Listen to Wham's "Careless Whisper" before George Michael fixed it


#1

Originally published at: http://boingboing.net/2016/12/29/listen-to-whams-careless-w.html


#2

One’s first impression with these things is often to be charmed by the novelty of it.

But this version really is just awful. George was what, 18? And he already had the gumption to can the Legendary Producer his label had working with him.


#3

The whys of it make me think it lacks the rich sound of GM’s version, and it seems to upbeat and chipper for a song about love and regret.

Am I even close?


#4

This is like the uncanny valley in song form. It somehow feels extra schmalzy and elevator music esque.

But it’s nothing compared with this:


#5

I think it’s a different kind of good.


#6

The prominence of the bass and of the jazzy guitar chords rob the song of variation. The guitar lick at 1:24 is cheesy and louder than the vocals. The gated reverb on the drums really dates this mix as well.

My impression is that this mix is going for a more 80’s jazz laid back kind of vibe, whereas the version we know today puts the vocals, and therefore, the story and its emotional connection with the listener, up front and feels like something you can actually slow dance to.


#7

Uh, it’s “Wham!”'s not “Wham”'s. they EARNED that exclamation mark.


#8

It was a good idea to change the name too. I mean, what the hell is a “Carless Whisper” anyways?


#9


#10

I was really hoping it was without the grating 80s sax. Turns out it just has the grating 80s everything else.


#11

It’s not 80’s music without rocksax.


#12

And then there’s this amazing cover:

The sneaky sax player cracks me up.


#13

I find generally that the only times I enjoy brass and woodwind instruments is when I see Cab Calloway dancing in front of them.


#14

Bravo sir. Bravo!


#15

George did a great job…this version’s lacking many of the aspects that ended up in the final, great mix. This version is amateurish and wouldn’t have been a hit despite having good potential.


#16

Open your mind…there are various aspects of any past era that can become annoying later, but at the same time there are great aspects about the 70s and the 80s that can’t be matched.


#17

I was there in the 70s and 80s. I had the feathered hair and jean jacket with the KISS patch on the back to prove it. I know about the good stuff.

80s sax wasn’t one of them.

It did work here;

Though the power of the Durranniness might be carrying it.


#18

Are backlit, pvc coated, horizontal blinds the single most 80s thing possible?

Oh no wait, I just remembered slat shades.

Still.


#19

Sax isn’t particular to the 80s, and it worked brutally well with Careless.


#20

It probably doesn’t help that I never liked this song to begin with. But I do think that with a different arraignment with less 80s sax could change my mind on it. The Post Modern Jukebox version up there isn’t bad.

Now, if there was some Cab Calloway dancing in front of them…