Elvis' Christmas Album is the fourth studio album and first
Christmas album by Elvis Presley on RCA Victor, LOC -1035, a deluxe
limited edition, released in October 1957, and recorded at Radio
Recorders in Hollywood. It has been reissued in numerous different
formats since its first release. It spent four weeks at number one
on the Billboard Top Pop Albums chart, and was the first of two
Christmas-themed albums Presley would record, the other being Elvis
Sings the Wonderful World of Christmas, released in 1971. The
publication Music Vendor listed Elvis' Christmas Album on their
singles charts for two weeks in December 1957 – January 1958, with a
peak position of #49.
According to the latest certifications by the Recording Industry
Association of America, Elvis' Christmas Album has shipped at least
13 million copies in the United States (3 million of the original
1957 RCA Victor release, plus 10 million total copies of a "budget"
edition first issued on RCA Camden in 1970 and then leased to
Pickwick Records in 1975). It is the first Presley title to attain
Diamond certification by the RIAA, and is also the best-selling
Christmas album of all time in the United States. The album has sold
over 20 million copies worldwide.
The original 1957 LP consisted of eight Christmas songs, and four
gospel songs which had been previously released on the EP Peace in
the Valley, catalogue EPA 4054, issued March 1957, peaking at number
three on the Pop albums chart and at number 39 on the singles chart.
The two album sides divided into a program of secular Christmas
songs on side one, with two traditional Christmas carols and the
gospel numbers on side two.
While most of the songs selected were traditional Christmas fare,
such as "White Christmas" and "Silent Night," two new songs by
regular suppliers of material for Presley were commissioned. One was
"Santa Bring My Baby Back (to Me)" and the other (selected by Elvis
to open the album), was a blues-based rock and roll number, "Santa
Claus Is Back in Town," written by Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller. (wikipedia