On December 10, 1999, George Michael was the guest of the morning show at 98.8 Capital FM Radio. This is a 6-part interview by Neil Fox, and the transcript was posted on the Capital FM radio website. Below is Part 5 of the interview:
The charming Mr. Michael joined our inimitable Dr. Fox for a good old chin wag to chat about life, the universe, vicars and big hair…
It was breakfast time, and most of us were just coming to terms with a new day, but these two had been up since the crack of dawn, chatting away like old mates catching up on all the goss…
First they had a chat about George’s latest album, ‘Songs From the Last Century,’ and how he came to make the very difficult choices of what to put on the album, what to leave out and why he made those decisions.
Then it was time to talk about their mutual mate, Robbie, and the pressure that George reckons he’s under to keep rolling out the hits – and he’s been there!
There was a quick prediction for Record Of The Year 1999 and then Foxy tried to pin George down on a ticklish subject – when, oh when are the fans going to be able to see him perform live again!!???
George talks about his fans and how he seems to get one of two very extreme reactions from them when they meet face to face…
Then it was time to talk about the contenders for the Christmas Number One spot… and that’s when George made those comments about Cliff Richard…
Almost time to bid their fond farewells, but before he nipped off for a hearty breakfast, George let Foxy and the listeners in on a his plans for New Millenium Eve and a naughty secret he’s been keeping hidden from us all. Bad boy George!
George reminisces about big hair and has a quick op at Sir Cliff…
Foxy: So it’s only a couple of weeks before we announce the chart for Christmas. Wham! ‘Last Christmas’ was one of the all time great Christmas records, you still hear that every year, Slade you still hear every year and Wizzard, because they’re great Christmas songs.
George: The thing that pleases me most about ‘Last Christmas’ is that it is pure cheese really, and as a friend of mine says, ‘fromage is our friend!’ I mean it is cheese, but you want cheese at Christmas don’t you – chocolate and cheese!
Foxy: When you look at the video what do you think now?
George: There’s so much hair in that video! There’s that scene round the dinner table, and one of the reasons that that scene looks so nice is that it really was friends, but my god, there’s no room for anything else but hair! Huge hair! All my friends too, but I had the biggest hair with the most lacquer on…
Foxy: It didn’t move at all did it…!
George: Nope, not at all. It was like claymation!
Foxy: Well we’re coming up to the Christmas Number One and the number one this Sunday looks like it’s going to be Cliff Richard again, which means it’s got a pretty good chance of being there for Christmas – any views on that at all?
George: (big sigh) Phew god yeah…
Foxy: Radio has given him a really hard time. Cliff is a lovely fellow and the most successful in the charts of all time and all the rest of it, which you do have to take your hat off to him to…
George: But he’s always taken his hat off to himself over the years, he’s always on the bloody radio telling you how many f…, sorry, how many hits he’s had. So yeah, absolutely great achievement, but I think this single and the way it’s been dealt with is vile actually. Just knowing that there was a church campaign for it. I think it was just so exploitative of people’s religion, and regardless what I think of the record, I think it’s disgusting that EMI didn’t put it out. I think they should have enough respect for him, as one of their first ever artists and most long running artists – even if they didn’t think it was going to be a hit, put it out, have some respect.
But having said that, I do think it’s a very exploitative record. I think there’s a number of people out there who think it’s their duty as a Christian to buy this record on the eve of the Millennium, and I think that’s a really horrible reason for a number one record really. I mean, I may be completely wrong, but this is just my opinion, so please don’t sue me Sir Cliff!
Foxy: A lot of people have been interviewed and they’ve said, actually I haven’t heard the song, I’m just buying it for Cliff. Now out on Monday as well is John Lennon’s ‘Imagine’…
George: Now that should be number one.
Foxy: It is a brilliant record and when you listen to the words of that, it’s nothing to do with religion, it’s just pure ‘peace.’
George: Exactly. It’s peace, it’s spirituality, it’s as simple as it could possibly be said – a simple expression of what we all really would love. It’s a beautiful, beautiful song and I’d love it to be number one – it would be a worthy number one, but I don’t think anyone’s going to shake ‘The Vicar.’ I think that every person that’s listening to this show should go and buy ‘Imagine’ when it comes out, just to make sure we don’t have that heinous piece of…. music on the radio as we go into the next Millennium.
Foxy: Say what you feel and don’t sit on the fence about this one George!
- Capital Radio Interview with George Michael (December 1999) | Part 2
- Capital FM Radio Interview with George Michael (2002)
- George Michael Interview with Capital FM Radio with Dr. Fox (Dec 1998)
- Capital Radio Interview with George Michael (December 1999) | Part 1
- Capital Radio Interview with George Michael (December 1999) | Part 6