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The Estate Of Michael JacksonMichael Jackson Estate May Appeal Quincy Jones Award. 31-07-'17

Last week, a jury awarded music producer Quincy Jones $9.4 million in unpaid royalties from the estate of Michael Jackson.

But the case may not be over yet.

Howard Weitzman, a lawyer who represented Jackson’s heirs at the trial, is exploring “post-trial options to overturn the verdict,” including an appeal, he told the New York Post.

The dispute centers on contracts dating back to 1978 and 1985.

In a lawsuit seeking $30 million, Jones argued those agreements granted him royalties on songs he produced for the King of Pop on albums including 'Off The Wall', 'Thriller' and 'Bad'” as well as the first right to remix the master recordings, but that Jones was granted neither when they were used in the concert documentary 'This Is It' released shortly after Jackson’s death as well as two Cirque du Soleil shows.

The jury agreed, though it awarded Jones less than a third of what he was asking.

That was still too much, Weitzman told the Post.

“We probably wouldn’t challenge an award up to $2.5 million,” he said.

In comment both after the verdict and again to the New York Post, the lawyer appears especially bothered by Jones’ spinning the award as a win for artists’ rights.

"This lawsuit was never about Michael. It was about protecting the integrity of the work we all did in the recording studio and the legacy of what we created,” Jones said in a statement after the verdict. “I view it not only as a victory for myself personally, but for artists’ rights overall.”

“The jury’s verdict was wrong,” Weitzman countered to the Post. “The real artist is Michael Jackson, and it is his money.”

Source: L.A. Biz / Billie Jean

Brooklyn Loves Michael Jackson 2017Brooklyn Loves Michael Jackson Annual Birthday Block Party. 30-07-'17

Saturday marks the 7th Annual “Brooklyn Loves Michael Jackson” block party thrown to honor the musical legend’s birthday.

In what has now become an very anticipated tradition, Director Spike Lee will host his annual Brooklyn Love Michael Jackson birthday celebration block party on August 26 from noon to 7pm.

The event will be held on Do The Right Thing Way avenue in the Bed-Stuy neighborhood of Brooklyn. Music by DJ Spinna.

Come on out and enjoy yourself!

Go to the site of Do The Right Thing Way.

Source: All Things Michael / Spike Lee / Billie Jean

‘Thriller 3D’ At The Venice Film Festival. 27-07-'17

For a long time fans have been discussing rumours about a possible ‘Thriller 3D’ that director John Landis has been teasing us with.

Today those rumors became a reality when Michael’s Estate confirmed that the special film will be premiered at this years Venice Film Festival.

The international film festival will begin on Wednesday August 30th and ends on Saturday September 9th. Both Michael Jackson’s ‘Thriller 3D’ and ‘The Making Of Michael Jackson’s Thriller', will be screened. Neither are eligible for the film festival’s competition.

Michael Jackson’s Thriller 3D, dir: John Landis
Making Of Michael Jackson’s Thriller, dir: Jerry Kramer

No other details have been announced, but more news will be released over the next month.

Venice Film Festival
Venice Film Festival has started and surprise!! Thriller 3D and the Making of Thriller are in the lists!

Source: The Estate Of Michael Jackson / Billie Jean

What Michael Jackson Would Have Looked Like Without Cosmetic Surgery. 27-07-'17

Michael JacksonDespite never publicly admitting to more than a nose job, the late Michael Jackson's face went through a lot of transformations over the years.

A Channel 5 documentary, 'The Ten Faces Of Michael Jackson', has shed some light into the different stages of those transformations and tried to piece together what led to the late star's obsession with his appearance.

Photographs of Jackson taken over the years show much more than a change in the colour of his skin.

The star is claimed to have undergone dozens of surgeries, including reported cheek implants and chin restructuring.

In the documentary, LaToya Jackson, one of the star's sisters, says he kept asking her about nose jobs and whether she thought he needed one.

"Michael, if that's what you want, if it's gonna make you feel better, get it done."

"He asked me: 'Can you be the guinea pig for me? Can you get your nose done and let me see how it looks and if it hurts?'"

