Wham - Last Christmas

December 29, 2021

"Last Christmas" is not a pop Christmas song in the series. George Michael did almost everything on his own in this little diamond that has now acquired a different meaning.
December 25 marks the fifth anniversary of the untimely death of true pop star George Michael in 2016.

The game of fate was about the famous British singer of Cypriot origin, whose real name was Georgios Panagiotou, to pass away on the day to which one of the most popular songs he has dedicated to his glorious career has been dedicated.

In December 1984, two upcoming Christmas anthems competed for Christmas No. 1 on the charts: "Do They Know It's Christmas" by the charity Band Aid supergroup created for charity (U2, Duran Duran, Sting, Phil Collins, Status Quo etc.) and "Last Christmas" by Wham !.

George Michael not only sang on the Band Aid single, but gave the rights to "Last Christmas" to the same charity.

However, the saturation of Christmas carols that year led to a strange phenomenon on the chart: Band Aid debut meant that "Last Christmas", one of the most popular and glamorous holiday songs, never reached No. 1 on the charts. 36 years after its release.

"Last Christmas" first conquered the top of the United Kingdom Evelina in early 2021

Over the years, "Last Christmas" has grown in size: Counting 3.7 million sales and countless reruns by all artists, from Taylor Swift and Whigfield to Ariana Grande and Good Charlotte.

George Michael - Hit Channel

There is a speculative side to a Christmas song. The one who will be successful can sustain an artist for a lifetime and the decision of Wham! to create their own single was no surprise.

Mark Ellen remembers that many in the music press were reluctant to Wham! and saw them as empty adventurers in the developing economy. But despite the fact that "Last Christmas" appears as a sweet and cynical commodity on the charts, it was almost a solo production.

The song was recorded in August 1984, in the once modern Advision studios in London, if and when Wham! they went there the technology was rudimentary. Earlier that year, George Michael released Wham! - and his budding solo career - from an indefinite record deal.

He had also begun to build himself as a serious creative force, starting from a less serious foundation.

George Michael, then 21, wrote, produced and played every instrument in "Last Christmas".

Gradually getting rid of the intervention of producers, managers, record labels, and even Andrew Ridgeley's collaborator, the only ones who admitted to attending the recording studio were Michael's sound engineer, Chris Porter, and two unassisted assistants. .

Lyrically, "Last Christmas" is a highly sophisticated song that is full of mixed messages and a powerful absurdity that defines the best pop music. There is a tension between the music and the lyrics: "You have the happiness from the rhythm of the song, but on the other you have the sadness from the unrequited love," Porter explains.

George Michael - Hit Channel

Intelligence is found in the lyrics themselves.

Not only does the simplistic chorus style make a sharp turn ("This year to save me from tears / I will give [my heart] to someone special"), but there is also a contradiction. The narrator tries to undermine his ex by dedicating an entire song to how devastated he is by their separation.

But "Last Christmas" is not just about the lies we tell ourselves to deal with rejection, it is also about the "cognitive mismatch" (in psychological terms) of obsessive love.

At the end of the first stanza, George Michael expresses this kind of double thinking: "How stupid I was, but if you kissed me now, I know you would fool me again," he sings.

It is a heartbreaking inscription in a song that abounds in such samples, documenting how contempt disguises hope and how easily love and desire can deceive us and give us forgiveness.