After 36 years, Wham’s “Last Christmas” (RCA) finally scales the U.K. singles chart summit, shattering records in the process.
The British pop duo’s holiday classic lifts 3-1 on the Official U.K. Singles Chart, to complete a chart journey that began in 1984.
According to the Official Charts Company, “Last Christmas” sets a new mark for the longest time for a single to reach No. 1, eclipsing Tony Christie’s “(Is This The Way To) Amarillo,” which took 33 years and four months to reach the top, which it did in March 2005.
“Last Christmas,” which until now had never gone better than No. 2, chalked up 9.2 million streams over latest frame. And it did so on the fourth anniversary of George Michael’s death.
“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,” wrote Wham founding member Andrew Ridgeley on social media. “It’s a fitting tribute 2 George’s songwriting genius and 1 of which he would’ve been immensely proud & utterly thrilled.”
Now, “Last Christmas” can shake off the unwanted title as the U.K.’s best-selling single to never reach No. 1, with 1.9 million combined sales since its release.
As Wham snag a fifth chart leader, 28 holiday tracks impact the Top 40, including Jose Feliciano’s classic “Feliz Navidad” (BMG), which makes its Top 40 debut some 50 years after its release. It’s up 44-40.
Indeed, every title in the Top 10 has a Christmas theme, with the exception of Little Mix’s “Sweet Melody” (RCA), up 20-9.
The Christmas bells are still ringing on the Official U.K. Albums Chart, which is led by Michael Buble’s Christmas (Reprise) blockbuster.
Christmas lifts 5-1 in its 90th week on the survey, for its fourth non-consecutive stint at the summit. Originally released back in October 2011, Christmas this week holds off Taylor Swift’s Evermore (EMI), unchanged at No. 2.
The highest new entry on the chart this week is Playboi Carti’s Billboard 200 leader Whole Lotta Red (Interscope). It’s new at No. 17 in the U.K.