George Michael’s ‘Careless Whisper’ Tops 1 Billion YouTube Views

George Michael’s enduringly popular 1984 chart-topper “Careless Whisper” has officially surpassed 1 billion views on YouTube.

“Careless Whisper,” originally released on Wham!’s album “Make It Big,” has averaged more than 400,000 daily views globally on YouTube in 2023, according to the video platform. The official music video of the ’80s classic, which Michael wrote with Wham! bandmate Andrew Ridgeley, was uploaded to YouTube in October 2009.

“Careless Whisper,” which features a signature saxophone riff, is the eighth song from the ’80s to join the YouTube Billion Views club. The first to do so was Guns N’ Roses’ “Sweet Child O’ Mine”; the others are A-ha’s “Take On Me“; Michael Jackson’s “Billie Jean”; Rick Astley’s “Never Gonna Give You Up“; Cyndi Lauper’s “Girls Just Want To Have Fun“; Europe’s “The Final Countdown”; and the Police’s “Every Breath You Take.”

The original music video for “Careless Whisper,” shot in Miami, was directed by filmmaker Duncan Gibbins, who had previously directed the video for Wham! hit “Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go” (which currently registers 427 million views on the group’s official YouTube channel). The “Careless Whisper” video was subsequently re-edited to add footage of Michael performing the song on stage at London’s Lyceum Theatre.

Michael died in 2016 at the age of 53. The British pop singer had sold more than 100 million albums over the course of his career. Michael, whose real name was Georgios Kyriacos Panayiotou, formed Wham! in 1981 with Ridgeley. Last year, Michael’s estate extended its global publishing agreement with Warner Chappell Music U.K. covering the artist’s solo work as well as songs from his time in Wham!

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