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Dorian HolleyKingvention: Dorian Holley As Third Special Guest. 30-03-'17

The first European convention Michael Jackson entitled Kingvention which will take place on September 30 in London has just announced that Dorian Holley would be the third special guest of this event after the announcement of the presence of Eddie Garcia and Paul Whitsitt.

Dorian Holley who was a chorister of Michael Jackson during the 'Bad', 'Dangerous' and 'HIStory' Tour is one of the rare people to have been present during all the King of Pop's solo tours. There is no doubt that his testimony will welcome the fans who will have the chance to be able to go to this European meeting impossible to circumvent.

As a reminder, the sale of tickets for the Kingvention will take place from March 31st.

Source: MJ France / Billie Jean

Katherine Jackson Flies Back To America To Testify In Elder Abuse Case. 30-03-'17

Katherine JacksonKatherine Jackson is flying back to America to testify as part of her elder abuse case against her nephew Trent.

The 86-year-old mother of the late Michael Jackson has been in London with daughter Janet, supporting her after the birth of her first child. But after Trent asked a judge to force Katherine to appear in court, after doubting the validity of her sworn statement in the case against him, Judge Rolf Treu ruled that he would not accept a sworn statement from Katherine, and she would have to appear in person in Los Angeles County Superior Court for her testimony and cross-examination in the case.

Now Katherine is en route back to the States to testify in the case, in which she claims Trent is an "an abusive con man" who has been emotionally abusing her and trying to take control of her money for years.

During a hearing on Wednesday (March 17), Katherine's lawyer Julianna Edwards told Judge Treu: "The petitioner is returning from London and needs time to re-acclimate after her journey (to) testify in this matter."

Judge Treu then continued the case until 25 April, when Katherine is expected to take to the witness stand.

However, Trent's lawyer Ron Rale added that he is hoping his client and Katherine reach a private settlement before the next court date.

"We're exploring resolution of the case," he said in court, according to the New York Daily News. "We're hoping to resolve this matter."

But if the relatives can't reach an agreement, Rale is keen for Trent to be given the chance to cross-examine Katherine, insisting it would be a "lack of due process" if he was denied that opportunity.

"It would not be a vicious cross examination," he said. "If she, from her heart, said she felt bullied (by Trent), we would honour that."

Trent has always strenuously denied Katherine's allegations, claiming the case is the work of her son Jermaine, who he alleges is masterminding the courtroom drama in an attempt to control Michael's estate.

Source: Contact Music / Billie Jean

Katherine JacksonKatherine Jackson Won't Appear Against Nephew In Court. 28-03-'17

Katherine Jackson will be a no-show Tuesday in a case that has become a family war over control of Michael Jackson's estate.

Katherine has filed for a permanent restraining order against her nephew, Trent Jackson, who has been caring for her since Michael died in 2009. The matriarch filed a declaration saying she thinks Trent has stolen from her and committed elder abuse against her, something Trent has strongly denied.

Katherine is in London, where she's been for months. She has not been seen but some of her kids say she's scared to come back to the U.S. because she's afraid of Trent.

Trent says Katherine's being manipulated by Jermaine and some of her other kids, adding the kids made the stories up and Katherine may not have even signed the declaration.

Trent points to a crazy incident in 2012, where Jermaine and some of the other kids took her to Arizona. At the time Paris went nuclear, saying the her grandma had essentially been kidnapped.

The judge has indicated he may boot the case if Katherine doesn't show, so we'll know at 1:30 PM PDT Tuesday.

Source: TMZ / Billie Jean

The Estate Of Michael Jackson
The Estate Of Michael Jackson.

Victory For Estate ... Judge Tells Ex-Biz Partners To Beat It. 27-03-'17

Michael Jackson's former business partners tried to get a multi-million dollar slice of the pie after MJ's death, but a judge just told them to kick rocks ... TMZ has learned.

Three of the 4 plaintiffs claim they had a meeting with Michael in a Tokyo hotel room on June 1, 2006, and MJ promised them shares of his company. They claim Michael wanted to reward them for their loyalty at a time when the music biz had turned its back on him.

The plaintiffs include MJ's former publicist Raymone Bain and Quadree el-Amin -- a former manager for Boyz II Men -- but they have a big problem. According to docs, there was no written contract, it was an oral agreement. Monday in L.A. the judge said their story lacked credibility, and they were too damn late.

