Wham Rap! (Enjoy What You Do)
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Wham Rap! Enjoy What You Do
"Wham Rap! (Enjoy What You Do)"
Wham Rap.jpg
Original 1982 UK 12-inch vinyl release
Single by Wham!
from the album Fantastic
Wham Rap! (Club Mix) (UK)
Released
  • June 16, 1982
  • January 1983 (Special US Re-Mix)
Format
Recorded1981-1982
Genre
Length
  • 3:30 (7")
  • 3:28 (7" U.S. Re-Mix)
  • 6:36 (Unsocial)
  • 6:43 (Special U.S. Re-Mix)
Label
Bob Carter
Wham! singles chronology
"Wham Rap! (Enjoy What You Do)"
(1982)
"Young Guns (Go for It!)"
(1982)
Music video
"Wham Rap! (Enjoy What You Do?)" on YouTube
Alternative cover art
UK vinyl single re-release (1983)
UK vinyl single re-release (1983)

"Wham Rap! (Enjoy What You Do)" is the debut single by English pop duo Wham! on Innervision Records, released in 1982. It was written by Wham! members George Michael and Andrew Ridgeley.

History

Wham Rap! was the first song written by Michael and Ridgeley following the breakup of their previous band, The Executive, but before they had officially formed (or named) Wham! The genesis of the song began in 1981 and was a result of Ridgeley making up his own words ("Wham! Bam! I am the man!") while dancing to "Rapper's Delight" with Michael and Shirley in Bogart's nightclub in South Harrow.[1] As they continued to work on the song an ultimatum to Michael from his father inspired the line "Get yourself a job or get out of this house".[2] A demo of Wham Rap! was recorded along with Club Tropicana and Careless Whisper on a borrowed Fostex 4-track porta-studio, with the resulting 3 song demo-tape gaining Wham! their record contract with Innervision Records some weeks later.[3] Innervision quickly arranged for a proper demo of the song to be recorded at Halligan Band Centre in Holloway using session musicians on bass and drums, which was then used by Michael and Ridgeley as a backing track for promotional performances at various nightclubs in preparation for their debut release.[4]

Synopsis

Although rap was still an underground and almost exclusively American phenomenon in the early 1980s, Michael rapped--as the title implies--a number of verses about the joys of living every day to the fullest, reveling in unemployment and celebrating government assistance from the Department of Health and Social Security (the initials "DHSS" are repeatedly chanted during the song). The explicitly political song flew in the face of the conventional British left-wing who were talking about the 'right to work' at the time. The chorus asked the question "Do you enjoy what you do?", which brought about the bracketed section of the title. The video depicted Michael and Ridgeley in their leather jackets, combining their moody image with a bright, effervescent choreography.[5] The video was filmed in London in February 1983 after the single was re-issued.

Versions

Uncharacteristically for Wham!, the Unsocial Mix of the song contains multiple repetitions of the swear words "damn", "bullshit", "shit" and "crap". All versions include "don't need this crap". These lines were included to illustrate the band's then-rebellious image, and future songs by Wham! would mostly refrain from using this type of language (although "Battlestations" does include an instance of "bullshit"). Both the Social Mix and the Fantastic album version have different verses from the Unsocial Mix; thus, there are three different sets of verse lyrics altogether. However, only the album version has appeared on CD.

Chart performance

The song, which had been tentatively released in June 1982 when Wham! were unknown, failed to make any impact and was later re-issued in January 1983 after the duo had achieved their breakthrough with "Young Guns (Go for It!)". The single subsequently reached No. 8 on the UK Singles Chart, the second release of four hits from Wham!'s debut album Fantastic.

Remixes

A new remix of the song was made in 1986, combining some of the Unsocial Mix with the album version. This version, entitled "Wham! Rap '86", was released on their American and Japanese album Music from the Edge of Heaven, and as the B-side on the 7-inch single "The Edge of Heaven" in the UK, Australia and Europe.

