'Santa Claus Is Coming to Town' Songwriter's Family Sues Over Grinch-Like Practices

  • TMZ
The family of the guy who wrote "Santa Claus Is Coming to Town" says they've been getting nothing but lumps of coal, when they should've been cashing in big on the holiday classic. The tune was written by Haven Gillespie way back in the 1930s. Haven's been dead since 1975, but his family says it entrusted Memory Lane Music Group to continue collecting royalties on Gillespie's catalog. He also wrote, "You Go to My Head" and
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Songwriter's Estate Wants Control Over 'Santa Claus is Comin' To Town'

One of the big issues in entertainment law this past year was songwriters terminating copyright grants to wrest back control over songs. The year is ending with a bang as the estate of J. Fred Coots is terminating publishing rights on one of the biggest hits of the holiday season, "Santa Claus is Comin' To Town." The estate has filed a lawsuit against Emi that seeks a declaration confirming the validity of a termination notice sent to the music publisher. Coots, along with fellow songwriter Haven Gillespie, wrote the song in 1934, which was first sung by Eddie Cantor,

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Mariah Carey unveils Xmas LP tracklist

Mariah Carey unveils Xmas LP tracklist
Mariah Carey has unveiled the tracklist and production credits for her new Christmas album. The singer's second Christmas album, called Merry Christmas II You, features 13 tracks, including five original songs and a re-working of her classic hit 'All I Want For Christmas Is You. According to Mariah Journal, production credits include Jermaine Dupri, who has worked on Carey's most-recent efforts, American Idol's Randy Jackson, Nelly Furtado producer 'James Wright' and Broadway composer Marc Shaiman. The LP's first single, 'Oh Santa!', is available to download in the Us now. The album follows on November 2. The complete track listing and production credits for Merry Christmas II You are as follows: 1. 'Santa Claus is Coming to Town' (Intro) - Written by J. Fred Coots, Haven Gillespie. Produced (more)
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Winter Wonderland Tops Ascap's Holiday Tune

"Winter Wonderland" has topped a new list of the most performed holiday songs of the decade. The 1934 tune written by Felix Bernard and Richard B. Smith was an instant hit for bandleader Guy Lombardo And His Royal Canadians and it has since been recorded by the Andrews Sisters, Doris Day, Perry Como, The Eurythmics and Jewel Kilcher.

And it seems the tune - the oldest on the top 25 countdown - is an annual favourite for radio programmers at this time of year - it's the most played track, according to the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers. Also making the top 10: Sleigh Ride, White Christmas and Jingle Bell Rock.

Here's Ascap's most played holiday tunes of the past 10 years:

Winter Wonderland - written by Felix Bernard, Richard B. Smith

The Christmas Song (Chestnuts Roasting on an Open Fire) - written by Mel Torme, Robert Wells

Sleigh Ride - written by Leroy Anderson,
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