Sam Smith wants to be the next George Michael.
The 'Too Good At Goodbyes' hitmaker has been a fan of the late Wham! star and gay icon since he was a youngster, and admits his music helped him to "escape" when he felt lost growing up.
The 25-year-old singer hopes he too can be a role model for young people by showing them he's not perfect, just like George - who passed away on Christmas Day last year (25.12.16) aged 53 - did by not being afraid to show his flaws.
Sam told the Daily Star newspaper: "I'm really just trying to reach the kids in the middle of nowhere.
"Like me. I grew up in a village in the middle of nowhere.
"I turned to George Michael, he was my escape.
"That's what I want to try and be. I looked up to him as a role model as a gay artist in pop music.
"I loved how flawed he was. He was a superstar but he was a human at the same time."
The 'Stay With Me' hitmaker - who will release his much-awaited follow-up to 2014 debut LP 'In The Lonely Hour' on Friday (11.03.17), 'The Thrill Of It All' - previously revealed the 'Careless Whisper' hitmaker sent him a gift of flowers when he couldn't attend an awards show to pick up a prize from him.
Sam previously said of his memory of George: "He sent me flowers once I was upstairs and I cried my eyes out.
"I think I'd asked him to present something. They were like, 'who's your dream person to present an award' or something.
"We asked him but he was busy, so he sent flowers. He's amazing.
"When I was at that time, in the time of 'In the Lonely Hour' I was going mad, I would unwind on the tour bus and I'd just watch videos of him, to see how he held himself and for me he was a megastar, but he was so human.
"I love that about him. I don't want to become a robot.
"I think sometimes people get so media trained that they become a robot.
"He was in interviews and he would say the wrong things and he was so flawed in such. Beautiful way.
"Also, he was gay."