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How Much Does Brenda Lee’s ‘Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree’ Make? – Billboard

Written by on 12/12/2023

True to its title, Brenda Lee‘s “Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree” — which just notched its second straight week at No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 — brings in some serious green over the holiday season.

Billboard estimates that in 2022, the enduring holiday hit racked up $2.7 million in master recording revenue for Lee and her label, Universal Music Group, and $1.274 million in publishing revenue, totaling nearly $4 million, on the strength of 464 million on-demand streams and 25,000 track downloads.

So far this year, Billboard estimates the master recording has garnered $1.6 million in revenue and about $700,000 in publishing revenue, or $2.3 million total, on the strength of 301 million on-demand global streams and 16,000 track downloads.

In the United States last year, “Rockin’ Around The Christmas Tree” generated nearly 1.75 million song consumption units (track downloads and on-demand streaming), while it has so far accumulated 967,000 song consumption units (and, within that, 301 million on-demand streams) in 2023.

But there’s still plenty of holiday season left — and when you compare the 49-week period that has elapsed so far this year with the same period in 2022, it’s clear that “Rockin’” is on track to surpass last year’s total. The song’s 967,000 song consumption units to date in 2023 is far ahead of last year’s 807,000 song consumption units (and 195 million streams) at the same point. (Luminate doesn’t compile global song consumption units).

“Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree” was solely written by the late Johnny Marks, whose publishing company, St. Nicholas Music, would get the publishing revenue. Marks wrote a number of other holiday favorites including “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer,” “A Holly Jolly Christmas,” “Silver and Gold” and “I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day.”

The above estimates don’t include whatever royalties come in from licensing the song to Christmas compilation albums; while the publishing total doesn’t include whatever revenue is generated from cover versions.

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