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Michael Jackson's Father Has Suffered A Stroke. 30-11-'12

Joe Jackson (83) is reportedly being treated in hospital after the medical scare, according to X17online.com. No other details on his condition are available.

Earlier this year, Joe dropped his wrongful death lawsuit against Dr Conrad Murray.

The showbiz patriarch filed a request with a Los Angeles court asking for his 2010 suit against the doctor - who was convicted of the involuntary manslaughter of the King of Pop in November 2011 - to be dismissed without prejudice.

In the suit, Joe had alleged Murray withheld vital information from the doctors and emergency room staff who tried to save Michael's life on the day he died in June 2009.

Joe claimed Murray wrongfully provided the Propofol and a "polypharmacy" of other drugs to his son just before he died and alleged the doctor asked a security guard to clean the room in which Michael died of medication before police arrived at the Los Angeles mansion.

Joe has had a difficult relationship with his children, who he also used to manage, with Michael claiming his father physically and emotionally abused him when he was younger.

Source: Yahoo / Billie Jean


Strange But True Stories From The Man Who Designed Michael Jackson's Jackets. 29-11-'12

On this November day, Julien's Auctions resembles what Michael Jackson's closet might have looked like, albeit a muchshabbier version. It's the opening of "The Collection of Tompkins & Bush: Michael Jackson" exhibit, and the Beverly Hills showroom is almost wall-to-wall military-style jackets. A week later, on Dec. 2, some very rich collectors will clean out the place during a live auction.

But perhaps none of those collectors is bigger than Michael Bush, who, with his late partner, Dennis Tompkins, designed for Jackson for nearly 25 years — a collaboration that would follow the King of Pop to the grave. Bush and Tompkins' designs make up the bulk of the collection, which also includes Jackson memorabilia that Bush purchased over the years. Prices range from a few hundred dollars to $120,000, the latter for a jacket Bush and Tompkins made for the Bad tour.

In his newly published book, The King of Style: Dressing Michael Jackson, Bush writes about the first time he walked into Jackson's trailer: Bubbles the chimp grabbed his leg, and Jackson playfully hit Bush in the face with a stemmed cherry. Bush and Tompkins subsequently worked on the singer's "Smooth Criminal" video and later joined the Japan leg of his Bad tour. From then on, the duo designed almost exclusively for Jackson.

"I'm an inventor because of Michael," Bush says. "He saw these facets in me that I didn't know I had. He saw a costume designer in me that I didn't know I had."

The last time all three would work together was on Jackson's ill-fated 2009 This Is It tour. A few weeks before the first concert date, Jackson died. Bush got a call from La Toya Jackson asking him to design for and dress her brother for the burial.

"My first thought was, 'I don't think I could do that.' And she said, 'Michael, you know what he would want,' " Bush says.

He and Tompkins knew that one of Jackson's favorite items was the pearl military jacket he wore to the 1993 Grammys. Unable to find the original, Bush and Tompkins had to re-create the jacket.

"It was me and the mortician at Forest Lawn" that day, Bush recalls, fighting back tears. "He stood back and said, 'I know you've done this for Michael. But if you can't handle it, you don't have to say a word. Raise your hand and I'll step in and finish. You have to be 100 percent comfortable in doing it, but the family wants you to do it.' This was my best friend, and I was sending my best friend on his way."

Two years later, in 2011, Tompkins died of natural causes.

And that sudden death of his partner, Bush says, was a factor in the decision to auction off these prized possessions. He insists that he's not doing it for a quick buck (the proceeds from the sale, in part benefit Guide Dogs of America and the Nathan Adelson Hospice in Vegas). It's meant to be a gift for the fans.

"The same thing could happen to me," Bush says. "And if I go and no one knows what this stuff is or it goes into a landfill, it's lost. I'd rather have it spread around the world like Michael's music.

"I have my house. I have my cars. I have my health, above everything. I believe I'm a happy camper."

At 54, Bush proclaims he's no longer designing, pointing to a gold-beaded jacket (also up for auction) as his last creation.

"I wanna go home and make my dining room draperies that I started 20 years ago."

Source: LA Weekly / Billie Jean


Adam Ant Hung Up On Michael. 28-11-'12

Adam Ant has revealed he once accidentally put down the phone down on Michael Jackson because he didn't believe the 'Thriller' star was actually on the line.

The 'Prince Charming' hitmaker met the late King of Pop in 1983 after appearing on the TV special 'Motown 25: Yesterday, Today, Forever' - which saw Michael perform his signature moonwalk for the first time.

The two pop stars got on well but Adam inadvertently snubbed Michael when he was back in the UK and the 'Thriller' star telephoned him because he didn't think the call was genuine.

Adam recalled: ''I met him when I did the 'Motown 25' show, I got to know Berry Gordy first and he invited me to be on the show and through that I got asked to visit Michael at his house, because he was still living with his mum and dad then.

''I went out there and met him and he was asking about music and the videos and stuff and then I got a call shortly after when I was back in London, really early in the morning, and he said, 'Hi, this is Michael Jackson, how did you get the drum sound on 'Kings of the Wild Frontier'?' I thought it was my drummer so I put the phone down.

''That happened a few times and then Quincy Jones got on the phone and said, 'Hi, this is Quincy Jones, it is Michael calling.' So I spoke to him and told him.''

Adam claims his calls and brief friendship with Michael resulted in the 'Thriller' star stealing his style.

