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Boy George

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Boy George
George posing in front of the camera wearing a leather jacket
Background information
Birth nameGeorge Alan O'Dowd
Born (1961-06-14) 14 June 1961 (age 62)
Eltham, London, England
  • Singer
  • songwriter
  • disc jockey (DJ)
  • fashion designer
  • performer
  • photographer
  • producer
  • actor
  • Vocals
  • turntables
Years active1979 (1979)–present
WebsiteOfficial website

George Alan O'Dowd, better known as Boy George (born 14 June 1961 in Bexley, Kent) is a rock singer-songwriter and Club DJ. He grew up in a large, working-class Irish family. The family originally came form Thurles, in Co. Tipperary, Ireland.

O'Dowd was a part of the British new romantic movement which emerged in the late 1970s and was popularised in the early 1980s. He and Marilyn (born Peter Robinson) were regulars at 'The Blitz'[1] a very popular nightclub in London. It was run by Steve Strange of the musical group Visage. The Blitz was a starting place for many early 1980s pop stars such as Spandau Ballet. The new romantics based their image on the coolness of David Bowie and high fashion. They liked the music of Bowie, Kraftwerk, Marc Bolan and post punk New Wave.

O'Dowd gained fame with his group Culture Club during the 1980s. His music is often called blue-eyed soul. He was heavily influenced by Rhythm and Blues and reggae. Early recordings with Culture Club showed that his vocals had an emotional quality which was like American soul music of the 1960s and 1970s. His later solo work has glam rock influences and was particularly influenced by David Bowie and Iggy Pop.

O'Dowd is also known for his flamboyant and androgynous appearance during the 1980s and early 1990s.

On 11 May 2009, Boy George was released from prison at HMP Edmunds Hill in Newmarket, Suffolk. He was four months into a fifteen-month sentence for the assault and false imprisonment of a male escort, in his East London flat. He was tagged and placed on a curfew for the rest of the sentence.[2]

Boy George told the BBC on 27 January 2011 that there would be a 30th anniversary Culture Club reunion tour sometime later in the year. He also said they would be releasing a new album in 2012.[3] Culture Club did play two live concerts, in Dubai and Sydney, but did not have a tour.

In 2018, George, along with Culture Club, released an album called Life. They did an accompanying tour, called the Life Tour. 

Harper Collins published his first autobiography, Take It Like a Man, in 1995, written with Spencer Bright. It was a bestseller in the UK. In 2005, Century published Straight, his second autobiographical book. This one was written with author Paul Gorman.

References[change | change source]

  1. "Boy George". The Blitz Kids. Archived from the original on 2011-08-30. Retrieved 2011-08-25.
  2. Paul Revoir (12 May 2009). "Out, the new Boy George appeared thinner with a healthy glow after stint in prison | Mail Online". The Daily Mail. UK. Retrieved 1 October 2009.
  3. Boy George and His Sparkly Hat Promise Culture Club Reunion – Amplifier Archived 2011-10-13 at the Wayback Machine. New.music.yahoo.com (27 January 2011). Retrieved on 27 March 2011.