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Michael Jackson Interviews (1970's through 2000's)

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Michael Jackson Interviews (1970's through 2000's)

Post by Admin on Wed Aug 01, 2012 4:31 am

This is the MJ Interviews thread for the purpose of posting many dozens of the interviews Michael participated in from the early 70's throughout the rest of his life - I will be posting these interviews 1-2 at a time for several weeks until all I have in archives are all posted-Please feel free to discuss and add additional information in new threads - this thread is primarily only for the interviews I will post-enjoy the many components which will include lovely pictures-some very rare and videos which support each interview. Many of the interview transcripts will include the actual interview (mostly on YT)


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#1-1978 MJ Interview at Hayvenhurst in Encino with Randy Taraborrelli

Post by Admin on Wed Aug 01, 2012 5:04 am

I decided to post one or two interviews at a time for the next few weeks or months to honor MJ – I wanted to return to the times we (well many of us) have experienced with MJ starting well over 30 years ago. These interviews bring back so many memories -some of the best of my life and some of the tough times too.

I have felt the need to reminisce and what better way than to read the actual words MJ spoke about what was important to him about life and love and how he shared all he could and gave all he had.

The 1st interview is in 1978 – 1 week before Michael’s 20th birthday – it takes place in Encino in Michael’s family home on Hayvenhurst with Randy Taraborrelli and a photographer.
I’ll include pictures along with these interviews taken during the same year –

note: If these pix do not open-the site is probably either defunct or has changed the links-I will get additional pictures to add when this occurs very soon after posting each interview

Michael Jackson as the Scarecrow in a 1978 production The Wiz. Yes, he's the Scarecrow, and that's actually Diana Ross as Dorothy in the middle (and Ted Ross as the Lion and Nipsey Russell as the Tin Man

INTERVIEW # 1

>>Interview by Randy J. Taraborrelli (1978)

When John Whyman, the photographer, and I [Taraborrelli] pulled up to the ominous
black wrought-iron gate at 4641 Hayvenhurst, the Jacksons' estate, it stood open, but
Whyman pressed the buzzer on the squawk box anyway. We had heard about the
vicious guard dogs and did not want to take any chances. An electronic camera,
conspicuously mounted on a fifteen-foot-high pole, seemed to zoom in for closer
inspection. Our images, we later learned, were being projected on a closed-circuit
television screen in the Jackson kitchen. "You may come in," said a disembodied
male voice.

We pulled into the circular driveway, a cache of Cadillacs, Rolls Royces, Mercedes-
Benzes, Datsun 240Zs, and a Pantara. Three angry sentry dogs, penned up at the end
of the drive, hurled themselves against the chain link fence. Their ferocious barks
were in contrast to the raucous cries of three large peacocks-one pure white-caged
nearby. The sound from the peacocks was something akin to a baby's wail and a cat's
howl. We decided to wait in the car.

Looking around, I noticed a custom-made street sign, Jackson 5 Boulevard, nailed to a
nearby tree trunk. To the left stood a basketball court. I glanced up at the two-story
house and noticed four expressionless faces staring down at us from as many
windows. Michael, LaToya, Randy, and their mother, Katherine, had their
countenances pressed against the panes as if they were prisoners in a compound.
It seemed that nobody would rescue us, so we took our chances, got out of the car,
and approached the front door. I rang the doorbell. Twenty-two-year-old LaToya, in a
white tennis outfit, answered. When Michael approached seconds later, she excused
herself, walked out into the driveway, got into a sporty red Mercedes convertible, and
sped off.

"Glad you could make it," Michael said as we shook hands.

He was wearing a yellow Jaws T-shirt, black jeans, and a safari hat, around which his
afro seemed to billow. His feet were bare and, to me, he looked painfully thin. He
spoke in an odd, falsetto whisper, which seemed even softer than it had the last time
we had talked. In exactly a week, he would turn twenty.

Michael led us through the house toward the living room. A huge yellow and green
parrot sat perched on a ledge outside the window, shucking peanuts. A red, blue, and
yellow cockatoo eyed us warily through another window. It let out an ear piercing
screech as we sat down. I suddenly felt like I was at a zoo.

"How come you're not getting your guests lemonade?" Katherine asked her son when
she came into the room. I could not help noticing that Michael's mother walked with a
slight limp, the result of a bout with polio she had as a child. At some times the
handicap was more pronounced than at others.

"Oh, sorry," Michael murmured. He dashed off to the kitchen, giving me an
opportunity to talk alone with his forty-nine-year-old- mother while the photographer
set up his equipment.