The 58-year-old musician - who is performing at London's Shepherd's Bush Empire on Friday (30.11.12) - claims the pop superstar got the idea to wear military jackets from his own signature gold and black hussar jacket.

He said: ''Then Michael wanted to know where I got my jacket from, he was very interested in finding out where I got my hussar jacket from, so I gave him the name of my contact guy who helped me get my jacket then he basically had them remade in different colours and started making that 'his' jacket, but you know, what you gonna do? It started there!''

Adam's comeback single 'Cool Zombie' is out now and his new album 'Adam Ant Is the Blueblack Hussar in Marrying the Gunner's Daughter' is due out next year.

Source: Contactmusic / Billie Jean


Garrett: Michael "Was A Creative Ball Of Energy". 28-11-'12

In an interview to Celebuzz Siedah Garrett, co-writer of ‘Man in the Mirror’ and Michael's duet partner on 'I Just Can't Stop Loving You', gave some further insights about the process of assembling 'BAD' that even the 'BAD25' documentary didn`t reveal. In particular, Garrett explained that her collaboration with Michael was remarkably reciprocal given his post-Thriller status as the world’s biggest pop star.

“When he worked with you, he treated you like he had as much to learn from you as you did from him. That’s not a common personality trait. I just found it so refreshing. He was just so cool!

He could have been this pompous idiot, because he was the King of Pop. But he was mellow and cool and sincere – and just a creative ball of energy. And you will see part of his creative process in this documentary.”

Garrett said she was shocked to discover that after submitting “Man in the Mirror” for consideration to be included on the 'BAD' album, Michael had as much enthusiasm about meeting her as she did him.

“I just knew I wanted to come up with something that would have Michael say something really important to the world, because he had the whole world as his audience. And also, I wanted to meet him. I don’t know how I even had the audacity to think I would meet him at this level. But not only did he want to meet me, because of my voice, but when he found out I wrote that song, I think he just wanted to meet this person.”

Source: MJFC / Celebuzz / Billie Jean


Michael Jackson Newspaper Historic Coverage. 27-11-'12

The Michael Jackson Newspaper - Historic Coverage provides all the news that was fit to print about the King of Pop! Read and reminisce with 62-pages of full-size newspaper headline and articles from the New York Times. Not only does this paper cover all the major moments in the life this world famous American, artist, dancer, singer-songwriter, musician and philanthropist, but it also includes a special color section.

Michael Jackson was born on August 29, 1958 and died on June 25, 2009. Michael debuted on the professional music scene along with his brothers as a member of The Jackson 5 in the mid-1960s and began his solo career in 1971. In his short life he was global phenomenon and over four decades. His contribution to pop culture -- music, dance, fashion -- prompted the Guinness World Records to recognize him as the “most successful entertainer of all time.” The Michael Jackson Newspaper - Historic Coverage provides all the details, so get yours now!

Printed on newspaper stock, and enlarged to 16" x 22" to enhance readability. Color and black-and-white pages. Comes in a clear, acid-free envelope for storage.

To buy the newspaper go to AnyDate.

Source: AnyDate / Billie Jean


Will.i.am Fears Home Is Haunted By Michael Jackson's Ghost. 27-11-'12

The Black Eyed Peas singer abandoned his hi-tech home recording studio after working with the King of Pop shortly before his death in June 2009 and now makes music using his laptop instead.

He is quoted by the Daily Star newspaper as saying: 'I can take it anywhere.'

will.i.am worked with Michael on a comeback record just before his death from acute Propofol intoxication aged 50. It would have been Michael's first album since 2001's 'Invincible'.

Michael's brothers, The Jacksons - Jackie, Jermaine, Marlon and Tito - recently hinted they may work with the singer-producer for their own comeback record which is due next year.

Jackie said: 'We're gonna do what people want to hear - The Jacksons, but we're also going to add the new elements of today's generation with that music as well, from the heart and soul.'

When asked if they may work with Will.i.am, Jackie added: 'There's a lot of that going on as well, collaboration. I can't give anything away yet. You already said them! We're talking to a lot of people, and we love surprises, so can't say any more.'

Source: M&C / Billie Jean


The Jacksons To Work With Will.i.am?

The Jacksons have hinted they may work with will.i.am and David Guetta.

The four brothers - Jackie, Jermaine, Marlon and Tito, siblings of the late Michael Jackson - are heading to the studio to work on a comeback album next year, and have a number of big name producers lined up to work with them.

Jackie exclusively told BANG Showbiz: ''We're gonnna do what people want to hear - The Jacksons, but we're also going to add the new elements of today's generation with that music as well, from the heart and soul.

When asked if they would work with producers David Guetta or Will.i.am, Jackie added: ''There's a lot of that going on as well, collaboration. I can't give anything away yet. You already said them! We're talking to a lot of people, and we love surprises, so can't say anymore.''

The group will head to Europe on their Unity tour at the beginning of next year and Tito says there are many groups from the continent who influenced The Jackson 5's early soul-funk sound.

He said: ''There was a great influence, The [Rolling] Stones, the Bee Gees and some of the work of The Beatles when Billy Preston was working with them. There's a lot of European influence on our sound. And I think they were getting influenced by American acts, music is a universal language and there are only eight notes.''

Speaking of their excitement about the tour, he added: ''It's exciting to play these tunes once again and play them for the people and play the music that we love to sing and play.''

