me hear what you done.' When we brought it to Syd Nathan he fell in love with mine." Milburn's "Christmas Comes But Once a Year" ended up as the B-side of Brown's King single... Brown subsequently recorded other singles and even an album of Christmas songs for Nathan, but never had another hit. While Brown claimed he wrote "Please Come Home" alone, the credits listed Redd as co-writer.
  4. ^ a b CD sleeve: Billboard Greatest Christmas Hits (1955 – Present), 1989 Rhino Records Inc.
  5. ^ Anthony, Randall. "Charles Brown blues". Archived from the original on 12 December 2019. Retrieved 12 December 2019. Merry Christmas Baby," first recorded with Johnny Moore's Three Blazers in 1947, and "Please Come Home For Christmas," a 1960 hit on King Records covered with great success the Eagles in 1978. Brown recorded both of these songs many times...
  6. ^ " – Eagles – Please Come Home for Christmas" (in Dutch). Ultratop 50.
  7. ^ " – Eagles – Please Come Home for Christmas" (in Dutch). Single Top 100.
  8. ^ " – Eagles – Please Come Home for Christmas". Top 40 Singles.
  9. ^ " – Eagles – Please Come Home for Christmas". Singles Top 100.
  10. ^ "Eagles: Artist Chart History". Official Charts Company.
  11. ^ "Eagles Chart History (Hot 100)". Billboard.
  12. ^ "ARIA Chart Watch #505". auspOp. December 29, 2018. Retrieved December 29, 2018.
  13. ^ "Top 100 Songs". Rolling Stone. December 24, 2019. Retrieved December 31, 2019.
  14. ^ Pennanen, Timo (2006). Sisältää hitin – levyt ja esittäjät Suomen musiikkilistoilla vuodesta 1972 (in Finnish) (1st ed.). Helsinki: Tammi. ISBN 978-951-1-21053-5.
  15. ^ "The Irish Charts – Search Results – Please Come Home for Christmas". Irish Singles Chart. Retrieved November 25, 2019.
  16. ^ "Top 10 Sales in Europe" (PDF). Music & Media. Vol. 12 no. 1. January 7, 1995. p. 11. Retrieved November 25, 2019.
  17. ^ "Official Scottish Singles Sales Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company. Retrieved November 25, 2019.
  18. ^ "Official Singles Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company. Retrieved November 25, 2019.
  19. ^ "Listy bestsellerów, wyróżnienia :: Związek Producentów Audio-Video". Polish Airplay Top 100. Retrieved December 27, 2016.
  20. ^ "Gary Allan Chart History (Hot Country Songs)". Billboard.
  21. ^ "Lee Roy Parnell Chart History (Hot Country Songs)". Billboard.
  22. ^ "Willie Nelson Chart History (Hot Country Songs)". Billboard.
  23. ^ "Josh Gracin Chart History (Hot Country Songs)". Billboard.
  24. ^ "Martina McBride Chart History (Hot Country Songs)". Billboard.
  25. ^ "Kelly Clarkson Chart History (Canada AC)". Billboard. Retrieved February 7, 2014.
  26. ^ "Gaon Album Chart 2013년 11월 5주차" (in Korean). GAON. Archived from the original on December 3, 2013. Retrieved November 29, 2013.
  27. ^ "Kelly Clarkson Chart History (Adult Contemporary)". Billboard. Retrieved November 11, 2014.
  28. ^ "Kelly Clarkson Album & Song Chart History". Billboard Holiday Digital Songs for Kelly Clarkson. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved February 7, 2014.

External links[edit]