Experts looked through the many photographs of Jackson and put together a montage showing what the King of Pop would have looked like if he had not had any cosmetic surgery.

The image is a long way from what the late pop star looked like in the later stages of his life.

Jackson's reported surgeries are blamed on potential child abuse and dysmorphic disorders that came as a consequence of his wealth and fame at such a young age.

Source: NZ Herald / Billie Jean

Quincy Jones Wins $9.4 Mil Against Michael Jackson Estate In Jury Trial. 26-07-'17

Quincy JonesQuincy Jones, the legendary producer who put Michael Jackson on the map with 'Off The Wall', 'Thriller' and 'Bad' albums won $9.4 million today against the singer’s estate in a jury trial.

Jones sued the estate, saying that since Jackson died and his executors turned things around, Jones was owed $30 million from licensing and other royalties. The jury gave him a little less than half what Jones asked for. But it was actually what Jones sued for in the first place– $10 million– before upping the amount.

Jones, who’s 84 and more active than a 54 year old, was already a legend when he produced Jackson’s three biggest selling albums. His contributions to them are almost incalculable. While Michael was certainly a superstar, it was Jones’s approach to the music, his arrangements and his long storied history in jazz and big band sounds that made the albums extra special.

“This lawsuit was never about Michael, it was about protecting the integrity of the work we all did in the recording studio and the legacy of what we created,” Jones wrote in a statement. “Although this (judgment) is not the full amount that I was seeking, I am very grateful that the jury decided in our favor in this matter. I view it not only as a victory for myself personally, but for artists’ rights overall.”

Jones claimed that for Jackson’s Cirque du Soleil shows and the movie 'This is It', the estate had cut up and reconfigured his work without permission, and then didn’t pay for it. Jones said he had a contractual right of refusal to work on all that material. The jury agreed.

The Jackson estate could have saved itself a lot of aggravation by just going to Jones, the way the Beatles have remained loyal to the late George Martin. But hubris undermined them, as the executors chose to use outsiders.

Source: Fox News / Billie Jean

It's Great To Be Here Single Cover'It's Great To Be Here' Single Is Released. 26-07-'17

On the occasion of the release of an album called 'Music Journey # 02 Floor Filler Mixed' by DJ JIN on July 26th in Japan, Universal Music Japan released a vinyl single with the title 'It's Great To Be Here' from The Jackson 5.

This song, which appeared on the first volume of the DJ JIN released on September 20, 2016, will contain the title "What Does It Take (To Win Your Love)" by Hearts Of Stone, Compil.

Note the presence of the title 'Hum Along And Dance' of the Jackson 5 on the compilation Music Journey # 02 Floor Filler Mixed by DJ JIN.

'It's Great To Be Here' from the album 'Maybe Tomorrow' released in 1971 was never released in front of a vinyl previously.

Record label: Universal
Series number: UKY 7025
Printed: Japan
Guide price: 25 €

Order the single here at Amazon.

Source: MJ France / Billie Jean

Michael Jackson Estate Lawyers On What To Expect As Quincy Jones Trial Closes: Exclusive. 24-07-'17

Howard Weitzman
Michael Jackson Estate Lawyer Howard Weitzman.

If Michael Jackson could see that his longtime friend and collaborator Quincy Jones was suing him in court for millions of dollars, “Michael would be rolling over in his grave,” says entertainment attorney Howard Weitzman, whose team is representing the Jackson estate in the case.

Weitzman, along with attorney Zia Modabber, spoke with Billboard exclusively as they prepared to head to Los Angeles Superior Court on Monday to convince a jury in their closing arguments that Jones is not entitled to receive the additional $30 million he is seeking in royalties. The case pits the legendary 84-year-old producer against the estate of the King of Pop, who died eight years ago after his doctor administered a fatal cocktail of medications.

Jones, who testified in court last week, maintains that he’s owed the royalties for the use of the songs from Off the Wall, Thriller, Bad and the film This Is It, among other projects. Jones has already received about $18 million in royalties since Jackson’s death, according to testimony given during the trial; his legal team did not respond to a request for comment.