Jackie jokingly added: ''The fans know all the lyrics better than me!''

Source: Castanet / Billie Jean


Forever Loved (Book). 26-11-'12

‘Forever Loved’ is the second book about Michael, written by Brenda Jenkins and illustrated by Kathy Garren. They both love Michael and want to carry on his legacy of love, peace and tolerance. The book will be released on November 23rd, 2012.

Michael devoted his life to sharing his gifts with the world. Through his music, dance, and humanitarian efforts he showed by example, how each of us can make a difference in the world, in our own way. ‘Forever Loved’ is a picture book which reviews Michael’s accomplishments and dreams, plus the effect he continues to have on people’s lives and the world.

20% of the authors’ commission will be donated to children’s charities in Michael’s name.

It is available through Amazon (UK) at £7.50. It is also available on Amazon (US) at $11.95, and other countries throughout Europe at varying prices.

Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform
Author: Brenda Jenkins
ISBN: 978-1480057661
Pages: 32
Guide price: 9 €

Go to Amazon

Source: Amazon / Billie Jean


Designing For The 'King Of Pop'. 26-11-'12

Michael Bush and Dennis Tompkins were responsible for creating many of the King of Pop’s most iconic outfits. The pair created between 900 and 1,200 pieces for Michael, including a solid rhinestone bedspread for his ranch that weighed 73 pounds. A selection of the costumes are on display in Los Angeles until November 30 at Julien’s Auctions in Beverly Hills (USA) and some 475 pieces from the pair's collection will be auctioned at Julien's Auctions on December 2.

Michael was of course famous for his music but many people also remember his iconic outfits:

“When I was waiting to go on the 'Today' show last week, [Homeland Security secretary] Janet Napolitano walked past me backstage and saw the costumes I had with me and said, ‘That’s Michael Jackson, 1986. That’s Michael Jackson, 1990.’ It was amazing,” Bush said in an interview.

On display at Julien’s Auctions are some of the best-loved outfits, including the red "Beat It" jacket from the Dangerous Tour, the "HIStory Teaser" jacket created to promote his 1995 album, the "Bad" tour jacket, a black stretch gabardine, zip-front jacket embellished with leather buckle straps and a black cashmere hussars jacket with red armbands and cuffs and covered in black braided rope which Michael wore during his visit to the White House in 1990 when he was honored by President George H.W. Bush as 'Entertainer of the Decade'.

“Many museums have shown an interest in these pieces, which is a good thing because some of them are starting to fade and tear,” said Bush, who kept the famous "Bad" tour jacket under his bed in a cardboard box for 20 years.

Michael had given many of the costumes back to Bush for inclusion in the book, which he has been planning for two decades.

“Michael was so generous. He would give you something if you said you liked it."

Bush found the process of designing with Michael to be amusing:

“We would sit at a table with some paper. He had a pencil, and I had a pencil with erasers. He would draw something, and I would say that I don’t want to make that. And then I would draw something, and he would say I am not going to wear that. It was like two kids with crayons, seeing who could mess up the other one’s drawing better than the other one could.

Michael’s mentality was, 'I am going to sing the beat and you have to help me show the beat. Michael’s basic mentality was I am not a model, I am a dancer. But he also understood show time. He didn’t care less what he wore otherwise. If he came in here in his personal clothes, you wouldn’t know it was Michael Jackson. He would wear oversized shirts, trousers, stepped down shoes. But he understood when he stood out in public that people wanted to see a show.”

Bush also reveleaed that Michael slept in Nordstrom over-the-counter pajama's.

For his final outfit when being laid to rest, he was dressed in a copy of the pearl jacket he wore when his sister Janet handed him a Grammy in 1994. He was also dressed in black Levis encrusted in black seed beads, as well as Lucite shin guards that Michael was supposed to wear for the opening number of the “This Is It” tour. Tompkins and Bush designed the outfit, and Bush had to dress him one last time.

“I didn’t know if I could do it. But LaToya said 'you know what he would pick out.' Dennis said, ‘let’s put him in his favorite jacket.’ We called the family, and no one knew where it was. I had one question: In public he wore his personal appearance shoes. Which shoes should he wear? LaToya said, ‘Oh my God. No. My brother has to go out of the world dancing.'”

The pieces Tomkins and Bush created for Michael Jackson are documented in Bush’s book “The King of Style: Dressing Michael Jackson” and Michael Bush will embark on a U.S. book tour in December, taking many creations with him.

Source: MJFC / The Wrap / Billie Jean


The Jacksons Unity Tour Dates - Update. 25-11-'12

The dates for the ‘Unity Tour’ are as follows:

