Mistletoe (Justin Bieber song)

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Justin Bieber - Mistletoe.jpg
Single by Justin Bieber
from the album Under the Mistletoe
Released October 17, 2011
Format CD single, digital download
Recorded 2011
Genre Pop, R&B, Christmas music
Length 3:03
Label Island, RBMG
Songwriter(s) Nasri Atweh, Adam Messinger, Justin Bieber
Producer(s) The Messengers
Justin Bieber singles chronology
"Next to You"
"Live My Life"

"Next to You"
"Live My Life"
Music video
"Mistletoe" on YouTube

"Mistletoe" is a Christmas song by Canadian singer Justin Bieber. It was written and produced by Nasri, and Adam Messinger. The song was released on October 17, 2011 as the lead single from his Christmas album, Under the Mistletoe (2011). "Mistletoe" is a pop and R&B song, that has reggae influences. "Mistletoe" received generally positive reviews from most music critics. The song reached the top ten in Canada, Denmark and Norway, and slightly missed the top 10 in the US, peaking at 11, while also reaching the top forty in nine other countries. The song's accompanying music video was directed by Roman White. It features the singer singing on a snowy, lit-up street.

Background and composition[edit]

Bieber first premiered the song live on the My World Tour on October 6, 2011 at Olympic Stadium in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.[1] During the performance, Bieber confirmed that the song would be released on iTunes worldwide on October 17, 2011.[1] In an interview with MTV News, Bieber said, "I'm really excited. [The song is] really catchy. I know all my fans are going to love it. It's something that I feel like they're going to be singing every Christmas."[2]

"Mistletoe" was written and produced by Nasri, and Adam Messinger.[3][4] It is a Christmas song that is sonically derived from the pop and R&B genres, while making use of reggae elements.[5] According to the sheet music published at Musicnotes.com by Sony/ATV Music Publishing, "Mistletoe" is set in common time with a "bounce" tempo of 80 beats per minute. It is composed in the key of A major with Bieber's vocal range spanning from the low-note of E3 to the high-note of E5.[6] According to many reviewers, the song's production and Bieber's delivery bears much similarity to Jason Mraz's "I'm Yours."[5] Bill Lamb of About.com went as far as to call the song "'I'm Yours' goes Christmas."[7] A Rolling Stone writer commented that "The song basically sounds like a laid-back Jack Johnson number with a bit of overdubbed sleigh bells." The song presents the maturation of Bieber's voice, with RJ Cubarrubia of Billboard writing that he sounded "smooth and intimate."[5] Lamb said "This track marks a distinct move toward a more adult sound on the part of 17 year old Justin Bieber."[7] The song, which includes subtle "Christmas flourishes" in the background arrangement,[7] opens up with jingle bells before an instrumental of guitar and bongos come in.[1]


Critical response[edit]

RJ Cubarrubia of Billboard first complimented the song, saying that "the stripped-down sound allows the young superstar to showcase how much he and his voice have grown," and that the chorus sounds "warm and fuzzy."[5] However he said "Bieber's breezy crooning and flat lyrics make 'Mistletoe' come off like an uninspiring, Jason Mraz-esque holiday track."[5] Cubarrubia commended Bieber for attempting to inject his charisma in such a track, but said "he's still far from the classic Christmas pop of Mariah Carey's "All I Want for Christmas Is You"."[5] Although he said the song may feel a bit calculated, Bill Lamb of About.com complimented the song's "acoustic Jason Mraz vibe, the subtle seasonal touches, and adult sound.[7] Lamb predicted the song to be a likely seasonal hit for Bieber and commented, "The subtle wintry holiday chimes in the backing track make it obvious this is a seasonal release, but it will not be jarring when included on a standard pop playlist."[7] Jarett Wieselman of The Insider.com said the song "is pretty damn good" and went on to say "it's gonna be the biggest song of 2011."[8] Wieselman said "You can't deny the appeal of America's tween dream du jour dropping a track where he asks the listeners to 'kiss me underneath the mistletoe.' Well played young man, well played."[8]

Commercial performance[edit]

"Mistletoe" sold 164,000 copies in its first week of release, according to Nielsen SoundScan, placing it at No. 5 on Billboard's Hot Digital Songs chart.[9]

As of January 1, 2012, Nielsen SoundScan estimated total sales of the digital track at 722,000 downloads, which is the most a Christmas/holiday digital song has ever sold in a calendar year.[10] As of November 25, 2016, "Mistletoe" is fourth on the list of all-time best-selling Christmas/holiday digital singles in SoundScan history, with total sales of 1,100,000 downloads.[11]

