I was a performing songwriter for years, and there's one thing I know: A really good song doesn't depend on the arrangement. Sure, layers of sound can make or break a popular tune (just ask Phil Spector), but "All I Want For Christmas" proves all that matters with a good song are the bones.
In 1994, Carey co-wrote and co-produced the song with Walter Afanasieff. It's been praised by the New Yorker as "one of the few worthy modern additions to the holiday canon."
Barry Schwarz from Stylus Magazine, "to say this song is an instant classic somehow doesn't capture its amazingicity; it's a modern standard: joyous, exhilarating, loud, with even a hint of longing."
Carey has re-recorded the tune several times (including once with... Justin Beiber?) but this one might be my favorite. Hard to beat the casual charm of this version!