A Mary Christmas

Not to be confused with A Mary Mary Christmas.
A Mary Christmas
Studio album by Mary J. Blige
Released October 15, 2013 (2013-10-15)
Recorded 20122013
Length 45:53
Producer David Foster
Mary J. Blige chronology
My Life II... The Journey Continues (Act 1)
A Mary Christmas
Think Like a Man Too (2014)

A Mary Christmas is the eleventh studio album and first Christmas album by American R&B recording artist Mary J. Blige. Produced by David Foster, it was released on October 15, 2013 via Matriarch, Interscope and Foster's Verve Records, compromising soulful interpretations of classic holiday tunes such as "Little Drummer Boy", "Do You Hear What I Hear?" and "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas".[1]

Upon its release, the album received generally positive reviews amongst critics. Commercially, it opened at number 23 on the US Billboard 200 and at number 5 on the Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums with 12,000 copies. It marked Blige's 15th top ten title on the latter chart, tying her with Snoop Dogg for second-most top ten entries in the Nielsen SoundScan era.[2] The album was certified Gold by the RIAA on December 4, 2013, which indicateds sales of over 500,000 copies.


It was confirmed in June 2013 that Blige had been working on a Christmas album, in an interview with Charleston Scene.[3] In that interview, Blige revealed featured artists to be on the record would be Jessie J, Jennifer Lopez, Marc Anthony and Barbra Streisand, with whom she duets a “jazzy version” of “When You Wish Upon a Star.”

This album is the first collaboration between legendary producer and hit-maker David Foster and Blige. The album will also be released on The Verve Music Group, in which Foster is the chairman of. Foster is also the producer of multi-platinum Christmas albums by Michael Bublé, Rod Stewart, Andrea Bocelli, Josh Groban and Celine Dion.[4] Chris Walden wrote two arrangements for the album.[5]

Critical response

Professional ratings
Aggregate scores
Review scores
The Guardian[8]
The Independent[9]
Los Angeles Times[10]

A Mary Christmas received generally mixed to average reviews from critics. At Metacritic, which assigns a normalized rating out of 100 to reviews from mainstream publications, the album received an average score of 49, based on 5 reviews.[6] Andy Kellman of Allmusic rated A Mary Christmas three out of five stars. He felt that the album "won't likely reach the high status of, say, Mariah Carey's Merry Christmas, but it's a full-effort holiday release that many of her fans should be able to enjoy for several years."[7]

Commercial performance

A Mary Christmas debuted at number 23 on the US Billboard 200 and at number 5 on the Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums with first week sales of 12,000 copies. After four weeks of fluctuating on the chart, A Mary Christmas entered the top 20 for the first time in its sixth week, rising from number 22 to number 13 with a 110% sales increase to 31,000 copies.[12] In its seventh week, the album experienced an 82% increase to 57,000 copies sold, despite falling two positions to number 15.[13] In its eight-week, the album rose to number 10 despite a 10% drop to 51,000 copies, giving Blige her 12th top ten album.[14] A Mary Christmas rose less than 1% to 52,000 copies sold in its ninth week, falling one spot to number 11.[15] In its tenth week, A Mary Christmas fell to number 13 with a 25% increase to 64,000 copies sold, the album's best-selling week.[16] In its eleventh week, the album sold approximately 32,000 copies (a decline of 49% from the previous week) and placed at number 21 on the Billboard 200, reflecting the end of the 2013 holiday season.[17][18][19] A Mary Christmas was the third best-selling Christmas album of 2013 with 328,000 copies sold for the year.[20]

On December 4, 2013, the album was certified Gold by the RIAA.[21]

Track list

All songs produced by David Foster.

No. TitleWriter(s) Length
1. "Little Drummer Boy"  Katherine Kennicott Davis 4:09
2. "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas"  Hugh Martin 4:37
3. "My Favorite Things"  Oscar Hammerstein II 3:51
4. "This Christmas"  
5. "The Christmas Song (Chestnuts Roasting on an Open Fire)"   3:53
6. "Rudolph, The Red-Nosed Reindeer"  Johnny Marks 2:27
7. "When You Wish Upon a Star" (featuring Barbra Streisand and Chris Botti) 3:42
8. "Mary, Did You Know"  Mark Lowry 3:48
9. "Do You Hear What I Hear?" (featuring Jessie J)Noël Regney 4:19
10. "Petit Papa Noel"  
  • Raymond Vincy
  • Henri Martinet
11. "The First Noel" (featuring The Clark Sisters)Traditional 4:24
12. "Noche De Paz (Silent Night)" (featuring Marc Anthony)Joseph Mohr 3:28