Howard Weitzman, lawyer for the MJ Estate, tells TMZ, "This was a frivolous and outrageous case and these claimants got what they deserved -- which was nothing."

The plaintiffs didn't file their claim until 2014 -- 5 years after Michael's death. The judge said if they really did strike this mega deal -- 1.6% each for 3 of them, and 10% for the 4th -- why not try to get it while Michael was still alive? Not to mention the deadline for such a claim was 2010.

In other words: Too Bad.

Source: TMZ / Billie Jean

Michael Jackson Items On Auction. 26-03-'17

Michael Jackson items are on auction in New York on March 27 which includes few signed items like a 'Ben' vinyl album, some contracts, and a set of hat and glove signed by Michael in a nice presentation box.

Bonhams auctions are showing those items in New York tomorrow for the public to see.

Here few of those, The hat and glove in a presentation box:

Black felt fedora hat, large, with black grosgrain band, with “Michael Jackson” and Dorfman-Pacific Co. Inc. logo stamped in gold to inner lining, signed (“All my love Michael Jackson 1998”) in silver pen to inner brim; plain white cloth glove, signed (“Michael Jackson”) in blue ink, mounted on a clear plastic hand mount; both housed in a rotating, doubled-sided, hinged black lacquered display case with an engraved information plaque about Jackson, a mannequin hand inside, a framed color photograph of Jackson in a similar fedora Velcro-ed to top, another framed color photograph within case depicting Jackson wearing a similar white glove. Classic examples of Jackson’s signature black fedora and white glove.

Black Fedora & Glove
Mr. Jackson himself is represented with a fedora and a single signed glove, and the Bonhams/TCM people clearly think this is highly collectible, since the estimate is $5,000 to $7,000.

A handwritten Michael Jackson lyric sheet ('TS' which became 'DS')

Autograph manuscript, 2 pp, 4to, ballpoint pen on yellow legal paper. Michael Jackson’s song 'T.S.' is commonly believed to be about former Santa Barbara County District Attorney Thomas Sneddon, who spearheaded a legal campaign against Jackson on child abuse charges. These lyrics seem to bear out this assumption: “He think he hot / cause he’s SBDA.” The lyrics were later changed to “He think he bad / cause he’s BTSA,” along with the song’s title, which became 'D.S'., about a “cold” man named Dom Sheldon. 'D.S.' appeared on Jackson’s 1995 album 'HIStory: Past, Present and Future, Book I'.

A Jacksons group of signatures including Michael, Janet, Randy, and Marlon Jackson.

A sheet of Airport Marina Hotels stationery, signed in pencil (“Michael Jackson,” “Marlon Jackson,” “Love / Janet,” “Randy Jackson,” “Ben Adkins / (Bass 1),” 1970's.

More items and information here.

Source: MJ Vibe / Billie Jean

Michael Jackson In SymphonyMichael Jackson In Symphony (Belgium/Brussels). 24-03-'17

Michael Jackson is one of the most popular entertainers of all time. His enormous influence on popular music and culture is undeniable and still felt. Five of his solo albums in the list of the best selling albums ever: 'Off The Wall', 'Thriller', 'Bad', 'Dangerous' and 'HIStory'. The album 'Thriller' is indeed still in first place in the list of more than 70 million copies sold.

During his extraordinary career Jackson sold Michael more than 750 million records. He had 13 number one hits and was one of the few artists that was recorded twice in the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. The Guinness Book of World Records recognized Michael Jackson as the most successful ever entertainer. Jackson won 13 Grammy Awards and received the American Music Award's Artist of he Century Award.

Michael Jackson in symphony on May 4th at Koninklijk Circus Onderrichtsstraat, 81 1000 Brussel. The show begins at 8:00pm.

This grand symphonic show for large choir and orchestra, the European Philharmonia brings under the expert guidance of conductor Walter Proost, a fitting tribute to the greatest artist of the past hundred years. The well-known arranger Roberto Martinello creates symphonic arrangements. He previously worked with José Van Dam, Rodger Hodgson, Philippe Catherine and many others.