But after nearly three weeks presenting a jury with evidence, testimony, music and line-by-line royalty summaries in an effort to prove that Jones is only entitled to a share of record sales, Weitzman says that he believes that the primary reason Jones is unhappy is because his name was left out of the credits for the film This Is It. The estate acknowledged that the omission was an error and said Jones received an apology.

Weitzman and Modabber spoke to Billboard about the trial so far and what to expect from their closing argument Monday, which they promise will be “entertaining.”

Read the whole article here.

Source: Billboard / Billie Jean

Bobby TaylorBobby Taylor Died At 83. 23-07-'17

Bobby Taylor, the singer and producer who discovered the Jackson 5, has died at the age of 83, according to Rolling Stone magazine.

Taylor died Saturday morning (July 22) at a hospital in Hong Kong, where he'd been living for the last several years. He was undergoing treatment for Leukemia. Family friend and producer Suzy Michelson confirmed his passing to Rolling Stone.

"Bobby was a producer, creator and mentor to all of the greats in the early Motown days,” Michelson said.

Although the Jackson’s and Motown credited Diana Ross with discovering the Jackson 5, it was Taylor who found the band. Bobby became the group first producer and supervised the first album 'Diana Ross Presents The Jackson 5'. The group was later moved to California, Bobby was left out of any credits for finding the group until later.

Taylor fronted the band Bobby Taylor & the Vancouvers. At a 1968 concert in Chicago, a family band called The Jackson 5 were their opening act. Taylor was impressed with the group and arranged for the Jackson 5 to audition for Berry Gordy and other executives at Motown. The group was singed to Motown and Taylor would be their first producer.

In a 2011 interview for the documentary 'Michael Jackson: The Life Of An Icon', Taylor talked about first seeing the Jackson 5. "I saw this little kid spinning and stuff and said, 'Dang, send him upstairs. When he finishes, I want to talk to this kid."

He produced the Jackson 5’s early Motown songs including a version of Smoky Robinson’s 'Who’s Lovin’ You'. Berry Gordy felt the songs produced by Taylor were old fashioned and he would assign a new producer for the young group.

Taylor was born in Washington D.C. in 1934. He sang in doo-wop groups in New York City. He moved out west and was in a band called Little Daddy and the Bachelors. One of the band members was Tommy Chong, who would go on to greater fame as a comedian and one half of the duo Cheech and Chong.

The group would change their name to Bobby Taylor & the Vancouvers. The band was signed to Motown in 1965 on the recommendation of Supremes members Mary Wells and Florence Ballard. The band had a top 5 R&B song “Does Your Mama Know About Me” in 1968.

"Bobby had a range that exceeded even Patti LaBelle." Tommy Chong told Rolling Stone.

Taylor went on to have a solo career for Motown. He later moved to China and then to Hong Kong. He performed at clubs in Honk Kong. His last known recording was on a tribute song for the late legendary rock guitarist Dick Wagner.

Source: Legacy / Billie Jean

Stranger Things Season 2 Is A Thriller. 23-07-'17

Fans of ‘Stranger Things’ and Michael Jackson unite!

The award winning show ‘Stranger Things’, which was released on Netflix in 2016 and gained a huge following, have just dropped the trailer for Season 2 at comic-con, and the soundtrack to it is none other than Michael’s classic ‘Thriller.’

Whilst a horror themed trailer seems apt to use ‘Thriller,’ it’s even more befitting as the show is set in the 1980s. The first seasons was based in 1983 and the new season, which will be released on October 27th, will be set in 1984. ‘Thriller’ nicely underscores the trailer encapsulating all that is horror and all that is 80s!

The show is littered with pop culture references, so we will need to wait another three months to see if there’s any more nods to arguably the most popular artist of the decade, Michael Jackson.


Source: MJWN / Billie Jean

Rad Retro PowerRad Retro Power – Michael 6″ Action Figure Coming Soon! 23-07-'17

Rad Retro Power, a company that designs action figures, just announced a Michael Jackson one!

