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Singer Mariah Carey has written and performed many famous tunes, from “Heartbreaker” to “We Belong Together.” But far and away, the single of hers that keeps coming back for more is “All I Want for Christmas Is You.” And it holds a special place in her heart.

Mariah Carey performs at the 81st Annual Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree Lighting on December 3, 2013 in New York City.
Mariah Carey performs at the 81st Annual Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree Lighting on December 3, 2013, in New York City. | James Devaney/WireImage

“The first Christmas song that I ever wrote was ‘All I Want for Christmas Is You,’ and so it has a lot of significance for me as a writer and obviously as a performer,” Carey told Elle in 2020. “It’s great to be able to share a song with the world and hear their experiences with the song.” But what about her other popular holiday tunes?

Miss You Most (At Christmas Time)

Carey’s first Christmas album, simply titled Merry Christmas, debuted in 1994. She released three singles from the album, including “All I Want for Christmas Is You” and a cover of “Joy to the World.” The second single was another original song, “Miss You Most (At Christmas Time).”

Jesus Born On This Day

The only other original song on Merry Christmas is “Jesus Born on This Day.” Like “All I Want for Christmas Is You” and “Miss You Most (At Christmas Time),” Carey co-wrote the song with Walter Afanasieff. “I don’t know that everybody knows it, but it’s one of my favorites that I’ve written,” she told Elle.

Oh Santa!

In 2010, Carey released her second Christmas album, appropriately titled Merry Christmas II You. Again, the album is a mix of covers and original songs. “Oh Santa” was the first single off the record, and it briefly charted on the Billboard Hot 100. A new version featuring Ariana Grande and Jennifer Hudson debuted a decade later after premiering in Mariah Carey’s Magical Christmas Special.

When Christmas Comes

A year after Merry Christmas II You dropped, Carey re-recorded and released one track from it, “When Christmas Comes,” as a single. The new version became a duet with the addition of John Legend’s vocals. “John is the perfect person to do this,” Carey said in a Vevo interview. “To hear his voice and his choices, he really took it up several notches.”

Christmas Time Is in the Air Again

Another track off Merry Christmas II You, “Christmas Time Is in the Air Again,” debuted as a promotional single in 2012, two years after the album’s release. In addition to the lyric video, Carey has performed the song on a handful of occasions, including her annual December residency All I Want for Christmas Is You: A Night of Joy and Festivity.

The Star

In 2017, Carey wrote and performed the titular song for the animated Christmas movie The Star. While the film, which featured the vocal talents of such stars as Kelly Clarkson and Oprah Winfrey, was not incredibly well-received, Carey’s track was nominated for the 75th Golden Globe Awards in 2018.

Lil Snowman


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That same year, Carey released an animated movie, Mariah Carey’s All I Want For Christmas Is You. The feature-length film stars Carey as herself, accompanied by characters voiced by actors like Henry Winkler and Lacey Chabert. The movie’s soundtrack includes an original song, “Lil Snowman.”