The almost blindingly bright, soul-tinged pop confection "Wake Me up Before You Go-Go" gave the British duo Wham! their first number one single in 1985, establishing George Michael and Andrew Ridgeley as the premier bubblegum teen idol act of the mid-'80s. It was also the first clear evidence of Michael's seemingly effortless mastery of the pop song form, a facility he would demonstrate time and time again over the next decade. "Wake Me up Before You Go-Go" is relentlessly perky, but to dismiss it as mere fluff is to overlook a tremendous guilty pleasure. The song is tightly and impeccably constructed, and its inescapable melody and bouncy beat are almost a force of nature, so difficult are they to resist. Moreover, the song's individual elements are the work of a fully formed pop craftsman -- from the way the keyboards and bass interact and leave room for each other to breathe, to the playful bass voice chanting "jitterbug" at regular intervals, to Michael's accentuation of the arrangement by adding (and subtracting) a lightly swinging horn section and soulful backing choir. It often takes some time for the big-picture status of bubblegum pop tunes to become clear -- at least until the initial backlash against their ubiquitous popularity wears off -- but in retrospect, it's clear that "Wake Me up Before You Go-Go" is one of the decade's true mainstream pop classics, which is why it's become a staple of '80s retro play lists, as well as the song most listeners immediately identify with Wham!