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It’s been five years since the music world lost Wham legend George Michael, and his long time friend Andros Georgiou has spoken about the tragedy on the anniversary of his death

George and Andros Georgiou are pictured in 1991

George Michael’s Last Christmas is a festive playlist must… but for loved ones it’s a painful reminder of his untimely death.

The megastar passed away on Christmas Day 2016 and the song is at No3 in the charts as fans honour his legacy.

Long-time friend Andros Georgiou says hearing the track still reduces him to tears.

In a moving interview he says:

  • December is a write-off, stirring memories of his pal’s death.
  • The singer would be alive if his first big love, Anselmo Feleppa, had not died.
  • A cemetery plaque has finally given the star respect he deserves.
  • George’s wild tours of sex, drugs, rock and roll included sleeping with a supermodel. Andros, 59, was a childhood friend of George and the pair were so close that they called each other cousins.

Their families spent Christmases and holidays together and Andros toured with George for more than a decade.

While still mourning his friend, Andros was delighted to see George’s name now engraved at the family grave in Highgate Cemetery, North London. A simple marble slab was recently added.







George with Andros and Kenny Goss in 1996
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Image:

Andros Georgiou)

Andros says: “I went to see George’s grave and finally I was happy to see a plaque along with his mum and sister. It was very emotional because it made it real. I’m very happy this has happened. It took so long. For a while now I have felt that he has been forgotten.

“He was so important as a singer and songwriter, so many pop stars followed him, he was a leader but it’s felt like that hasn’t been recognised. Now to have the stone finally engraved feels like something.”

Andros marked the anniversary of his beloved friend’s death by playing his hits on London Calling Radio FM. He says: “This time of year is always incredibly hard for me. December is a write-off.

“But yesterday I did a radio show and played all of his hits.







George’s final resting place has now been marked with a headstone five years after his passing
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Image:

Nigel Howard)

“Hearing Last Christmas is painful but I wanted to remember him and reach out to his fans to show that he isn’t forgotten.”

Music producer Andros appeared in the BBC2 documentary Freddie Mercury: The Final Act, to mark the 30th anniversary of his death.

It covers the final concert with Queen before Freddie died in 1991 due to complications from AIDS.

Andros believes if George’s Brazilian boyfriend Anselmo Feleppa had not contracted the disease, the singer would still be alive. George’s song Jesus to a Child was a tribute to Anselmo, a dress designer who was 33 when he died in 1993, a year into their relationship.

Andros says: “George was the love of his life and if he hadn’t died I think George would still be here.






Andros, his mum Pat and George

“After Anselmo, he didn’t find real love, he had a lot of sex and met lots of people but he never found what he had with Anselmo. I saw how happy they were. I think he was quite lost after Anselmo died, it hit him hard.”

George was godfather to Andros’s son James Kennedy, 28 – a US reality TV star.

Andros has a huge collection of pictures chronicling his time with George – and shares some with Mirror readers today.

He also has hundreds of hours of footage and is in talks to make a film about their time together.

He continues: “The footage is amazing and there is loads of it.

“I want to make a docufilm and bring that time alive. There are so many great memories.”







Taken in 1974 in Cyprus left to right: Pat Andros’s mum, George’s mum Lesley with his sister Melanie, sister Yoida, George, Andros and George’s father Jack
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Image:

Collect Unknown)

One such occasion was a holiday to St Barts in 1992 with George and Anselmo. Andros recalls: “We were on top of the world at that point. We had champagne for breakfast.

“Anselmo loved Dom Perignon. We partied for 48 hours. I loved souffle and George had salmon all the time. We used to do a lot of ecstasy. We’d have an ecstasy pill for breakfast and would go all day and all night.

“We went to this little club in the mountain, the only one there, and then drove back to the house. But we stopped in the middle of the road for hours because we were so high. If we got bored we would just take a seaplane to another island.”

Despite the emergence of AIDS, Andros says there was no shortage of sex, drugs and rock and roll.

He says: “There was a lot of sex in clubs in New York and London. Cloakrooms and stuff. It was fun and I don’t regret a second of it. I was the luckiest man in pop because I was with George and George was gay and there were queues and queues of models. There were A-list models, A-list pop stars.”







George with Andros’ father Jimmie, Yioda and Andros
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Image:

Mirrorpix)

He remembers George sleeping with a supermodel during one video shoot, saying: “Sometimes George got with women too. In the early days he was bisexual. I can’t name her but he slept with the top model in the world.”

George was found dead, aged 53, at his home in Goring-on-Thames, Oxon.

Tragically, sister Melanie died three years later to the day, aged 59. Her grave lies on the other side of mum Lesley’s in Highgate Cemetery. And Andros believes bad luck has struck once more – after the recent death of one of his and George’s close friends.

He adds: “We got the curse again. One of my exes, who I met with George and who George initially asked out, died. I don’t want to name her out of respect for the family but she was one of George’s great friends and he left money to her in his will.

“It’s just been so sad.”

George – born Georgios Kyriacos Panayiotou – shot to fame in the 1980s with Andrew Ridgeley in Wham!

He went solo and sold more than 100 million albums worldwide.

Four of his five albums went to No1, as did seven singles – including 1984’s Careless Whisper, recorded during his time with Wham!

He remains in huge demand on the likes of Spotify, and latest accounts show his main music companies made £8million in 2019 – four times as much as the year he died.

George had a long-term relationship with American art dealer Kenny Goss and lived with hair stylist Fazi Fawaz at the time of his death. He left most of his £97.6million estate to his sisters.

Despite their closeness, George and Andros had fallen out in the decade before the star’s death. And Andros has always regretted not properly healing the rift.

“That hurts the most, that I didn’t get to say goodbye,” he says.

Now he is hoping George’s family and the estate will give their blessing to his upcoming projects.

He adds: “For the Freddie Mercury documentary, George’s family initially didn’t want anything to do with it. But then they watched it and loved it. I hope they will be on board with my film as it’s going to be special and I want the world to see it.”

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