A talented bass player and R&B singer whose friendship with George Michael earned him the 1989 hit ballad "Heaven Help Me," Deon Estus was born and raised in Detroit, Michigan, where he sang in the school choir and studied bass under the tutelage of the late James Jamerson (of the legendary Funk Brothers). As a teen, Estus recorded a pair of well-received LPs with the group Brainstorm. He spent the early '80s as an in-demand session player, performing on Marvin Gaye's 1982 comeback album Midnight Love, among others. He eventually joined the band Wham!, and later backed frontman George Michael when he went solo.
In 1989, Estus released his first and only solo album, Spell, which was produced by Colin Campsie and George McFarlane, with several tracks produced by George Michael. The record spawned a trio of hits, including "Me or the Rumours," the title track, and the aforementioned "Heaven Help Me," the latter of which reached number five on the Billboard Hot 100, and featured additional vocals from Michael. Estus eventually returned to being a top-notch session player, appearing alongside a wide array of artists, including Frank Zappa, Elton John, Annie Lennox, Tina Turner, and George Clinton. Deon Estus died on October 11, 2021, at the age of 65.