George Michael: biography, best songs, interesting facts, listen

George Michael

George Michael is an iconic figure in British musical history. His songs have become classics, his voice, soft and melodic, still delights to this day. It feels emotions, sincerity and love for his work. Perhaps that is why music educators do not bypass the way the British perform in vocal classes. He became an idol, whose popularity knows no time limit. His life ended abruptly, leaving his fans alone with the music whose name was George Michael.

short biography

A mop of frizzy hair, big glasses and a shy smile - this was what George Michael saw himself in the reflection of the mirror. He was at that time 10-12 years old. Become a popular singer with this look? No, this young boy could not imagine, although from the age of 7 he dreamed of a stage and singing career.

Growing up in a low-income family in north London, George was busy with other things. He worked part-time overseeing the neighbors' kids, attended school and waited for father and mother to be freed from the endless tasks that they had a lot of. His parents, the Greek émigré Kyriakos and the indigenous Briton Leslie, tried to provide their children with a worthy present and future, and therefore they were constantly at work. The boy who was born on June 25, 1963 was raised by two older sisters.

His acquaintance with music began with a classic violin. Parents insisted on it. The boy did not want to go to classes for several reasons. Firstly, it did not decorate him in the eyes of classmates, and, secondly, it was difficult because he was left-handed. After working his hours alone with the violin and teacher, he returned home and enjoyed the music of Queen and Elton John, whose records he played in a cassette player. Such moments gave him strength and kindled a desire to become an artist.

The life of an exemplary student and son changed overnight with the advent of chatterbox Andrew Ridgeley. This confident, attractive and cheerful guy has become a friend of shy George. The guys began to dream of a musical career. The school went into the background. Instead of lessons, they disappeared in the London subways and gave their first concerts.

Andrew managed to have a tremendous impact on George’s image: he changed his glasses to lenses, took off his weight, and went in for sports to give his body relief. Andrew even gave his friend dance lessons. After a short time, George Michael turned into a beautiful young man, who was destined to conquer the hearts of fans.

External transformations are complete. What's next? Create your own group. After all, two 16-year-olds dreamed about this. In 1981 appeared the team "The Executives". Despite the zeal, friends could not succeed. Then they decided to change the stage image and the name of the group. They appeared before the public in the form of two hangers, which in life only value entertainment. Duet "Wham!" made a splash: singles began to bring popularity and commercial success. Separate songs ("Wham Rap!") Were even banned for rotation due to obscene language.


The guys immediately divided the responsibilities: Andrew was responsible for the image of the group, and George - for the music. The first real hit he wrote by chance. Coming to Andrew, he drew attention to the note that he left the mother. It was written "Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go", while the "go" specifically two times. Such a simple detail prompted George to write the song, which is called "Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go." It was with this single that the guys broke into the European and American charts.

It seems that here it is popular! Enjoy it But George Michael felt that he was developing his stage image. He wanted to write more adult music - in 1986 "Wham!" breaks down. Andrew decides to leave show business, and George - to declare himself as a solo artist. In addition, the prerequisites for this have already been. The young man actually performed all the songs alone.

It all started with the single "Careless Whisper", a lyrical ballad. She entered the last album of the group. But in the USA, the track was already used to represent George as a solo singer. Even in the video, it was shot without Andrew. Fans are waiting for their debut album, which is released in October 1987 under the name "Faith". The audience is no longer a young man, but a brutal man, with bristles, in a tight white T-shirt and torn jeans. Following the album, fans like the new image - the commercial success of "Faith" in the first week reached one million copies. In addition, the album brought the singer the first Grammy in the nomination "Album of the Year."

Unfortunately, in the work of George Michael was not without scandal. The artist was famous for his harsh statements and behavior. But what happened in 1998 changed the attitude towards the singer. In April, he was detained for sexual harassment by a policeman. The whole world has learned about the singer's gay. In the US, he became an object for ridicule, it was time to take a break in his career. In addition, the rest did not give drug addiction.

In 2002, the singer tried to return the former glory and love of fans. He releases the single "Freeek!" and fails. Then a track with political overtones "Shoot The Dog" appears in the rotation. After 4 years, George goes on a world tour "25 Live", for the first time in 15 years. This is followed by treatment for pneumonia, from which he barely got out, the release of the concert album "Symphonica" and the desire to write further. But fate decided to cut short the life of George Michael on December 25, 2016. It was his last Christmas. The idol of millions died at the age of 53 years. His death was a real loss for everyone who grew up on his songs, who admired his talent. Gone is the legend, without which it is difficult to imagine the modern music world.

