George Michael is one of the best-selling musicians of all time, with his sales estimated at between 100 million and 125 million records worldwide.
97 Facts About George Michael
George Michael achieved thirteen number-one songs on the UK Singles Chart and eight number-one songs on the US Billboard Hot 100.
George Michael won numerous music awards, including two Grammy Awards, three Brit Awards, twelve Billboard Music Awards, and four MTV Video Music Awards.
George Michael has been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and the UK Music hall of fame.
George Michael became the best-selling music artist of 1988, and Faith was awarded Album of the Year at the 1989 Grammy Awards.
George Michael went on to release two more multimillion-selling albums, Older and Patience.
George Michael fell into a coma in 2011 during a bout with pneumonia, but later recovered.
George Michael performed his final concert at London's Earls Court in 2012.
George Michael died of heart disease on Christmas Day in 2016, at his home in Goring-on-Thames, Oxfordshire.
George Michael was born Georgios Kyriacos Panayiotou on 25 June 1963, in East Finchley.
George Michael's father, Kyriacos "Jack" Panayiotou, was a Greek-Cypriot restaurateur who emigrated from Patriki, Cyprus, to England in the 1950s.
In June 2008, George Michael told the Los Angeles Times that his maternal grandmother was Jewish, but she married a non-Jewish man and raised her children with no knowledge of their Jewish background due to her fear during World War II.
George Michael spent most of his childhood in Kingsbury, London, in the home his parents bought soon after his birth; he attended Roe Green Junior School and Kingsbury High School.
George Michael had two sisters: Yioda was born on 1958 and and Melanie.
George Michael busked on the London Underground, performing songs such as "'39" by Queen.
In 1985 George Michael received the first of his three Ivor Novello Awards for Songwriter of the Year from the British Academy of Songwriters, Composers and Authors.
The song became the UK Christmas number one and George Michael donated the profits from "Last Christmas" and "Everything She Wants" to charity.
George Michael sang "Don't Let the Sun Go Down on Me" with Elton John at Live Aid at Wembley Stadium in London on 13 July 1985.
George Michael cited Cassidy as a major career influence and interviewed Cassidy for David Litchfield's Ritz Newspaper.
For George Michael, it became his third consecutive solo number one in the UK from three releases, after 1984's "Careless Whisper" and 1986's "A Different Corner".
The single was the first George Michael had recorded as a solo artist which he had not written himself.
In late 1987, George Michael released his debut solo album, Faith.
In Los Angeles, George Michael was joined on stage by Aretha Franklin for "I Knew You Were Waiting ".
At the 1988 Brit Awards held at the Royal Albert Hall on 8 February, George Michael received the first of his two awards for Best British Male Solo Artist.
At the 1989 MTV Video Music Awards on 6 September in Los Angeles, George Michael received the Video Vanguard Award.
George Michael offers the healing passage of time as the only balm for physical and emotional hunger, poverty, hypocrisy, and hatred.
George Michael did not appear in this video or any subsequent videos for the album.
Later in 1991, George Michael embarked on the Cover to Cover tour in Japan, England, the US, and Brazil, where he performed at Rock in Rio.
In 1991, George Michael released an autobiography through Penguin Books titled Bare, co-written with Tony Parsons.
George Michael donated the royalties from "Too Funky" to the same cause.
George Michael performed with Queen at The Freddie Mercury Tribute Concert on 20 April 1992 at Wembley Stadium.
George Michael consistently dedicated the song to Feleppa before performing it live.
George Michael released "Fastlove", an energetic tune about wanting gratification and fulfilment without commitment, in 1996.
In 1996, George Michael was voted Best British Male at the MTV Europe Music Awards and the Brit Awards; and at the British Academy's Ivor Novello Awards, he was awarded the title of Songwriter of the Year for the third time.
George Michael performed a concert at Three Mills Studios, London, for MTV Unplugged.
In 2000, George Michael worked on the hit single "If I Told You That" with Whitney Houston.
In February 2003, George Michael recorded another song in protest against the looming Iraq war, Don McLean's "The Grave".
George Michael performed the song on numerous TV shows including Top of the Pops and So Graham Norton.
George Michael ran into conflict with the show's producers for an anti-war, anti-Blair T-shirt worn by some members of his band.
McLean stated that he was "'proud of George Michael for standing up for life and sanity'".
George Michael allowed Oprah's crew inside his home outside London.
In 2006, George Michael embarked on his first tour in 15 years, 25 Live.
On 9 June 2007, George Michael became the first artist to perform live at the newly renovated Wembley Stadium in London.
George Michael made his American acting debut by playing a guardian angel to Jonny Lee Miller's character on Eli Stone, a US TV series.
George Michael appeared on the 2008 finale show of American Idol on 21 May, singing "Praying for Time".
In early 2010, George Michael performed his first concerts in Australia since 1988.
On 20 February 2010, George Michael performed his first show in Perth at the Burswood Dome to an audience of 15,000.
On 2 March 2011, George Michael announced the release of his cover version of New Order's 1987 hit "True Faith" in aid of the UK charity telethon Comic Relief.
George Michael appeared on Comic Relief itself, featuring in the first Carpool Karaoke sketch of James Corden, with the pair singing songs while Corden drove around London.
On 15 April 2011, George Michael released a cover of Stevie Wonder's 1972 song, "You and I", as an MP3 gift to Prince William and Catherine Middleton on the occasion of their wedding on 29 April 2011.
