Christmas posts 2013 part 1

Last Christmas

Yup, it’s four weeks until Christmas Day, so I am starting my annual Christmas posts now.

First up, ‘Last Christmas.’

‘Last Christmas’ was first a hit for Wham! in 1984, and nearly thirty years since it original release, it still holds the record for being the best-selling single not to go to No.1 in the UK. This was due to Band Aid’s ‘Do They Know It’s Christmas?’ which was the best-selling single in the UK from 1984 until 1997 when it became Elton John’s ‘Candle In The Wind 1997.’ Though the indie kids may have been clasping The Smiths to their collective bosom, in the pop charts 1984 was the year of Wham! and Frankie Goes To Hollywood (who’d been championed by John Peel anyway).

Whatever mistakes George Michael may have made over the last ten years, I was eight when this record came out, and Wham! and his solo career were definitely part of the soundtrack to my pre-teen years. So, no, I make absolutely no apologies for featuring this.

There have been numerous cover versions over the year, this rather lovely one is by ILikeTrains, which as far as I can tell never received a commercial release.

ILikeTrains-‘Last Christmas.’ mp3

Amongst the many cover versions available, the song has been covered by the Manic Street Preachers, All About Eve, and Jimmy Eat World amongst many others. These versions are available commercially, so if you like them, go and buy them.

Songs For Christmas II

Two very different Christmas songs for your listening pleasure today:

First up, the Godfather of Soul himself, who passed away on Christmas Day last year:

James Brown – ‘Santa Claus Go Straight To The Ghetto.’ mp3

…And a cover of a Christmas classic from when I was a kid. I believe that for many years, this Wham! song was the biggest selling record in the UK not to go to No.1 (Band Aid’s ‘Do They Know It’s Christmas?’ held the spot at the time.) Funnily enough, this was also covered by the Manic Street Preachers in the late 90s, too…

Jimmy Eat World -‘Last Christmas (Wham! cover).’ mp3