Wham! have earned the Christmas Number One with their iconic holiday hit ‘Last Christmas’ after attempting to land the spot for 39 years.
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The track was penned and produced by the late George Michael with the aim of landing the Christmas Number One in 1984. However, ‘Last Christmas’ was kept off the top spot upon release by Band-Aid’s ‘Do They Know It’s Christmas?’, a track that would go on to become the second best-selling single of all time.
Today, almost four decades later, ‘Last Christmas’ has earned the festive top spot. Wham! have also made history by setting the record for the longest-ever journey to the UK Christmas Number One.
Speaking about the achievement to Official Charts in a press release, Wham!’s Andrew Ridgeley said: “‘Last Christmas’ has finally ascended to the much-cherished and sought-after Official Christmas Number One, which was always the main goal.”
He continued: “George would be beside himself [that] after all of these years, [we’ve] finally obtained Christmas Number One. Yog [George] said that he wrote Last Christmas with the intention of writing a Christmas Number One. It’s mission accomplished!”
‘Last Christmas’ was streamed a staggering 13.3 million times over the past seven days, according to Official Charts Company data – the most-streamed Christmas Number 1 ever during Christmas week. It has become the UK’s third biggest song of all time with a combined lifetime total of 5.34m chart units, comprising 1.93m sales and nearly 413 million streams.
Over the past week, Wham! batted off competition from Sam Ryder, Mariah Carey and The Pogues ft. Kirsty MacColl, Elton John and more over the Christmas Number one spot.
In other Official Charts Christmas spots, The Rolling Stones have landed the Number One Christmas album with their latest release, ‘Hackney Diamonds‘.
Speaking exclusively to Official Charts in a press release, The Rolling Stones said: “It’s a wonderful way to round off 2023. Thank you to everyone for listening to Hackney Diamonds. Have a very happy Christmas and New Year!”
Elsewhere, Cher became the first female artist to achieve a Top 40 hit with new material on the Official Singles Chart across seven consecutive decades.
She also became the oldest solo female performer, at 77-years-old, to secure a Top 40 on the Official Singles Chart with ‘DJ Play a Christmas Song’ from her 27th studio album ‘Christmas’. The pop icon surpassed the previous record-holder Shirley Bassey, who was 70 years old when ‘The Living Tree’ peaked at Number 37 in 2007.