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December 26, 2016 at 07:39 AM EST

2016 began with Chris Rock jokingly comparing Sam Smith to George Michael during the Academy Awards, and it’s ending with Smith mourning the fellow artist, who died over Christmas at age 53.

Smith, who has only tweeted once since March (in June, following the shooting at Pulse nightclub in Orlando), returned to Twitter to share his thoughts in a series of three posts.

“@GeorgeMichael. Words can’t express how much you and your music meant and means to me,” he wrote. “Please play his music as loud as you can today… & celebrate one of the most magical, talented, bravest & important figures in music & life as I know it. Your music & message will live on.”

Smith concluded, “I would not be the artist I am if it wasn’t for you.”

See the tweets below.

Smith spoke of his love for Michael back in October 2015 during an interview with BBC’s Radio 1.

“I have a weird and undying love for George Michael,” he told host Annie Mac. “He’s the reason why I want to do what I do…. He’s so honest and when you really dig into his lyrics, he’s just very inspirational as a public figure.”

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