Added on 29-Jun-2009
Hard to know what to say – what to feel. I find myself wondering what might have happened on his tour … the number of dates in the UK that he had committed to was insane … I did have a feeling it was impossible … but I was so shocked to hear that he went so suddenly. Very sad. Of course I still think of him as a boy … he used to come and see us (Queen) play when we were on tour in the States, and he and Freddie became close friends … close enough to record a couple of tracks together at Michael’s house … tracks which have never seen the light of day. Michael was the boy star of the Jackson Five, and always the most screamed at. I remember in their show, they tried very hard to make all the brothers equal in the presentation, but it was abundantly obvious that all most of the girl fans really wanted to see was little Michael. It was Michael who heard our track “Another One Bites the Dust” when he came to see us on “The Game” tour … and told us we were mad if we didn’t release it as a single. Of course this was way before Michael’s monster solo career began … but he was already in search of that fusion between Funk and Rock, Black and White, and the Thriller album was the consummation of that quest. There are many similarities between it and our “Hot Space” album … but our timing was out, really. Michael got it right in every respect … including timing … the world was just ready for it … and of course he was in a sense seeking the same ground, but coming from the opposite direction. Amusingly, after Freddie and Michael has spent some time together recording, Freddie came back and played us the work in progress, and he remarked that Michael had come up with a great album title … BAD. A little later, Freddie smiled his wicked little conspiratorial smile, and said … “I have a perfect idea for our album title – you may love it or hate it … but think about it …. we can call it ….. wait for it …. GOOD”!!!
I think the world is a more colourful place thanks to Michael’s work … he was a truly wonderful performer at his peak – and had a great team around him, including, of course, genius Quincy Jones. I think he qualifies as a great artist; he devoted his whole body and soul to his art. It’s as if, with all the changes he introduced to his body, his art actually became his body and his persona. Yes, I only hope he passed away in happiness, in great hopes and anticipation of his glorious comeback tour. RIP Michael.