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Boy George

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Biography

George Alan O’Dowd (born June 14, 1961, in London, United Kingdom), a Irish/British singer, songwriter & DJ who gained fame with his group Culture Club during the 80s. He epitomized the term “blue-eyed soul” and received just as much airplay on R&B radio stations as pop stations.

George’s androgynous style caught the attention of music executive Malcolm McLaren, who arranged for George to perform with the group Bow Wow Wow, featuring Annabella Lwin, at various shows. George called himself Lieutenant Lush and nearly stole the spotlight from Lwin. George and Bow Wow Wow didn’t last long after that and George started his own group with bassist Mikey Craig. In Praise Of Lemmings was to be the name of the group. Jon Moss (who had drummed with The Damned, Adam and the Ants and London) came aboard. Shortly thereafter, Roy Hay came into the mix, after an association with another guitarist proved unsatifactory, and they abandoned yet another name, Sex Gang Children. After realizing that the group consisted of an Irish transvestite singer, a Jamaican-Briton on bass, a Jewish drummer, and an Englishman on guitar, they settle on the name Culture Club.

The band signed with Virgin Records in the U.K. and with Epic Records in America, as Virgin didn’t have a U.S. presence at the time, and released it’s debut album “Kissing To Be Clever” in 1982. The first single “White Boy” wasn’t a mainstream hit and failed to chart but George was still happy because “five thousand people bought my single and didn’t even know me”. The next single, “I’m Afraid Of Me” also did not become a pop hit.

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