November 25 (Matinee) - Rotterdam, Netherlands / Night of the Proms, Ahoy
November 26 - Rotterdam, Netherlands / Night of the Proms, Ahoy
November 27 - Rotterdam, Netherlands / Night of the Proms, Ahoy
November 30 - Yas island, Abu Dhabi / Du Forum
December 6 - Tokyo, Japan / Tokyo International Forum
December 7 - Tokyo, Japan / Tokyo International Forum
December 9 - Osaka, Japan / Osaka Grand Cube
December 12 - Selangor, Malysia / Palace of the Golden Horses
December 13 - Kuala Lampur, Malysia / Negara Indoor Stadium
December 15 - Singapore / Singapore Indoor Stadium
February 5 - Dortmund, Germany / Verkleinert Westfallenhale
February 6 - Frankfurt, Germany / Jahrhunderthalle
February 9 - Vienna, Austria / Stadthalle F
February 11 - Rome, Italy / Atlantico
February 12 - Milan, Italy / Alcatraz
February 17 - Ulm, Germany / Ratiopharm Arena
February 18 - Berlin, Germany / Tempodrom
February 20 - Copenhagen, Denmark / Falkoner Theatre
February 21 - Oslo, Norway / Spektrum
February 22 - Stockholm, Sweden / Stockholm Waterfront
February 24 - Helsinki, Finland / Barona Arena
February 26 - Birmingham, UK / NIA Academy
February 27 - Manchester, UK / Apollo
February 28 - Glasgow, UK / Clyde Auditorium
March 2 - Bournemouth, UK / B.I.C.
March 3 - London, UK / Hammersmith Apollo
March 5 - Munich, Germany / Kleine Olympia Halle
March 6 - Antwerp, Belgium / Lotto Arena
March 7 - Amsterdam, Holland / Heineken Music Hall
March 10 - Dusseldorf, Germany / Mitsubishi Hall

Source: Billie Jean


ABC Airs Shortened Version Of 'BAD25'. 24-11-'12

Unfortunately, US tv station ABC decided to air a shortened version of the Michael Jackson documentary 'BAD25'. As director Spike Lee points out on his Twitter account the version which was televised was only 64 minutes (90 minutes including commercials) of the original 2 hours and 11 minutes movie.

The full version will be released in February 2013 on BluRay and DVD and will also include bonus extras.

SpikeLee

Thanks For Watching. What You Viewed Is 64 Minutes Of The Original 2 Hour And 11 Minute Version.The Blu-Ray/DVD Drops Feb 2013 + Bonus Extras 2.

Source: MJFC / Twitter / Billie Jean


Prince Wants To Become Filmmaker. 24-11-'12

According to Michael's elder brother Jackie Jackson, Prince (15) wants to become a filmmaker.

"Prince is always around the house with his movie camera, making home movies with all the nieces and nephews. They get together all the time and make movies, that's all they do. That's what he wants to be a director - so he's making movies, and they make their own costumes and do their own make-up around the house, and all the nieces and nephews they make movies all the time."

Referring to Prince as well as Paris and Blanket he added:

"They've already seen James Bond. The first day it came out they were at the movie theatre. That's what they love to do. They go and see every movie, they don't care what it is. They loved James Bond."

Jackie insists that for the most part the three lead normal lives.

"They're just kids, kids growing up as teenagers, doing homework, they activities after school, taking acting lessons, they're normal. They do the same thing as all other kids, their names just happen to be Paris and Prince and Blanket."

Jackie, Jermaine, Marlon and Tito have just announced that The Jacksons will bring their 'Unity' show to the UK for a string of concerts in February and March 2013.

Source: MJFC / Bang Showbiz / CTV / Billie Jean


Bad25 Documentary On Television Channel BBC 2. 24-11-'12

On December 1st, the television channel BBC 2 sends the Bad25 Documentary out, it starts at 9:45 PM until 0:00.

Oscar-nominated director Spike Lee's forensic documentary assessment and celebration of Michael Jackson's 1987 blockbuster album, the follow-up to Thriller.

With over 40 interviews conducted by Lee himself with those involved in the making of the album, the accompanying videos and the tour, this fast moving but epic film is a detailed study of Jackson's second blockbuster album which went on to sell over 45 million units worldwide and included 5 consecutive US Number 1 singles and such classics as The Way You Make Me Feel, Bad, Man in the Mirror, Smooth Criminal etc.

Interviewees include Martin Scorsese, Walter Yetnikoff, Kanye West, Ce-Lo Green and Sheryl Crow who was a backing singer on the BAD tour.

Don't forget it because it's a great and beautiful documentary, the DVD will be on sale in February 2013.

Source: BBC 2 / Billie Jean


BAD 25 Revisits Michael Jackson The Artist. 23-11-'12

Spike Lee was a long-time fan of Michael Jackson and after his death in 2009 began thinking about how perceptions of the singer’s artistry had been hurt by his tawdry reputation.

This latest documentary, BAD 25, revisits Jackson’s 1987 album Bad and draws a portrait of the savvy businessman, talented singer-songwriter and consummate perfectionist who Lee sees as the real Michael Jackson.

BAD 25 airs on U.S. network ABC and Canadian network CTV 2 on Thursday evening.

“I think…Bad is not given the credit that it’s due. I think that Michael, his artistry, his creativity has been overlooked and people were focused on other stuff,” says Lee, who is known for feature films such as Do The Right Thing and documentaries such as When the Levees Broke.

“I just wanted to be truthful. This was not going to be some Wacko Jacko wack-job,” Lee said in an interview with CBC’s Q cultural affairs show recorded in September.

“We weren’t doing that. We wanted to concentrate on the man’s gifts, his work ethic and the creative process with the collaborators.”

At the time Bad was being made, five years had passed since the recording of Thriller, the biggest-selling album of all time and the work that crowned Jackson King of Pop in the 1980s.

Jackson was so fixated on topping that success, he wrote the figure 100 million time after time in hotel rooms and studios as he recorded. That was how many albums he wanted to sell.
Michael Jackson performs in 1990. He did an international tour after releasing Bad.
He hired Richard Price to write the screenplay for the video of Bad and Martin Scorsese to direct it.

