In 1984, George Michael and Andrew Ridgeley were at the top of the international pop-music scene. As Wham!, the three-year-old British duo were making millions with such dance-pop hits as "Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go," "Freedom," and "Everything She Wants."
By 1987, it was over. George Michael had quit and begun a successful solo career. Ridgeley, widely seen as the less-musically-talented member of the group, seemed to disappear.
Ridgeley used his fortune to pursue his interest in auto-racing, with little success. Later, he invested in a restaurant that failed and even tried a solo album. "Son of Albert" (1990) sold poorly.
Today, Ridgeley lives with his wife, Keren Woodward (formerly of the '80s girl-group Bananarama), and her son. An avid surfer, Ridgeley has become an eco-warrior of sorts. He's a spokesman for Surfers Against Sewage, a British lobbying group. "We have a responsibility to future generations," he told The Times of London recently, "a responsibility to keep the sea clean."
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