Reclusive former Wham! singer Andrew Ridgeley will break his decades-long silence on Oct. 8 with a memoir about his days in the band with late singer and childhood friend George Michael. Publisher Penguin Random House announced this week that Ridgeley’s book will tell the “inside story of Wham!, his life-long friendship with George Michael and the formation of a band that changed the shape of the music scene in the early eighties.”
The 320-page Wham! George & Me is due out on Oct. 3 and is available for pre-order now. “In 1975 Andrew took a shy new boy at school under his wing,” reads the book’s description. “They instantly hit it off and their boyhood escapades at Bushey Meads School built a bond that was never broken. The duo found themselves riding an astonishing rollercoaster of success, taking them all over the world. They made and broke iconic records, they were treated like gods, but they stayed true to their friendship and ultimately to themselves. It was a party that seemed as if it would never end. And then it did, in front of tens of thousands of tearful fans at Wembley Stadium in 1986.”
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The book promises to cover the duo’s heyday all the way up to their final concert in front of 72,000 fans, including “the scrapes, the laughs, the relationships, the good and the bad.” Ridgeley and Michael — who died at 53 on Christmas Day in 2016 — formed Wham! in 1981, with Michael taking on the lion’s share of the musical heavy lifting in the group. The duo released their debut single a year later, “Wham Rap! (Enjoy What You Do),” later landing a string of indelible pop hits, including “Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go,” “Careless Whisper,” “Freedom” and “Last Christmas.”
Unlike Michael, who went on to a massive solo career, Ridgeley has kept a low profile since the group’s split, releasing one poorly selling 1990 solo album, Son of Albert.