Below is the press release issued by Epic Records to promote George Michael’s album ‘Ladies and Gentlemen’ released on November 10, 1998.
On November 10, 1998, Epic Records will release the definitive anthology of one of contemporary pop music’s defining figures: Ladies And Gentlemen, The Best Of George Michael.
This lavish two-CD set contains 28 songs, including 13 US Top 10 Pop hits. Among these are seven US No. Is, “Careless Whisper,” “Father Figure,” “One More Try” (also a No. 1 R&B and Adult Contemporary hit), “Praying For Time,” and “Faith.” Here, too, are George’s No. 1 duets with Elton John (“Don’t Let The Sun Go Down On Me”) and Aretha Franklin (“I Knew You Were Waiting”).
Several tracks on Ladies And Gentlemen… were previously available only on tribute albums and compilations, including “Desafinado” (with Astrud Gilberto), from the AIDS benefit album Red, Hot & Rio; and George’s performances from the 1993 Freddie Mercury Tribute Concert, “Somebody To Love” (with Queen) and “Killer/Papa Was A Rolling Stone.”
Finally and perhaps most significantly, Ladies And Gentlemen… contains two brand- new George Michael recordings. The first single from the anthology, “Outside,” is written and arranged by George Michael, and produced by George Michael and Jon Douglas. The “Outside” video is directed by Vaughan Arnell, whose credits include George’s “Fastlove” and hit clips by Jamiroquai and the Spice Girls. George Michael wrote, arranged, and produced the second new track, “A Moment With You.”
Born Georgios Kyriacos Panayiotou on June 25,1963, near North London, George Michael grew up embracing American soul on old records, dance music in clubs, and the West Indian rhythms of ska that swept the UK. He fell in love with the music of Motown but also that of Elton John and Queen.
George first met classmate Andrew Ridgeley at grade school, and in 1981 the two formed a band called the Executive. But they soon settled on performing as a duo and Wham! was born, making its recording debut the following year with the single “Enjoy What You Do (Wham Rap).” It was their second effort, “Young Guns (Go For It),” however, that unleashed a string of Top 10 UK hits.
The duo’s first album, Fantastic (1983), premiered at No. 1 in the UK but was only a minor hit in the US, eventually going gold. Their next release, however, was a blockbuster: Make It Big (1984) remained at No. 1 for three weeks in the US and sold more than 5 million copies. The single “Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go” went platinum and became George Michael’s first No. 1 record in America (it also earned a Grammy nomination for Best Pop Vocal Performance by a Duo or Group). The gold “Everything She Wants” rose to No. 1 as well, with two further singles, “Freedom” and “I’m Your Man,” both reaching the No. 3 spot.
- George Michael Interview with Capital FM Radio with Dr. Fox (Dec 1998)
- List of Duets and Backup Vocals
- Symphony Orchestra Tributes to George Michael
- An Audience with George Michael: Interview with Chris Evans (1996)
- George Michael: Artist or Airhead? (Musician, 1988)