Wham! may have broken up 30 years ago, but the two members of the musical duo, George Michael and Andrew Ridgeley, remained close friends up until Michael’s death at the age of 53 this month.
Unlike so many other famous musical groups, the two friends, who once dreamed as teenage kids in England of becoming pop icons together, never had a falling out after they decided to call it quits. In fact, in 1986 ― after multiple No. 1 hits and 25 million records sold ― Michael called their decision “the most amicable split in pop history.”
On his website, Michael referred to Ridgeley as his “best friend,” saying that at the end of their run together, their friendship was “as strong as it was in the beginning.”
Ridgeley, who largely escaped from public view after Michael took his career solo in the mid-1980s, evidently shares that feeling. Upon hearing of Michael’s death, Ridgeley tweeted that he was “heartbroken” and that Michael had “left the best of himself,” a clear reference to his friend’s music.
“[George Michael] had a voice that would transport u, he was the finest singer/songwriter of his generation & has left the best of himself 4 us,” Ridgeley wrote.