For over 20 years George Michael (and Wham!) has been one of my favourite performers and for the past decade that I have known my girlfriend Julie, we have made a pact that if he ever toured Australia that no-matter-what we would go!
Well that time finally came when a Sydney concert was announced earlier this year, while I was still living in Hong Kong. In fact, while I was actually on a flight to Bangkok at the time, Julie took no chances and bought a ticket for me! And am I ever so glad she did.
The concert held on a 25 degree perfect night in Sydney was (to quote a GM song) AMAZING!!
He has only toured Australia once as a solo artist, in 1988, and in 1985 as part of Wham! with Andrew Ridgely, so I think most of the sold out stadium never thought they would get to see the man live. Even though he is pushing 50, his voice has not been effected by age, or his well documented daily stoner habit. He was (again quoting a GM song) FLAWLESS!
It was a hit-laden, energetic show, yet I can still name 10 songs I would have loved him to play. Highlights included George taking the mickey out of his 1998 arrest, wearing a police uniform for Outside; then the eternal ballad favourite Careless Whisper which had 50,000 fans singing in harmony to his hit he wrote when Michael was just 17 years old.
Back on his last visit 22 years ago, George Michael was a sex symbol wooing women (my older sister had posters all over her wall) and enjoying the peak of his fame with the million-selling Faith album. In 2010 the women realise they’re no longer in with a chance.
So does Michael – in the Wham! classic Everything She Wants (one of the few tracks played from his hetero period) the superstar laughs “yeah right” after singing “I guess I must have loved you because I said you were the perfect girl for me.”
Such an entertainer – love anyone who doesn’t take themselves too seriously and he has proved in all his Australian concerts he is the ultimate singer and performer. I would highly recommend seeing him live to anyone!