Andrew Parsons / Barcroft Media / Barcroft Media via Getty ImagesFollowing George Michael’s death on Christmas Day, interest in his music has, predictably, exploded. Billboard reports that overall, sales of George’s solo music and his work with Wham! increased by 2678%.
Three of his solo albums and Wham!’s biggest disc, 1984’s Make It Big, have all re-entered the Billboard album chart. In at #12 is George’s 2008 best-of, Twenty Five. His solo debut, 1987’s Faith, is back at #18, while his 1998 best-of, Ladies & Gentlemen: The Best of George Michael, is in at #84. Make It Big re-enters at #168, marking the first time the album has been on that chart since 1986.
Finally, the hit “Careless Whisper” is back on the Billboard Hot 100 at #33, while “Faith” re-enters at #47. “Last Christmas,” which was already on the chart thanks to the holiday season, rises to #41.
Meanwhile, two of George’s former collaborators — Cindy Crawford and Aretha Franklin — remember the pop superstar in the latest Entertainment Weekly.
Crawford, who co-starred in George’s “Freedom ’90” video with a bevy of other supermodels, noted how groundbreaking it was for George not to appear in his own clip. “MTV had really changed the face of music. It wasn’t enough to have a great voice anymore. You had to be the whole package,” she explains. “George Michael deciding at that pivotal moment that he didn’t want to play the game in the same way…was a great message. I think people loved him more because of that.”
Franklin, who dueted with George on the 1987 hit “I Knew You Were Waiting (For Me),” tells EW that the song “does not grow old.” She adds, “We had a super time [making the video]…My older sister, Erma, just fell for him right away. He was very friendly and personable.”
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