Weekly charts

Chart (2013) Peak
scope="row" Dutch Albums (MegaCharts)[23] 96
scope="row" Irish Albums (IRMA)[24] 62
Japanese Albums (Oricon)[25] 162
scope="row" Scottish Albums (OCC)[26] 56
scope="row" Swedish Albums (Sverigetopplistan)[27] 34
scope="row" UK Albums (OCC)[28] 28
UK R&B Albums (OCC)[29] 2
US Billboard 200[2] 10
US Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums (Billboard)[2] 2
US Top R&B Albums (Billboard)[2] 1
US Top Holiday Albums (Billboard)[30] 1

Year-end charts

Chart (2013) Position
US Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums (Billboard)[31] 90


Region Certification Certified units/Sales
United States (RIAA)[32] Gold 500,000^

*sales figures based on certification alone
^shipments figures based on certification alone


  1. "Mary J. Blige Announces Christmas Album". Rap-Up.com. 2013-07-25. Retrieved 2013-09-13.
  2. 1 2 3 4 Ramirez, Rauly (2013-10-24). "Eminem's 'Rap God' Debuts at No. 2 on Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs". Billboard. Retrieved 2013-10-26.
  3. "As the 'Queen of Hip-Hop Soul,' Mary J. Blige still seeks to inspire". Charleston Scene. 2013-06-26. Retrieved 2013-09-13.
  4. "Mary J. Blige Is Set To Release Her First Christmas Album With Legendary Producer David Foster". 8 News NOW. Retrieved 2013-09-13.
  5. "CHRIS". Chriswalden.com. Retrieved 2013-09-13.
  6. 1 2 "Critic Reviews for A Mary Christmas". Metacritic. Retrieved 2016-11-09.
  7. 1 2 Kellman, Andy. "A Mary Christmas". Allmusic. Rovi Corporation. Review. Retrieved 2013-10-24.
  8. Jonze, Tim (2013-12-12). "Mary J Blige: A Mary Christmas – review". The Guardian. Retrieved 2016-11-13.
  9. Gill, Andy (2013-12-21). "Christmas album reviews: Leona Lewis, Erasure, Bright Eyes, Mary J Blige, Richard Durrant". The Independent. Retrieved 2016-11-13.
  10. Lewis, Randy (2013-11-29). "Review: Rating the new crop of holiday albums". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2016-11-13.
  11. Henderson, Eric (2013-10-15). "A Mary Christmas". Slant Magazine. Retrieved 2016-11-13.
  12. Caulfield, Keith (28 November 2013). "Chart Moves: Mary J. Blige 'Holiday' Sales Sizzle, AWOLNATION's 'Symphony' Sees Big Gain". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved 30 November 2013.
  13. Trust, Gary (5 December 2013). "Billboard's Holiday Songs & Albums Charts Return". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved 7 December 2013.
  14. Caulfield, Keith (11 December 2013). "Garth Brooks Earns Ninth No. 1 Album, Britney Spears Debuts At No. 4". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved 12 December 2013.
  15. Ramirez, Rauly (19 December 2013). "Beyonce Scores Fifth No. 1 on Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved 24 December 2013.
  16. Ramirez, Rauly (27 December 2013). "Beyonce's 'Drunk In Love' Debuts at No. 2 on Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs Chart". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved 29 December 2013.
  17. Ramirez, Rauly (2 January 2013). "Beyonce Leads for Third Week at No. 1 on Billboard 200 Chart". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved 4 January 2013.
  18. "Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums : Jan 04, 2014". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved January 4, 2013.
  19. Tardio, Andres (2013-12-26). "Hip Hop Album Sales: The Week Ending 12/22/2013". HipHopDX. Retrieved 2013-12-26.
  20. Paul Grein (January 2, 2014). "Chart Watch: The Top 10 Christmas Albums of 2013". Yahoo Music.
  21. "Gold and Platinum Database". Archived from the original on 2010-01-17.
  22. http://www.target.com/p/mary-j-blige-a-mary-christmas-only-at-target/-/A-14802514#prodSlot=medium_1_16&term=mary%20j%20blige
  23. "Dutchcharts.nl – Mary J. Blige – {{{album}}}" (in Dutch). Hung Medien. Retrieved December 29, 2013.
  24. "GFK Chart-Track Albums: Week 48, 2013". Chart-Track. IRMA.
  25. メアリー・クリスマス (in Japanese). oricon.co.jp. Retrieved December 9, 2013.
  26. "Official Scottish Albums Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company. Retrieved December 29, 2013.
  27. "Swedishcharts.com – Mary J. Blige – {{{album}}}". Hung Medien. Retrieved December 9, 2013.
  28. "Official Albums Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company. Retrieved December 9, 2013.
  29. "2013 Top 40 R&B Albums Archive". Official Charts Company. December 7, 2013. Retrieved December 9, 2013.
  30. "Mary J. Blige Album & Song Chart History". Billboard Top Holiday Albums for Mary J. Blige. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved November 3, 2013.
  31. "Best of 2013 – R&B/Hip-Hop Albums". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved December 29, 2013.
  32. "American album certifications – Mary J. Blige – A Mary Christmas". Recording Industry Association of America. If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Album, then click SEARCH

External links

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