Rough patch on comeback road

Posted on 06 Jan 2006 at 3:13am
By Gilbert Garcia Pop Music Critic

Latest auto incident overshadows George Michael’s recent successes



Last Sunday, George Michael was taken to a London hospital and later arrested after he was found sleeping at a traffic light while operating his 2007 Mercedes S-Class.

Some weeks, you’ve got to shake your head at George Michael’s dumb luck. Even when things are looking up for the 43-year-old international star, a PR pitfall is literally just a short drive away.

Two weeks ago, Michael was riding a wave of popularity after the kickoff of his “25 Live” tour in Barcelona his first tour in more than 15 years. In front of a sold-out crowd, Michael got tongues wagging with a devilishly hilarious stage-show during his Tony Blair and George Bush ode, “Shoot the Dog.” Unveiling a giant inflatable Dubya doll, Michael sang while pulling open the blow-up Bush’s trousers. Meanwhile, a second prop a bulldog decorated with a Union Jack simulated oral sex with the presidential effigy to obvious audience delight.

As positive as the stunt might have proved for the buzz surrounding Michael’s tour, it couldn’t compare with last Sunday’s news. Michael was arrested in London after being found unconscious behind the wheel of his car: his fourth sloppy-driving incident in the past eight months.

Picked up for suspicion of driving under the influence, a sleepy-headed Michael was first transported by ambulance to a nearby hospital before being booked for possession of marijuana. Released on bail later that morning, Michael was proclaimed to be “fine” by partner and native North Texan Kenny Goss, who added that he had picked up a McDonalds meal for his vehicularly challenged beau.


Last February, Michael was arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence after he was seen slumped over in the driver’s seat of his Mercedes. Though a breath test found no evidence of drunk driving, a search of the vehicle turned up marijuana, for which Michael was charged.

In April, witnesses near the singer’s North London home reported seeing Michael crash his Range Rover into several parked cars after he reportedly fell asleep at a traffic light. Michael fled the scene of that accident, but eventually confessed to police and agreed to compensate the owners of the damaged vehicles.

Here’s a novel idea: George, next time you need to fire up the bowl in a motorized vehicle, hire a chauffer.

Gilbert Garcia

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition, October 6, 2006.

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