"Merry Xmas Everybody" is a 1973 song by the English rock band Slade. Written by lead vocalist and guitarist Noddy Holder and bassist Jim Lea, and produced by Chas Chandler, it was the band's sixth number-one single in the UK. It earned the UK Christmas Number One slot in December 1973, beating another Christmas-themed song, Wizzard's "I Wish It Could Be Christmas Everyday", which reached fourth place. By mid-January it was still at number one; it stayed in the UK Singles Chart well into February 1974.
Based on melodies from discarded songs written six years before, "Merry Xmas Everybody" was Slade's best-selling single, released at the peak of their popularity, and sold over a million copies upon its first release. It is Slade's last number-one single, and by far their most successful. It has been released during every decade since 1973, and has been covered by numerous artists. In a 2007 poll, "Merry Xmas Everybody" was voted the UK's most popular Christmas song.
According to the Fan Club Newsletter for January and February 1974, the album was rewarded a Silver Disc for pre-order sales, even before the single's release. Within the first week of release, the single had sold 500,000 copies. Also, according to the same newsletter, "Merry Xmas Everybody" was in such big demand that Polydor records had to make special arrangements to have 250,000 discs sent from Los Angeles, as well as 30,000 copies a day they were receiving from Germany.
The single was certified UK Platinum by BPI in December 1980. Since 2007 and the advent of downloads counting toward the UK Singles Chart, it has re-entered the charts each December. Therefore, it has sold 1.21 million copies in the UK as of December 2012.
On 8 December 2013 it re-entered the UK Singles Charts, at number 57.
"Merry Xmas Everybody" is a perennial feature, and is played regularly at UK nightclubs around Christmas. It is included on numerous Christmas-themed compilation albums, and has been featured in several of Slade's subsequent compilation albums. Despite the song's popularity it became the band's last number-one hit. The song charted in every year in the early half of the 1980s, and again in 1998 and 2006–2011, and is a regular feature of television and radio playlists in the Christmas season. However, some venues have removed it from their Christmas playlist because it was overplayed, and became "irritating" to some people. Despite this negative response, in a 2007 poll carried out by MSN Music, it was voted the UK's most popular Christmas song.
Noddy Holder has referred to the song as his pension scheme, reflecting its continuing popularity as it makes £500.000 each year from Royalties. The song has been credited with popularizing the annual race for the UK Christmas Number One Single.
My brother bought this single in 1973 as a 14 year old with his Christmas money. So we used to play this record every year in the run up to Christmas.