Other appearances

The original version of the song was used for the 1985 film drama Perfect from James Bridges, with John Travolta and Jamie Lee Curtis.

In September 2017, "Wham! Rap" was used for an H&M commercial starring Naomi Campbell.

Track listing

1982 release

All tracks are written by George Michael (credited to George Panos) and Andrew Ridgeley.

7": Innervision (UK)
No.TitleLength
1."Wham Rap!"3:30
2."Wham Rap!" (Club Mix) (a.k.a. Special Club Re-Mix, edited version of the 12" 'Social Mix')4:02
12": Innervision (UK)
No.TitleLength
1."Wham Rap!" (Unsocial Mix)6:36
2."Wham Rap!" (Social Mix)6:46
  • Note: Due to an error in labelling, the "Unsocial Mix" is listed as the single's A-side[6] despite Michael specifically referring to it as the B-side in the song's lyrics: "Hey, everybody, now listen to me/Cut the radio bullshit, this is side B."

1983 reissue

All tracks are written by George Michael and Andrew Ridgeley.

7": Innervision (UK)
No.TitleLength
1."Wham Rap! (Enjoy What You Do)" (Special U.S. Remix Part 1) (a.k.a. 'Special US Re-Mix')3:28
2."Wham Rap! (Enjoy What You Do)" (Special U.S. Re-Mix Part 2) (a.k.a. 'Special Club Re-Mix')3:10
12": Innervision (UK)
No.TitleLength
1."Wham Rap! (Enjoy What You Do)" (Special US Re-Mix) (a.k.a. 'Parts 1 and 2', identical to the Fantastic album version)6:43
2."Wham Rap! (Enjoy What You Do)" (Special Club Re-Mix) (a.k.a. 'Radio Version', same as the 7" version from the 1982 release)3:34

Charts

Chart (1983) Peak
position
Australia (ARIA)[7] 9
Belgium (Ultratop 50 Flanders)[8] 12
Netherlands (Single Top 100)[9] 9
Germany (Official German Charts)[10] 17
Ireland (IRMA)[11] 13
New Zealand (Recorded Music NZ)[12] 18
UK Singles (Official Charts Company)[13] 8

References

  1. ^ Ridgeley, Andrew (2019). Wham! George & Me (First ed.). Penguin. p. 122. ISBN 9780241385807.
  2. ^ Ridgeley, Andrew (2019). Wham! George & Me (First ed.). Penguin. p. 124. ISBN 9780241385807.
  3. ^ Ridgeley, Andrew (2019). Wham! George & Me (First ed.). Penguin. p. 137. ISBN 9780241385807.
  4. ^ Ridgeley, Andrew (2019). Wham! George & Me (First ed.). Penguin. p. 143. ISBN 9780241385807.
  5. ^ Steele, Robert Careless Whispers: The Life & Career of George Michael Omnibus Press, 2011. Retrieved 8 January 2016.
  6. ^ "Wham Rap!". Retrieved 2011.
  7. ^ David Kent (1993). Australian Chart Book 1970-1992. Australian Chart Book, St Ives, N.S.W. ISBN 0-646-11917-6.
  8. ^ "Ultratop.be - Wham! - Wham Rap!" (in Dutch). Ultratop 50. Retrieved 6 March 2016.
  9. ^ "Dutchcharts.nl - Wham! - Wham Rap!" (in Dutch). Single Top 100. Retrieved 6 March 2016.
  10. ^ "Offiziellecharts.de - Wham! - Wham Rap!". GfK Entertainment Charts. Retrieved 6 March 2016.
  11. ^ "The Irish Charts - Search Results - Wham Rap!". Irish Singles Chart. Retrieved 6 March 2016.
  12. ^ "Charts.nz - Wham! - Wham Rap!". Top 40 Singles. Retrieved 6 March 2016.
  13. ^ "Official Singles Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 6 March 2016.

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.

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