George Michael Rest in Peace

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George Michael

REST in PEACE Dear GEORGE

Singer-songwriter George Michael, the former Wham! band member turned solo artist, has died, his representatives confirmed on Sunday. He was 53.

“It is with great sadness that we can confirm our beloved son, brother and friend George passed away peacefully at home over the Christmas period. The family would ask that their privacy be respected at this difficult and emotional time. There will be no further comment at this stage,” the representative said in a statement to EW.

Born Georgios Kyriacos Panayiotou in East Finchley, London, Michael first found fame as one-half of the duo Wham! — formed in 1981 with schoolmate Andrew Ridgeley — before going solo. He sold more than 100 million albums worldwide throughout a career that spanned more than three decades.

Michael’s hits with Wham! included “Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go” (the duo’s first song to hit No. 1 in the U.S., off their second album, Make It Big), “Freedom,” “Last Christmas,” and “Careless Whisper” (which came out as a solo single for Michael in 1984).

In 1987, Michael released a duet with Aretha Franklin, “I Knew You Were Waiting For Me,” that topped charts on both sides of the Atlantic. Later that same year, he released his first solo album, Faith, which included the titular single and other memorable tracks like “I Want Your Sex” and “Father Figure.” The album spawned six singles in all and won the 1989 Grammy Award for Album of the Year.

His second solo album, Listen Without Prejudice Vol. 1, came in 1990 and featured the singles “Praying for Time” and “Freedom ’90.”

Singer-songwriter George Michael, the former Wham! band member turned solo artist, has died, his representatives confirmed on Sunday. He was 53.

“It is with great sadness that we can confirm our beloved son, brother and friend George passed away peacefully at home over the Christmas period. The family would ask that their privacy be respected at this difficult and emotional time. There will be no further comment at this stage,” the representative said in a statement to EW.

Born Georgios Kyriacos Panayiotou in East Finchley, London, Michael first found fame as one-half of the duo Wham! — formed in 1981 with schoolmate Andrew Ridgeley — before going solo. He sold more than 100 million albums worldwide throughout a career that spanned more than three decades.

Michael’s hits with Wham! included “Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go” (the duo’s first song to hit No. 1 in the U.S., off their second album, Make It Big), “Freedom,” “Last Christmas,” and “Careless Whisper” (which came out as a solo single for Michael in 1984).

In 1987, Michael released a duet with Aretha Franklin, “I Knew You Were Waiting For Me,” that topped charts on both sides of the Atlantic. Later that same year, he released his first solo album, Faith, which included the titular single and other memorable tracks like “I Want Your Sex” and “Father Figure.” The album spawned six singles in all and won the 1989 Grammy Award for Album of the Year.

His second solo album, Listen Without Prejudice Vol. 1, came in 1990 and featured the singles “Praying for Time” and “Freedom ’90.”

 

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GEORGE MICHAEL

The YOUNG MAN