Interesting Facts

  • The real name of the artist is Giorgios Kyriakos Panayotu. On the first albums of the group "Wham!" He signed it that way. But the popularity grew and the name given at birth did not resonate much with it. George (another interpretation of Georgios) began to look for a pseudonym. Fingering his closest acquaintances, he settled on Michael Mortimer, a friend of his father. He liked that name. In addition, the so-called sibling of his father and close friend of the school.
  • The first concert, which was visited by George Michael, was the performance of Elton John. At that time, the young star was 12 years old. He could not have imagined that in some 10 years his idol would admire him and personally present the award. But it was. Also, George and Elton recorded the duo "Don't Let The Sun Go Down On Me". The single was included on Elton John's album "Ice on Fire" and won victorious places in the charts in Europe and America. But celebrity friendship was prevented by marijuana, which George was fond of. Elton was beside himself with the fact that a gifted singer wastes his talent in vain. Insults and offensive words have been said a lot on both sides. Ended with all the reconciliation after the course of rehabilitation of George.
  • The sister of the artist, Melanie, admits that her brother was very lazy in his youth. He was constantly late for school because he got up late. It was simply impossible to stop him doing household chores: he didn’t do anything around the house! Despite this, George never squandered the love of his family and helped financially already in adulthood.
  • Melanie, who graduated from hairdressing courses, was her brother's first hairdresser. Together with him she went to concerts.
  • George Michael's father was against his son becoming singers. He prophesied his career as a “normal” person, for example, a doctor or a lawyer.
  • As a child, George dreamed of becoming a pilot. But the dream did not come true: the doctors identified the boy with color blindness. So, the peculiarity of view played its role in the development of a world-class pop star.
  • Among school subjects, young George loved mathematics and not only for the beauty of formulas and logical calculations. The desire to get the highest score was fueled by a young and attractive teacher - the secret object of a teenager's dreams.
  • Looking at the photos of this British artist, it is impossible not to notice his white-toothed smile. Immediately there are thoughts about the ultrasonic bleaching, which resorted to many stars of the 80s. But George owes everything to nature. He almost never experienced problems with his teeth, for which he thanked the Greek roots of his father.
  • Among rap artists George Michael singled out Eminem.
  • The Russian public is well-known group "Smash !!". Knowing the work of George Michael, it is easy to draw parallels with the "Wham!" Boy band. This similarity is not accidental. The manager of both teams was Simon Napier-Bell. He wanted to make "Smash !!" new andrew and george Hence the number of exclamation marks in the title. By the way, "Wham!" became the prototype for many boys groups in the UK. One of the most popular "versions" was the "Take That" team, in which Robbie Williams participated.

  • The list of George’s achievements includes the highest-paid performance on Russian soil. Oligarch Vladimir Potanin invited him to a frequent closed party on the occasion of New Year 2007. For the concert, the British pop singer was paid $ 3 million. Even during the tour, which took place in mid-2006, he could not earn so much. Fans and people who are not related to music, perceived this event negatively. But all the money went to charity, which helped George regain the public interest.
  • June 25, the official day of George Michael is celebrated in Los Angeles. This decision was made by the city council, not without the influence of fans of the artist.

The best songs of George Michael

  • "Careless whisper"- the most successful and memorable single in the work of a popular Briton. He wrote it at the age of 17, when he stood at the cinema box office. The saxophone was invented during a bus ride home. It is noteworthy that Andrew co-wrote the song, although George was previously the only author Before finding that saxophonist, the singer listened to a dozen musicians, but it was worth it. The performer himself did not understand such a rush around the song. He believed that he wrote the usual "punching" about love, jealousy and treason.

"Careless Whisper" (listen)

  • "Freedom! '90"- George Michael's second successful track with a similar name. He already wrote" Freedom "as part of" Wham! ", and to avoid confusion, he added the prefix 90 to the name of the new composition. With this song he performed at the closing of the Summer Olympics in 2012 the year, which took place in the capital of Great Britain. By the way, 5 supermodels took part in the creation of the video, the cover with which accidentally caught the eye of the singer.

"Freedom! '90" (listen)

  • "Last christmas"- a kind of Christmas hymn that has been sung for more than 30 years. Despite the fact that the song was released during the period of" Wham! ", they associate it more with George’s solo career. The reason is simple - he is the author. Although the single didn’t even in the top ten of the charts, it became the most successful commercially. The number of cover versions on Last Christmas exceeded 50 a long time ago. In French, its quail Dalida.

