Watch George Michael do 'Carpool Karaoke' before it even came to be

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George Michael made several contributions to pop culture during his lifetime (as we archived here) before he died suddenly at the age of 53. For James Corden, though, one of Michael's contributions was practically life-changing.

Before the likes of Mariah Carey, Justin Bieber, Adele and more got in the car with Corden for a little "Carpool Karaoke," Michael was the one who gave the Late Late Show host the inspiration for the now viral sketch.

PHOTOS: Stars share their tributes to George Michael

41 PHOTOS
Stars react to George Michael's death
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Stars react to George Michael's death
I am in deep shock. I have lost a beloved friend - the kindest, most generous soul and a brilliant artist. RIP… https://t.co/Pyeu7gb2QI
Paul on George Michael: https://t.co/t7vu2Hyjey https://t.co/ZBq0VsTatB
I would not be the artist I am if it wasn't for you. @GeorgeMichael
I've loved George Michael for as long as I can remember. He was an absolute inspiration. Always ahead of his time.
Before I sleep I wanted to send out my love to @GeorgeMichael and his family and friends. What a wonderful gift to the world he was. 🙏🏼💙
George Michael - Extras Xmas Special https://t.co/dmuLC88xcR via @DailymotionUK
I would not be the artist I am if it wasn't for you. @GeorgeMichael
George Michael was a kind and gentle soul. #Wham
So sad to hear of George Michael's passing, huge sympathy to friends and family. Particularly difficult time to lose someone. RIP.
George Michael RIP. Your music lifted our spirits. Your heart was pure. Sad. You will be missed.
A beautiful Christmas with my boys but so saddened by the passing of George Michael -and extraordinary talent - So missed RIP X
Finished the prime rib... now onto blasting George Michael and doing the dishes
George Michael Read: https://t.co/z669xGdjwM
I'm very sad about the news of my good friend George Michael. God bless you and may you rest in peace.
#Heartbroken Here's how George Michael impacted my life... https://t.co/C6oY6ekJ91 https://t.co/yFpJiuh4ed
So sorry to hear about George Michael's passing. Brilliant icon. "Kissing a Fool" one of my all time favs. Strength & light to his family.
"I have never and will never apologize for my sex life. Gay sex is natural, gay sex is good!" - George Michael
mine & mari's song of the day: JESUS TO A CHILD - GEORGE MICHAEL (R.I.P. GEORGIOS) https://t.co/A1UBaUjA4L
Song of the day...."Kissing A Fool" by George Michael. RIP George. Amazing singer and songwriter!!! https://t.co/0cgzPFcu7N
So Sad to hear of George Michael passing. I met him after his Earls Court Gig and he hosted us at his wonderful home in Highgate RIP❤️
So sad about George Michael. Truly one of the greatest songwriters.
Another fine musical talent gone--RIP, George Michael. Spent Christmas evening dancing around to "Before You Go-Go." Damn you, 2016.
Waking up to the sad news of George Michael's passing. An incredible talent taken far too soon. https://t.co/MuTlPxEDSk
Rip George Michael - What a singer, just watched him with queen "somebody to love " Vocals for days
When a baby first breathes When night sees sunrise When the whale hunts in the sea When man recognizes Freedom https://t.co/zSTUgCmXo7
Frank Sinatra's amazing letter to George Michael after the latter complained about fame. One for all stars to ponde… https://t.co/soQOiDkeQT
So sad to hear my Cypriot brother @GeorgeMichael has passed away. Will miss him & pray God will have mercy on him.… https://t.co/L2P4maiCSC
Deeply saddened by the news of the passing of George Michael. What an amazing artist we've lost... rest in peace.
" @maryjblige and @georgemichael ~ their remake of #steviewonder's AS says it all to me.." #georgemichael "ALWAYS!!… https://t.co/n6BIbQvxSs
If you're ever feeling pretty good about a piece of art you've just made, remember this. George Michael wrote careless whisper at 17. 17!!!
Farewell My Friend! 🙏🏻 Another Great Artist leaves us. 💔Can 2016 Fuck Off NOW? https://t.co/aEGIUNSJbt
This is insanely cool. George Michael & Queen rehearsing 'Somebody To Love' as Bowie looks on. Wow. https://t.co/4okLGWWpBc
I'm never gonna dance again Guilty feet have got no rhythm Though it's easy to pretend I know you're not a fool ~ George Michael
George Michael. Rest In Peace. Such heartbreaking news yet on a celebratory day. We are blasting your songs all night!
Rest in peace George Michael. Thanks for sharing your soul and talent with all of us, traveling… https://t.co/oTVB1IB3tk
So sad @GeorgeMichael What a talent & significant part of my generation's musical journey. May he find his "freedom." #ripfreedom
Gone too soon. Brilliant George Michael. RIP. https://t.co/9SNg6HT0ac
I've only witnessed true genius a few times in my life. One of those was watching George Michael lay down Feeling Good for #Elistone 1/2
Everything I know about singing I learned from listening to George Michael's perfect voice. My absolute favorite. RIP sweet man.
GEORGE MICHAEL FOREVER https://t.co/QcjKvpCpjw
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In a video for Comic Relief in 2011, Corden and Michael are driving around when Corden -- who was best known as Smithy on British comedy show Gavin & Stacey at the time -- gets a call from Comic Relief's Lenny Henry requesting that Smithy helps with a charity single at the BBC Television Centre. The bulk of the video is centered around the charity single conference, but Michael is perhaps the most memorable part of the whole thing.

Similar to the demeanor of Corden's "Carpool Karaoke" guests, Michael displays his charming humility in the sketch, shaming Corden for being a "closet bummer" (meaning he "doesn't want to be seen with a gay man") and taking a shot from Corden for being an "embarrassment." But the best part of Michael's cameo was when Corden put on Wham! classics "I'm Your Man" and "Freedom" and the pair completely jam out.

Thank you, George Michael, for inspiring one of the best sketches in late-night television today.

Relive the original "Carpool Karaoke" clip below.


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