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George Michael - life of a music legend [Photos] Close

Wham's George Michael (left) and Andrew Ridgeley. Pop superstar Mr Michael has died peacefully at home, his publicist said. 30/03/84

Wham's George Michael (left) and Andrew Ridgeley. Pop superstar Mr Michael has died peacefully at home, his publicist said. 30/03/84

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George Michael with BBC Radio 1 DJ Steve Wright. 31/08/90

George Michael with BBC Radio 1 DJ Steve Wright. 31/08/90

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Princes Diana, Patron of the National Aids Trust talking to George Michael as Mick Hucknall looks on ahead of a concert of Hope at Wembley Arena in London, to mark World Aids Day. 01/12/93

Princes Diana, Patron of the National Aids Trust talking to George Michael as Mick Hucknall looks on ahead of a concert of Hope at Wembley Arena in London, to mark World Aids Day. 01/12/93

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George Michael and Andrew Ridgeley of Wham at Heathrow Airport before leaving for a tour of Japan. 05/01/85

George Michael and Andrew Ridgeley of Wham at Heathrow Airport before leaving for a tour of Japan. 05/01/85

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George Michael outside his house in Highgate, north London, after being released from prison, as the pop superstar has died peacefully at home, his publicist said.  11/10/10

George Michael outside his house in Highgate, north London, after being released from prison, as the pop superstar has died peacefully at home, his publicist said. 11/10/10

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George Michael collecting his Ivor Novello award at London's Grosvenor House for his album Faith to be international hit of the year, as the pop superstar has died peacefully at home, his publicist said. 04/04/89

George Michael collecting his Ivor Novello award at London's Grosvenor House for his album Faith to be international hit of the year, as the pop superstar has died peacefully at home, his publicist said. 04/04/89

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Paul McCartney  with George Michael performing during the LIVE8 Concert in Hyde Park, London, as George Michael has died at the age of 53 from suspected heart failure. 11/05/11

Paul McCartney with George Michael performing during the LIVE8 Concert in Hyde Park, London, as George Michael has died at the age of 53 from suspected heart failure. 11/05/11

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Wham's Andrew Ridgeley and George Michael (right). Pop superstar Mr Michael has died peacefully at home, his publicist said. 08/10/84

Wham's Andrew Ridgeley and George Michael (right). Pop superstar Mr Michael has died peacefully at home, his publicist said. 08/10/84

PA

George Michael leaving Highbury Corner Magistrates' Court in north London, after he appeared charged with driving under the influence of drugs after his car crashed into a high street shop.

George Michael leaving Highbury Corner Magistrates' Court in north London, after he appeared charged with driving under the influence of drugs after his car crashed into a high street shop.

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George Michael performing at Wembley Stadium in London, as the pop superstar has died at the age of 53 from suspected heart failure.

George Michael performing at Wembley Stadium in London, as the pop superstar has died at the age of 53 from suspected heart failure.

PA

George Michael of Wham performing at the Live Aid concert at Wembley Stadium in London, as the pop superstar has died at the age of 53 from suspected heart failure.

George Michael of Wham performing at the Live Aid concert at Wembley Stadium in London, as the pop superstar has died at the age of 53 from suspected heart failure.

PA

George Michael and Kenny Goss arriving for Attitude Magazine's 10th Birthday Party at the Atlantic Bar & Grill in central London. Pop superstar Mr Michael has died peacefully at home, his publicist said.

George Michael and Kenny Goss arriving for Attitude Magazine's 10th Birthday Party at the Atlantic Bar & Grill in central London. Pop superstar Mr Michael has died peacefully at home, his publicist said.

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File photo dated 24/08/10 of the Snappy Snaps store in Hampstead, north London, which George Michael crashed into in his Range Rover, as the pop superstar has died peacefully at home, his publicist said.

File photo dated 24/08/10 of the Snappy Snaps store in Hampstead, north London, which George Michael crashed into in his Range Rover, as the pop superstar has died peacefully at home, his publicist said.

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File photo dated 19/04/2000 of George Michael and Geri Halliwell arriving for the 95.8 Capital FM London Awards in London, as the pop superstar has died peacefully at home, his publicist said.

