Pop Star George Michael Dead at 53
December 26, 2016

George Michael (photo: GeorgeMichael.com)
British pop superstar George Michael died on Christmas Day, stunning the music world and fans around the globe. Michael was only 53 years old and his voice was heard countless times over the holidays, as "Last Christmas," the smash hit from his former group Wham!, has grown to become a staple of the season. Heart failure has been given as the cause of his death.

In a statement to the BBC, his publicist said, "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."

Born Georgios Kyriacos Panayiotou, he and Andrew Ridgeley shot to superstardom as Wham! in the early '80s. Michael was only 21 when their sophomore album Make It Big was released, featuring their massive hits "Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go" and "Careless Whisper," among others. After Wham! split in 1986, Michael embarked on a solo career.

His 1987 album Faith catapulted Michael into the Pop stratosphere in the late '80s, with hits including the title track, "Father Figure" and the controversial "I Want Your Sex." Faith sold 10 million copies in the U.S. alone and won the Grammy for Album of the Year in 1989.

The follow-up Listen Without Prejudice Vol. 1 was released in late 1990 and featured multiple hits but couldn't match the massive success of Faith. In the '90s, Michael ended up in a court battle with Sony Music and signed with DreamWorks and Virgin, who paid Sony millions of dollars to acquire his contract. However, he only released three more studio albums (one of which was all cover songs).

In 1998, Michael was arrested for "engaging in a lewd act," and spent years appearing in the tabloids on and off due to drug problems and sexual encounters. The singer was not shy about his sexuality but never officially came out as gay until 2007.

Michael was also renowned for his charitable work throughout his career, performing benefit concerts for many causes, including fighting HIV/AIDS.

Music News
Drake's More Life Sets Billboard 200 Streaming Record
Quick Hits: Halsey, Snoop Dogg / 2Pac, Pitbull / Wrestlemania, Paul McCartney, Phoenix, Matchbox Twenty & Counting Crows
Quick Hits: Kendrick Lamar, Iggy Azalea, Vans Warper Tour
Quick Hits: Gorillaz, Kaaboo Festival, March Madness
Chance the Rapper, The Killers, Muse & Arcade Fire Headlining Lollapalooza
QuickHits: Ed Sheeran, Chuck Berry, The Decemberists
QuickHits: NIN, Missy Elliot, Frank Ocean, Pitbull, Enrique Iglesias, Sublime
Rock Pioneer Chuck Berry Passes Away
The Entertainment World Remembers Chuck Berry
Ed Sheeran Spends Second Week Atop Billboard 200
QuickHits: Drake, James Blunt, Spoon, Bob Dylan
Quick Hits: Coldplay. BET Experience, Weezer
Quick Hits: The Chainsmokers, Pitbull, Ohana Music Festival, Arroyo Seco Weekend, Feist
Ed Sheeran Earns Biggest Debut Week of 2017
Quick Hits: Drake, Pearl Jam, Fifth Harmony
Breaking News
Dennis Reese Named SVP/Promotion At RCA Nashville
Cumulus Media Brings Hot AC To Savannah, GA Launches WZAT (102.1 The Sound)
In Brief - March 27, 2017
March 24, 2017
Ryan Seacrest Announces KIIS FM's Wango Tango 2017 Lineup
WMGC (105.1 The Bounce)/Detroit Adds “Big Boy” To Mornings
107.1 The BOSS/New Jersey Announce Air Talent Line-Up
March 23, 2017
iHeartRadio Surpasses 100 Million Users
Westwood One Promotes Mark Wildman to EVP/Strategic Partnerships
March 23, 2017
iHeartMedia Oklahoma City Names JJ Ryan PD For KJYO & KXXY
Entercom Names Richard J. Schmaeling EVP & CFO
Doug Gottlieb Joins FOX Sports Radio & FS1
March 21, 2017
Beasley Broadcast Group Reports 4th Quarter and Full Year 2016 Results
Chip Arledge Appointed OM For Cumulus Media Shreveport/Bossier City, LA
KXQQ/Las Vegas Names Natalia Hernandez As New Midday Personality
In Brief - March 21, 2017
March 17, 2017
Cumulus Reports Results for Fourth Quarter and Full Year 2016
Entercom Austin To Move 96.3 FM RnB To 95.9 FM
March 16, 2017
iHeartMedia Names Geoff "G-Off" Owens PD For KXJM/Portland & KUBE/Seattle-Tacoma
c3 & FMC Statement: Elimination of the NEA, NEH, and CPB Indefensible, Shameful, and Senseless
iHeartMedia Introduces SmartAudio
Condé Nast Acquires Pop2Life And Ribyt
March 15, 2017
Radio One Houston Names DJ Riddler MD & On-Air Talent/Mixer For KROI (92.1 Radio Now)
iHeartMedia Names Mark Fuhrman Area President in Pittsburgh/West Virginia Region

Sam Milkman, EVP
Coleman Insights

Search FMQB.com
FMQB Member Login

Not a member yet?
Sign up Now!
Sign Up for Breaking News!
Enter FMQB E-Tracking!