On this day in music history: April 2, 1986 – “A Different Corner” by George Michael is released (UK release date is on March 28, 1986). Written and produced by George Michael, it is the second solo single for the singer, songwriter and producer from Bushey, Hertsfordshire, UK. In spite of having phenomenal worldwide success as one half of the pop duo Wham!, by the end of 1985, George Michael feels that the group have gone as far as they can musically. Just before the split between he and his childhood friend Andrew Ridgeley is announced, Michael records and releases his second solo single. Only twenty two years old at the time, the singer has already achieved fame and fortune beyond his wildest dreams, the only thing missing from his life is true love. Becoming increasingly aware of his true sexual identity, but also wanting to guard his privacy, George pens the ballad “A Different Corner”. The song is written about wanting a relationship with someone, and then discovering that they do not share the same sentiment. The track is recorded at Sarm West Studios in Notting Hill, North London in February of 1986, and features George performing all of the instrumentation and vocals. The song is accompanied by a simple black and white video, with George singing the song in a stark white room. Issued worldwide in late March and early April in the US, the single is an immediate smash in the UK, entering at #4 on April 6, 1986. It leaps to #1 two weeks later, spending three weeks at the top. At the time, George Michael makes UK chart history as the first solo artist to have his first two solo singles reach the top of the pop singles chart. And Michael is the second artist after Stevie Wonder to reach the top with a single entirely written, produced arranged and performed by him alone. Wonder had achieved this in the Fall of 1984 with “I Just Called To Say I Love You”. Also released in the UK as a 12" single, it is lavishly packaged in a gatefold sleeve, designed by Peter Saville Associates (New Order). The cover features the title and artist name printed on the front in black print, framed in a thin black border. The inner gatefold photo taken by photographer Trevor Key, features the same image used on the front of the 7" picture sleeve, but in color and blown up to LP size. “A Different Corner” enters the Billboard Hot 100 at #57 on April 26, 1986, peaking at #7 seven weeks later on June 14, 1986. The song is included on Wham’s compilation albums “The Final” and “Music From The Edge Of Heaven”. An alternate mix of “Corner” later appears on George Michael’s solo hits compilation “Ladies & Gentlemen: The Best of George Michael” in 1998. The remixed version omits the acoustic guitar solo and background vocals during the songs’ instrumental break.
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