The show contains all the hits and a few surprises, but you can at least count on spectacular arrangements of 'Billie Jean', 'Beat It', 'Pretty Young Thing', 'Love Never Felt So Good', 'Don't Stop 'Til You Get Enough', 'Thriller', 'Man In The Mirror', 'Rock With You' and 'Smooth Criminal'.

Order here your tickets.

Source: Ticketmaster / Billie Jean

The Ultimate Collection 2CD Album Cover'The Ultimate Collection' 2CD Album Will Be Released. 24-03-'17

A new double cd album 'The Ultimate Collection' of Michael Jackson will be released in Germany on April 21.

Motown is releasing this compilation which is part of a series including other artists such as The Temptations and The Cranberries.

Track list:

CD 1:
1: Farewell My Summer Love (Album Version) - Michael Jackson - 3:44
2: Melodie - Michael Jackson - 3:28
3: Call On Me (1984 Remix Rersion) - Michael Jackson - 3:39
4: It's Too Late To Change The Time (Album Version) - The Jackson 5 - 4:00
5: You're My Best Friend, My Love (Album Version) - The Jackson 5 - 3:32
6: One Day In Your Life (Album Version) - Michael Jackson - 4:18
7: Who's Looking For A Lover (Album Version) - Michael Jackson - 2:52
8: If 'n I Was God - Michael Jackson - 3:06
9: I'll Come Home To You (Album Version) - Michael Jackson - 3:12
10: Dear Michael (Album Version) - Michael Jackson - 2:42
11: Just A Little Bit Of You (Album Version) - Michael Jackson - 3:15
12: We're Almost There (Album Version) - Michael Jackson - 3:47
13: Music And Me (Album Version) - Michael Jackson - 2:43
14: Morning Glow (Single Version) - Michael Jackson - 3:40

CD 2:
1: Happy (Love Theme From "Lady Sings The Blues") (Album Version) - Michael Jackson - 3:29
2: With A Child's Heart (Album Version) - Michael Jackson - 3:34
3: Maybe Tomorrow (Promo Single Version) - The Jackson 5 - 4:33
4: Never Can Say Goodbye (Single Version) - The Jackson 5 - 3:05
5: Darling Dear (Album Version) - The Jackson 5 - 2:40
6: I Want You Back (Album Version) - The Jackson 5 - 3:05
7: When I Come Of Age (Album Version) - Michael Jackson - 2:41
8: We've Got A Good Thing Going (Single Version) - Michael Jackson - 3:06
9: Shoo-Be-Doo-Be-Doo-Da-Day (Album Version) - Michael Jackson - 3:22
10: People Make The World Go 'Round (Album Version) - Michael Jackson - 3:21
11: Ben (Single Version) - Michael Jackson - 2:48
12: Girl Don't Take Your Love From Me (Album Version) - Michael Jackson - 3:03
13: I Wanna Be Where You Are (Album Version) - Michael Jackson - 3:03
14: Ain't No Sunshine (Album Version) - Michael Jackson - 4:13

Record label: Motown
Series number: B06XDZH21P
Printed: Germany
Guide price: 12 €

Pre-order the cd album here at Amazon.

Source: MJ Vibe / Billie Jean

Crucial Hearing In The Elder Abuse Case Of Michael Jackson's Mother Katherine Delayed. 23-03-'17

Katherine JacksonA critical hearing in Katherine Jackson's elder abuse case was delayed Thursday amid a new battle to force her return from London.

Lawyers for nephew Trent Jackson won the continuance saying the matriarch must appear in person for the court to be sure she wants a permanent restraining order barring Trent from her life.

"She needs to be here. If she's here and she says Trent abused her, so be it," Trent's lawyer Ron Rale said outside the courtroom.

"He loves his aunt. He cares for his aunt. He wants the best for her," Rale said.

Katherine won a temporary restraining order against Trent last month and claimed in a follow-up sworn statement she's "tired of being subjected to his manipulation, mistreatment, abuse of my finances and bullying."

She said Trent, the nephew of her husband Joe Jackson, isolated her from her kids in recent years, screened her calls, copied the key to her bedroom, yelled at her, stole her money and refused to call 911 once when she thought she was having a stroke or seizure.

"I have been afraid to fire him out of fear of his retaliation," she wrote. "This time I am clear and resolute … Enough is enough."