BAD 25 goes back to all those collaborators, with Lee interviewing them about the Jackson they knew. It involved sifting through hours of behind the scenes archival footage from the time. And it gathers interviews with stars such as Kanye West, Cee Lo Green and Mariah Carey who were inspired by Jackson.

Lee is an unapologetic fan of Jackson, having followed his career since the Jackson Five appeared on Ed Sullivan. He argues the press got fixated on the “Wacko Jacko” image and missed out on the creative genius.

Bad was not the only video made for that album. Richard Price the screenwriter said "I was told ‘We got to make Michael down with the homies, always with the brothers’. "

“Everything that Michael did was calculated. Dirty Diana – we’re going after the hard rock. I Can’t Stop Loving You – this is our ballad. Every single song was designed for a specific demographic.”

With tracks like Man in the Mirror and The Way You Make Me Feel, it became the first record in history to spawn five consecutive number one singles on the Billboard chart.

BAD 25 looks back at the elements that made it a success and reflects on the price Jackson paid for his tabloid image.

“After that it was out of control. And there’s a price for it. In fact, the new CD Bad 25 comes with eight or nine songs [that] didn’t make the Bad album. One of them’s called The Price of Fame,” Lee said.

Source: CBSNews / Billie Jean


Quincy Jones Talks About 'Thriller'. 22-11-'12

Producer Quincy Jones was interviewed by The Denver Post last month while attending a fundraiser for the Global Down Syndrome Foundation in Denver (USA). He talked about the 'Thriller' album which was released on November 30, 1982 and thus soon turns 30. Quincy Jones said that his goal was not to produce the highest-selling album in history.

"Our underlying plan was to take disco out. That was the bottom line. I admired disco, don't get me wrong. I just thought that it had gone far enough. We needed to go someplace else."

The cultural impact of 'Thriller' is still being felt worldwide:

"Everywhere we go," said Jones, "I don't care if it's Soweto or Cairo or Monte Carlo or Abu Dhabi or Shanghai, if we're at a disco at midnight, they still play that song."

Reece Livingstone, a Colorado State University graduate now living in Golden, was a zombie dancer in the "Thriller" video. You can see blood coming out of his mouth in a street-scene close-up. He went on to teach at-risk students at a South Central Los Angeles high school where Michael visited a year after "Thriller" was released.

"One really angry black kid at the school thought Jackson was a sellout who was not content with the color of his skin," Livingstone said. Michael shook the teen's hand that day, "and from that moment on, he was a different person. The one legacy I take from that whole experience was that, because of Michael Jackson, that kid is not dead."

Livingstone remembers Michael Jackson as being "a little pissed" by the lack of artists of color on MTV at the time the album was released and said Jackson enjoyed breaking through that barrier.

It's fair to say that most people have first-hand experience with the "Thriller" craze. Former Denver actor Murphy Funkhouser Capps lived overseas until she was 7, when her military father was assigned stateside.

"We came home in 1982, and the first thing I saw on TV was a Michael Jackson video," she said. "My first thought was, 'Whoa ... this is America? Awesome.' "

Army veteran John Paul Rojas of Denver was 9 and growing up in Sidney (Nebraska, USA) when he caught the fever:

"I remember sliding around on our shiny, linoleum floor in my onesies PJs with that album playing while my parents entertained their friends," he said. The next year his parents bought Rojas a red M.J. jacket with a glittery glove for Christmas — and a Broncos coat. "And I was teased more for the Broncos coat than for the M.J. jacket," he said.

Back to Quincy Jones: He said the 30th anniversary of 'Thriller' will likely pass without fanfare because of Michael Jackson's death. He says he has been unable to come to any kind of meaningful resolution on his death.

"It's just tragic that somebody had to leave us at 50 years old," said Jones, who was in Luxembourg when Jackson died. "I was there at the invitation of the duke and duchess. There was a band that gave us a wonderful reception at the airport, and on the way into town, the duke told me, 'Oh, by the way, Farrah Fawcett and Ed McMahon and Michael Jackson just died.' It just knocked me off my socks... . Michael had it all: Talent, grace, professionalism and dedication. He was the consummate entertainer, and his contributions and legacy will be felt forever."

To view a video of the interview with Quincy Jones, please click here.

Source: MJFC / The Denver Post / Billie Jean


Garrett's Favorite BAD25 Documentary Moment. 22-11-'12

Siedah Garrett is the co-writer of Michael's hit "Man in the Mirror" and his duet partner on "I Just Can't Stop Loving You". She also appears in the 'BAD25' documentary. There's a moment in the movie that she particularly favors.

"When Michael said he wanted to record 'Man in the Mirror,' the demo was in a key that was comfortable for me and one step too high for Michael. So he wanted me to re-sing the demo in the new key, and when I went into the studio to do it in the new key Michael followed me with a video camera. I said, 'What are you doing?' He said, 'I want to record you performing the song… because I want to sing it like you.' And I'm like, 'Great, Mike; all my friends are really gonna believe me when I tell them, 'Oh, Michael Jackson wanted to sound like me.' And I'm cracking up and he's cracking up, but he's still recording. And it's in ('Bad25'). I never thought I would see it because it's Michael's personal footage. It's amazing."

Adding to the amazement:

"You can see a little bit of him in a reflection in the mirror in the studio. You can see him videotaping me singing the song in the new key, and it's like HE'S the man in the mirror."

