UK Music Number 1’s Of 1996

UK Number 1’s 1996: A Trip Down the Musical Memory Lane

In 1996, the UK music scene was alive with diverse sounds and memorable hits that still resonate today. From iconic pop anthems to mesmerizing ballads, the charts were dominated by a slew of talented artists that left an indelible mark on the industry. Join us as we take a nostalgic journey back to the year 1996 and explore the captivating UK number 1’s that rocked the nation.

The Musical Landscape of 1996

The year 1996 was a time of musical exploration and innovation, with various genres and styles making their presence felt on the UK charts. From pop to rock, dance to R&B, the diversity of sounds was a testament to the evolving tastes of the audience. The emergence of new artists and the continued success of established ones created a dynamic atmosphere that kept music enthusiasts eagerly tuning in.

UK Number 1’s of 1996

Here is the full list of all the UK number 1 singles of 1996, along with the number of weeks each song spent at the top spot:

Babylon Zoo – “Spaceman” (1 week)

George Michael – “Jesus to a Child” (1 week)

Take That – “How Deep Is Your Love” (3 weeks)

Mark Morrison – “Return of the Mack” (2 weeks)

Fugees – “Killing Me Softly” (4 weeks)

George Michael – “Fastlove” (3 weeks)

Spice Girls – “Wannabe” (7 weeks)

Oasis – “Don’t Look Back in Anger” (1 week)

Fugees – “Ready or Not” (2 weeks)

Robson & Jerome – “What Becomes of the Brokenhearted” (2 weeks)

The Prodigy – “Firestarter” (3 weeks)

Fugees – “No Woman, No Cry” (2 weeks)

Robert Miles – “Children” (1 week)

Spice Girls – “Say You’ll Be There” (2 weeks)

Peter Andre featuring Bubbler Ranx – “Mysterious Girl” (4 weeks)

No Doubt – “Don’t Speak” (3 weeks)

Oasis – “Don’t Look Back in Anger” (1 week – returned to the top spot)

Prodigy – “Breathe” (1 week)

Gina G – “Ooh Aah… Just a Little Bit” (1 week)

Deep Blue Something – “Breakfast at Tiffany’s” (1 week)

Baddiel & Skinner and The Lightning Seeds – “Three Lions” (6 weeks)

Spice Girls – “Wannabe” (1 week – returned to the top spot)

Spice Girls – “Say You’ll Be There” (1 week – returned to the top spot)

Spice Girls – “2 Become 1” (3 weeks)

This comprehensive list covers the UK number 1 singles of 1996, providing insights into the diverse range of songs that captivated audiences throughout the year.

BEST UK Number 1’s of 1996 – Selected by the MarkMeets team

“Firestarter” – The Prodigy

One of the most memorable hits of 1996 was “Firestarter” by the electronic music group The Prodigy. This high-energy track captivated listeners with its infectious beats and provocative lyrics, pushing the boundaries of the electronic genre. The song’s unique sound and edgy visuals made it an instant classic.

“Wannabe” – Spice Girls

No discussion about 1996’s music scene would be complete without mentioning the Spice Girls. With their debut single “Wannabe,” these British pop sensations burst onto the scene and quickly became a global phenomenon. Their catchy tunes, bold personalities, and message of female empowerment resonated strongly with audiences, solidifying their status as icons of the era.

“Killing Me Softly” – Fugees

The Fugees’ rendition of “Killing Me Softly” showcased their remarkable talent and brought a fresh twist to a beloved classic. Blending hip-hop, R&B, and soul, the group delivered a soulful performance that struck a chord with listeners. The song’s emotional depth and Lauryn Hill’s powerful vocals left an enduring impact.

“Ooh Aah… Just a Little Bit” – Gina G

“Ooh Aah… Just a Little Bit” by Gina G was a Eurodance sensation that dominated dance floors in 1996. Its catchy hooks and energetic rhythm made it a favorite in clubs and radio stations alike. The song’s upbeat vibe and infectious chorus had people dancing and singing along wherever they went.

“Return of the Mack” – Mark Morrison

Mark Morrison’s “Return of the Mack” was a chart-topper that seamlessly blended R&B and pop elements. With its smooth vocals and groovy instrumentation, the song captured the essence of 1996’s musical landscape. It remains a quintessential track from that era, instantly transporting listeners back in time.

Popular Singers and Bands of 1996

Beyond the UK number 1’s, 1996 was populated by a plethora of influential singers and bands that left their mark on the music scene. Here are a few notable names that were synonymous with the year:


Oasis continued to make waves in 1996 with their album “What’s the Story Morning Glory?” The band’s distinctive blend of rock and Britpop resonated with a wide audience, and tracks like “Wonderwall” and “Don’t Look Back in Anger” became anthems of the era.

George Michael

George Michael’s music was a constant presence in the UK charts. His soulful voice and meaningful lyrics struck a chord with listeners, making songs like “Fastlove” and “Jesus to a Child” instant classics.

Alanis Morissette

Canadian singer-songwriter Alanis Morissette made a lasting impact with her album “Jagged Little Pill.” Her raw and emotive vocals, coupled with introspective lyrics, connected with a generation, and hits like “You Oughta Know” showcased her bold and unapologetic style.

The Prodigy

Apart from their chart-topping hit “Firestarter,” The Prodigy’s album “The Fat of the Land” solidified their status as pioneers of the electronic genre. Tracks like “Breathe” and “Smack My Bitch Up” pushed boundaries and introduced new sonic possibilities.

Michael Jackson

The King of Pop, Michael Jackson, continued to be a prominent figure in the music world. His album “HIStory: Past, Present and Future, Book I” produced hits like “Earth Song,” reflecting his ability to merge impactful messages with memorable melodies.

Remembering the Magic of 1996

As we reflect on the UK number 1’s and the artists who defined 1996, it’s clear that this year was a pivotal moment in music history. The variety of genres and the caliber of talent that graced the charts speak to the enduring appeal of the era. Whether you were dancing to the infectious beats of The Prodigy, singing along to the Spice Girls, or getting lost in the soulful melodies of Mark Morrison, the music of 1996 remains a cherished part of our cultural heritage.

So, let’s take a moment to relive the magic of 1996, a year that brought us unforgettable music that continues

Author Profile

Adam Regan
Adam Regan
Deputy Editor

Features and account management. 3 years media experience. Previously covered features for online and print editions.


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