I wasn’t going to say anything about George Michael’s sudden passing – thousands of tributes have appeared (from Bananarama, from Spandau Ballet, from Kim Wilde – the list goes on) – what could I add? But then, this blog is my little space to record the stuff I care about and while my memories of George may not be in the same league as ‘sung with him at Wembley‘, they are important to me.
There’s a common theme in social media posts about George’s death – that 2016 has been a spectacularly shitty year and it has robbed us of so many great musicians – Bowie, Prince and Cohen immediately come to mind. No disrespect to them, but the loss of George was deeply shocking for me.
His music was the soundtrack of my youth – I finished grade six with a class dance to Wake Me Up Before You Go Go (complete with the self-hug “…cuddle up baby…” dance move).
His music challenged what I thought about all sorts of stuff (particularly a person’s sexuality – it was the early-eighties…). And of course the hair, the two earrings, the gloves, the snazzy shorts – no one did an eighties-gelato palette quite like George.
Just last week I was explaining to my kids that Last Christmas was a seminal video-clip (no, not overstating it) because of its superb narrative arc.
You take the grey skies out of my way
You make the sun shine brighter than Doris Day
Yesterday I slipped on my Choose Life tee, put Faith on the turntable and had a little cry. But also a little smile because George will be rocking that upstairs lounge.