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George Michael, Elton John

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Elton John won't ever let the sun go down on his friendship with George Michael

During his Rocket Hour on Beats 1 Radio, the icon dedicated the entire 60 minutes to the late legend, who he referred to as "one of the best in the world."

"I wanted to do a little tribute to him on the show because not only was he a good friend, but he was probably one of the most brilliant songwriters this country's ever produced, and certainly one of the best vocalists ever that we ever produced and one of the best in the world," John complimented.

The revered musicians, who later collaborated on the 1991 version of "Don't Let the Sun Go Down on Me," had known each other for decades. 

"I became friends with him very early on in Wham! and I remember I played at the last Wham! concert dressed as Ronald McDonald for some reason at Wembley Stadium and I bought him a 3-wheeler car, with him and Andy [Ridgeley], and I put their names on the front of it and put some fairy dice. It was a real clapped out thing—a bit like me at the moment," John recalled.

"It was an amazing friendship based on music to start with, and I remember sitting in the car just off of Hyde Park listening to a cassette of 'Wake Me Up Before You Go Go' and I said, 'George, that's the nearest record I've heard to a Motown record for years and years.' It was such a great record, and he and I became great friends."

George Michael, Elton John

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The friendship lasted until Michael's untimely death on Christmas Day in 2016, when he "passed away peacefully at home," according to his publicist. The loss has taken a great toll on all those close to the 53-year-old star, including the "Rocket Man" singer.

"I just want to remember him for his wonderful music and his kindness, which people are commenting on. He was the kindest, most generous man, and did it without—he didn't want any publicity. I've seen him being so kind to so many people. I'll miss him so much for his music but, more than anything, for his humanity," John told listeners. 

The Grammy winner played six tracks in honor of his friend's memory, including Michael's track "One More Try" and Ray Charles' "Drown In My Own Tears."

"I put together a list of songs right now, which I'm going to play you without interruption that get sadder and sadder and sadder because I'm so sad about it. It's going to start off with a song from his from the Faith album called 'One More Try' which if Aretha Franklin sang, it wouldn't be any great surprise. I don't get jealous of many songs, but I'm jealous of this song. I'd love to have written this," he admitted.

"George Michael, we miss you, we love you, I love you, and this is a tribute to you."