George Michael, a singer who rose to fame in the 1980s as part of the group Wham!, has died.
In a statement, the star’s 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.”
An 80s icon
The 53-year-old became a big star with his band-mate Andrew John Ridgeley as Wham! partly due to catchy songs and partly due to having the right look at the beginning of the MTV era. Michael later left Wham! and went off to for a brief time become on of the biggest solo stars on the planet.
Michael had numerous hits with Wham! including “Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go,” “Club Tropicana,” and “Last Christmas.” He had even more success as a solo artist with songs including “Faith,” “I Want Your Sex,” “and “Father Figure.”
In recent years the singer has been somewhat out of the public. Born Georgios Kyriacos Panayiotou, Michael sold more than 100 million albums throughout a career spanning almost four decades. And while his popularity has dimmed in recent years, he released the album Symphonica, in 2014 and was expected to release a documentary on his career in 207.
Thames Valley police told the BBC an ambulance attended the house at 1.42pm and there were no suspicious circumstances, reported The Guardian.
Michael becomes the third major music artist to pass away in 2016. His death was preceded by that of David Bowie and Prince. All three were unexpected by the general public.