It's notable that 'BAD' got a documentary for its silver anniversary while 'Thriller' did not. But Garrett has her own theory about why 'Bad' resonates so significantly right now.

"'Bad25' is such a stellar marker in time because (Jackson) was still alive when 'Thriller' was 25 years old. He was still alive and getting ready to tour, so there was a different kind of vibe going on. I think the fact he's passed now is what makes 'Bad' more special. I did notice that when he passed away, all the news footage and all the specials about his life, it wasn't 'Michael Jackson The Thriller' or 'Michael Jackson Beat It;' it was 'Michael Jackson Man In the Mirror.' That just spoke volumes to me."

For the song "I Just Can't Stop Loving You" Michael and producer Quincy Jones originally considered big-name partners such as Barbra Streisand, Whitney Houston, Aretha Franklin and others. Unable to snag one, they chose Garrett, then working as one of Jones' staff songwriters. But they neglected to mention it to her until it was time to record the song.

"Quincy called me back and I thought we were still finishing 'Man in the Mirror,' 'cause we had been working on that a few days earlier and I knew we hadn't finished it," Garrett remembers. "There was another song being played, so I thought maybe they were running behind. I just made myself comfortable sitting behind Quincy and knitting, and then he says over his shoulder, 'Do you think this song?' I'm like, 'Yeah, yeah.' Then he said, 'Can you sing it?' 'Yeah.' He said, 'Go in there and sing it. Michael, go in there,' and as we're walking through the door it hit me I was gonna sing this song with Michael" - who, Garrett adds, spent the whole take throwing popcorn at her while she was singing her parts.

Garrett has recently released a tribute song called "Keep on Loving You" that she calls "an answer to our duet. I never got to express to him how much what he did for me - introducing me to the world as a singer and a songwriter - meant to me. So I wrote it down in a song, just my sentiments about how I was feeling the day I met him and how surprised I was to find out he was as cool as he was. It's just a love song, a basic love song."

Source: Billboard / Billie Jean


Dutch Michael Jackson HIStory Statue Is Being Renovated. 22-11-'12

For 15 years this Michael Jackson statue (originally made for the promotion of the HIStory album) stood at Mc Donald’s in Best, the Netherlands. It has been removed to be renovated by a specialized company. The statue is getting several new layers of Polyester and another three layers of protective coating.

The coating can be compared with the protection of ships. It is expected that the statue will now be protected for another 10 to 15 years. It will be placed back in December.

Source: EDTV.nl / Billie Jean


Michael Jackson's Personal Debts Paid Off, Just In Time For Bad 25. 22-11-'12

On the eve of the Thanksgiving debut of Spike Lee’s Bad 25 documentary, the late Michael Jackson has a lot to be thankful for.

Yesterday a representative of the singer’s estate confirmed to FORBES that, on Monday, the estate paid off the last dollars on a loan connected to Mijac Music, the catalog that’s home to many songs composed by the King of Pop, including hits like “Beat It” and “Billie Jean.”

The payment means that the estate has eliminated the last of Jackson’s outstanding personal debts (FORBES reported last month that Jackson’s personal debts would be paid off by the end of the year). That’s no small feat, considering the pile obligations–roughly half a billion dollars–left behind by the singer when he passed away in 2009.

Jackson’s estate has been able to pay off that debt earlier than expected thanks to the enduring popularity of the King of Pop and his work, which spurred earnings of $145 million over the past year alone.

Financial highlights since 2009 include a $60 million advance for concert film This Is It, which went on to become the most successful concert film in history with a worldwide gross in excess of a quarter billion dollars, as well as a new $250 million record deal with Sony, the largest ever.

More recently, the Michael Jackson Immortal World Tour–a joint venture with Cirque du Soleil–grossed $160 million during its first leg, making it this year’s top tour in North America. The show now moves abroad, and is currently wending its way through Germany.

There are still some business debts left for Jackson, namely a loan that FORBES estimates at $280 million, connected to the Sony/ATV publishing catalog.

But the loan’s interest rate of 2.9%, negotiated down from 5.8% shortly after the singer’s death, seems innocuous enough–and perhaps necessary for continued expansion of the company, which is half-owned by Jackson’s estate.

Source: Forbes / Billie Jean


The Jacksons Unity Tour Comes To Europe. 21-11-'12

The ‘Unity Tour’ 2013 marks the first time the group have toured together since their worldwide ‘Victory Tour’ nearly three decades ago.

The UK dates for the ‘Unity Tour’ are as follows:

February 26 – Birmingham NIA
February 27 – Manchester O2 Apollo
February 28 – Clyde Auditorium, Glasgow
March 2 – Bournemouth BIC
March 3 – Hammersmith Apollo, London

Source: Billie Jean


BAD25 Documentary Sneak Peek. 21-11-'12

Who doesn’t remember the iconic dance routine performed by Michael in the subway station during the 'BAD' short film. See Michael working on the dance routine in his hotel room. This is just one of the scenes that fans will see when BAD25 is broadcast.

 

Source: michaeljackson.com / Billie Jean


Bad 25 DocumentaryBad Jackson Doco Won't Hit Big Screen. 21-11-'12

Spike Lee is in a good mood. His film Bad 25 about the making of Michael Jackson's Bad album has been a huge success.

It's just a pity that a movie made for the big screen will only be seen on television here because watching Jackson so vital on the big screen, it's hard not to fall in love again with the astounding singer and dancer who died so tragically in 2009 at the age of 50.

