A Sydney bar has banned Mariah Carey’s ‘All I Want For Christmas’

Mariah Carey’s 1994 festive anthem All I Want For Christmas Is You has been blacklisted by Sydney pub Jolene’s   

With the festive season in full swing, a Sydney bar has removed the Mariah Carey song All I Want For Christmas Is You from its Christmas playlist. Simon Rose-Hopkins, who operates Jolene’s bar in question, announced plans for the Mariah Carey ban yesterday (December 13), preventing her record-breaking anthem from the airwaves of the CBD venue. Rose-Hopkins told The Daily Mail that he would instead opt for classic country tunes. 

We’ve got a Country Christmas playlist, but we won’t be playing Mariah,” he said. “We get a lot of retailer workers coming in after their stores close and say thank you because they are so overhearing the traditional retail Christmas music.” The publican went on to explain that Carey isn’t the only musician to be blacklisted by Jolene’s. Fellow artist Michael Bublé — who likewise seems to defrost every year around Christmas with covers like It’s Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas — is also on the bar’s no-play list. 

Christmas Albums
Credit: Mariah Carey/Twitter

Rose-Hopkins said that the boycott has been met with “giggles and admiration” by his patrons. While the ban reads like something of a Grinch move, Rose-Hopkins insists that Jolene’s is Christmas-friendly. “We are doing Christmas on steroids,” he said. “We’ve got lights, reindeer, Christmas trees and Christmas cocktails like a Gingerbread Manhattan and a Pavlova Christmas slushie.” 


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The festive season at Jolene’s will instead be soundtracked by country singers like Lee Kernaghan, Blake Shelton and Dolly Parton, the last of whom wrote the 1974 song after which Jolene’s is named. Rose-Hopkins isn’t the only person to express dismay at the annual revival of All I Want For Christmas Is You. A Change.org petition requesting the carol be removed from retail spaces says that “holiday hit has become the bane of shoppers, retail workers and pedestrians due to its intense overplay.”

Meanwhile, in November of last year, Carey herself responded after a US bar similarly prohibited the song, sharing an image of herself on Twitter dressed in armour to fight “the war on Christmas.” Both Carey bans appear difficult to mandate, however, given the sheer ubiquity of the pop star in November and December. Research indicates that Carey earns some $2.5 million from the jingle every year, collectively amassing $60 million by 2016. 

Earlier this year, Carey was sued over allegedly stealing the title of All I Want For Christmas Is You. Songwriter Andy Stone filed a copyright infringement lawsuit against the singer, but the lawsuit was dropped in late-November. Head here for Happy‘s picks for the Christmas tracks that are actually. Fear not, Bublé and Carey are nowhere to be found.