File photo dated 19/04/2000 of George Michael and Geri Halliwell arriving for the 95.8 Capital FM London Awards in London, as the pop superstar has died peacefully at home, his publicist said.

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File photo dated 11/04/99 of Tom Jones (left) and George Michael performing a duet during a tribute concert to Sir Paul McCartney's late wife Linda, held at the Royal Albert Hall in London. Pop superstar Mr Michael has died peacefully at home, his publicist said. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Sunday December 25, 2016. See PA story DEATH Michael. Photo credit should read: Sean Dempsey/PA Wire

File photo dated 11/04/99 of Tom Jones (left) and George Michael performing a duet during a tribute concert to Sir Paul McCartney's late wife Linda, held at the Royal Albert Hall in London. Pop superstar Mr Michael has died peacefully at home, his publicist said. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Sunday December 25, 2016. See PA story DEATH Michael. Photo credit should read: Sean Dempsey/PA Wire

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File photo dated 07/12/06 of George Michael performing at the Point Depot in Dublin, as the pop superstar has died at the age of 53 from suspected heart failure. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Monday December 26, 2016. See PA story DEATH Michael. Photo credit should read: Niall Carson/PA Wire

File photo dated 07/12/06 of George Michael performing at the Point Depot in Dublin, as the pop superstar has died at the age of 53 from suspected heart failure. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Monday December 26, 2016. See PA story DEATH Michael. Photo credit should read: Niall Carson/PA Wire

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(FILES): This file photo taken on September 6, 1997 shows pop stars George Michael (L) and Elton John (R) leaving Westminster Abbey following the funeral service of Diana, Princess of Wales. 
British pop singer George Michael, who rose to fame with the band Wham! and sold more than 100 million albums in his career, has died aged 53, his publicist said on Sunday, December 25, 2016.
 / AFP PHOTO / AFP POOL / Adam ButlerADAM BUTLER/AFP/Getty Images

(FILES): This file photo taken on September 6, 1997 shows pop stars George Michael (L) and Elton John (R) leaving Westminster Abbey following the funeral service of Diana, Princess of Wales. British pop singer George Michael, who rose to fame with the band Wham! and sold more than 100 million albums in his career, has died aged 53, his publicist said on Sunday, December 25, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / AFP POOL / Adam ButlerADAM BUTLER/AFP/Getty Images

AFP/Getty Images

(FILES): This file photo taken on September 6, 1997 shows pop stars George Michael (L) and Elton John (R) leaving Westminster Abbey following the funeral service of Diana, Princess of Wales. 
British pop singer George Michael, who rose to fame with the band Wham! and sold more than 100 million albums in his career, has died aged 53, his publicist said on Sunday, December 25, 2016.
 / AFP PHOTO / AFP POOL / JOHNNY EGGITTJOHNNY EGGITT/AFP/Getty Images

(FILES): This file photo taken on September 6, 1997 shows pop stars George Michael (L) and Elton John (R) leaving Westminster Abbey following the funeral service of Diana, Princess of Wales. British pop singer George Michael, who rose to fame with the band Wham! and sold more than 100 million albums in his career, has died aged 53, his publicist said on Sunday, December 25, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / AFP POOL / JOHNNY EGGITTJOHNNY EGGITT/AFP/Getty Images

AFP/Getty Images

George Michael performing during the closing ceremony of the 2012 London Olympic Games at the Olympic stadium in London.

George Michael performing during the closing ceremony of the 2012 London Olympic Games at the Olympic stadium in London.

