Earlier today, we reported the unfortunate news that pop music icon George Michael had passed away at the age of 53, after suffering from a heart failure. While his death was certainly unexpected, there is no foul play suspected, as the Hollywood community and fans around the world are in mourning at this devastating loss. As fans begin the grieving process, we have compiled a number of statements and tributes that have been sent out through social media over the past 24 hours, since the musician's untimely passing was announced.
One of the first to pay tribute to this late musician was his collaborator in the 1980s pop group Wham!, Andrew Ridgeley. Both George Michael and Andrew Ridgeley attended high school together, before forming Wham! in 1981. The group skyrocketed to fame with their 1984 album Make It Big, which was certified 6x platinum and included the smash hit singles "Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go" and "Freedom." Here's what the musician had to say on Twitter below, referring to his childhood nickname Yog.
"Heartbroken at the loss of my beloved friend Yog. Me, his loved ones, his friends, the world of music, the world at large. 4ever loved. #GM had a voice that would transport u, he was the finest singer/songwriter of his generation & has left the best of himself 4 us. RIP GM."
George Michael would go on to have an incredibly successful solo career, with his first album "Faith" debuting in 1987, featuring the hit single "I Want Your Sex," which was quite controversial at the time. His follow-up album "Listen Without Prejudice Vol. 1" arrived in 1990, with Vol. 2 debuting in 1992. He has sold more than 100 million records worldwide throughout his career, and became a staunch advocate for LGBT rights, after coming out as a homosexual in 1998. One of his close friends was another legendary musician, Elton John, who sent out this tribute after news of George Michael's death spread.
"I am in deep shock. I have lost a beloved friend - the kindest, most generous soul and a brilliant artist. My heart goes out to his family, friends and all of his fans. @GeorgeMichael #RIP"
What some fans may not know is that, aside from a hit musical career, he also inspired what has become one of late-night TV's most beloved sketches. Back in 2011, George Michael appeared in a sketch on BBC One's Comic Relief with James Corden, in what would become the first ever Carpool Karaoke video. After James Corden became the host of The Late Late Show with James Corden in 2015, the host made it a regular sketch, singing with a number of film, TV and music icons during his daily commute. Take a look at just some of the numerous Twitter tributes to the late George Michael below, including Madonna, Ryan Reynolds. Mariah Carey and Stephen King, just to name a few.