USA TODAY staff 10:59 p.m. EST December 26, 2016
AP BRITAIN GEORGE MICHAEL I GBR
(Photo: Tim Ireland, AP)
One day after news broke of George Michael's death over the Christmas holiday, fans and friends are still reeling. USA TODAY rounds up the latest developments related to the singer.
Frank Sinatra's letter surfaces. Crooner Frank Sinatra wasn't one to mince words, and when Michael talked to the Los Angeles Times in 1990 about the strain of celebrity status, the Chairman had to respond. Michael said, "Stardom can make you miserable. After all, everybody wants to be a star. I certainly did, and I worked hard to get it. But I was miserable, and I don't want to feel that way again." That interview prompted Sinatra to write a response. In it, he addressed Michael directly: "Come on George, Loosen up. Swing, man, Dust off those gossamer wings and fly yourself to the moon of your choice and be grateful to carry the baggage we've all had to carry since those lean nights of sleeping on buses and helping the driver unload the instruments."
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Catherine Rampell ✔ @crampell
Frank Sinatra's letter to George Michael
7:39 AM - 26 Dec 2016
1,555 1,555 Retweets 2,593 2,593 likes
Reports: Boyfriend found Michael. Hairstylist and photographer Fadi Fawaz, who has been romantically linked to Michael in recent years, says he found the singer's body, according to reports by People and ET. Fawaz, whose Twitter profile includes a photo of him kissing Michael, tweeted about "finding your partner dead peacefully in bed first thing in the morning." (Fawaz's account is followed by Michael's verified personal account.)
Fadi Fawaz @fadifawaz
ITs a xmas i will never forget finding your partner dead peacefully in bed first thing in the morning.. I will never stop missing you xx
9:38 AM - 26 Dec 2016
1,130 1,130 Retweets 3,536 3,536 likes
Former boyfriend shares grief. Before Fawaz, Michael was linked to Kenny Goss for 13 years. Goss issued a statement to People on Monday. In it, he said: “I’m heartbroken. … He was a major part of my life and I loved him very, very much.”
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Andrew Ridgeley honors friend. The other half of Wham! continued his remembrance Monday via social media. Ridgeley tweeted that he was "heartbroken at the loss of my beloved friend Yog."
George Michael's Wham! bandmate Andrew Ridgeley is 'heartbroken'
Fans pay tribute. The news shocked Michael's devoted fans, many of whom went to pay respects to the singer by leaving mementos, flowers and balloons outside his homes in Britain. Albums, candles, newspapers and more were left in tribute outside the singer's London residence, as well as his riverside home in Goring-on-Thames, a village in Oxfordshire, where he "passed away peacefully," according to a statement released Christmas Day by his publicist Connie Filippello.
A portrait is left with flowers and tributes outside
A portrait is left with flowers and tributes outside the Oxfordshire home of British pop singer George Michael. (Photo: Carl Court, Getty Images)
Fans are listening as they mourn: Spotify streams of George Michael’s solo music shot up more than 3,000% the day after the star’s death, the digital music service reports. Including Michael’s Wham! music, his five most-streamed songs Tuesday were Last Christmas, Careless Whisper, Faith, Freedom! ’90 and Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go.
Fellow music stars remember. In addition to the tangible fan tributes, more of Michael's peers in the music industry remembered him Monday. Among the famous musicians taking to social media to express their appreciation for the Wham! co-founder: Paul McCartney, Mariah Carey, Sam Smith, Carrie Underwood and Mark Ronson.
Stunned stars react to George Michael's death
Original 'Carpool Karaoke' with Michael. The inspiration for James Corden's late-night TV Carpool Karaoke segment, featuring Michael in a sketch for a comedy benefit, resurfaced Monday as fans revisited the laugh-out-loud clip.