Generally acknowledged as the most commercially successful English pop group of the 80s, the Wham! duo first performed together in ska-influenced school band, the Executive. George Michael (Georgios (Yorgos) Kyriacos Panayiotou, 25 June 1963, East Finchley, London, England) and Andrew Ridgeley (b. 26 January 1963, Windlesham, Surrey, England) streamlined the group and in 1982 began searching for a contract under their new name, Wham! Local boy Mark Dean was impressed with their demos and agreed to sign them to his recently formed label, Innervision. They next fell into the hands of music publishers Dick Leahy and Bryan Morrison, the former was to play a crucial part in guiding their career hereafter. After embarking on a series of personal appearances at local clubs with backing singers Amanda Washbourn and Shirlie Holliman (who went on to become one half of Pepsi And Shirlie), they completed their debut single Wham! Rap which had originally...
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