,

Stars pay tribute to the late George Michael

george michael

During 2016, we have lost a number of iconic stars from the entertainment world. On Christmas Day, the world was once again rocked by the loss of another, when it was announced that legendary performer George Michael had passed away at the age of 53.

Following the news, many stars took to social media to pay their tributes to the late, great George Michael. Leading the tributes was Sir Elton John, who was close friends with George. The pair recorded ‘Don’t Let the Sun Go Down on Me’ together in 1991, after first performing the song together in 1985 at the Live Aid concert.

Andrew Ridgeley, who formed one half of Wham! with George, took to Twitter to share his heartbreak over the loss of his beloved friend.

Producer Mark Ronson posted a heartfelt message on Instagram, recalling how George’s ‘Praying For Time’ inspired him. He also re-lived a phone call he had with the late star.

i bought Listen Without Prejudice the day it came out, which happened to be my 15th birthday. even when i put it on now, hearing the opening chords of “praying for time”—the opening tune, i can picture the exact shade of yellow paint that covered my teenage bedroom. it all comes back to me in pure technicolour. that’s how much of a mark that song left on me. i had never heard a musical language quite like that before. later, when i discovered the 70’s masterworks of Stevie Wonder, i started to understand where George got it from. but at that point, to my naive musical knowledge, it blew the doors open. it prepared me for Stevie in a way. later on, as a DJ in hip-hop clubs in New York City in the late 90’s, George/Wham’s “Everything She Wants” was one of maybe three or four tunes by white artists that you could follow MJ, Frankie Beverly or Roy Ayers with. the keyboard lick from “Father Figure” comprised the bones for the Jungle Bros.’ classic, underground club destroyer “J Beez Comin’ Through”. So while “Faith” and the like made George a global phenom, another side of his genius as singer, writer, producer and arranger made him a bonafide giant of soul music. as did most soul afficionados, George had a huge affinity for the music of Amy Winehouse. i imagine  he felt more than a little kindred spiritness to some of the personal stuff too. Anyway, as a result of my ties to Amy, he called me once. i was on holiday exactly around this time 9 years ago. he told me he had a few soulful tunes left off of Faith that he never got to finish and asked if i would be interested in working on them. i remember one of the songs was absolutely flooring, as good as any pop/soul ballad of the era. i said of course i would be interested—all the while in complete disbelief that i was actually on the phone with GEORGE MICHAEL. i don’t know why, for some reason it never materialized. i hope one day i might get to, but i really dreamed of being in the room with him while i did. this is a tough day in a brutal year. but i'm so grateful for what he left us xxx

A post shared by Mark Ronson (@iammarkronson) on

The Late Late Show host James Corden also paid tribute to George, calling him an “absolute inspiration”. Many will remember George being James’ first Carpool Karaoke companion during a comedy sketch for Comic Relief in 2011.

Sam Smith made a brief return to social media to pay his tribute to George. He called him “one of the most magical, talented, bravest & important figures in music & life as I know it”.

Boy George also took to Twitter to pay tribute, stating that “his music will live on as a testament to his talent.”

I am thinking of @GeorgeMichael‘s family, friends and fans right now. He was so loved and I hope he knew it because the sadness today is beyond words. Devastating. What a beautiful voice he had and his music will live on as a testament to his talent. I can’t believe he is gone. I hope the Buddha will hold him in his arms. NMRK.

Country singer Carrie Underwood also shared a beautiful message on Instagram, which talks about how he was a huge influence in her life.

Capital FM DJ Roman Kemp posted his own tribute to George, who was also his godfather. George introduced Roman’s parents, Martin Kemp and Shirlie Holliman to each other.

George publicly supported charities throughout his career, but he was also a kind soul behind closed doors. Following his passing, it has been revealed that he would often take on secret acts of generosity too. Among them, Pointless host Richard Osman took to Twitter to talk about the time George gave a lady on Deal Or No Deal £15,000 for IVF treatment.

A whole host of other celebrities also took to social media to pay their respects, share their tributes and thank him for his music and inspiration.

George Michael was an incredible talent, with a brilliant 30+ year career to his name. Throughout his time in Wham! and as a solo artist, he sold over 100 million records worldwide. His music is globally recognised and has struck a chord with countless people.

However, he wasn’t just a musical icon. He was a man who lived life to the full and was always unapologetically himself. George pushed boundaries, was a trailblazer for the LGBTQ community and encouraged us to accept love in all its forms.

His legacy will live on through his music and his message – “You’ll never find peace of mind until you listen to your heart.”

Our deepest condolences are with George Michael’s family, friends and fans. Share your memories of George with us on Twitter @CelebMix

Written by Katrina Rees

I’m Katrina, or Kat to pretty much everyone. I’m a writer, charity shop manager, boyband lover and all round music fanatic.
Twitter: @lifeofkatrina
Email: katrinanaomirees@gmail.com

Playlist: CelebMix Weekly Music Finds Week Twelve – Christmas Edition

CelebMix chats with fashion designer Mondo Guerra