George Michael’s Careless Whisper has been voted as the number one song of all time in a new radio poll, knocking John Lennon’s Imagine off the top spot for the first time in three years.
More than 28,000 votes were cast by Smooth Radio listeners to choose the nation’s All Time Top 500 songs, and George’s saxophone-heavy ballad – released in 1984 – has taken the prime position just four months after his death.
Michael died on Christmas Day at the age of 53 of natural causes.
George has also achieved the second place with his 1986 hit A Different Corner.
He has 19 songs in the list, the highest number for him in the chart’s four-year history.
The Wham! star’s duet with Sir Elton John, Don’t Let The Sun Go Down On Me, is in ninth place, and his other songs on the list include Father Figure and Jesus To A Child.
Along with George, Sir Elton is in joint first place overall with 19 songs in the poll, Michael Jackson is third with 17 tracks and Abba and Elvis Presley are in joint fourth with 15 hits each.
Richard Park, group executive director and director of broadcasting at Global, said: “George Michael was one of the biggest talents the world has ever seen and the results of Smooth’s All Time Top 500 confirm that he remains in the nation’s heart now more than ever.
“Together with Smooth’s 5.4 million listeners across the UK, our countdown over the Bank Holiday weekend has been the perfect way to celebrate the life and music of this great man.”
John’s Imagine previously reigned supreme at the top of the chart, but the track has now slipped down to 16th place.
Adele has been successful on this year’s poll with four tracks – including Someone Like You and Hello – in the top 10, and her single When We Were Young is the highest new entry, debuting at number 28.
Tina Turner’s What’s Love Got To Do With It has been crowned the chart’s highest-climber, moving up 384 places to number 40.
:: Smooth’s All Time Top 500 – top 10:
1. Careless Whisper – George Michael
2. A Different Corner – George Michael
3. Someone Like You – Adele
4. Hello – Adele
5. Dancing Queen – Abba
6. I Will Always Love You – Whitney Houston
7. Make You Feel My Love – Adele
8. You’re the First, the Last, My Everything – Barry White
9. Don’t Let the Sun Go Down On Me – George Michael and Elton John
10. Rolling in the Deep – Adele