English singer and former lead singer of Wham!. Most successful during the 1990s. Known for taking a long time to make albums (five albums so far in 26 years), and media controversy due to his drug use and alleged solicitation of a police officer (which was actually a sting operation).
Michael's band Wham! are covered here also.
- 1987: Faith
- 1990: Listen Without Prejudice (Volume 1)
- 1996: Older
- 1999: Songs From The Last Century (Cover Album)
- 2004: Patience
- Notable Singles:
- 1984: Careless Whisper
- 1986: A Different Corner
- 1987: Faith
- 1987: Father Figure
- 1990: Praying For Time
- 1998: Outside
Provides examples of the following tropes:
- Awesome Mc Cool Name: Being of Greek parentage, his real name is Georgios Panayiotou which he anglicised.
- Breakup Breakout: When George Michael left Wham! he got even more successful. Andrew Ridgeley on the other hand released one album, to minimal success, and then retired.
- Canon Discontinuity: In 1983, Wham's label Inner Vision had already put out four out of eight songs as singles from Fantastic, and couldn't decide on a fifth, so mixed three songs together to become the Club Fantastic Megamix, which was released as a 12" and 7". This was put out without consulting the band members, who disliked the mix and don't count it as part of their discography.
- The band's only original B Side, "Blue (Armed With Love)" has never appeared on CD outside of a hard to get Club Tropicana 3 inch single from Japan. The band also did a live version, which is on CD as part of Music From The Edge Of Heaven, a US/Canada/Japan album which came out instead of The Final over there. However the two versions are quite different with the live version having more lyrics, and having crowd noise and a spoken intro, in which Michael describes the song as a song that is very personal to him. This makes it particularly unusual the studio version isn't on CD, because Michael has been known to prefer his mature Wham! songs over the more poppy ones.
- Cover Version: As well as his Covers Album (below) Many, often released as B Sides. A lesser known one is Freedom '90 (Back To Reality Mix), which is actually a cover of Soul II Soul's Back To Life, with a few of the lyrics from Freedom '90 thrown in to give Michael a co-writing credit.
- Covers Album: Songs From The Last Century, which was largely recorded as a contractual obligation.
- Creator Backlash: George is not a fan of his early work in Wham!, especially Bad Boys.
- Creator Breakdown: His album Older was a largely a collection of mournful ballads, Brazilian inspired music, and a few dance tracks which were lyrically about getting over grief. This was because his then-boyfriend Anselmo Feleppa, who was from Brazil, died of AIDS in 1993, and Michael was so depressed about it that he couldn't focus on anything else. At the time, he had yet to come out to the general public and this made it harder for him. The album became a surprise success and gave him more hit singles than any other album he released.
- Development Hell: Patience was planned for release over 2 years before it actually came out. The singles Freeek! and Shoot The Dog were released as singles in March and July 2002 respectively, but the album only came out in March 2004. Freeek! was even slightly remixed as Freeek! 04 to hide how old it was.
- Distinct Double Album: His compilation Ladies And Gentlemen with a first disc of ballads, and second one of pop and dance tracks.
- He planned this for Listen Without Prejudice, but the proposed Volume 2 never happened due to record company disputes.
- Expository Theme Tune: Wham Rap! explains the band's philosophy of having a good time, explaining that working is for losers.
- Greatest Hits Album: Ladies And Gentlemen and Twenty Five, both double disc sets. In the case of Twenty Five there was a limited 3 CD version available as well. His previous band Wham! have The Final, and the more widely available (but less thorough) The Best Of Wham!
- Keep Circulating the Tapes: Wham! era B-Side "Blue (Armed With Love)" appeared on the Club Tropicana 7" and 12" singles, but only appeared on CD on a rare Club Tropicana CD single from Japan.
- The band also have many club mixes and instrumentals that are vinyl only, most of which will probably not appear on CD.
- Lighter and Softer: His album Patience was more upbeat than the previous Older.
- Never Live It Down: His arrest in a sting operation for allegedly soliciting sex from a cop in a public toilet in 1998. In actual fact the cop (who was undercover) came onto him.
- More recently his drug use and driving under the influence. Which he's done frequently and served jail time for.
- And thanks to his infrequent recordings and 80s nostalgia rising whilst he was away, he hasn't quite managed to shake off the image of "the guy from Wham!" either.
- No Export for You: His song "Shoot The Dog", about the Iraq war, was considered so controversial in the US that it was never released over there, neither as a single, nor on the album Patience where it appeared elsewhere.
- Transparent Closet: Michael came out in 1998 after a widely-publicised scandal made him no longer able to deny it. However those who had been following him since his Wham! days were not surprised. Many thought that Michael and Ridgeley were gay lovers to start with (as their album covers seem to imply), the song Young Guns is seemingly about secretly not wanting your friend to marry because you're in love with him, A Ray Of Sunshine features the line "Watch out boy", his reference to Doris Day, a gay icon in "Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go" and of course "I'm Your Man".
- Wasted Song: He seemed to feel this way about the B-Side "Fantasy", including it on compilations, rerecording it, and performing it live.