One of her lawyers said Thursday that it's "ridiculous" to force the Jackson family matriarch to return from London — where she's staying with daughter Rebbie — to prove she truly wants him fired.

"They're trying to get an 86-year-old woman to come from London. They're continuing (this matter) over and over, making Katherine come and face this guy. It makes no sense. She's asked him to leave, and he doesn't want to go. It's more of the abuse. She has to spend more money on counsel. It's just ridiculous," lawyer Joy Bass said outside court.

Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge Rolf Treu delayed the hearing until Tuesday and ordered several witnesses to return for possible testimony. He's expected to rule on whether Katherine must appear in person by then.

One witness subpoenaed by Trent was Tito Jackson's son TJ Jackson, a relative who's acted as a co-guardian of Michael Jackson's three kids along with Katherine.

TJ looked uncomfortable and waved hello to Katherine's supporters as he was called into the gallery by the judge and ordered to return next week.

Often seen as a family peacemaker, TJ was a pivotal figure back in 2012 when Katherine was allegedly "kidnapped" by some of her adult kids and taken to Arizona.

Lawyers for Katherine, TJ and the King of Pop's kids went to court saying Katherine went missing from her California home while she was supposed to be caring for Prince, Paris and Blanket, who were all minors at the time.

Katherine's kids Jermaine, Randy, Janet and Rebbie countered that their mother was resting at an Arizona spa, and they subsequently released a letter accusing Michael Jackson's executors of fraud.

A judge granted co-guardianship of Paris, Prince and Blanket to TJ during the family feud.

In recent filings for Katherine's new restraining order against Trent, Jermaine said Katherine went to Arizona to "get rest" on her doctor's orders. He said Trent turned violent when he and Janet tried to visit Katherine's house amid the kidnapping allegations to tell Paris, Prince and Blanket their grandmother was "fine."

"Trent started locking doors," Jermaine recalled of the visit. "Trent hit my nephew in the jaw."

Rale said Thursday that he subpoenaed TJ and wants Katherine present so all the dueling claims about what Katherine truly wants can be settled before a judge.

"Nobody wants to be dragged to court. We just want the truth," he said.

"I'm not sure what TJ is going to say," Rale continued. "He's a guy that public records show (Katherine) trusts and loves."

Source: Daily News / Billie Jean


Michael Jackson 'Tried To Spy On U2'. 22-03-'17

Michael Jackson tried to spy on U2 at the height of their pop rivalry.

The music icon apparently became obsessed with the Irish rock group following the success of their 1988 album 'The Joshua Tree' and so he attempted to send a private film crew to Dublin to tape U2 in the studio in order to uncover their secrets.

But Michael's plan was uncovered by U2's manager Paul McGuinness, who considered it to be a bit "creepy".

Lead singer Bono told The Sun newspaper: "Michael wanted to observe us in our natural habitat."

However, neither Bono or his U2 bandmates commented any further.

It is known that Michael Jackson kept himself informed on the latest sounds, producers and singers so this revelation from U2 is not surprising.

Source: MSN / Billie Jean

Look Back At When Michael Jackson Came To Liverpool. 20-03-'17

This summer The Jacksons will bring Motown to Merseyside when they play at Haydock Park.

But it isn’t the first time members of the musical dynasty have performed here.

The Jacksons - or The Jackson 5 as they were then known - first came to Merseyside back in 1972 when they played for excited fans at the Liverpool Empire.

Back then, the group included 14-year-old Michael - who went on to become the King of Pop.

On September 11th,1988, at the height of his fame, Michael returned to Merseyside as a solo star, for the final British date of his iconic Bad tour.

Bad Tour (11-09-1988)
Bad Tour concert at Aintree Racecourse, Aintree, Merseyside, England, 11th September 1988.

He arrived by helicopter at Speke airport and his entourage travelled to the city centre in three black limousines, with a police escort.

During his stay, the superstar took over an entire floor of the Atlantic Tower hotel, requesting the then £100 a night Port of Liverpool Suite, with sweeping views of the Mersey.

Down at Aintree Racecourse, 125,000 fans - who had each paid £16.50 for a ticket - poured into the venue, some having queued for hours to get a good view of the star. Merseyside Police drafted in 500 extra offices, but the night went off with few problems.

