Hallelujah! Burke takes top spot

December 23rd, 2008 - 2:34 pm ICT by IANS  

London, Dec 23 (IANS) Alexandra Burke has won the race for the Christmas number one slot with her version of “Hallelujah”.But the song was the real winner, with Jeff Buckley’s version taking the number two spot in the festive countdown and writer Leonard Cohen’s recording at number 36.

X Factor winner Burke sold 576,000 copies via CD and download, making the song the fastest-selling single by a female solo artist, ananova.com quoted Official Charts Company as saying.

Buckley, who died in a drowning accident in Memphis in May 1997 aged 30, reached number two on download sales only.

The “Hallelujah” double means that for the third time in history, and the first ever time at Christmas, the same song is occupying the top two positions in the chart.

In January 1957, Tommy Steele and Guy Mitchell held the top two places with “Singin’ The Blues”.

In 1965, the Righteous Brothers topped the charts with “You’ve Lost that Loving Feeling”, with Cilla Black at number two with the same song.

Burke, 20, won a one million pound recording contract when she was crowned X Factor winner just over a week ago.

She said: “This is absolutely crazy, I can’t believe it. It’s been the best week of my life.

“I’m bursting with excitement right now, it’s incredible!”

The reality TV theme continued in this year’s Christmas charts after comedian Peter Kay’s spoof singer Geraldine entered the top 10 at number five with “Once Upon A Christmas Song”.

In the album charts, Take That claimed the Christmas number one spot with “The Circus”.

The album has already passed the one million sales mark, making it the fastest selling album of the 21st century.

Official Charts Company managing director Martin Talbot said: “It is a particularly amazing week for Alexandra Burke who has broken a string of records to announce her arrival in spectacular style.”

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