Lee feels sorry about that too, explaining he had fought for a few gala screenings of Bad 25 in the US.

"I just hope you have a big-a.. widescreen TV with speakers all around," the 55-year-old film-maker says.

Lee's film shows how painstaking the self-styled King of Pop was in every stage of the album's production. Instead of a conventional music video he made a short film for each track and most famously collaborated with Martin Scorsese on an 18-minute movie for the title track.

Lee traces the creation of each of the songs and short films, conducting interviews with those involved, and there are many famous faces along the way.

"I did all the interviews myself," he says."There was of course archival material, but any documentary I do, I conduct all the interviews."

Lee previously directed the short film for They Don't Really Care About Us, a song from Jackson's History album, though he had already known the singer for many years.

"I think there must have been some part of my filmmaking that Michael liked for me to do the short film for him," Lee recalls. "The History album was divided in half, between greatest hits and new material. So he said, 'I am going to come to your house and play all the new material and you get to choose what song you like'.

"Michael played me all the new songs and I chose Stranger in Moscow and he said, 'No, no, you are not doing that one. You are doing 'They Don't Really Care About Us'. I said, 'Michael, if you had just told me I would have done it.' He thought that would be the one I would choose, but I didn't."

So the famously adamant Lee acquiesced to Jackson's request. They didn't come to loggerheads just a little bit? "No, no. We were simpatico," he insists.

While the obvious choice might have been to make a feature film about the creation of Thriller, which remains the best-selling album of all time, Lee explains there were three reasons why they decided on Bad, which itself produced a record five number one hits, only equalled recently by Katy Perry's Teenage Dream album.

"It was to commemorate the 25th anniversary on August 31 during the Venice Film festival; number two, Bad has been overlooked because it directly followed Thriller; and number three, Bad is where Michael really creatively started to stretch," he says.

Jackson also wanted to promote an edgier street image through the album, though as with all his work Bad was above all a huge celebration of African-American culture, notes Lee.

"Several people say in the documentary that Bad was like a signal to black people to remember who they are and where they come from," Lee says. "If you think about the Bad video, having Wesley Snipes in it (in his breakthrough role before Lee cast him in Mo' Better Blues and as the lead in Jungle Fever) and having it take place in Harlem which is the capital of black America, that stuff's no accident."

The final shot in Bad 25 shows Jackson with his arms outstretched in 1988 at London's Wembley stadium. He was performing a poignant and now chilling rendition of his signature song Man in The Mirror in what Lee considers his best concert during the Bad world tour.

Has Lee ever thought to make a fictional film about Jackson? "About him?" the pint-sized powerhouse bellows in response. "Who's going to play Michael Jackson? What, are you gonna get some Michael Jackson impersonator? I can't do it. I can't talk about anybody else, but I cannot do a biopic of Michael Jackson. That's not for me."
'Who's going to play Michael Jackson? What, are you gonna get some Michael Jackson impersonator? I can't do it.'

Source: Yahoo / Billie Jean


Mesereau: Charges "Shortened His Life". 20-11-'12

Thomas Mesereau, Michael Jackson’s lead criminal defense attorney in his 2005 trial, recently commented on the new Michael Jackson biography by Randall Sullivan which was criticized very much for including incorrect information and being full of observations made countless times before.

“The greatest benefit to come out of this book is Mr. Sullivan’s objective conclusion that Michael Jackson was not a child molester,” Mesereau, who is quoted in the book, told the NY Post. “To be called a pedophile is worse than being called a murderer. I know what these false charges did to him. In my opinion, they shortened his life.”

Mesereau added that he wanted to write his own book, but...

"Publishers were not interested in why Michael Jackson was innocent. This was very disturbing to me.”

Source: MJFC / NY Post / Billie Jean


AMA’s Most Memorable Moments. 19-11-'12

Celebuzz.com has listed the five most memorable moments from ‘The American Music Awards,’ which includes Michael winning 8 awards in a single year, 1984.

1984 was one of the greatest years in the career of Michael. He got a record breaking number of eight Grammy Awards. In the same year he also won eight American Music Awards; Award of Merrit, Favorite Male Artist (Pop/Rock), Favorite Male Artist (Soul/R&B), Favorite Album (Pop/Rock), Favorite Album (Soul/R&B), Favorite Single (Pop/Rock), Favorite Video (Pop/Rock), Favorite Video (Soul/R&B). Here is a historical selection from the award ceremony in 1984.

He was the first artist to achieve this honour, and made musical history. Whitney Houston achieved the same result in 1999.

To see the rest of the list please click here.

Source: celebuzz.com / Billie Jean


Mrs. Jackson Attends DWTS Tribute To MJ. 19-11-'12

Michael's mother, Mrs. Katherine Jackson, attended the semifinals of the US tv show 'Dancing With The Stars' which featured a tribute to Michael's album 'BAD'. The four celebrities (Shawn Johnson, Melissa Rycroft, Apolo Anton Ohno, Emmitt Smith) and the professional dancers still in the competition danced to the songs 'BAD', 'Dirty Diana', 'I Can't Stop Loving You', and 'Leave Me Alone'.