Singer Kim Wilde was the support act, and Jackson’s two hour set included a Beatles medley, in tribute to his Liverpool heroes.

Source: Liverpool Echo / Billie Jean

Thriller LiveRecord-Breaking 'Thriller Live' Announces New Booking Period. 15-03-'17

Michael Jackson famously sang 'Don't Stop Till You Get Enough'.

The West End spectacular 'Thriller Live' that celebrates his musical legacy and groundbreaking dance moves, and which recently became the 15th Longest Running Musical in West End history, is taking that message to heart!

'Blame It On The Boogie'... the show's producers today announce a new 12- month booking period to April 1, 2018!

'Thriller Live', on 26 March becomes the 9th longest running show - musical or play - in the West End, has now been seen by over 4.2 million people in 33 countries and played over 5,400 performances worldwide, never failing to get a standing ovation!

'Thriller Live' first moonwalked into the Lyric Theatre on Shaftesbury Avenue in January 2009 and tonight (Wednesday 14 March) is its 3,403rd West End performance. It holds the record as the longest ever run of a show since the theatre started entertaining the capital in December 1888.

'Thriller Live' first moonwalked into the Lyric Theatre on Shaftesbury Avenue in January 2009 and tonight (Wednesday 14 March) is its 3,403rd West End performance. It holds the record as the longest ever run of a show since the theatre started entertaining the capital in December 1888.

'Thriller Live' is also receiving 5 star rave reviews on a major tour, playing theatres across the UK and several countries across Europe. The final UK dates on the current leg of the tour are Waterfront Hall, Belfast (16 - 18 March); Grand Theatre Swansea (20 - 25 March); Grand Theatre Leeds (11 - 15 April).

A new UK tour will set out in autumn, dates to be announced soon.

In April, 'Thriller Live' will return to the People's Republic of China, where in 2016 it was honoured to be chosen as the opening production at a brand new state-of-the-art 1,200-seat theatre at the new Parisian Hotel Macau. It will take up residency there again running to September 2017.

The London production also today announces its Christmas 2017.

Performance schedule:

week commencing 18 December
6 shows, no shows on Sunday 24 December

week commencing 25 December - 9 Shows

Mon 25/12 - No show
Tue 26/12 - No show
Wed 27/12 - Two shows 3.30/7.30
Thur 28/12 - One show 7.30
Fri 29/12 - Two shows 3.30/7.30
Sat 30/12 - Two shows 4/8
Sun 31/12 - Two shows 3.30/7.30

week commencing 1st Jan

Extra Matinee at 3.30pm on Wednesday 3 January.

Source: Broadway World / Billie Jean

Harper's Bazaar Magazine CoverParis Jackson Says She Was Michael Jackson’s Favorite Child. 15-03-'17

It's Paris Jackson like you've never seen her before! The 18-year-old aspiring actress and musician stuns on the April cover of Harper's Bazaar, looking glam in her vintage Parisian photo shoot.

"I've always wanted to kind of break off and do my own thing, just 'cause I feel I enjoy independence very much," Jackson told the magazine. "When I was a kid, I was with my dad and my two brothers. Growing up, I was treated as the favorite because I was the only girl. I was the princess; I was perfect in my dad's eyes."

As the daughter of the late Michael Jackson, growing up without a father has had a real impact on Paris.

"The first 12 years of my life I was homeschooled," she said, adding, "Which means that the only interactions I'd ever had were with family members or other adults."

This familial bond has been a common thread throughout her life. In fact, during the interview, Paris took a call from a Rolling Stone photographer and when asked by the interviewer why she seemed upset afterwards, replied, "All anyone wants to talk about is my father, and it makes me sad."

But Paris is determined to use her newfound spotlight for a good cause.

"Once I got introduced into the real world, I was shocked. It blew me away," she said. "Not just because it was sexist, but misogynist and racist and cruel. It was scary as hell. And it still is really scary." She added, "I know there are a lot of people who would feel very blessed to be in my position, so I want to use it for important things."

One learning curve the formerly homeschooled teen had to face was working on her social skills.

"I had to force myself to learn so fast," she said. "For the past six years, I've been learning how to communicate. And I think I've gotten pretty good at it.

Source: Yahoo / Billie Jean

A New Attraction To Come With Some MJ Exhibits. 14-03-'17

One of the Media we love so much (sarcasm), National Enquirer will open a themed attraction in Pigeon Forge in Eastern Tennessee.