One of the designer Miguel Wilson shared some images of the project on Instagram and said:

“Comic Con has begun, I am excited to share another teaser photo of a project I have been working hard on with my Rad Retro buddy @nerdychavez ! This guy is a homage to the 80s style of action figures with a Rad Retro Power twist. Also, the talented @sculptorshelf brought our 2D design work to life with an amazing sculpt! Stay tuned for more info!…”

Source: MJ Vibe / Billie Jean

Michael Jackson's Chimpanzee Bubbles Star Of Miami Art Show. 22-07-'17

Michael Jackson's former pet chimp Bubbles sold his artwork at a Miami gallery show on Friday (July 21).

The ape's paintings were selling at prices ranging from $375 to $2,000 while on display at Frames USA & Art Gallery for the charitable Going Ape! art show.

Proceeds from the event will help support Florida’s Center for Great Apes, where Bubbles has been residing along with nearly 50 other primates who have been rehabilitating from a life of forced performance.

“I was invited three months ago to do a tour of the centre and it was there in the orientation centre where I saw a picture, a painting, of a chimpanzee who made something on paper," gallery owner Adam Brand tells Channels Television of his inspiration for hosting the Going Ape! exhibition. "It didn’t dawn on me until the three-and-a-half-hour drive back to Miami where I said ‘wow, they’re talking about a whole expansion, fundraising, they needed money,’ and I said, ‘let’s do an art show'."

Each canvas on sale at Going Ape! was painted by one of the primates who live Florida's Center for Great Apes. The rehabilitation centre is in need of funds to expand housing and care for the animals, who due to their performance backgrounds and exposure to humans are too socialised to survive in the wild.

Although the art show was a hit, prospective buyers of the canvasses admitted they were tripped out by the thought of owning a piece painted by a chimp.


“The idea of looking at these paintings and you know on the one hand I say, ‘well isn’t this fascinating?’ but then on the other hand I say, ‘what else would you expect?'” Deana Litowitz, who was eyeing a painting by Bubbles, mused at the gallery.

This isn't the first time the 34-year-old chimpanzee has caused a stir on the art scene - American pop artist Jeff Koons memorialised Bubbles' unique relationship with the King of Pop in a controversial 1988 porcelain sculpture titled Michael Jackson and Bubbles.

The famous ape is also the subject of a forthcoming biopic about his life directed by Green Lantern actor Taika Waititi alongside animator Mark Gustafson.

Source: Music News / Billie Jean

Michael Jackson Trial Juror Reflects On Child Molestation Case: 'I Would Still Vote Not Guilty Today'.

Paulina Coccoz
Juror Paulina Coccoz

Juror Paulina Coccoz is shocked many people still believe Michael Jackson was found not guilty on all charges of molesting a 13-year-old boy he befriended as the child recovered from cancer in 2003.

The then-46-year-old King of Pop walked free in June 2005 after a nearly four-month trial. While the jurors said at the time they wanted to “return to our lives as anonymously as we came,” some, including Coccoz, have spoken about their experience for Oxygen’s four-night special, “The Jury Speaks,” in hopes it will set the record straight.

“It’s really important for me to share my story because when I talk, even in my daily life to people that I don’t know or even with people I know, everybody still thinks he was guilty,” Coccoz, known as juror #10, told Fox News. “And I find it hard to believe that it’s still going on. That’s not what happened… he was accused of some horrible, horrible things and it’s a sad thing that we lost such a wonderful human being on this planet.

"We need to all look at things for what they were instead of saying, ‘Oh yeah, he was a freak. He was guilty because he was a freak.’ Everybody’s different and God forbid we should all be judged in a courtroom because we’re a freak and we’re guilty.”

Coccoz didn’t always feel that way about the pop star. When the mother of three boys first heard the accusations, she was ready to find him guilty if they proved to be true.

“For me, it was a real sensitive spot,” she admitted. “I took it kind of personal in a way that you would never want something like that to happen to your children. So I really didn’t think or care that he was Michael Jackson. If he was doing these things that he was being accused of, I didn’t feel that I had any problem finding him guilty if that was the case.”

