George Michael Tribute

Gosh, George Michael is gone. What spooked me big time was that he’s only 3 years older than me! I always thought he was a good deal older than me because I was watching him on tv with his music videos and doing so much in his life.

The only regret is that I never saw any of his concerts. Okay, I also wish he didn’t have that wicked legal battle with Sony. I think it hurt him emotionally and stunted his work.  Okay, I got that out of the way…

I feel like I grew up with the guy. It was the 80’s and America was so uptight. Mostly because of the Reagan administration and the AIDS problem. The Cold War was also still raging. I still remember that many thought that any second now, nuclear missiles were going to fly and we’d all be gone. Yes, it was that real.

So with Wham, it was so fun. You just wanted to get up and dance and for me at least, lightened my whole mood. I remember seeing “Wake me Up Before You Go-Go” when he was in Wham. I just loved the energy of the music. “Careless Whisper” was huge!

Now that I think about it, Wham’s rise was quite meteoric. It took only 3 years to reach the crazy pitch that takes most others that eventually reach that level, a decade or more. Heck, even Taylor Swift took much longer than that. Much longer.

There were some other great Wham hits but it didn’t last long. I mean, their rise was so crazy, how can you expect it to last. But I think George Michael of Wham and solo George Michael felt like two different people. The Wham version while fun, didn’t really feel as real as solo George Michael. Love them both!

But solo George Michael was definitely a bit more risqué! When “I Want Your Sex” came out it was huge! Everyone was trying to figure out what the message was. Of course, politicians, popular media and others with a certain agenda were trying to make it out to more than what it really was. I mean, what’s racy about monogamous sex? But, that word sex…  Can’t have that in America. Especially during that time. He got a lot of heat over that music video.

Now, my favorite!

Freedom ’90! God, In my opinion, was George Michael’s pinnacle of music and video. Even though he doesn’t appear in the video at all, it’s such a beautiful video in every way. Sure, many of the biggest supermodels of the time appear in the video. But I love the lighting and vibe. It’s definitely in one of my Youtube playlist!

There were certainly many other music videos George Michael did. Like Faith. But I wanted to hit on some of my favorites and what his music and videos do for me. The 80’s and at least the earlier part of the 90’s were a very special time for music videos. It was a new way of getting your message out there and being creative with that. George Michael was definitely one of the mavericks of the time who share that space with people like Madonna and Michael Jackson.

Thank you for everything you gave us!

About the author

Ricardo Gomez is a Fashion Photographer based in New York City.

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