strapped for time

Praying for Time

"Praying for Time" is a U.S. number-one song written and performed by George Michael, released on Epic Records in 1990.


The song was Michael's first single in almost two years, entering the UK Singles Chart in August 1990.

A dark and sombre reflection on social ills and injustice, the song was hailed by critics as it peaked at number six in the UK, but it was his ninth number one on the Billboard Hot 100 in the USA. The song remained in the Billboard Top 40 for ten weeks. George used an echoey vocal effect and put the melody in a low enough key to take away the sunny nature of his regular singing voice. It was the first song of political motivation he had released as a single since his earliest days with Wham!.

The song was the first of five released in the UK from the album Listen Without Prejudice Vol. 1, although it was the only one of the quintet to make the UK Top 10.

Video Clip

While George Michael refused to appear in videos to support the album, a video clip for "Praying for Time" was released featuring only the words of the song with a blue and black background that, at the end of the clip, reveals itself to be the image on the cover of the album. Similarly, the commercial had no cover photo, only words.

American Idol

The song was performed by Carrie Underwood for the 2008 Idol Gives Back mini-marathon on April 9, 2008. In a matter of 24 hours, Underwood's rendition of "Praying for Time" reached #10 on the Hot Digital Songs chart, with all proceeds being donated to charity. It also peaked at #27 on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 on the week of April 26, 2008.

The song was performed by George Michael himself during the 2008 American Idol Finale on May 21, 2008. At the conclusion of his performance, host Ryan Seacrest greeted Michael, who confirmed that his North American leg of 25 Live tour would kick off in San Diego on June 17, 2008.

Track listing

7": Epic / GEO 1 (UK)

  1. "Praying for Time" - 4:40
  2. "If You Were My Woman" (live) - 4:05
  3. also available on MC (Epic / GEO M1)
  4. also available on 12" (Epic / GEO T1)
  5. also available on CD (Epic / CD GEO 1)

CD: Epic / GEO C1 (UK)

  1. "Praying for Time" - 4:40
  2. "If You Were My Woman" (live) - 4:05
  3. "Waiting" (reprise) - 2:27
  4. limited edition

Cassette, 7" and CD: Columbia 73512 (US)

  1. "Praying for Time" - 4:40
  2. "If You Were My Woman" (live) - 4:05


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