Read the whole article here at Fox News.

Source: Fox News / Billie Jean

Michael Jackson’s Estate Renews Deal With Sony. 20-07-'17

The Michael Jackson Estate has decided to re-up its deal with Sony/ATV to administer the music publishing rights to some of the King of Pop’s best-known songs, the publisher confirmed on Thursday.

Sony/ATV, run by Martin Bandier, won the rights to the Mijac Music catalogue in 2012 from Warner/Chappelle, which had held them since 1980.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed, but it is believed to be a long-term arrangement.

That deal expired recently, and the Mijac catalogue came up for bidding.

In a recent auction all the major music publishers — from Universal to BMG — made an attempt to acquire the rights, sources said, but Sony/ATV ultimately prevailed.

Sony buy Michael Jackson’s half of Sony/ATV for $750 Million.

The collection includes 'Bad', 'Beat It', and 'Billie Jean', among many others by the late singer/songwriter.

Sony/ATV was owned jointly by Japan’s Sony Corp. and the estate of Michael Jackson but did not house all of the Jackson song rights.

Sony bought out the Jackson estate last year for $750 million, giving the estate a rethink about where best to house the music.

John Branca and John McClain, the co-executors of the Estate, said in a statement: “The music of the greatest entertainer that ever lived, Michael Jackson, is in the hands of the number one publishing company in the world.

“We had to beat off every competitor,” Bandier told The Post.

Source: New York Post / Billie Jean

Quincy Jones Testifies Against Michael Jackson Estate: ‘I Was Cheated Out Of A Lot Of Money’. 20-07-'17

Quincy JonesQuincy Jones took the witness stand on Thursday, telling jurors he was “cheated out of a lot of money” by Michael Jackson’s estate.

Jones’ lawyers have alleged that the veteran producer is owed $30 million in revenues that have flowed to Jackson’s estate since the singer’s death in 2009. Jones, 84, has been touring in Europe for most of the trial, which has been underway in Los Angles Superior Court for two weeks. He entered the courtroom Thursday in a wheelchair.

At issue is the interpretation of two contracts for the albums 'Off The Wall', 'Thriller', and 'Bad'. Jones testified that he left such details to lawyers and never read the actual agreements.

Instead, in often rambling testimony, Jones articulated a basic principle that he deserves to be paid for any use of songs from the albums.

“If we made the record, we deserve to get paid,” he said. “It’s that simple.”

An attorney for Jackson’s estate, Howard Weitzman, tried to get Jones to concede that he is entitled to a share of album sales but not to licensing revenues for the Jackson recordings.

“That’s a joke,” Jones answered.

As Weitzman pressed him, Jones added, “I don’t care what the agreement says. If I put my heart and love into making a record, I want to get paid. I don’t care what the paper says.”

At another point, Jones asked the lawyer: “You ever made a No. 1 record?”

“No,” Weitzman said.

“I know that,” Jones replied.

Jones’ lawyers contend that his contracts entitle him to significant proceeds from 'This Is It', the backstage concert film released after Jackson’s death, as well as those from two Cirque du Soleil shows. The attorneys also contend that Jones is owed a larger share from a Sony contract that was renegotiated after Jackson’s death.

Under questioning from his own lawyer, Mike McKool, Jones gave extensive reminiscences about his music career and his collaboration with Jackson. He testified that his relationship with Jackson was founded on “love, respect, and trust,” and that financial considerations rarely surfaced.

“That never in my life crossed my mind — money and fame,” he said. “If that happens, God walks out of the room. If you try to sell Ciroc vodka, forget it.”

Under cross-examination, Weitzman played Jackson’s demo versions of 'Workin’ Day And Night', 'Don’t Stop ‘Til You Get Enough', and 'Beat It', as well as the finished album versions of each song. Jones nodded his head in rhythm, and at one point raised his arm as if conducting musicians.

Weitzman’s point was that Jackson himself made major contributions to the sound of each song, which rankled Jones, who testified that producers often take the blame for failures while artists get credit for hits.