Music video and live performances[edit]

The music video for "Mistletoe" was directed by Roman White.[2] The video marked the second time Bieber had worked with White on a music video, the first being "One Less Lonely Girl" (2009).[2] It was also shot in Franklin, Tennessee, where the previous video was filmed.[12] On recruiting White to shoot the video, Bieber explained, "Roman can tell a story really well, so we wanted to use him," Bieber explained. "He shot the 'One Less Lonely Girl' video, and I thought he did a great job; he shot the 'You Belong With Me' video with Taylor Swift, and he had a lot of great experience and a lot of great work." A teaser of the video was released on October 11, 2011.[2] The video itself premiered on October 18, 2011.[12] A Rolling Stone reviewer said "the clip is cheesy holiday joy, with the singer courting a cute chick in some idyllic small town decked out with tasteful white lights and a very light dusting of snow."[13]

"Mistletoe" was performed for the first time on October 5, 2011, during a concert in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.[14] It was also performed at the 2011 MTV Europe Music Awards on November 6, 2011.[15] Bieber performed the song on November 20, 2011 at the 2011 American Music Awards,[16] and on November 10, 2011 at the Bambi Awards[17] and on German X Factor.[18] He performed "Mistletoe" on the semi-final on UK The X Factor.[19] He additionally performed the song on the UK ITV Christmas special This is Justin Bieber which aired on December 10, 2011 with featured guest Tinie Tempah.[20]

Chart performance[edit]

Chart (2011–17) Peak
Australia (ARIA)[21] 20
Austria (Ö3 Austria Top 40)[22] 45
Belgium (Ultratop 50 Flanders)[23] 28
Belgium (Ultratop 50 Wallonia)[24] 1
Canada (Canadian Hot 100) 9
Denmark (Tracklisten)[25] 7
Finland (Suomen virallinen lista)[26] 15
France (SNEP)[27] 76
Ireland (IRMA)[28] 16
Italy (FIMI)[29] 72
Netherlands (Single Top 100)[30] 21
New Zealand (Recorded Music NZ)[31] 11
Norway (VG-lista)[32] 2
Scotland (Official Charts Company)[33] 24
South Korea International Singles (Gaon)[34] 41
Sweden (Sverigetopplistan)[35] 14
Switzerland (Schweizer Hitparade)[36] 49
UK Singles (Official Charts Company)[37] 21
US Billboard Hot 100[38] 11
US Adult Contemporary (Billboard)[39] 2
US Mainstream Top 40 (Billboard)[40] 40


Country Certifications
Canada Platinum[41]
Denmark Platinum[42]
United States 2x Platinum[43]