Along with visitors creating their own tabloid headlines to share on social media, the attraction will also have celebrities exhibits and of course Michael Jackson is one of them!

It is said that the actual hyperbaric chamber used by Michael Jackson will be on display.

The rumor of Michael Sleeping in a chamber started in 1986 when the National Enquirer (AKA the Least Reliable News Source Ever) published a photograph of Jackson laying inside an actual hyperbaric chamber. While the photo IS real, this was a piece of medical equipment inside the Brotman Medical Center’s Michael Jackson Burn Unit, where he was treated for severe scalp burns in 1984. Jackson donated vast sums of money to the Burn Center, making the purchase of this piece of equipment possible. The photo was taken when he crawled inside, being a perpetual joker, and pretended to be asleep.

Michael inside a oxygen chamber (09-1986)
Michael Jackson is pictured inside a hyperbaric oxygen chamber at Brotman Memorial Hospital.

Also other exhibits on Michael Jackson will be present but it is unclear yet of which ones.

No dates have been announced for the opening yet.

Source: MJ Vibe / Billie Jean

New Trial Date Set For alleged Michael Jackson Sex Syndicate Proceedings. 14-03-'17

Wade Robson
Wade Robson

Choreographer Wade Robson is heading to court again in a new trial linked to his molestation allegations against the late Michael Jackson.

The professional dancer, who has worked with Britney Spears, Demi Lovato, and N'SYNC, launched a negligence lawsuit against executives at Jackson's companies MJJ Productions and MJJ Ventures in September (16), claiming the businesses were illegitimate and set up as a ruse to covertly "operate as a child sexual abuse operation".

And now he has been given a chance to prove his accusations next year (18).

According to the New York Daily News, a Los Angeles judge has ruled the case will officially go to trial on 5 March, 2018.

Wade's attorneys now plan to spend the next 12 months "gaining access to the materials needed for a much-anticipated trial".

"We look forward to completing that discovery and disclosing to the public, through trial, the full extent of Michael Jackson’s serial sexual abuse of children, which was facilitated through his companies MJJ Productions and (MJJ) Ventures,” his lawyer Vince Finaldi said in a statement.

However, attorneys representing the companies have little faith the case will make it to trial in 2018, with lawyer Howard Weitzman telling the Daily News, "My opinion is that summary judgment will be granted in this case and there won’t be any trial, but the court did set a trial date for a year away just in case."

Robson, 34, initially launched a claim against Jackson's estate in 2013, but his legal bid was rejected by the courts with magistrates contending he filed papers too late after the singer's 2009 death. The choreographer, who testified in the pop star's defence during his criminal sex abuse trial in 2005, attests Jackson performed sexual acts on him from the ages of seven to 14.

Wade didn't come forward with his assault claims until after Michael's death, because he did not believe he was molested until he entered psychotherapy following a nervous breakdown in 2012.

Source: MSN / Billie Jean

Weird Fashion T-Shirt featuring MJ. 12-03-'17

Rock band T-shirts have been a polarizing topic in fashion for the past year or so. Hardcore rock fans understandably feel that only those who appreciate the music of rock legends have the right to wear them.

Japanese brand Needles decided to create their own take on the rock band T-shirt with these rebuilt styles. Featuring the likes of Led Zeppelin, Journey, The Police and Michael Jackson, the T-shirts adopt classic rock band aesthetics, each of them reconstructed from seven vintage tees.

MJ T-Shirt
But for £135 a T-shirt, I would have preferred to keep the original to be honest with you!

The Needles Rebuild 7 T-shirts are available now here.

Source: MJ Vibe / Good Hood Store / Billie Jean

John SingletonJohn Singleton Remembers Working With Michael Jackson. 07-03-'17

On “The Real” show, director John Singleton talks about his new BET show, “Rebel,” his 1991 directorial debut “Boyz In the Hood,” and how a friend’s prank resulted in him directing Michael Jackson’s 'Remember The Time' video.

Loni Love: You directed Michael Jackson’s music video 'Remember The Time'. Did he personally call you about that?

