Wham! / Original Album Classics


Sony are putting out a trio of Wham! releases in one tidy Original Album Classics package next month.

The budget three-CD set combines the only two ‘proper’ studio albums from George Michael and Andrew Ridgely – 1983’s Fantastic and 1984’s Make It Big – and might be mildly interesting to casual fans thanks to the inclusion of Music From The Edge of Heaven, the 1986 compilation that was issued in America (and a few other territories)  instead of The Final.

Make It Big was actually the first album in the US, so understandably issuing a greatest hits called ‘The Final’ wasn’t something that appealed to the marketeers – hence Music From The Edge Of Heaven.

Unlike The Final, the American compilation included Wham! Rap ’86 which was part of the UK Edge of Heaven EP / 12-inch. This remix runs to 6.33 and Music From The Edge Of Heaven is the only place to find it on CD. Other differences to The Final are a unique extended version of I’m Your Man (i.e. it’s different to the ‘extended simulation’ version) and the inclusion of Blue (Live in China). Different Corner is also unique. It has an extended intro which bizarrely wasn’t on the UK 12-inch but was on the instrumental B-side!

Don’t expect any remastering. These will almost certainly just use whichever is the lastest available version.

Wham! Original Album Classics is out on 23 March 2015.

Disc: 1 / Fantastic 
1. Bad Boys
2. A Ray Of Sunshine
3. Love Machine
4. Wham Rap! (Enjoy What You Do?)
5. A Ray Of Sunshine
6. Love Machine
7. Club Tropicana
8. Nothing Looks the Same In the Light
9. Come On!
10. Young Guns (Go for It!)
11. Nothing Looks The Same In The Light

Disc: 2 / Make It Big
1. Wake Me up Before You Go-Go
2. Everything She Wants
3. Heartbeat
4. Like A Baby
5. Freedom
6. If You Were There
7. Credit Card Baby
8. Careless Whisper

Disc: 3 / Music From The Edge of Heaven
1. The Edge of Heaven
2. Battlestations
3. I’m Your Man* [unique extended version – not indicated on packaging]
4. Wham Rap ’86*
5. A Different Corner* [extended intro]
6. Blue (Live in China)*
7. Where Did Your Heart Go?
8. Last Christmas

*Not on The Final.

45 responses to Wham! / Original Album Classics

  1. mike says:

    Music from the edge of heaven is fab. Nuff said. Got my copy today and great to have 4 rarities i didnt have.

  2. elliott buckingham says:

    have a megamix 12″ promo compiling non singles from the 1st album credited to wham uk on Columbia records

  3. darkroman says:

    I’m Your Man is the Extended Stimulation version however, the ‘talking’ intro and Andrew Ridgeley car crash have been cut from the start. So this version cuts straight to the music.

    A Different Corner is the video version which includes a double bass intro not included on the single version.

    Hope this helps to clarify.

  4. Paul Brown says:

    I picked this up today (20th March) for $20AUD in Shellharbour JB Hi Fi…back cover says “copyright 2013 Sony Music Entertainment”…so I guess it’s been released before?

  5. Yet another pointless album reissue. Can’t believe people keep re-buying reissues without bonus tracks or remastered sound.

    • peter m says:

      Agree with you dennis, in most cases it’s simply product
      that’s being put out there.

    • Scott says:

      I disagree. These aren’t intended for hardcore fans. The “point” of these releases is to provide a chunk (or in this case, all) of an artist’s catalog to the casual “greatest hits” fan who decides he wants to dive a little deeper. It’s also an inexpensive way to replace old vinyl. Most of these sets come with 5 albums for around $20 which is cheaper than buying them all individually if you can even find them. Many of the titles they include in these sets are out of print on their own.
      I have over a dozen of these sets (as well as the Warner version) and really enjoy them. I have discovered a lot of great music I would not have otherwise taken a chance on. They all use the most recent version of the album so many of them are remastered with bonus tracks. The ELO set contained all the remasters with bonus tracks on every album. The Laura Nyro set actually included an album that was previously unreleased on CD. I don’t care for the packaging and lack of liner notes, but it’s a tradeoff for the price and convenience. I hope they continue this series for a long time.

  6. Fady says:

    I would love to see the both Fantastic and Make It Big given the proper deluxe vinyl treatment. I still think that George Michael’s Wham had a freshness that his solo music didn’t quite replicate (yes, I know that GM was trying to be taken seriously as a mature artist and felt the need to break free from the group). I actually think that the Wham songs have stood the test of time better than his solo stuff.

    On another completely separate issue, Paul, have you considered a redesign of this site. I don’t know if it’s just me but I find it a little hard to follow the conversations, especially as you cannot reply directly to a poster’s response. Just my two cents (or pence) for what it’s worth.

    • Paul Sinclair says:

      There are ‘plans’ for a design refresh actually, although you can reply directly to people’s comments. You just hit the ‘reply’ button at the bottom of wherever people have left a comment and your reply appears directly below that person’s comment and not right at the bottom of the list.

