Wham’s Last Christmas finally claims Number 1 on the Official Singles Chart 36 years after its release and breaks a new Official Chart record in the process, the Official Charts Company can confirm.
The festive favourite climbs from 3 to 1 after racking up 9.2 million streams over the past week, reaching the summit on the fourth anniversary of George Michael’s death.
Last Christmas sets a new record for the longest time taken for a single to reach Number 1, at 36 years, overtaking Tony Christie’s (Is This The Way To) Amarillo, which took 33 years and 4 months to claim the top spot (March, 2005).
Celebrating the news, Andrew Ridgeley paid tribute to his bandmate, the late George Michael:
I am delighted, somewhat amazed & profoundly pleased that WHAM!’s iconic Christmas classic Last Christmas has finally achieved the accolade of becoming a No 1. It’s a fitting tribute 2 George’s songwriting genius and 1 of which he would’ve been immensely proud & utterly thrilled.— Andrew Ridgeley (@ajridgeley) January 1, 2021
Martin Talbot, chief executive, Official Charts Company, added: "This is a fantastic record for Last Christmas. Just a few weeks after Mariah Carey’s All I Want For Christmas is You reached Number 1 after a 26 year wait, for the Wham! tune to make its own impact after so long really shows how much the British public love their Christmas classics.”
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Previously, Last Christmas was the UK’s best-selling single to never reach Number 1, accumulating 1.9 million pure sales to date across its lifetime. That title is now handed over to Maroon 5’s Moves Like Jagger ft. Christina Aguilera (1.55m pure sales), a Number 2 hit in 2011.
Released in 1984, Last Christmas spent five weeks at Number 2 that year, pipped to the Official Christmas Number 1 post by Band Aid’s Do They Know It’s Christmas?. It was re-released the following year and reached Number 6.
Since 2007, shortly after downloads were introduced to the Official Chart, Last Christmas has re-entered the Top 40 on a further 13 occasions, reaching Number 2 again in 2018.
It earns Wham! - comprising of George Michael and Andrew Ridgeley - a fifth UK Number 1 - their last was The Edge Of Heaven in 1986. View Wham's complete Official Chart history here.
Last Christmas is the second festive classic to finally claim chart glory in recent weeks, after Mariah Carey’s All I Want For Christmas Is You reached Number 1 in December, 26 years after its release.
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Christmas songs continue to dominate this week’s Official Singles Chart, with 28 festive tracks inside the Top 40, four of which reach new peaks: Kylie Minogue’s Santa Baby (31), Ronettes’ Sleigh Ride (33), Dean Martin’s Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow! (37), and Jose Feliciano’s Feliz Navidad, which makes its Top 40 debut 50 years after its release at Number 40.
Elsewhere, Little Mix’s Sweet Melody rebounds 11 places to Number 9, Ed Sheeran’s Afterglow zooms 17 places to Number 13, and newcomer Shane Codd climbs back up with his breakthrough hit Get Out My Head, up 16 places to 22.
Outside the Top 40, this week's highest new entry comes in at Number 65 from Asian Dub Foundation and Stewart Lee, whose track Comin' Over Here had been the subject of a social media campaign to get it to Number 1 Number One when the Brexit transition period ends - the first day the UK leaves the EU. 100% of the band’s share of sales are going to frontline refugee and migrant support groups.