John Singleton: No, no, it started as a prank. It was a friend of mine, he’s no longer with us. His name is Lloyd Avery II. He’s the guy who shoots Ricky in Boyz n the Hood. He’s from my neighborhood and he called me up late at night. He did a high voice like Michael Jackson… I was like half asleep. I was like, “Fine, whatever. I’ll call you tomorrow. Is this really Michael?” “Yes!” He said, “Call me tomorrow, right.” So I call my agent and said, “Michael Jackson called me out of the blue saying you know, “”He wanted to meet with me. Can you go see what he wants?” They called Michael Jackson. Michael Jackson called me for a meeting and said, “Hey, I wanted to talk to you about doing a video.” I said, “You called me right?” He says, “No, I didn’t call you.” He said he thought his manager Sandy Gallin called me. But Michael said, “No, I didn’t call you.” And then we found out it was my friend Lloyd.

Adrienne Houghton: So it was all from a prank?

John: It was all from a prank that I ended up doing it.

Source: Eurweb / Billie Jean

When Michael Jackson Needed A Guitar Solo, He Called The First Lady Of Shred. 07-03-'17

Jennifer Batten
Jennifer Batten

She is the hellraiser whirling around the King of Pop in the climax of Moonwalker — the cat-suited punk sporting a pointy guitar and an explosion of peroxide blonde. She prowls the stage with Michael Jackson in concert footage from 1987, wearing a three-foot mohawk and a light-up fiber-optic suit, topped only by the guitar solo she unfurls in 'Beat It'. She is Jennifer Batten, a guitarist who spent a decade touring the planet with Jackson in support of albums like 'Bad' and 'Dangerous'. Twenty years after their last concert, Batten is still in awe of the energy he brought to the stage. “Every drum hit, Michael did something with his body,” she says. “Most people, if they did that for one song, they would have to take a nap.”

Batten’s affiliation with Jackson, and subsequent work with Jeff Beck, have made her into something like the first lady of shred guitar, an iconic female virtuoso in a world with surprisingly few of them. Despite a younger generation of formidable players like Carrie Brownstein, St. Vincent, Marnie Stern, Mary Halvorson, and Screaming Females’ Marissa Paternoster, the culture around electric guitars still bulges with an unbecoming bro-y-ness — a boys’ club attitude that Batten says is finally starting to change.

In 1978, she entered the Guitar Institute of Technology — now Musicians Institute — in Los Angeles. She had never performed live and never jammed much with other musicians. (“My mother,” she says, “didn’t want me to go play with strangers at night.”) Shortly Batten discovered something for which her limited experience had not prepared her. Of the entire student body, about 70 players, she was the lone female. “That’s when it really hit me that, ‘Hmm, maybe this isn’t such a normal choice,’” she says, chuckling. “It was a real shock. I don’t know that it even crossed my mind that it would be off-balance at all.”

In 1989, a guitar magazine that interviewed Batten revealed its subscribership as 98 percent male — a higher percentage than that of Playboy or Penthouse. The link between masculinity and electric guitar culture can seem, from one angle, obvious: An academic study by Steve Waksman called Instruments of Desire defines the instrument as a kind of gadget-dick hybrid: a “technophallus.” But anatomy, of course, is not destiny. Batten believes the divide around her instrument instead reflects the persistence of oppressive ideas about gender. “Even now, it’s not okay for women to be aggressive,” she says. “For many generations, if not thousands of years, women were [told to] make the babies and make the food and stay out of the limelight. In a lot of cultures, whether it’s recognized or subtle, women picked that up. And a lot of rock ’n’ roll is really aggressive.”

Batten was playing in five different bands when she got the call, in 1987, to audition for Jackson. She showed up to find no band, just a video camera. She played funky rhythms, followed by her solo arrangement of John Coltrane’s “Giant Steps,” a product of her years of jazz training. Then she tapped out the monstrous solo for 'Beat It', originally recorded by Eddie Van Halen.

A few days went by. Batten was asked to rehearse again, this time with a band. It seemed to go well, but still she heard no final verdict. After even more rehearsals, she was given a passport, a plane ticket to Tokyo, and a makeover that traded her brown hair and glasses for an electric mohawk and heavy makeup. After her arrival, as a gesture of goodwill, Jackson closed Tokyo Disneyland to the public and let his 100-person entourage enjoy themselves without crowds or nagging fans.