AFP/Getty Images

(FILES) This file photo taken on May 8, 2007 shows British pop star George Michael (L) arriving at Brent Magistrates Court in west London, as he faces charges of driving while unfit through drugs.
British pop singer George Michael, who rose to fame with the band Wham! and sold more than 100 million albums in his career, has died aged 53, his publicist said on December 25, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / CHRIS YOUNGCHRIS YOUNG/AFP/Getty Images

(FILES) This file photo taken on May 8, 2007 shows British pop star George Michael (L) arriving at Brent Magistrates Court in west London, as he faces charges of driving while unfit through drugs. British pop singer George Michael, who rose to fame with the band Wham! and sold more than 100 million albums in his career, has died aged 53, his publicist said on December 25, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / CHRIS YOUNGCHRIS YOUNG/AFP/Getty Images

AFP/Getty Images

(FILES) This file photo taken on June 09, 2007 shows British pop singer George Michael performing during his 25 Live concert at the Wembley Stadium in London.
George Michael died aged 53, according to his publicist on December 25, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / ADRIAN DENNISADRIAN DENNIS/AFP/Getty Images

(FILES) This file photo taken on June 09, 2007 shows British pop singer George Michael performing during his 25 Live concert at the Wembley Stadium in London. George Michael died aged 53, according to his publicist on December 25, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / ADRIAN DENNISADRIAN DENNIS/AFP/Getty Images

AFP/Getty Images

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Wham's George Michael (left) and Andrew Ridgeley. Pop superstar Mr Michael has died peacefully at home, his publicist said. 30/03/84

Sir Elton John has led the tributes to his "beloved friend" George Michael, who died on Christmas Day aged 53.

The Rocket Man singer said he was "in deep shock" at Michael's death.

The pair famously collaborated on a rendition of Elton's classic Don't Let The Sun Go Down On Me, released in 1992, nearly two decades after the original.

Writing on Instagram, Elton said: "I have lost a beloved friend - the kindest, most generous soul and a brilliant artist. My heart goes out to his family and all of his fans."

Pop stars from the former Wham! front man's heyday were joined by current chart-toppers in declaring their sadness.

Martin Fry, lead singer and songwriter with Look Of Love band ABC, said on Twitter: "Absolutely devastated to hear of the loss of @GeorgeMichael Truly brilliant talent #sad #sad #sad."

Contemporaries Duran Duran referenced the so-called "curse of 2016" - which has seen the deaths of rock and pop behemoths David Bowie, Prince and Rick Parfitt, posted on their official Twitter account: "2016 - loss of another talented soul. All our love and sympathy to @GeorgeMichael's family."

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And 1980s pop star Howard Jones, known for the song I'd Like To Get To Know You Well, said: "Can't believe George Michael has passed ....one of the greatest singers and writers the UK ever produced. I'm really saddened ..a lovely man."

Alison Moyet, who performed at Live Aid in 1985 on the same bill as Michael, said: " I met George Michael a few times & he was ever a gentle, unassuming soul. A rare presence in a world full of self. Honest, genuine talent."

This year's X Factor winner Matt Terry said: "Noooooooooooooooo! I cannot believe this !!!! RIP George Michael".

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People arrive with bunches of flowers to lay in tribute outside the north London home of British singer George Michael on December 26, 2016, after news of the singer's death broke. 
 / AFP PHOTO / Daniel LEAL-OLIVASDANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP/Getty Images

People arrive with bunches of flowers to lay in tribute outside the north London home of British singer George Michael on December 26, 2016, after news of the singer's death broke. / AFP PHOTO / Daniel LEAL-OLIVASDANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP/Getty Images

AFP/Getty Images

George Michael fans outside his London home, as the pop superstar has died at the age of 53 from suspected heart failure.  Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire

George Michael fans outside his London home, as the pop superstar has died at the age of 53 from suspected heart failure. Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire

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People outside the Goring house of George Michael in Oxfordshire as the pop superstar has died at the age of 53 from suspected heart failure.  Andrew Matthews/PA Wire

People outside the Goring house of George Michael in Oxfordshire as the pop superstar has died at the age of 53 from suspected heart failure. Andrew Matthews/PA Wire

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George Michael fans outside his London home, as the pop superstar has died at the age of 53 from suspected heart failure. Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire

George Michael fans outside his London home, as the pop superstar has died at the age of 53 from suspected heart failure. Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire

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People lay flowers outside the Goring house of George Michael in Oxfordshire as the pop superstar has died at the age of 53 from suspected heart failure. Andrew Matthews/PA Wire

