Superstars Ariana Grande and Mariah Carey may be pushed out from Britain’s coveted Christmas number one by an unlikely contender: a dad blogger’s debut single.
Mark Hoyle – aka YouTube regular LadBaby – has rocketed to number two in the charts with a cover of Starship’s 1996 anthem, We Built This City.
His wife Roxanne is backup singer on the tune, which credits the titular city being built on sausage rolls not rock’n’roll, and pays homage to Britain’s ongoing tradition of awful novelty Christmas songs.
“Who would have thought it? A sausage roll song being sung by a Nottingham lad would be sitting at Number 2,” LadBaby told OfficialCharts.com.
The song “started as a joke”, he told the BBC.
“I had never sung before in my life. I’ve never done karaoke. Now I don’t want to let it slip. Now I feel like we can go all the way, and why not? We want a Christmas miracle and get the number-one spot.”
He urged fans to help him take down “global mega stars” and “eat our own body weight in sausage rolls”.
According to UK reports on Wednesday, We Built This City on Sausage Rolls trails US singer Ava Max with Sweet But Psycho by just 978 sales.
LadBaby is 508 sales and streams ahead of Grande’s hit, Thank U, Next.
Other contenders for the Christmas number one, which is announced on Friday (UK time) include perennials All I Want For Christmas Is You by Mariah Carey and Wham!’s Last Christmas. Both are in the top 10.
While he’s a singing newcomer, LadBaby already has a cracking showbiz career.
He found fame posting videos to his own YouTube channel about his ‘lad to dad’ transformation since becoming a parent.
The clips have been viewed 70 million times and according to his online biography, LadBaby’s Facebook page gained one million followers in four months.
The former graphic designer and self-proclaimed entrepreneur said he wants to clinch top spot as an early Christmas gift for Roxanne, who has regular cameos in his YouTube clips.
One which was viewed more than 6.5 million times shows him buying their son a cheap toolbox rather than a higher quality one, against his wife’s express wishes.
When Roxanne gave birth to their second son Kobe in May – eldest boy Phoenix is two – the arrival was the subject of a LadBaby video posted to YouTube.
His social media profile has seen the 31-year-old named the UK’s Celebrity Dad of the Year in 2018 over Prince William and One Direction’s Liam Payne.
Speaking of William, a spoof the Hoyles made of Prince William and Kate Middleton leaving St Mary’s Hospital after the birth of one of their children drew 4 million Facebook views.
Recorded to benefit the Trussell Trust, a UK food bank provider, the We Built This City on Sausage Rolls clip has been viewed nearly half a million times since its December 14 premiere.
But could his meaty festive single really bring home the bacon? The stats are against him, according to the BBC.
The national broadcaster said while sales of the song are “robust” and it was downloaded more times on Saturday than Grande’s song was in the whole of last week, “its performance on streaming platforms is almost negligible”.
As chart expert James Masterton told the BBC: “People will cheerfully buy a charity single. It’s a nice, tangible, feel-good gesture. But they won’t necessarily listen to it.”