Brenda Lee Makes History: Oldest Artist Tops US Chart After 65 Years!

Brenda Lee Makes History: Oldest Artist Tops US Chart After 65 Years!


In a delightful turn of events, Brenda Lee, the iconic singer, has etched her name in the annals of music history by reaching the summit of the US Hot 100 chart at the age of 78. What's truly remarkable is that her perennial holiday favorite, "Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree," initially released in 1958, has clinched the No. 1 spot after a staggering 65 years.

This achievement not only secures Brenda Lee's status as a musical legend but also sets a new record for the longest gap between a song's release and its ascent to the top of the charts. Mariah Carey, who saw success in 2019 with "All I Want For Christmas Is You" after 25 years, now graciously hands over the baton to Brenda Lee.

The journey of "Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree" has been nothing short of a Christmas miracle. Penned by the prolific Johnny Marks, the man behind other festive classics like "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer" and "Have a Holly Jolly Christmas," the song was recorded when Brenda Lee was just 13 years old. Despite an initial lackluster reception, the track climbed into the US Top 20 in 1960, aligning with the ascent of Lee's pop career. That year saw her notch back-to-back No. 1 singles, adding to her burgeoning success.

The song's resurgence began in 1990 when it found a new audience through its prominent placement in the beloved film "Home Alone." However, its true renaissance occurred in 2014, fueled by the growing popularity of streaming services. Since then, the song has become a staple of the holiday season, consistently charting in the US each year. Last year, it spent an impressive nine weeks at No. 2 over the festive period.

Brenda Lee's feat also extends beyond the realms of ageless melodies; it shatters records previously held by renowned artists. Not only does she surpass Mariah Carey's 32-year span between her first and most recent No. 1 singles, but she also overtakes Cher's 24-year gap between two chart-toppers. At 78, Brenda Lee now stands as the oldest person to top the US chart, dethroning Louis Armstrong, whose record had remained untouched since 1964.

Reflecting on her unexpected journey to the pinnacle of music charts, Brenda Lee shared her astonishment, stating, “I would’ve never thought in my wildest dreams that Rockin’ would be my signature song.” This sentiment captures the essence of her enduring impact on the music industry.

While the UK charts often feature explicitly Christmassy tunes for the coveted Christmas No. 1 spot, Brenda Lee's "Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree" represents only the third seasonal song to claim the top position in the US. It joins the ranks of Mariah Carey's classic and The Chipmunk Song, a 1958 chart-topper for the animated trio, the Chipmunks.

In the UK, the song reached its highest-ever position last year at No. 4. Its current standing at No. 14 indicates a continued fondness for this timeless classic. Notably, in the midweek chart, nine out of the Top 10 singles are Christmas-themed, emphasizing the enduring appeal of holiday music.

As we celebrate Brenda Lee's historic achievement, it prompts us to ponder the timeless nature of certain songs. What is it about "Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree" that resonates across generations? Is it the infectious melody, the nostalgic lyrics, or perhaps the magical memories attached to the holiday season?

Moreover, in a week where emotions run high following the passing of Shane MacGowan, The Pogues' "Fairytale of New York" is anticipated to claim the No. 1 spot. This convergence of events adds a bittersweet note to the music charts, underscoring the emotional connection people have with these seasonal tunes.

In conclusion, Brenda Lee's ascent to the top of the US Hot 100 chart is not just a testament to the enduring charm of "Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree" but a celebration of the power of timeless music. As we embrace the holiday season, her achievement invites us to revisit the classics, appreciate the nostalgia they evoke, and perhaps create new memories to be cherished for decades to come.


The  One  With  Three  Eyes  👁

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