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Singer George Michael dies at 53

Singer George Michael has died. He was 53.

“It is with great sadness that we can confirm our beloved son, brother and friend George passed away peacefully at home over the Christmas period,” Michael’s publicist confirmed to Entertainment Weekly and PEOPLE.

“The family would ask that their privacy be respected at this difficult and emotional time. There will be no further comment at this stage.”

George Michael was born to a Greek-Cypriot father and a British mother, with the original name of Georgios Kyriacos Panayiotou. Michael has had numerous medical-related serious incidents over the span of his career. Many of them had to due with his drug use.

He was best known in the 1980s and 1990s with his style of post-disco dance-pop, with best-selling songs such as "Last Christmas" and "Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go".Michael sold more than 100 million records worldwide.

His 1987 debut solo album, Faith, sold more than 20 million copies worldwide. Michael garnered seven number one singles in the UK and eight number one hits on the Billboard Hot 100 in the US, including "Careless Whisper" and "Freedom! '90". He ranks among the best-selling British acts of all time, with Billboard magazine ranking him the 40th-most successful artist to ever live.

Michael won various music awards throughout his 30-year career, including three Brit Awards—winning Best British Male twice, four MTV Video Music Awards, four Ivor Novello Awards, three American Music Awards, and two Grammy Awards from eight nominations.