Have Yourself a Merry Average Christmas!🎄

Posted : December 22, 2023 -



What better thing to celebrate at Christmas than the greatest analytics gift of them all… the average.  The ultimate summary number to make decisions on, throw everything together and get a reliable answer right.  With that in mind I have decided that AphA should try and obtain the ever-decreasing-prestigious honour of official UK Christmas No.1 next year, and to do that we are going to come up with the most average song we can based on all the previous number ones in the 71 years that there has been a Christmas no.1.  I figured this will improve our chances, right?  If it worked for many others why won’t it work for us?

So first up, what type of song should we sing?  Most songs fall into 3 groups; Original, Covers or a re-release.  Given our lack of a back catalogue to draw from I think we can rule out re-releasing one of our earlier tracks for commercial gain.  That leaves us with a choice of covering someone else’s song or writing our own.  It’s pretty even with regards to improving our odds of securing that no.1 spot.  Of the 71 songs in total 34 are covers, 33 are originals, with 4 being re-releases.  With not much in it let’s take the easy option and just cover someone else’s song.  What we’ll lose in royalties we’ll gain in free time.  We’re in it for the honour after all.

Now this is where it gets awkward… who’s going to be in the band.  Of the 34 covers to reach no.1 an incredible 20 have been performed by solo artists.  I guess when you’re already losing royalties to the original songwriter you don’t really want to share any merchandise or additional proceeds with others do you.  However since we’re not doing this for the money I’m willing to share the limelight with others.  Of the 71 no.1s choirs (3) and band collectives (4) have accounted for 7, that’s a bit of a long shot for my liking.  Bands scored 27 of the 71 no.1s.  I can live with that, we are a community after all.  So what should we cover?

Surprisingly Christmas songs only account for 12 of the no.1s.  For the record Stay Another Day by East 17 isn’t a Christmas song! It was from an album released in October, and put out as a single in November, and then a second music video with a bit of snow and silly coats was released while it was still in the charts. This carried an October release to Christmas no.1.   Your run of the mill Christmas free songs are responsible for a whopping 41 no.1s.  This is great news; it really opens up our song options.  I’d stay clear of novelty songs though since they have only scored 2 no.1s, besides, I’m not a very good builder or at fixing things and I’ve no idea what Mr Blobby was meant to be.

Time to pick our song.  Track length plays an important part, over too soon and people feel short changed, too long and they get bored.  26 no.1s come in between 3 and 4 minutes in length, that is the sweet spot we need to aim for.  Many musical genres have reached no.1 over the years.  Unsurprisingly Pop leads the way with 23 no.1s.  Pop also accounts for 10 no.1s that are 3-4 minutes long.  So a 3:30 minute pop cover is where we should be at to improve our chances.  I guess we could cover an existing number 1 since we know it works.  At 3:34 minutes Mr Blobby is closest song.  Everyone loves that song right.

I know there’ll be some of you out there who would rather we created our own original song.  So what’s in a title? Quite a lot it seems when it comes to Christmas no.1s.  The word “Christmas” appears 7 times in song names.  “You” and “The” both appear an incredible 9 times, “I” 8 times, “In” 6 times, “My” 5 and “Love” 4.  Therefore if anyone can think of some lyrics that go with “My I love you in the Christmas” then we could be on to something.

I don’t know about you but ⭐ I’m feeling quite confident about this, the data is on our side ⭐.  We’re merely adopting tried and tested ways to score an official UK Christmas number 1 song.  What could go wrong?

🎉 Well there’s nothing else for me to say except band auditions will be held in January 2024.  Hope to see as many of you there as possible. 🎉


Merry Christmas all


Written by: Mark Foy, Executive Director, AphA