People lay flowers outside the Goring house of George Michael in Oxfordshire as the pop superstar has died at the age of 53 from suspected heart failure. Andrew Matthews/PA Wire

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Flowers outside the Goring house of George Michael in Oxfordshire as the pop superstar has died at the age of 53 from suspected heart failure.Andrew Matthews/PA Wire

Flowers outside the Goring house of George Michael in Oxfordshire as the pop superstar has died at the age of 53 from suspected heart failure.Andrew Matthews/PA Wire

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Flowers and candles left in memory of George Michael outside his London home, as the pop superstar has died at the age of 53 from suspected heart failure. Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire

Flowers and candles left in memory of George Michael outside his London home, as the pop superstar has died at the age of 53 from suspected heart failure. Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire

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Flowers and candles left in memory of George Michael outside his London home, as the pop superstar has died at the age of 53 from suspected heart failure. Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire

Flowers and candles left in memory of George Michael outside his London home, as the pop superstar has died at the age of 53 from suspected heart failure. Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire

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Flowers and candles left in memory of George Michael outside his London home, as the pop superstar has died at the age of 53 from suspected heart failure. Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire

Flowers and candles left in memory of George Michael outside his London home, as the pop superstar has died at the age of 53 from suspected heart failure. Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire

PA

Children lay flowers outside the Goring house of George Michael in Oxfordshire as the pop superstar has died at the age of 53 from suspected heart failure. Andrew Matthews/PA Wire

Children lay flowers outside the Goring house of George Michael in Oxfordshire as the pop superstar has died at the age of 53 from suspected heart failure. Andrew Matthews/PA Wire

PA

Messages and candles are seen among floral tributes outside the north London home of British singer George Michael on December 26, 2016, after news of the singer's death broke.  / AFP PHOTO / Daniel LEAL-OLIVASDANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP/Getty Images

Messages and candles are seen among floral tributes outside the north London home of British singer George Michael on December 26, 2016, after news of the singer's death broke. / AFP PHOTO / Daniel LEAL-OLIVASDANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP/Getty Images

AFP/Getty Images

Messages and candles are seen among floral tributes outside the north London home of British singer George Michael on December 26, 2016, after news of the singer's death broke. 
 / AFP PHOTO / Daniel LEAL-OLIVASDANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP/Getty Images

Messages and candles are seen among floral tributes outside the north London home of British singer George Michael on December 26, 2016, after news of the singer's death broke. / AFP PHOTO / Daniel LEAL-OLIVASDANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP/Getty Images

AFP/Getty Images

Messages and candles are seen among floral tributes outside the north London home of British singer George Michael on December 26, 2016, after news of the singer's death broke. 
 / AFP PHOTO / Daniel LEAL-OLIVASDANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP/Getty Images

Messages and candles are seen among floral tributes outside the north London home of British singer George Michael on December 26, 2016, after news of the singer's death broke. / AFP PHOTO / Daniel LEAL-OLIVASDANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP/Getty Images

AFP/Getty Images

People lay bunches of flowers in tribute outside the north London home of British singer George Michael on December 26, 2016, after news of the singer's death broke. 
 / AFP PHOTO / Daniel LEAL-OLIVASDANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP/Getty Images

People lay bunches of flowers in tribute outside the north London home of British singer George Michael on December 26, 2016, after news of the singer's death broke. / AFP PHOTO / Daniel LEAL-OLIVASDANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP/Getty Images

AFP/Getty Images

A man says a prayer outside the north London home of British singer George Michael on December 26, 2016, after news of the singer's death broke. 
 / AFP PHOTO / Daniel LEAL-OLIVASDANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP/Getty Images

A man says a prayer outside the north London home of British singer George Michael on December 26, 2016, after news of the singer's death broke. / AFP PHOTO / Daniel LEAL-OLIVASDANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP/Getty Images

AFP/Getty Images

People arrive to pay tribute outside the north London home of British singer George Michael on December 26, 2016, after news of the singer's death broke. 
 / AFP PHOTO / Daniel LEAL-OLIVASDANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP/Getty Images

