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I Knew You Were Waiting (For Me)

"I Knew You Were Waiting (for Me)" was a song performed by Aretha Franklin and George Michael in a duet in 1987. It was written by Simon Climie and Dennis Morgan.

Chart performance

The song was a one-off project which helped Michael achieve an ambition by singing with one of his favourite artists, and it reached number one in both the UK Singles Chart and the Billboard Hot 100 upon its release. It was, remarkably, Franklin's first and only UK number-one hit, and only her fourth top ten achievement in the country since "I Say a Little Prayer", nearly decades earlier. This was also the last, out of eighteen Top 10 hits, for Franklin in the U.S. Billboard Hot 100.

For Michael, it became his third consecutive number-one in the UK from three releases since going solo, following 1984's "Careless Whisper" (though the single was actually from the Wham! album Make It Big) and 1986's "A Different Corner". However, as the song was a duet, he was not afforded the same status or level of congratulation as Gerry and the Pacemakers or Frankie Goes to Hollywood, the only two artists to have previously achieved number one with their first three releases. Michael's previous success (with Wham!, which included four number-ones) was also a factor in the watering down of his achievement.

The single was the first Michael had recorded (as a lead artist) which he had not written himself. The co-writer, Simon Climie, was unknown at the time, although he later had success as a performer with Climie Fisher in 1988.

The continuous run of UK chart-toppers ended for Michael thereafter, with his next number-one coming in 1991 - again as part of a duet (this time with Elton John) - while his next entirely solo number-one in the UK didn't appear until 1996.

On the U.S. Billboard Hot 100, "I Knew You Were Waiting (for Me)" debuted at #59, the week of February 21, 1987, reaching #1 in its ninth week, April 18, 1987, and remaining there for two consecutive weeks. The track also reached #1 in the United World Chart.


Country Peak
Australia 1
The Netherlands 1
United Kingdom 1
United States 1
United World Chart 1

Cover versions

A cover of "I Knew You Were Waiting (for Me)" was recorded in 2001 by Hear'Say as the B-side to their single "Everybody". Also Michael McDonald (singer) covered it in 2008 on his album Soul Speak. Simon Climie had co-written the song and also produced it.

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