Careless Whisper hitmaker George Michael no longer feels as ''safe'' as he used to, since battling with acute pneumonia in December 2011.

The 50-year-old singer, who collapsed at his London home last month, admits that his ailments have changed him.

Michael said: ''It almost killed me. On a subconscious level it was very frightening and I'll probably never feel quite as safe again. But oh my God, I was just so grateful to come out alive and very happy to get back to my home in London.''

When asked what his secret to staying in the music industry for so long is, George is further quoted by Contactmusic online, as saying: ''I think it's heart. It's the desire to communicate genuinely, rather than a desire to show off and make a bit of money.

''I always had a strong intent to be direct and emotional with my songs, and that's never left me. When music comes from the heart it's as much an artistic statement as a painting or a book.

''To have had such a long and successful career, well - it's every artist's dream, isn't it?

''And I don't know how it happened, I really don't. Maybe it's because people can still sense my energy and my desire to make the best music that I possibly can. Who knows?''