George Michael Dead at 53
UPDATE 12/26/16: George Michael's boyfriend, Fadi Fawaz, tweeted that he found Michael unresponsive in bed on Christmas morning. Fawaz and Michael had been dating since 2012.
George Michael, the legendary UK singer-songwriter who began his career with the band Wham! in the '80s before moving on to solo stardom, died today (Dec. 25).
A publicist for the singer confirms that Michael "passed away peacefully at home" in Goring in Oxfordshire at 13:42 GMT, according to the BBC.
According to his manager Michael Lippman via The Hollywood Reporter, the singer died of heart failure.
Police are "treating the death as unexplained but there were no suspicious circumstances."
The singer's publicist also issued a statement, via the BBC: "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. The family would ask that their privacy be respected at this difficult and emotional time. There will be no further comment at this stage."
George Michael sold more than 80 million albums worldwide. While in Wham!, the singer scored hits in the early-to-mid '80s with songs like "Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go," "Careless Whisper" and, ironically, "Last Christmas." He continued to have success in his own right as a solo singer with dozens of hits, including "Faith," "I Want Your Sex," "Freedom! '90" and "One More Try."
His iconic 1987 debut album, Faith — which turns 30 in 2017 — won the Album Of The Year GRAMMY Award in 1989.
Back in 2004, George Michael was named "the most played artist on British radio" by the Radio Academy. "I can't believe it. I've only made six albums in 22 years so I don't know how this happened. I'm the luckiest writer on earth," he said at the time.
His sixth and final solo album, Symphonica, was released in March of 2014.
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