A few days ago I talked about how much the music of George Michael meant to me over the years and how much I enjoy seeing him live. But that's not the only reason I'm a fan.
So, what is it - besides the music - that makes George Michael so great? He's not exactly scandal-free, is he? Yeah, that part of being a George fan definitely sucks. But George Michael is so much more than all the bad publicity would have you believe. I admire George greatly for a number of things.
I admire him because after being closeted for a long time and then enduring the most public and humiliating outing since, well, ever, he still managed to come out (heh) of it a better and more honest artist. He really couldn't have handled the whole silly mess better. On occasion I watch the hour long interview he did with talkshow host Michael Parkinson. It's a master-class in coming out with power and dignity.
Most stars try to present a happy image to the world, as if having fame shields you from life's troubles. George Michael is not afraid to show us he's a real human being who goes through some really bad stuff on occasion. I admire him because he's talked openly about his ongoing battle with depression and grief and the counselling he received for it.
He's known a lot of grief and didn't handle it at all well. For years and years it was this dark cloud hanging over him, keeping him from writing more great music and on occasion making him do stupid things (LA restrooms anyone?).
He's quite confident, and deservedly so, when it comes to his talent. But apart from that he really doesn't have the most positive self-image, does he? For years he genuinely didn't like his own looks, despite being drooled over by millions of women worldwide. And whenever he talks about his youth and complicated family life you can still see the hurt boy in his eyes. Showing vulnerability like that makes it very easy to relate to him.
All in all I find the life of George Michael utterly fascinating. He's such a beautiful mass of contradictions. He's 'the gayest man on earth' who bedded numerous women. Here we have this huge superstar who was afraid to come out to his family for years (he only told them after his lover died).
He used to be fiercely reticent about his private life but after being outed couldn't stop talking about his sex life and his love for soft-drugs. Thank God in these last few months he finally came across his personal 'mute' button, refusing to be drawn about his personal life. Long may it last!
Well, there you have it: my reasons why I'm such a fan of George Michael. Some people may find it strange that I'm such an ardent fan at my age, but I don't care. I just adore the man.