Shaun Ryder affected by celebrity deaths
George Michael's death reminded Shaun Ryder how important it is to maintain a healthy lifestyle in your 50s. The Happy Mondays frontman was shocked to hear the Wham! singer had passed away on Christmas Day at the age of 53, of natural causes. The 'Careless Whisper' hitmaker had a dilated cardiomyopathy, a disease of the heart muscle, with myocarditis, inflammation of the heart wall, and a fatty liver when he died. Shaun, 54 who is a recovering drug addict - has had problems with thyroids and a hernia in his later life and says he had to change his rock 'n' roll lifestyle or face dropping dead. Speaking exclusively to BANG Showbiz about the abundance of celebrity deaths over the past couple of years, including David Bowie and Prince, Shaun said: "They all affected me really. Especially George Michael. It's dangerous, once you get into your 50s you've got to keep getting MOTs. "Things keep going on me thyroids, testosterone. "You've got to keep well otherwise you'll just drop dead." The 'Step On' hitmaker admitted he has had a number of near-death experiences during his eventful life. He said previously: "When you come close to death, everything slows down. It's happened to me a few times. "Car crashes where the car has flipped around and bounced; an emergency landing in a plane crash; a few guns shoved in my eyeballs." The Black Grape singer was struck by debilitating panic attacks just two years ago, but is "glad" he didn't have them earlier in his career or he'd never have achieved all the things he did. He said: "I had my first panic attack at 52 years of age. I'm glad it came when it did. If I'd had one as a young lad I don't think I'd have been able to have a career. It's the most debilitating thing I've come across in my life."