“I believed in Michael like my own son,” he testified. “I spent more time with him than his family. They weren’t in the studio.”

Weitzman repeatedly noted that he is representing Jackson’s three children, who are the beneficiaries of the estate, and asked if Jones would sue Jackson if he were still alive.

“I’m not suing Michael, I’m suing y’all,” Jones said, noting that the estate’s lawyers have been handsomely paid. Another attorney for the estate testified earlier that the executors have received about $50 million in fees since Jackson’s death.

When Weitzman raised the children again, Jones rebutted, “I got children, too.”

Source: MSN / Billie Jean

Quincy Jones Earned $18 Million in Royalties Since Michael Jackson's Death. 18-07-'17

Quincy JonesOn Day 6 of trial over missing royalties, Sony exec's testimony reveals producer's payout.

Since the death of pop star Michael Jackson in 2009, Quincy Jones has received nearly $18 million in royalties for his work on some of the King of Pop’s most iconic music, according to court testimony given by a high-ranking music executive on the sixth day of the trial between Jones and the Jackson estate.

Though the 84-year-old Jones, who is likely to take the stand on Thursday (July 20), claims that the Jackson estate owes him at least $30 million due to a breached contract for his work on albums 'Bad', 'Thriller', 'Off The Wall' and 'This Is It', Sony's vp of royalty audits David Moro took the stand Tuesday and spoke at length about the substantial royalties that Jones has already received from the label through the years, emphasizing payments issued since Jackson’s death 8 years ago.

Jones sued the estate and Sony Music in 2003, claiming that songs such as 'Billie Jean', 'Thriller' and 'Don’t Stop ’Til You Get Enough' were remixed to block him from royalties and a producer’s fee.

The legendary producer, who has been nominated 79 times for a Grammy, alleges that his contracts gave him the first option to re-edit or alter the songs, and that not having had that opportunity has hurt his reputation.

After the Jackson estate's legal team called Moro to the stand, attorney Tami Sims led Moro through series of back-to-back questions that established how much Jones has received, from smaller amounts in the range of $30,000 to much larger sums in the millions.

Moro explained that Jones was chiefly paid record royalties, not funds through a license agreement. The executive also explained that a “joint venture” agreement precluded Jones from receiving other monies.

“Mr. Jones is not a party to those agreements,” Moro said during his testimony. “Mr. Jones has never been paid under those agreements.”

When asked if Jones has previously requested audits, Moro confirmed that there had been “about 6” audits from 1981 through 1989. Additionally, there was a settlement totaling between $200,000 and $300,000 in recent years.

The jury was shown royalty summaries pertaining to Jones with one line item illustrating that Jones received nearly $18 million between 2009 and 2016.

More witnesses are expected to take the stand in Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Michael L. Stern’s courtroom including Jones, who this week returned from work duties in Europe.

Source: Billboard / Billie Jean

Court Readies For Quincy Jones To Take The Stand In Suit Against The Michael Jackson Estate. 17-07-'17

Quincy JonesJones’ legal team has publicly stated that their client is owned at least $30 million.

Quincy Jones is expected to take the stand this week in his case against the Michael Jackson estate as the celebrated Grammy-award-winning 84-year-old producer seeks millions of dollars in royalties for his contributions to songs from albums such as 'Off The Wall', 'Thriller', 'Bad' and 'This Is It'.

The jury for the case was excused on Monday but was told to return on Tuesday (July 18) as attorneys for both Jones and the Jackson estate spent the morning with Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Michael L. Stern. The legal teams mostly reviewed organizational items as they inch closer to hearing Jones’ testimony, which will likely be Thursday (July 20), according to a legal representative for the producer.

During Monday’s session with legal teams from each side, Stern asked Jones’ attorney, J. Michael Hennigan, why the case had come this far considering that his star client has had some of the best representation in the business. The biggest issue, the attorney said, was not having access to “audit material” and the results of that data.

Source: Billboard / Billie Jean

In Quincy Jones Trial, Expert Critiques Pitbull's Version Of Michael Jackson's 'Bad'. 14-07-'17

Bad25Pitbull is no Michael Jackson.

