RIP: George Michael (born Georgios Kyriacos Panayiotou), an English singer, songwriter, and record producer who rose to fame as a member of the music duo Wham!, died of heart failure on Dec. 25 at his home at Goring-on-Thames, Oxfordshire, aged 53.
He started his career as a busker and DJing in London clubs and formed Wham! in 1983 with Andrew Ridgeley and hit the big time out-of-the-box with their debut album, Fantastic that became a #1 album and produced a string of hits. Their second album, Make It Big, was released in 1984 and became an even bigger hit, reaching number one across the world and catapulting George to international stardom.
Two years later the partnership dissolved and Michael went on to have a succession of global hits with songs such as "Careless Whisper," "Faith" and Jesus to a Child." -- Obit: BBC News