Wham! George & Me by Andrew Ridgeley

I was eleven years old when I first heard Wham! and fell for them completely. I thought they were going to be the next Beatles. And then, just like that, a few years later they were gone.

But while they were around, their music was a big part of my life. I was constantly watching MTV with my friends so we could see the videos, which seem so silly now. I still have Make it Big and Music From the Edge of Heaven on vinyl (and upgraded to CD) So reading about Andrew Ridgeley and George Michael’s childhood relationship that turned in to one of pop’s biggest phenomenons of the mid-1980’s was a treat.

Wham! George & Me is not great literature, but a mostly fun read about pop stardom. Ridgeley repeatedly acknowledges George Michael’s immense talent as a singer and a songwriter. This whole book reads like a love letter to a friend.

As for the negatives of the book, there’s a lot of shallowness of the detailed descriptions of who wore what and when, and spending too much time talking about Michael’s hair, but after all, this was the 1980’s and the decade of excess and superficiality, so it works.

The only thing I wished for was more knowledge of how the relationship between these two school chums weathered in light of Michael’s immense success and Ridgeley’s several failed attempts at careers.

If you loved the pop music of the 1980’s, I highly recommend Wham! George & Me.

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