People arrive to pay tribute outside the north London home of British singer George Michael on December 26, 2016, after news of the singer's death broke. / AFP PHOTO / Daniel LEAL-OLIVASDANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP/Getty Images

AFP/Getty Images

People lay bunches of flowers in tribute outside the north London home of British singer George Michael on December 26, 2016, after news of the singer's death broke. 
 / AFP PHOTO / Daniel LEAL-OLIVASDANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP/Getty Images

People lay bunches of flowers in tribute outside the north London home of British singer George Michael on December 26, 2016, after news of the singer's death broke. / AFP PHOTO / Daniel LEAL-OLIVASDANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP/Getty Images

AFP/Getty Images

A letter is seen among floral tributes outside the north London home of British singer George Michael on December 26, 2016, after news of the singer's death broke. 
. / AFP PHOTO / Daniel LEAL-OLIVASDANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP/Getty Images

A letter is seen among floral tributes outside the north London home of British singer George Michael on December 26, 2016, after news of the singer's death broke. . / AFP PHOTO / Daniel LEAL-OLIVASDANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP/Getty Images

AFP/Getty Images

People lay bunches of flowers in tribute outside the north London home of British singer George Michael on December 26, 2016, after news of the singer's death broke. 
 / AFP PHOTO / Daniel LEAL-OLIVASDANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP/Getty Images

People lay bunches of flowers in tribute outside the north London home of British singer George Michael on December 26, 2016, after news of the singer's death broke. / AFP PHOTO / Daniel LEAL-OLIVASDANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP/Getty Images

AFP/Getty Images

A woman lays a candle among floral tributes outside the north London home of British singer George Michael on December 26, 2016, after news of the singer's death broke. 
. / AFP PHOTO / Daniel LEAL-OLIVASDANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP/Getty Images

A woman lays a candle among floral tributes outside the north London home of British singer George Michael on December 26, 2016, after news of the singer's death broke. . / AFP PHOTO / Daniel LEAL-OLIVASDANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP/Getty Images

AFP/Getty Images

People arrive with bunches of flowers to lay in tribute outside the north London home of British singer George Michael on December 26, 2016, after news of the singer's death broke. 
 / AFP PHOTO / Daniel LEAL-OLIVASDANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP/Getty Images

People arrive with bunches of flowers to lay in tribute outside the north London home of British singer George Michael on December 26, 2016, after news of the singer's death broke. / AFP PHOTO / Daniel LEAL-OLIVASDANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP/Getty Images

AFP/Getty Images

People arrive to pay tribute outside the north London home of British singer George Michael on December 26, 2016, after news of the singer's death broke. 
 / AFP PHOTO / Daniel LEAL-OLIVASDANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP/Getty Images

People arrive to pay tribute outside the north London home of British singer George Michael on December 26, 2016, after news of the singer's death broke. / AFP PHOTO / Daniel LEAL-OLIVASDANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP/Getty Images

AFP/Getty Images

Floral tributes are piled outside the north London home of British singer George Michael on December 26, 2016, after news of the singer's death broke. 
Tributes poured in from the music world on Monday as British pop superstar George Michael, who rose to fame with the duo Wham! and a string of smash hits including "Last Christmas", dies aged 53. / AFP PHOTO / Daniel LEAL-OLIVASDANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP/Getty Images

Floral tributes are piled outside the north London home of British singer George Michael on December 26, 2016, after news of the singer's death broke. Tributes poured in from the music world on Monday as British pop superstar George Michael, who rose to fame with the duo Wham! and a string of smash hits including "Last Christmas", dies aged 53. / AFP PHOTO / Daniel LEAL-OLIVASDANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP/Getty Images

AFP/Getty Images

Messages of condolence are pictured beside candles and flowers outside the north London home of British singer George Michael on December 26, 2016, as news of the singer's death spread. 
Tributes poured in from the music world on Monday as British pop superstar George Michael, who rose to fame with the duo Wham! and a string of smash hits including "Last Christmas", dies aged 53. / AFP PHOTO / Daniel LEAL-OLIVASDANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP/Getty Images