That was the gist of the expert testimony that highlighted the fourth day of the trial that pits legendary producer Quincy Jones against the Michael Jackson estate, with Jones claiming that the late King of Pop’s estate breached its contract with him and owes him millions of dollars in royalties from works that include songs from the albums 'Thriller', 'Off The Wall', 'This Is It' and 'Bad'.

Jones had sued the Jackson estate and Sony Music Entertainment in 2013, alleging that songs such as 'Billie Jean', 'Thriller' and 'Don't Stop 'Til You Get Enough' were re-edited to cut him out of royalties and a producer's fee. The suit also claimed that Jones’ contracts gave him the first opportunity to re-edit or alter the songs, partly to protect his reputation.

On Friday (July 14), Jones’ legal team called Michael Fremer, editor of AnalogPlanet.com, to the stand, in hopes of establishing that some of Jackson’s posthumously released remixes -- issued without Jones’ permission -- had diminished Jones' reputation due to their mediocrity.

"I like club mixes," Fremer told the court, but Afrojack’s 2012 remix of Jackson’s 'Bad', featuring Pitbull, is "inconsistent with his spirit and who he was."

Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Michael L. Stern, though, later excluded Fremer's testimony from the case after conferring privately with both legal teams.

After his testimony, Fremer told Billboard that he was “so against” the remix featuring Pitbull.

“Whomever produced it [the Pitbull version] should have said, 'No.' Before the trial I did some research and the comments online were really negative about that song. People were outraged. It was just a mess and it should have never come out."

Fremer testified that he never met Jackson and does not know Jones. The Afrojack-Pitbull rework of 'Bad' peaked at No. 18 on Dance Club Songs and No. 45 on Dance/Electronic Digital Songs and sold 19,000 digital downloads in the U.S., according to Nielsen Music. The song also generated 2.2 million on-demand streams -- audio and video combined -- in the U.S.

During Friday's trial, which concluded by mid-afternoon, the jurors consisting of mostly women and two men also got to hear and watch a clip of the film 'This Is It', on which Jones is seeking credit and royalties. The clip showed Jackson in rehearsals for the 'The Way You Make Me Feel'.

Jackson's distinctive vocals lit up the room. Jurors sat mostly stoic, but a few of them showed emotion including a male who was all smiles during the portion of the song, while another female juror closed her eyes and listened intently to the music and lyrics. Even attorney Howard Weitzman, representing Jackson’s MJJ Productions, was seen slightly bopping his head to the music.

By the session's end on Friday, Stern instructed the jurors to return on Monday and informed them that the trial, which was expected to last 3 weeks, may conclude by the end of next week, one week earlier than originally anticipated.

According to a court spokesperson, no witnesses are scheduled for Monday (July 17).

Source: Billboard / Billie Jean

Unveil New Michael Jackson Statue In Spain. 14-07-'17

Michael Jackson will be “alive” in Teatro Calderón (Madrid, Spain) with the tribute “I want you back”

A life size statue of Michael Jackson will be unveil today in Teatro Calderón, the same day of the first “I want u back” tribute show, a 2 hours concert-like show with MJ’s music performed by Spanish impersonator Sac MJJ.

The show was born as the need of having an “annual meeting point around the myth of the artist” in Madrid, as said Jose María Cámara, from Som Produce, the company that produce the show.

This first show will unveil a Michael Jackson statue, created by sculptor Juan Villa, similar to the one located in Las Vegas, inspired by the cover of 'HIStory: Past, Present and Future Book I'. This one will be life size, “now the fans can pose for pictures with their idol” said Cámara.

In the show, Sac MJJ -whose real name is Adrián Álvarez-, four dancers and a live band from Spain, will guide the audience through the Michael Jackson’s hits, “everybody will sing along” with one of the best impersonators of Michael Jackson according the producer.

The statue will be unveiled by Toni Arias (admin of Michael Jackson’s HideOut) and Laura Serrano (President of Heal The World For Children Spain charity) and will stay in the theater as a meeting point for MJ fans.

Last show for this year will coincide with the singer birthday, August 29th.

