George Michael: 20 Essential Songs

The best of the pop icon's hits, duets and reinventions

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"Father Figure" (1988)

Michael set out to write a midtempo dance track for this Faith single. But a fluke in the studio that muted the snare drum "changed the whole entire mood of the track," he said later. "Suddenly it just seemed really dreamy." He finished writing the song – a pledge to clean up his act for a loved one – in that vein. It became what Michael called "the most original-sounding thing on the album."

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