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Georgios Kyriacos Panayiotou (25 June 1963 – 25 December 2016), known professionally as George Michael, was an English singer, songwriter, and record producer who rose to fame as a member of the music duo Wham! He was best known in the 1980s and 1990s with his style of post-disco dance-pop, with best-selling songs such as "Last Christmas" and "Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go".
Michael sold more than 100 million records worldwide. His 1987 debut solo album, Faith, sold more than 20 million copies worldwide. Michael garnered seven number one singles in the UK and eight number one hits on the Billboard Hot 100 in the US, including "Careless Whisper" and "Freedom! '90". He ranks among the best-selling British acts of all time, with Billboard magazine ranking him the 40th-most successful artist ever. Michael won various music awards throughout his 30-year career, including three Brit Awards—winning Best British Male twice, four MTV Video Music Awards, four Ivor Novello Awards, three American Music Awards, and two Grammy Awards from eight nominations. Michael, who was gay, was an active LGBT rights campaigner and HIV/AIDS charity fundraiser.
In 2004, the Radio Academy named Michael the most played artist on British radio during the period 1984–2004. The documentary A Different Story, released in 2005, covered his career and personal life. In 2006, Michael announced his first tour in 15 years, the worldwide 25 Live tour, spanning three individual tours over the course of three years (2006, 2007 and 2008). In 2016, he announced a second documentary on his life entitled Freedom, set to be released in March 2017. In the early hours of 25 December 2016, Michael, aged 53, was found dead in bed at his Oxfordshire home.