  7. Those instrumentals on Fantastic! were originally available on the cassette release.

    Unfortunately Sony/CBS whatever you want to call them are a terrible company so you’re unlikely to ever get any decent reissues from them. When I worked in record stores I always found their product inferior in quality. Fortunately not many of the bands I like were signed to them! I’m certainly not holding out for any good Midnight Oil re-issues any time soon :P

    • Kevin says:

      Without looking for the track listing for these editions, I’m pretty sure that the instrumentals in question were the ones included on the original UK CD edition; it had 11 tracks, whereas the album proper had just 8. The US CD omitted the extra instrumentals.

  8. John Hank says:

    It’s sad with all the unique edits and remixes and heck maybe an unreleased track or two, these CD’s aren’t getting the proper reissuing they deserve. Maybe George Michael, who’s said before he didn’t like a lot of the Wham stuff, is preventing this from happening?

  9. peter m says:

    The problem with this series is the usually poor packaging.
    To be fair this isn’t a bad track listing for the casual listener.

  10. Marc Hocker says:

    Fantastic and Make It Big were reissued and remastered in the UK in 1998 shortly after the 1997 If You Were There compilation. Fantastic had some instrumentals added to its tracklisting and its this version which is on this new boxset.

    • Scott says:

      Great observation on the “Fantastic” track list, Marc! I didn’t even notice that. Between that and the UK artwork for “Make It Big” I may actually consider picking this up now.

  11. omar says:

    On the other hand a deluxe of Fantastic on 2cds would be awesome. That way all those US Club mixes could be included.

  12. Scott says:

    Yes, Adam. I would love that too. I almost mentioned that in my post above.

  13. Adam says:

    Wake me up… when the video mix of “Wham Rap!” comes out on CD. Been waiting a few decades for that. (I’m really hoping I’m wrong and someone jumps in to tell me it was released somewhere.)

    • Scott says:

      The video mix of Wham! Rap you’re looking for, Wham! Rap (Social Mix), was released on CD long ago. Do a search for Wham! The Best Remixes. It was released on Sony Japan. It’s the Wham! Rap where GM sings, “I ain’t got no cars, no bodyguards, never been to the Holiday Inn,” etc.

  14. Scott says:

    There really should have been a 30th Anniversary Edition of “Make It Big” last year.

    These albums are so short they could easily do a “Complete Wham!” collection on two-discs. The combined running time of these three albums is only around 120 minutes. That would leave room for about 40 minutes of b-sides of which there were many (mostly instrumentals of the a-sides) and even the “Club Fantastic Megamix” which I don’t believe has ever been issued on CD.

  15. Kevin says:

    The long version of “I’m Your Man” on Music from the Edge of Heaven is the ‘extended stimulation’ mix without the pitch-shifted voices (“That ain’t no MAGIC CAR!”) in the middle—the backing track is still there, but the voices aren’t.

    • Paul Sinclair says:

      Yes, those funny voices are gone replaced by the lyrics that are missing from the UK 12″. I think I prefer the Music From The Edge of Heaven version although I did like the silliness of the original mix.

  16. Roelant says:

    The original long version of I’m Your Man was titled ‘extended stimulation’, not ‘simulation’. :-)

  17. Frank says:

    There was a remastered Wham compilation in 2001 called “Les Indispensables De” and the sound is ok. The Final K2Hd sounds very fine and the Make It Big SACD sounds fine, too. But there is no reissue with proper artwork.

  18. Russell says:

    I’ve got a copy of the Music From The Edge Of Heaven reissue. There’s no remastering credit anywhere but I can’t say if it sounds any different from the first issue as I’ve never heard the original cd.

  19. Nate says:

    Wham! remasters are at the top of my wishlist. I cannot fathom what’s preventing it from happening. Is it George himself?

    • omar says:

      Weren’t both Fantastic & Make It Big remastered back in the late 90’s on cd in the UK? Fantastic had a few instrumental remixes. I think i have the cd somewhere.

      • Kevin says:

        I was under that impression as well. Based on how loud If You Were There: The Best of Wham! was, I was never inclined to look for them.

  20. NeilKelly says:

    Should’ve been remastered. So much Wham! stuff unreleased on CD it’s gotta be some kind of joke especially considering one of the biggest bands in the UK from 1983-1986

  21. Pete says:

    There is a Japanese reissue of Music From The Edge Of Heaven from about 10 years ago. Does anyone know if it is remastered, and if so worth the plunge?

  22. Kevin says:

    correction: Fantastic was the first Wham! album in the US as well. Initial copies were credited to Wham! U.K., as there was apparently an American group called Wham! This must have got sorted out somehow, as the “U.K.” was dropped from subsequent pressings.

  23. Galley says:

    Quiet is good!

  24. dominic says:

    A shame Music from the edge of heaven hasn’t been remastered, my US copy is possibly the most quietly pressed CD I own!

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