  1. ^ a b c Vena, Jocelyn (2011-10-06). "Justin Bieber Previews 'Mistletoe' On Tour". MTV News. MTV Networks (Viacom). Retrieved 2011-10-25. 
  2. ^ a b c d Vena, Jocelyn (2011-10-11). "Justin Bieber Gets Romantic In 'Mistletoe' Teaser". MTV News. MTV Networks (Viacom). Retrieved 2011-10-25. 
  3. ^ "Track Review: Justin Bieber, 'Mistletoe'". Billboard.com. 2009-09-14. Retrieved 2011-10-30. 
  4. ^ "JUSTIN BIEBER'S "UNDER THE MISTLETOE", HIS FIRST CHRISTMAS ALBUM, SET FOR NOV 1 RELEASE | Universal Music Canada". Universalmusic.ca. 2011-10-05. Retrieved 2011-10-30. 
  5. ^ a b c d e f Cubarrubia, RJ (2011-10-24). "Track Review: Justin Bieber, 'Mistletoe'". Billboard. Prometehus Global Media. Retrieved 2011-10-25. 
  6. ^ Messinger, Adam; Atweh, Nasri; Bieber, Justin (2011). "Justin Bieber – Mistletoe Sheet Music" (sheet music). Musicnotes.com. Universal Music Publishing Group. Retrieved 2011-10-30. 
  7. ^ a b c d e Lamb, Bill. "Justin Bieber - "Mistletoe"". About.com. The New York Times Company. Retrieved 2011-10-30. 
  8. ^ a b "First Listen: Justin Bieber's 'Mistletoe'". The Insider.com. Buzzmedia Publishers. 2011-10-17. Retrieved 2011-10-30. 
  9. ^ "Adele's '21' Hits 13th Week At No. 1 On Billboard 200; Casting Crowns Bow At No. 2". Billboard.biz. 2011-10-26. Retrieved 2011-10-30. 
  10. ^ Grein, Paul (2011-12-14). "Chart Watch Extra: The Year's Top 30 Hits". Yahoo! Music. Nielsen Business Media. Retrieved 2012-01-06. 
  11. ^ Billboard Staff (November 25, 2016). "What Are the Top-Selling Holiday Songs?". Billboard Magazine. Retrieved December 2, 2016. 
  12. ^ a b Montgomery, James (2011-10-13). "Justin Bieber Brings 'Mistletoe' Video To MTV Tuesday!". MTV News. MTV Networks (Viacom). Retrieved 2011-10-25. 
  13. ^ "Video:'Mistletoe'". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 2011-10-30. 
  14. ^ "Justin Bieber Previews 'Mistletoe' On Tour - Music, Celebrity, Artist News | MTV". MTV. 2011-10-06. Retrieved 2012-01-11. 
  15. ^ "2011 MTV Europe Music Awards | Pictures | Photos | Red Carpet". Sydney Morning Herald. 2011-11-07. Retrieved 2012-01-11. 
  16. ^ "Digital Spy". 2011-11-21. Retrieved 2012-01-11. 
  17. ^ "Justin Bieber Performs & Wins at the Bambi Awards In Germany!". Hollywood Life. November 10, 2011. Retrieved December 17, 2015. 
  18. ^ "Justin Bieber to perform on this weekend's X Factor". The Mirror. November 29, 2011. Retrieved December 17, 2015. 
  19. ^ "Justin Bieber & Kelly Rowland Are "Down For Whatever" Under The "Mistletoe" On 'X Factor' UK". 97.1 AMP RADIO. Retrieved 13 January 2016. 
  20. ^ "Tinie Tempah And Justin Bieber Perform Christmas Duet". Capital FM. 14 November 2011. Retrieved 13 January 2016. 
  21. ^ "Australian-charts.com – Justin Bieber – Mistletoe". ARIA Top 50 Singles.
  22. ^ "Austriancharts.at – Justin Bieber – Mistletoe" (in German). Ö3 Austria Top 40.
  23. ^ "Ultratop.be – Justin Bieber – Mistletoe" (in Dutch). Ultratop 50.
  24. ^ "Ultratop.be – Justin Bieber – Mistletoe" (in French). Ultratop 50.
  25. ^ "Track Top-40 Uge 49, 2017". Hitlisten. Retrieved December 13, 2017. 
  26. ^ "Justin Bieber: Mistletoe" (in Finnish). Musiikkituottajat – IFPI Finland. Retrieved December 31, 2017.
  27. ^ "Lescharts.com – Justin Bieber – Mistletoe" (in French). Les classement single.
  28. ^ "Chart Track: Week 42, 2011". Irish Singles Chart.
  29. ^ "Top Singoli – Classifica settimanale WK 52" (in Italian). Federazione Industria Musicale Italiana. Retrieved December 30, 2017. 
  30. ^ "Dutchcharts.nl – Justin Bieber – Mistletoe" (in Dutch). Single Top 100.
  31. ^ "Charts.nz – Justin Bieber – Mistletoe". Top 40 Singles.
  32. ^ "Norwegiancharts.com – Justin Bieber – Mistletoe". VG-lista.
  33. ^ "Official Scottish Singles Sales Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company.
  34. ^ "South Korea Gaon International Chart (Week: January 01, 2012 to January 07, 2012)". Gaon Chart. December 15, 2012. Archived from the original on December 19, 2012. Retrieved December 21, 2012. 
  35. ^ "Sverigetopplistan – Sveriges Officiella Topplista". Sverigetopplistan. Retrieved December 23, 2017. 
  36. ^ "Swisscharts.com – Justin Bieber – Mistletoe". Swiss Singles Chart.
  37. ^ "Official Singles Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company.
  38. ^ "Justin Bieber Chart History (Hot 100)". Billboard.
  39. ^ "Justin Bieber Chart History (Adult Contemporary)". Billboard.
  40. ^ "Justin Bieber Chart History (Pop Songs)". Billboard.
  41. ^ "Gold/Platinum". Music Canada. Retrieved 13 January 2016. 
  42. ^ "Gold/Platinum". IFPI Denmark. Retrieved 9 January 2017. 
  43. ^ "Gold & Platinum". RIAA. Retrieved 13 January 2016. 

External links[edit]