Batten was frolicking in the Disneyland gift shop with Sheryl Crow, then a background singer on the tour, when she felt a tap on her shoulder. She turned around to find the King of Pop standing there. “He said, ‘I like how you’re playing the 'Beat It' solo,’” she remembers. “And I thought, ‘Wow, what a great surprise and a validation.’ That was when I knew I had the gig.”

Jennifer Batten performs Wednesday and Thursday, March 8 and 9, at Iridium as part of Her Story, Her Voice, a month-long series of concerts celebrating female musicians.

Source: Village Voice / Billie Jean

A Diamond HIStory In Auction. 06-03-'17

On March 25 at Drouot Auction in Paris, a very rare collector will be on sale: A Diamond History CD. The item was made in limited edition by Epic Records in 1996 to celebrate the 1,000,000 sold copies! This item comes in a purple case and was made for the French Market.

An estimate of this collector is announced between 2000 and 3000 €.

The auctioneer of this auction is Olivier Couteau-Bégarie and it will take place in room 14, 9 rue Drouot in Paris 09ème. The public exhibitions will be held on Friday, March 24 from 11:00 am to 6:00 pm and Saturday, March 25 from 11:00 am to noon or other collection items about Michael Jackson will also be on sale.

You can consult the catalog of sale on the site coutaubegarie.com.

Diamond History CD
This item is said to get to €2,000 at €3,000 at Drouot auctions in Paris on Friday 25 March from 11am!

Source: MJ France / Billie Jean

‘I’m The Son Of The King’: Prince Jackson Says He Knew Dad Michael Was Famous When Grown Men Fainted At His Shows. 06-03-'17

Prince JacksonMichael Jackson‘s eldest son Prince is recalling the moments he learned that his father was the King of Pop.

During a Monday appearance on Good Morning America, the 19-year-old remembered his late father – Jackson died in 2009 – noting that he learned just how famous his music legend dad was when he and his siblings watched footage of Jackson performances.

“We were watching some videos of his performances and I’ve been used to seeing most females pass out when they see their artists. They get, you know, very emotional,” Prince began. “But what blew my mind was when I saw these big, muscle-bound dudes fainting and having to be dragged out.”

He added: “So, I was like, ‘Okay, there’s something else going on here."

Michael died of cardiac arrest in June 2009 at his Los Angeles home. He was 50.

Prince said that it took a while for him and his siblings to fully realize their father’s fame.

“Even to this day, I don’t think it holds the same weight to us that it does to other people, because he was our father, our dad,” he told GMA‘s Robin Roberts.

Instead of following in his father’s footsteps, Prince is developing his talents behind the scenes, founding his own company called King’s Son Productions – a name referencing his father’s King of Pop moniker.

“King’s Son Productions has this mantra where ‘a title is earned, but a name is given.’ So, I was born as Prince and that was the name my dad had given to me,” Prince said. “But my dad had earned the epithet King of Pop and that’s through hard work and years of training and everything he worked so hard to get.”

He added: “So, it’s a form of motivation because my name is Prince, but for all intents and purposes I am the king’s son and working to get my own epithet.”

Source: Yahoo / Billie Jean

Pre-Order 'Michael Jackson: The Short Films - A Tribute To The Filmmaker' Book Vol.1 And Vol.2.

On April 29 and September 29 there will released two new books on Michael Jackson's career.

Michael Jackson: The Short Films - A Tribute To The Filmmaker, Volume 1 (1979/1989).

Michael Jackson: The Short Films - A Tribute To The Filmmaker, Volume 2(1990/2001).

Offered by Picadilly and the magazine 'Invincible', they retrace the entire video of Michael Jackson with more than 200 rare and unpublished photos. (100 photos per book).

The works are offered in the form of a luxurious 68-page photobook, large format 24 x 34 cm with a cardboard cover, glued square backs, matt lamination and metallic printing!

Limited edition and numbered for the first 500 copies.

Michael Jackson: The Short Films Books Covers
Price: 24 euros. 10% reduction for ordering both numbers. (43,20 euros) + shipping costs.

Publisher: ?
Author: Jed Pitman
Pages: 68 per book
Printed: France
Guide price: 43,20 €

Pre-order the books here at Piccadilly Store.

Source: Piccadilly Store / Billie Jean

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