Messages of condolence are pictured beside candles and flowers outside the north London home of British singer George Michael on December 26, 2016, as news of the singer's death spread. Tributes poured in from the music world on Monday as British pop superstar George Michael, who rose to fame with the duo Wham! and a string of smash hits including "Last Christmas", dies aged 53. / AFP PHOTO / Daniel LEAL-OLIVASDANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP/Getty Images

AFP/Getty Images

A message of condolence lies with flowers outside the north London home of British singer George Michael on December 26, 2016, as news of the singer's death spread. 
Tributes poured in from the music world on Monday as British pop superstar George Michael, who rose to fame with the duo Wham! and a string of smash hits including "Last Christmas", dies aged 53. / AFP PHOTO / Daniel LEAL-OLIVASDANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP/Getty Images

A message of condolence lies with flowers outside the north London home of British singer George Michael on December 26, 2016, as news of the singer's death spread. Tributes poured in from the music world on Monday as British pop superstar George Michael, who rose to fame with the duo Wham! and a string of smash hits including "Last Christmas", dies aged 53. / AFP PHOTO / Daniel LEAL-OLIVASDANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP/Getty Images

AFP/Getty Images

A message of condolence is pictured outside the north London home of British singer George Michael on December 26, 2016, as news of the singer's death spread. 
Tributes poured in from the music world on Monday as British pop superstar George Michael, who rose to fame with the duo Wham! and a string of smash hits including "Last Christmas", dies aged 53. / AFP PHOTO / Daniel LEAL-OLIVASDANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP/Getty Images

A message of condolence is pictured outside the north London home of British singer George Michael on December 26, 2016, as news of the singer's death spread. Tributes poured in from the music world on Monday as British pop superstar George Michael, who rose to fame with the duo Wham! and a string of smash hits including "Last Christmas", dies aged 53. / AFP PHOTO / Daniel LEAL-OLIVASDANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP/Getty Images

AFP/Getty Images

A woman brings a bouquet of flowers to the north London home of British singer George Michael on December 26, 2016, as news of the singer's death spread. 
Tributes poured in from the music world on Monday as British pop superstar George Michael, who rose to fame with the duo Wham! and a string of smash hits including "Last Christmas", dies aged 53. / AFP PHOTO / Daniel LEAL-OLIVASDANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP/Getty Images

A woman brings a bouquet of flowers to the north London home of British singer George Michael on December 26, 2016, as news of the singer's death spread. Tributes poured in from the music world on Monday as British pop superstar George Michael, who rose to fame with the duo Wham! and a string of smash hits including "Last Christmas", dies aged 53. / AFP PHOTO / Daniel LEAL-OLIVASDANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP/Getty Images

AFP/Getty Images

A message of condolence is pictured beside candles and a single rose outside the north London home of British singer George Michael on December 26, 2016, as news of the singer's death spread. 
Tributes poured in from the music world on Monday as British pop superstar George Michael, who rose to fame with the duo Wham! and a string of smash hits including "Last Christmas", dies aged 53. / AFP PHOTO / Daniel LEAL-OLIVASDANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP/Getty Images

A message of condolence is pictured beside candles and a single rose outside the north London home of British singer George Michael on December 26, 2016, as news of the singer's death spread. Tributes poured in from the music world on Monday as British pop superstar George Michael, who rose to fame with the duo Wham! and a string of smash hits including "Last Christmas", dies aged 53. / AFP PHOTO / Daniel LEAL-OLIVASDANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP/Getty Images

AFP/Getty Images

(FILES) This file photo taken on May 25, 2007 shows pop singer George Michael performing on stage in Bratislava during his concert as part of his European Tour.
British pop singer George Michael, who rose to fame with the band Wham! and sold more than 100 million albums in his career, has died aged 53, his publicist said on December 25, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / SAMUEL KUBANISAMUEL KUBANI/AFP/Getty Images

(FILES) This file photo taken on May 25, 2007 shows pop singer George Michael performing on stage in Bratislava during his concert as part of his European Tour. British pop singer George Michael, who rose to fame with the band Wham! and sold more than 100 million albums in his career, has died aged 53, his publicist said on December 25, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / SAMUEL KUBANISAMUEL KUBANI/AFP/Getty Images