  • "Jesus to a Child"- a very touching composition, which immediately reached the top of the chart in 1995. After George publicly acknowledged his sexual orientation, he began to say openly that he often devotes his songs to his partners. This composition was no exception. It was written in the memory of Anselmo Feleppe, whose death caused AIDS. After this tragedy, the singer forgot about the music for a year and a half and returned to his career with this song. It is noteworthy that all the proceeds from the track were sent to the children's support fund.

"Jesus to a Child" (listen)

  • "Faith"- the first single of the singer as a solo artist. In 1988, the USA recognized this song to be the best. The composition's plot revolves around new relationships that the main character wants, but is afraid to join. In the video, George appeared in the style characteristic of that period of creativity: blue jeans, a leather jacket, a light unshaven face, an earring in the ear, and aviator glasses. By the way, playing the guitar, which he shows in the video series, is just an imitation.

Films about George Michael and his participation

True, myths, trauma and frustration - all this is revealed in the film "George Michael: another story." The tape was filmed in 2005. It tells about the period of creativity from the beginning of the collapse of the popular boy group and until the shooting of the picture. In 2017, the singer wanted to release another documentary film “Freedom: George Michael” on TV screens. Other celebrities who somehow influenced the life of the famous Briton took part in it.

George Michael's music in movies

To do without the classics when creating a film is simply impossible. This proves the list of the following films, soundtracks for which is the work of the legendary pop singer.



"Blasting blonde" (2017)

"Father Figure"

"The Beast" (2016)

"Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go"

Deadpool (2016)

"Careless Whisper"

"Something is wrong with Kevin" (2011)

"Last Christmas"

The Nanny Diaries (2007)

"Freedom '90"

"Chuck and Larry: Fire Wedding" (2007)

"Freedom '90"

"Charlie's Angels" (2000)

"Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go"

"The singer at the wedding" (1998)

"Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go"

"Bitter Moon" (1992)


"Lord of the Tides" (1991)


"The Beverly Hills II Policeman" (1987)

"I Want Your Sex"

You can hear his lyric tenor in various TV series: "Doctor House", "This Life", "Clinic" and others.

The brightest duets

Elton John is not the only one with whom George collaborated. The list also includes other famous personalities.

  • Aretha Franklin. The American Queen of Soul was one of the favorite performers of the British pop singer. To record their joint song "I Knew You Were Waiting For Me" (1987) he approached with his peculiar desire to control the process. It was important for him to produce his own part, which was contrary to the work in the studio. The group was impatient - when will it end. But, having given the "reins of power" into the hands of the stubborn George, no one regretted it. The single gained popularity and brought the Grammy to its performers in the genre of "The Best R & B Duet".
  • Whitney Houston. At one time, George was very offended by a hot-tempered and temperamental singer by not seeing anything remarkable in her voice. Despite this, they recorded a bright and memorable duet in 2000. The original song "If I Told You That" was written for Whitney and Michael Jackson, but the work did not work. Therefore, George Michael was invited to the recording. The pair not only recorded the track, but also shot a clip on it. By the way, George never sang "If I Told You That" at his concerts and did not even include the song in the album.
  • Paul McCartney. The creative paths of these two Britons crossed twice. In 2005, they recorded "Heal the pain"which George wrote in 1991 with an eye on the Beatles, and sang the classics of the Liverpool Four"Drive my car".
  • Beyoncé. Performing the songIf I Were a Boy"at one of the concerts in 2009, a talented American woman riveted all her attention. But not for long. Just a minute later George Michael joined her, which caused a stormy glee of the public.

Charity or the other side of george michael

Speaking of this artist, it is difficult to get around the topic of charity. During his lifetime he donated huge sums to various organizations and ordinary people. The main condition was that information about the philanthropist remained secret. He sent money to organizations to fight AIDS, cancer, helped the children's fund ... And this is only a small part of his good deeds.

After the death of his mother in 1997, George spoke for free to the nurses who were caring for her. He selflessly wrote a check to a woman who really wanted to get pregnant, but did not have enough money for IVF. Anonymously bought a piano by John Lennon and handed it to the museum "The Beatles", so that the instrument was available to all fans and did not fall into a private collection. Friends and acquaintances of the artist say that it was enough for someone to give a hint that he doesn’t have a car, as the car appeared the next day before entering. And everyone knew it was the merit of George, sympathetic and kindhearted.

During his career, George Michael released a total of 5 studio albums. That was enough to record your name in the annals of the music industry and become a real legend.

Watch the video: Top 10 George Michael and Wham Songs (January 2020).


Leave Your Comment