MJ Statue in Spain
We will post the pictures of the unveiling as soon as we have some…

Source: MJ Vibe / Billie Jean

Make-Up Artist Kabuki Starshine Talks Michael Jackson’s Last Photoshoots. 14-07-'17

In a recent interview for Paper Mag, make-up artist Kabuki Starshine talks about the time he worked with Michael Jackson for L’uomo Vogue photoshoot in September 2007.

How did it come about that you worked with Michael Jackson?

That was a big mystery. I didn’t realize how it came about. I thought maybe because I’d worked with Macaulay, but no. Actually, Bruce Weber, whom I’d never worked with before, thought of me for that project. It was for L’uomo Vogue, and it was the first shoot Michael had done in 10 years. They asked me to come back and do the cover of Ebony with him too. Those were his last photo shoots. He was really lovely.

I can relive it all in my mind because I was so full of adrenaline when it was going on. I had to talk to him on the phone before I met him. I was at a cash machine and the phone rang and it was his people clearing the line to make sure it was me. He was gonna call me in seven minutes, so I ran home, not wanting to be on the street with sirens and street noise. I got so nervous, I had to breathe into a ziploc bag.

I was hyperventilating. But he sounded so scared himself that I instantly calmed down. I sort of felt for him. And when I met him in person, he had dark glasses on so you couldn’t see his eyes. He seemed very shy, but when we started to work together, I guess he got my energy, and he was so sweet, quite considerate of me and my working process.

L'uomo Vogue Photoshoot
Michael Jackson and make-Up artist Kabuki Starshine on the set of the L'uomo Vogue photoshoot in New York on September 15th, 2007.

Source: MJ Vibe / Billie Jean

Michael Jackson “Cascio Songs” CD Offered For Auction For Millions, Then Mysteriously Removed.

Bible CD-RFor about a minute yesterday Michael Jackson’s unreleased songs from the “Cascio” album was up for auction for a million dollars.

Then it mysteriously disappeared.

An auction house called Gotta Have Rock and Roll announced it was selling a master tape quality CD of songs obtained from a close friend of Jackson who was his personal assistant and had traveled he world with him. The track list on the CD made it clear these were the songs recorded in New Jersey in the fall of 2007 by Eddie Cascio at his parents’ home. Cascio had already recorded the songs with another artist. But when Jackson, his kids, and nanny came to stay at the Cascio home– his personal friends and surrogate family for years and years– Eddie persuaded Michael to re-rec0rd the vocals and turn the whole thing into a Michael Jackson album.

I broke the story about this album in 2010, a year after Michael died.

The result was a scandal. Jackson super fans refused to believe Michael had done any of this. (It was, however, true.) The Jackson estate and Sony made a deal for the recordings. Three of them made it onto Michael’s posthumous 'Michael' album. The rest drifted into obscurity.

The Cascio album was a surprise to everyone in the Jackson camp, which led to a discrediting of the material that killed the 'Michael' album. Co-executor John McClain didn’t like it because he wasn’t involved in it. Jackson’s nephews, a group called 3T, was sore because they didn’t have a part in it. The Jacksons in general, post-Michael’s death, weren’t so happy about the Cascio family at all. They resented them because Michael had long ago chosen them as a surrogate family. He stayed with them, lavished gifts on them, and confided in them while excluding his actual brothers, sisters, parents, etc.

Before Michael died, I’d heard all the songs recorded with a different vocalist. They were very good. When I broke the story that Michael had stayed with the Cascio's in 2007 I did not know that he’d recorded with Eddie. Indeed, everyone remained mum for a long time. When I broke the news about the recordings, the naysayers waged a campaign saying that it was a Michael Jackson imitator. This was ridiculous. Michael had left the recordings with the Cascio's as a legacy.

So what happened to the for-auction CD? Even if someone had bought it for a million dollars, the winner could not have used it for anything other than personal listening pleasure. Something tells me though that the Jackson Estate and/or Sony intervened when they saw the listing.

Source: Roger Friedman; Showbiz411 / Billie Jean

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