AFP/Getty Images

LONDON, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 26:  A woman wipes away tears as tributes of flowers are left at the home of pop music icon George Michael in The Grove, Highgate on December 26, 2016 in London, England. Singer George Michael died on Christmas day in his country home in Oxfordshire at the age of 53 on December 25.  (Photo by Jack Taylor/Getty Images)

LONDON, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 26: A woman wipes away tears as tributes of flowers are left at the home of pop music icon George Michael in The Grove, Highgate on December 26, 2016 in London, England. Singer George Michael died on Christmas day in his country home in Oxfordshire at the age of 53 on December 25. (Photo by Jack Taylor/Getty Images)

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LONDON, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 26:  Tributes of flowers are left at the home of pop music icon George Michael in The Grove, Highgate on December 26, 2016 in London, England. Singer George Michael died on Christmas day in his country home in Oxfordshire at the age of 53 on December 25.  (Photo by Jack Taylor/Getty Images)

LONDON, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 26: Tributes of flowers are left at the home of pop music icon George Michael in The Grove, Highgate on December 26, 2016 in London, England. Singer George Michael died on Christmas day in his country home in Oxfordshire at the age of 53 on December 25. (Photo by Jack Taylor/Getty Images)

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GORING, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 26:  A message is left with flowers and tribute outside the Oxfordshire home of British pop singer George Michael on December 26, 2016 in Goring, England. Singer George Michael died on Christmas day in his country home in Oxfordshire at the age of 53 on December 25.  (Photo by Carl Court/Getty Images)

GORING, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 26: A message is left with flowers and tribute outside the Oxfordshire home of British pop singer George Michael on December 26, 2016 in Goring, England. Singer George Michael died on Christmas day in his country home in Oxfordshire at the age of 53 on December 25. (Photo by Carl Court/Getty Images)

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GORING, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 26: A message is left with flowers and tribute outside the Oxfordshire home of British pop singer George Michael on December 26, 2016 in Goring, England. Singer George Michael died on Christmas day in his country home in Oxfordshire at the age of 53 on December 25.  (Photo by Carl Court/Getty Images)

GORING, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 26: A message is left with flowers and tribute outside the Oxfordshire home of British pop singer George Michael on December 26, 2016 in Goring, England. Singer George Michael died on Christmas day in his country home in Oxfordshire at the age of 53 on December 25. (Photo by Carl Court/Getty Images)

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LONDON, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 26:  An envelope with the name George is written near tributes of flowers, candles and cards left at the home of pop music icon George Michael in The Grove, Highgate on December 26, 2016 in London, England. Singer George Michael died on Christmas day in his country home in Oxfordshire at the age of 53 on December 25.  (Photo by Jack Taylor/Getty Images)

LONDON, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 26: An envelope with the name George is written near tributes of flowers, candles and cards left at the home of pop music icon George Michael in The Grove, Highgate on December 26, 2016 in London, England. Singer George Michael died on Christmas day in his country home in Oxfordshire at the age of 53 on December 25. (Photo by Jack Taylor/Getty Images)

Getty Images

LONDON, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 26: A photograph of George Michael is left as tributes of flowers, candles and cards are left at the home of the pop music icon in The Grove, Highgate on December 26, 2016 in London, England. Singer George Michael died on Christmas day in his country home in Oxfordshire at the age of 53 on December 25.  (Photo by Jack Taylor/Getty Images)

LONDON, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 26: A photograph of George Michael is left as tributes of flowers, candles and cards are left at the home of the pop music icon in The Grove, Highgate on December 26, 2016 in London, England. Singer George Michael died on Christmas day in his country home in Oxfordshire at the age of 53 on December 25. (Photo by Jack Taylor/Getty Images)

Getty Images

GORING, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 26: Young girls carry flowers to lay outside the Oxfordshire home of British pop singer George Michael on December 26, 2016 in Goring, England. Singer George Michael died on Christmas day in his country home in Oxfordshire at the age of 53 on December 25. (Photo by Carl Court/Getty Images)

