London (AFP) – an Artist tormented by drug abuse and a love life complicated, the british singer George Michael, singer of the hits “Faith” and “Careless Whisper”, died of unknown causes at his home at the age of 53 years.
“It is with great sadness that we confirm that our son, brother and friend George died in peace at his home on Christmas”, announced on Sunday evening the agent of the singer in a statement, without further details.
According to Billboard magazine, his manager Michael Lippman said that the singer had been found lying “in his bed, in peace”, and that he had died of a heart attack.
teen Idol in the 1980s with the band Wham!, then became a global superstar solo, the singer died at his home in Goring, west of London, according to the BBC. His death is not considered a suspect by the british police, alerted shortly before 14: 00 GMT on Sunday.
“at this stage, the death is being treated as unexplained but not suspicious. An autopsy will be conducted in a timely manner,” said the police.
The tributes to the singer, from strangers and celebrities, have flocked on social networks.
“I am deeply shocked. I lost a dear friend – the most kind and generous, and a brilliant artist. My thoughts go out to his family and all his fans,” responded the british singer Elton John on Instagram.
The rockstar canadian Bryan Adams wrote on Twitter: “RIP George Michael. I can’t believe it. An amazing singer and a lovely man, far too young to leave us”.
“You have offered the world an incredible gift! What a talent! What a loss!”, tweeted the american singer La Toya Jackson.
Several messages of condolence mentioned the deaths of other stars of the song missing this year, including David Bowie in January, the Prince at the end of April, and guitarist of Status Quo, Rick Parfitt, passed away on Sunday.
“Farewell, my friend! Another great artist leaves us. Is 2016 can go fuck himself NOW?” released Madonna on Instagram.
“2016 – loss of another soul talented. All our love and all our sympathy to the family of George Michael’s”, has also written to the group Duran Duran, contemporary of Wham!, on his official account.
“no, not George Michael, too. Another great musician left us this year. 2016 can go to see,” tweeted the ex-international footballer british Gary Lineker.
- Glory and setbacks -
his real name Georgios Kyriacos Panayiotou, he had survived pneumonia at the end of 2011. His condition had required intensive care because of the severity of pneumococcal infection which he had contracted.
“This has literally been the worst month of my life, but I have a chance incredible, really incredible, to be here,” he said after his hospitalization.
By removing these last few years, George Michael was preparing an album with british producer Naughty Boy. The pop star, the son of a father, a Greek cypriot and an English mother, had to also release a documentary, autobiographical in 2017.
the popularity of The singer had declined in the 1990s, but it was back in 2004 with the album “Patience”, which has occupied the first place of sales in the United Kingdom.
The singer of “Club Tropicana”, “Last Christmas”, “Careless Whisper” and “Faith” has experienced several setbacks related to the drug (cannabis and crack cocaine) and alcohol in the past. He had spent four weeks in jail in 2010 after being stamped, with his Range Rover, a shop in north London, under the influence of cannabis and of drugs.
Three years earlier, he had been found passed out in his Mercedes and admitted to having consumed the drug, but escaped the prison by performing 100 hours of general interest work. He had received a driving prohibition for two years.
- ‘tragic Character’ -
Born on 25 June 1963 in London, the British had started his career in 1981 with the group Wham! to the side of his fellow high school Andrew Ridgeley. This last was said on Twitter, having “the heart broken by the loss of (his) friend loved it”.
neat Appearance, permanent tan, hair puffed to wicks and image of a hedonistic, Wham! it has captured the spirit of the time, quickly becoming the darling of the teens and one of the greatest british bands, with hits like “Club Tropicana” and “Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go”.
The success became global and in 1985, Wham! was the first western group to perform in China.
After four singles ranked number one in Great Britain, Wham! implosa in 1986 and George Michael launched a solo, to a targeted audience that is more adult.
It has sold over 100 million records worldwide, including 20 million from his solo album “Faith” (1987), and has served several times on the top of the hit-parades.
His last solo album, Symphonica, which was released in 2014, has been gold disc in the United Kingdom.
After years of speculation about his sexuality, George Michael was publicly revealed his homosexuality in 1998, after having been arrested for an indecent act in a public toilet in Los Angeles (United States). He will explain later, not having wanted to talk about as long as his mother lived.
“people want to see me as a tragic character, with these sex in the public toilets and the taking of drugs”, but “I don’t see even more of it as weaknesses. This is just what I am”, he declared to the british newspaper the Guardian in 2009.