The Cover-Song Showcase Showdown: Wrapping Up “Last Christmas”

Nov 24th, 2006 // 14 Comments

lc.jpgNow that it’s the season for “Last Christmas,” the 1984 Yuletide lament by Wham!, to blare from public loudspeakers all over the land, we figured the time was right to stage a Cover-Song Showcase Showdown for the song. There are many covers floating around out there, and we’ve selected four for you to download and vote on today: they come from, in alphabetical order, Crazy Frog, Hilary Duff, Jimmy Eat World, and Sarge.

Crazy Frog – Last Christmas [MP3, link expired]
Hilary Duff – Last Christmas [MP3, link expired]
Jimmy Eat World – Last Christmas [MP3, link expired]
Sarge – Last Christmas [MP3, link expired]

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  1. Chris Molanphy

    The interesting thing about “Last Christmas” is that – no matter how many covers there are of it – this is a song George Michael clearly wrote to suit himself. The moment in the second verse where he whispers “Merry Christmas” in his seductive, pre-gaydar Wham! voice is cheesy and douche-chill-worthy now; but you can imagine it making British teenage girls positively squeal in 1984. And the rhythm of the song is such that the “Merry Christmas” whisper sort of stops the song dead for a moment for just that purpose: girls, here’s where you squeal. Ol’ George: an evil genius, that one.

    Coming out of Hilary Duff and whoever the fuck is singing the Crazy Frog version, the whisper sounds fairly ridiculous. Even Sarge’s Elizabeth Elmore sounds weird doing it, which is probably why she doesn’t actually try to whisper it. The JEW guys are probably the smartest, because they dump half the lyrics of the song, including the whisper. Strangely, as good as their version sounds musically, the missing lyrics make it sound sort of empty to me. (I voted for Sarge.)

    I’ve long admired Michael’s ability to write a great pop song, but “Last Christmas” is especially canny (or, to be more cynical, crass) – it’s like one of those teen-idol singles from the ’50s and ’60s designed to highlight an act’s dreamy qualities, except said act wrote it himself.

  2. Chris Molanphy

    P.S. That single-sleeve cover art you guys dug up is positively priceless.

  3. Ned Raggett

    Yeah, I can’t get past that. However did I miss THAT in the past?

  4. Brian Raftery

    We didn’t dig that up. That’s actually me and Maura’s new press photo, photoshopped just a smidge.

  5. The Mozfather

    As a former retail employee forced to listen to this song ad nauseum, I am boycotting this poll. The song’s pretty much up there with “Chrissy, the Christmas Mouse” as my Most Loathed Christmas Song of All Time.

  6. BawstonSean

    As my girlfriend said “Turn that shit off – I ain’t shoppin’ yet.”

  7. tee.

    Can I vote for George Michael here instead? The original is perfect; all holiday songs should be kind of cheesy, because that’s what Christmas is.

    Fortunately for me, I never ended up with “Last Christmas” on any of my holiday soundtrack rotations when I was in retail. I do really, really fucking hate “Wonderful Christmastime” though.

  8. h. ross piroshky

    i can’t really explain why i love this song. i just do. it’s fun to sing along with…it’s all wistful and tragic, yet inspirational somehow.

    i wish i knew how to quit you, George Michael.

    and i completely agree with tee. about “Wonderful Christmastime”. gross. it makes holiday shopping 10x worse.

  9. Wicked Zoot

    I’m voting for a write in candidate: Erlend Oye. Mobile Records 2002 Xmas comp “Seasonal Greetings.” All these people are trying to hard.

  10. jack

    surprised you kids didn’t put up butch walker’s version…he of the “pop metal wizard” fame and all

  11. xtianrut

    jack: ooh, snap!

  12. MTS

    no pas/cal, no cred

  13. FunkyJ

    I vote for Richard Cheese’s cover of it on Silent Nightclub…

  14. faraways0close

    PAS/CAL’s version kills these, even though I consider JEW’s version a guilty holiday pleasure

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