GORING, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 26: Young girls carry flowers to lay outside the Oxfordshire home of British pop singer George Michael on December 26, 2016 in Goring, England. Singer George Michael died on Christmas day in his country home in Oxfordshire at the age of 53 on December 25. (Photo by Carl Court/Getty Images)

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GORING, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 26: A woman and young girl carry flowers to lay outside the Oxfordshire home of British pop singer George Michael on December 26, 2016 in Goring, England. Singer George Michael died on Christmas day in his country home in Oxfordshire at the age of 53 on December 25.  (Photo by Carl Court/Getty Images)

GORING, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 26: A woman and young girl carry flowers to lay outside the Oxfordshire home of British pop singer George Michael on December 26, 2016 in Goring, England. Singer George Michael died on Christmas day in his country home in Oxfordshire at the age of 53 on December 25. (Photo by Carl Court/Getty Images)

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People arrive with bunches of flowers to lay in tribute outside the north London home of British singer George Michael on December 26, 2016, after news of the singer's death broke. / AFP PHOTO / Daniel LEAL-OLIVASDANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP/Getty Images

Former Radio One disc jockey Tony Blackburn said: "Unbelievable, George Michael has died at the age of 53. RIP.This dreadful year goes on and on.So sad, a real talent."

One-time X Factor winner Shayne Ward said: "Absolutely shocked to hear that one of my vocal idols @GeorgeMichael Has passed away. I adored his voice."

Producer and musician Mark Ronson said: "I bought (& worshipped) Listen Without Prejudice on my 15th birthday. This song readied me for Stevie Wonder... Other than a global pop phenom, George Michael was one of the true British soul greats. A lot of us owe him an unpayable debt. bye George xx"

Singer and stage actress Pixie Lott said: "Grew up listening to the beautiful and talented @GeorgeMichael - my mama's favourite! was a pleasure to meet him so sad to hear the news."

Fellow pop star La Roux said: "Another one gone.... What a voice, what a songwriter."

Matt Lucas, who worked with the singer during a sketch for BBC comedy Little Britain, said: "Well 2016, you had to just take one more, didn't you?"

His Little-Britain co-star David Walliams said: "I pray George Michael finally finds peace. A deeply private man with an awe-inspiring talent that couldn't help but make him a superstar."

Mayor of London Sadiq Khan said: "Very sad to hear the news about George Michael. An incredible talent who brought joy to millions of us with his music."

Fellow politician Nicola Sturgeon, the First Minister of Scotland, said: "This is just too awful. Such an amazing talent gone too soon. Wham was part of the soundtrack to my teenage years."

His former Wham! bandmate Andrew Ridgeley said he was "heartbroken at the loss of my beloved friend Yog", a nickname which refers to "Yours Only George".

He said: "Me, his loved ones, his friends, the world of music, the world at large. 4ever loved. A xx"

Holly Johnson, lead singer of Frankie Goes To Hollywood, said: "Sad to hear the news about George Michael , and so many great singers and songwriters we lost this year."

Music contemporaries Spandau Ballet said: "We are incredibly sad at the passing of our dear friend George Michael. A brilliant artist & great songwriter."

Simply Red said: "Its hard to take in. One of our most talented singer songwriters has left us. RIP George Michael. Such sad, tragic news. 2016 please end."

Matt Goss, singer in the band Bros, said: "George Michael was part of the tapestry of my life. His songs his lyrics & his melodies, True pop royalty! Heartbroken, RIP dearest George."

Chic founder and guitarist Nile Rodgers said he with the tragic pop star days before he died.

He said: "This is so crazy. I was just at his house the morning of the 23rd. So crazy."

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn paid tribute to Michael's dedication to equality campaigning.

He said: " Sad to hear that George Michael has died. He was an exceptional artist and a strong supporter of LGBT and workers' rights."

LGBT charity Stonewall tweeted their sadness at the news, writing: "R.I.P. George Michael. You inspired many and your music will live on in the hearts of the community. You will be sorely missed x."

TV personality James Corden said: "I've loved George Michael for as long as I can remember. He was an absolute inspiration. Always ahead of his time."


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