Monday, June 28, 2021

Musical Monday - Freedom by Wham!

#1 on the Billboard Hot 100: Never.
#1 on the Cash Box Top 100: Never.
#1 on the U.K. Chart: October 20, 1984 to November 3, 1984.

Wham! had a few top hits in the United States in the 1980s. The duo had a few more top hits in the U.K. This song reached number one in the U.K., and was only slightly less successful across the Atlantic. The thing about Wham! is that even though they are one of the iconic bands of the 1980s, they only released a total of two studio albums, and their heyday only lasted for about two years. Michael and Ridgeley somehow managed to help set the tone for the entire decade with a handful of songs and some fairly suspect dancing.

The weird thing about this song is that even though it is super-peppy and upbeat, the lyrics tell the story of a one-sided, almost abusive relationship. It seems odd to have a toe-tapping dance song that features lyrics about a narrator whose significant other apparently routinely cheats on them, but the narrator is so smitten that they always forgive their wayward partner. This is a strangely happy sounding tune with a dark core behind it. I suspect that few people who put this on for a turn at cutting the rug spent much time thinking about the words being sung at them. I kind of wonder if it would have mattered if they had.

Previous Musical Monday: Let's Go Crazy by Prince
Subsequent Musical Monday: Caribbean Queen (No More Love On the Run) by Billy Ocean

Previous #1 on the U.K. Chart: I Just Called to Say I Love You by Stevie Wonder
Subsequent #1 on the U.K. Chart: I Feel for You by Chaka Khan

List of #1 Singles from the Billboard Hot 100 for 1980-1989
List of #1 Singles from the Cash Box Top 100 for 1980-1989
List of #1 Singles on the U.K. Chart for 1980-1989

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