In October 2011, George Michael was announced as one of the final nominees for the Songwriter's Hall of Fame.
In February 2012, two months after leaving hospital, George Michael made a surprise appearance at the 2012 Brit Awards at the O2 Arena in London, where he received a standing ovation, and presented Adele the award for Best British Album.
On 7 September 2017, George Michael's estate released the single "Fantasy".
George Michael had been working on the film shortly before his death, alongside David Austin, and provides the narration throughout.
George Michael stated that his early fantasies were about women, which "led me to believe I was on the path to heterosexuality", but at puberty he started to fantasise about men, which he later said "had something to do with my environment".
At the age of 19, George Michael told Andrew Ridgeley that he was bisexual.
George Michael later said that she had been his "only bona fide" girlfriend, and that she knew of his bisexuality.
In 1992, George Michael established a relationship with Anselmo Feleppa, a Brazilian dress designer who he had met at the Rock in Rio concert in 1991.
George Michael's single, "Jesus to a Child", is a tribute to Feleppa, as is his album Older.
In 1996, George Michael entered into a long-term relationship with Kenny Goss, a former flight attendant, cheerleading coach, and sportswear executive from Dallas, Texas.
On 22 August 2011, the opening night of his Symphonica world tour, George Michael announced that he and Goss had split two years earlier.
George Michael's homosexuality became publicly known following his April 1998 arrest for public lewdness.
In 2012, George Michael entered a relationship with Fadi Fawaz, a Lebanese-Australian celebrity hairstylist and freelance photographer based in London.
On 7 April 1998, George Michael was arrested for "engaging in a lewd act" in a public restroom of the Will Rogers Memorial Park in Beverly Hills, California.
George Michael was arrested by undercover policeman Marcelo Rodriguez in a sting operation.
Rodriguez claimed that this video "mocked" him, and that George Michael had slandered him in interviews.
In February 2006, George Michael was arrested for possession of Class C drugs, an incident that he described as "my own stupid fault, as usual".
On 19 September 2008, George Michael was arrested in a public restroom in the Hampstead Heath area for possession of Class A and C drugs.
George Michael was taken to the police station and cautioned for controlled substance possession.
On 14 September 2010, at the same court, George Michael was sentenced to eight weeks in prison, a fine, and a five-year ban from driving.
George Michael was released from Highpoint Prison in Suffolk on 11 October 2010, after serving four weeks.
George Michael was arrested for drug-related offences in 2006,2008 and 2010.
In September 2007, on BBC Radio 4's Desert Island Discs, George Michael said that his cannabis use was a problem; he wished he could smoke less of it and was constantly trying to do so.
On 5 December 2009, in an interview with The Guardian, George Michael explained he had cut back on cannabis and was smoking only "seven or eight" spliffs per day instead of the 25 per day he had formerly smoked.
On 26 October 2011, George Michael cancelled a performance at the Royal Albert Hall in London due to a viral infection.
George Michael told the press that he had undergone a tracheotomy, that the staff at the hospital had saved his life, and that he would perform a free concert for them.
On 16 May 2013, George Michael sustained a head injury when he fell from his moving car on the M1 motorway, near St Albans in Hertfordshire, and was airlifted to hospital.
In 2014, George Michael stated that he had refrained from using cannabis for one-and-one-half years.
At the age of fifteen, George Michael joined the Young Communist League, under his Greek name.
In 2006, George Michael performed a free concert for NHS nurses in London to thank the nurses who had cared for his late mother.
George Michael devoted his 2007 concert in Sofia, from his "Twenty Five Tour" to the Bulgarian nurses prosecuted in the HIV trial in Libya.
On 17 June 2008, George Michael said he was thrilled by California's legalisation of same-sex marriage, calling the move "way overdue".
George Michael donated the royalties from "Last Christmas" to Band Aid and subsequently sang with Elton John at Live Aid in 1985.
In 1986, George Michael took part in the Prince's Trust charity concert held at Wembley Arena, performing "Everytime You Go Away" alongside Paul Young.
In 1988, George Michael participated in the Nelson Mandela 70th Birthday Tribute at Wembley Stadium in London together with many other singers, performing "Sexual Healing".
George Michael was a patron of the Elton John AIDS Foundation.
George Michael wore a red ribbon at the Freddie Mercury Tribute Concert at Wembley Stadium in April 1992.
George Michael was instrumental in bringing the compilation CD Red Hot + Dance to fruition, contributing three original songs, with the album featuring Seal and Madonna among others.
George Michael was the largest funder of Highgate's annual Fair in the Square for those ten years, donating anonymously as "a local resident".
The site, in a private square that George Michael had owned, was tended by fans for approximately eighteen months until it was cleared.
The proceeds were donated to various philanthropic organisations George Michael gave to while he was alive.
In 2021, following legal proceedings, the trustees of George Michael's estate entered into a financial settlement with Goss.
In 2020, George Michael was commemorated with a mural in his native borough of Brent.
In 2019, George Michael was named as the greatest artist of all time by Smooth Radio.
In 2023, George Michael was nominated for induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
On 3 May 2023, George Michael was picked as an inductee to the 2023 class alongside Kate Bush, Willie Nelson, The Spinners, Missy Elliott and Rage Against the Machine.
At the time of his death, George Michael was estimated to have sold between 100 and 125 million records worldwide.