Source: MJFC / USA Today / Billie Jean


Don't Miss BAD25 Documentary On US TV. 19-11-'12

Don`t miss on Thanksgiving Day US broadcast premiere of Spike Lee's documentary "Bad 25". After its premiere at the Venice Film Festival and a small theatrical release it will be aired today at 9:30pm on ABC. The documentary, celeberating the 25th anniversary of Michael's iconic 1987 album "Bad", tells a lot of insider stories about how the album came about, pays particular attention to the music videos the album spawned at a time when the form was in its prime and features footage that has never been shown before.

The film also includes interviews with Justin Bieber, Mariah Carey, Sheryl Crow, Cee Lo Green, Martin Scorsese, Stevie Wonder, author Joe Vogel and more.

Source: Indiewire / Billie Jean


Michael Jackson Could Have Performed With The Jacksons. 18-11-'12

If Michael Jackson were still alive, chances are he would have performed here in Singapore with The Jacksons next month, so say his older brothers in the band, Jackie, Tito and Marlon.

Jackie, at 61 the oldest brother in the family, says: "Oh absolutely, he was supposed do the O2 Arena shows, then take a break for four or five months and then do the tour together with us as brothers, as a group."

The late King Of Pop died in June 2009, three weeks before the first concert was to start at the O2 Arena in London. He was 50 years old.

Still, the current tour is special because it marks the first time that four of the brothers, including Jermaine, are touring together in almost three decades. Randy, 51, is not part of the tour. The quartet will make their Singapore stop on Dec 15 at the Indoor Stadium.

Source: Straitstimes / Billie Jean


How MJ's 'Hollywood' Friends Preyed On His Millions. 18-11-'12

Michael Jackson was ripped off for millions of dollars by the few Hollywood stars he called friends, including Marlon Brando and Elizabeth Taylor, an explosive new book has revealed.

According to author Randall Sullivan, Brando and Taylor both took the singer for lots of money while purporting to support him, the Daily Express reported.

He claims that Brando demanded 600,000 pounds simply to record a 10-minute tribute video played at a concert in New York to celebrate Jackson's 30 years as a performer.

More than 20,000 fans booed as the actor slurred his way through a scripted speech.

Elizabeth Taylor, whom the singer described as his "closest friend in the world," also demanded payment for defending him during his child molestation trial.

Instead of a fee, she was rewarded with a 402,000-pound diamond necklace for recording a brief video message played on major US TV networks.

Sullivan's book 'Untouchable: The Strange Life and Tragic Death of Michael Jackson,' just published in America, also accuses family members of demanding cash to be filmed at his concerts.

They vehemently deny this but Sullivan alleges that the singer even built a secret room at his Neverland Ranch where he hid when they tried to visit.

Source: Realbollywood / Billie Jean


Michael Jackson Tune Trouble Halts GTA: Vice City PC Sales. 17-11'12

Digital sales of Grand Theft Auto: Vice City have been halted due to a music licensing dispute. The game is no longer on Steam, for example.

GTA developer Rockstar confirmed the move in a post on the Steam forum.

"Due to some music licensing issues, we've had to temporarily remove Vice City PC from digital stores," a Rockstar spokesperson said. "We'll make it available again as soon as possible."

Those who have already downloaded the game from Steam are able to re-download it, however.

Rockstar did not confirm which track was causing the headache, but Cinema Blend has word it is Michael Jackson's Wanna be Startin' Something', which plays on Vice City's Fever 105 station. Sony Music Entertainment and its subsidiary Warner Chappell reportedly blocked the content on copyright grounds.

The trouble comes ahead of Rockstar's upcoming iOS and Android re-release of Vice City, due later this year.

Source: Eurogamer / Billie Jean


Michael Bush Appears On The TODAY Show. 16-11-'12

Author and designer Michael Bush appeared on the TODAY Show on NBC to share a few costumes from Michael Jackson's collection as well as to discuss the upcoming auction taking place in Los Angeles.

In the video clip below, Michael joins Martin Nolan from Julien's Auction House to share information on the Beverly Hills exhibit which starts on Monday, November 19th. The auction, featuring over 400 pieces from Michael Bush's 25-year career as Michael Jackson's official designer, will be on sale starting December 2, 2012.

Pick up a copy of The King of Style: Dressing Michael Jackson for a visual collection of the costumes which helped put Michael Jackson at the top of the list of music icons who continue to inspire fashion trends.

Source: NBC / Billie Jean


Chris Tucker Was Scared To Show Michael Jackson His Impression Of Him. 16-11-'12

The actor mimicked the singer in his early years as a stand-up comedian, and eventually went on to become friends with Michael.

Despite even appearing in the video for his 2001 single You Rock My World, he never had the courage to show him his impersonation.

He said: "I never dreamed of becoming friends with him but then when I met him he was just the nicest guy, the kindest man I ever met. He just befriended me like an older brother."

When asked if he'd done his impression for the late star - who died in June 2009 - he added: "[I was] scared that he'd be like, 'Who you doing?'"

The 40-year-old briefly became the highest paid actor in the world, starring alongside Jackie Chan in 'Rush Hour 3' and receiving $25 million for his role, but he says money was never his main motivation.

When asked how he managed to negotiate such a fee for the film, he told The Guardian newspaper: "You know what, just ask. They say, 'Ask and you will receive.' I was blessed to do that. You always think, if you keep working hard you will get rewarded, that's always in the back of your mind.

"But the thing that really pushed me at the beginning was just people laughing. I think that's where my joy really came from."

Source: Entertainmentwise / Billie Jean

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