The house, which they had lived in since 1971, was a combination pale yellow, soft
green, and white, a reflection of Katherine's warm personality. She was gregarious,
friendly, and she had a benevolent glow about her. She told me she had decorated the
house herself as an assignment for a home-decorating class. She mentioned that
Michael's favorite foods were hot apple turnovers and sweet potato pies.

"Only now I can't get him to eat anything. I try and try," she said, shrugging her
shoulders. "I keep thinking he'll eat when he gets hungry, but the boy never gets
hungry. Have you noticed how skinny he is? It worries me."

I looked around at the opulent furnishings. "These last few years have certainly been
good ones," I said to Katherine. "Maybe the best of your life?"

"Not really," she answered thoughtfully. "The best years were back when Michael
was about three and I used to sing folk songs with him. You see, I'd always wanted to
be a country star, but who'd ever heard of a black country star back then? Those
restrictions, again. Anyway, we had one bedroom for the boys and they all slept
together in triple bunk beds. Before going to sleep, we'd all sing. We were all so
happy then. I'd switch my life now and give up all that we have now for just one of
those days back in Gary when it was so much simpler. When we first came to
California, I don't know how many times I said, "I wish things were the way they used
to be in Gary." But things have never been the same," she added sadly. "It's all
changed now."

Michael came back into the room juggling two glasses of lemonade. He handed one to
me and the other to the photographer and then sat in a chair, lotus position. Katherine
excused herself.

During our two-hour interview, Michael shared his thoughts on a wide range of
topics. "I don't know much about politics," Michael admitted. "Nothing, I guess.
Someone told me recently that Gerald Ford was president."

He laughed a silvery peal, as he did often; he was in good spirits this afternoon, not at
all the shy, reclusive superstar he would become in a few years. I laughed with him
because I was certain we were sharing a joke, but we weren't. He was serious.

"I remember when he was vice-president," Michael continued thoughtfully. "That I
remember. But president?" He shrugged his shoulders helplessly. "That I missed."
In just a few years, Michael would become an avid reader and exchange ideas about
politics with Jane Fonda. But at the time, Michael was quite naive about current
events. Astounded at the extreme isolation of this twenty-year-old's world, I began to
probe deeper. "How do you keep up with current events? Do you read newspapers?
Watch TV?"

"I watch cartoons," he told me. "I love cartoons." His eyes lit up. "I love Disney so
much. The Magic Kingdom. Disneyland. It's such a magical place. Walt Disney was a
dreamer, like me. And he made his dreams come true, like me. I hope."

"What about current events?"

Michael looked at me blankly, "Current events?"
"Do you read the paper?" I repeated.

He shook his head no. "See, I like show business. I listen to music all the time. I
watch old movies. Fred Astair movies. Gene Kelly, I love. And Sammy [Davis]. I can
watch those guys all day, twenty-four hours a day. That's what I love the most. Show
business, you know?"

We talked about old movies for a while, and about his involvement in The Wiz, the
film he had just finished shooting in which he plays the Scarecrow. I asked what he
saw as his biggest professional challenge.

"To live up to what Joseph expects of me."
"Joseph? Who's Joseph?" I wondered.
"My father, Joseph."
"You call your father by his first name?" I asked.
"Uh-huh."
"And living up to what he expects of you is a professional challenge?"
Michael mulled over my question. "Yes. A professional challenge."

"What about the personal challenges?"
"My professional challenges and personal challenges are the same thing," he said
uneasily. "I just want to entertain. See, when I was in the second grade, the teacher
asked me what I wished for. I asked for a mansion, for peace in the world, and to be
able to entertain...Can we talk about something else?"

"Do you have any friends that you can really confide in?"
Michael squirmed. "No, not really. I guess I'm pretty lonely."
"How about Tatum O'Neal?" I wondered.

Michael shrugged his shoulders. "She's nice. She was really happy for me when I got
the part in the Wiz. She and Ryan were on my side, helping me with my lines, and I
owe them a lot. Tatum understands me, I guess. She's gonna teach me how to drive a
car. She introduces me to people, famous, famous people. But my real dates, they're
the girls who stand outside the gate out there. I go out and sign autographs for them
when I can. They like that. They stay on one side of the gate, and I stay on the other."

"You mean you keep the gate closed?" I asked.
"Oh, yeah. Of course."

"Any other friends?"
"Well, I do have one friend," he said. "A very dear, close friend that I can tell my
deepest, darkest secrets to because I know she won't tell anyone, not another living
soul. Her name is..." He paused dramatically. "Miss Diana Ross."

"You have deep, dark secrets, Michael?"
He laughed, "Everybody has deep, dark secrets."

At this point, Michael was joined by his brothers Jackie, Tito, Marlon, and Randy.
Michael talked about the group's success at Motown and about the fanatical hysteria
generated by their fame, which Motown tagged "Jacksonmania."

"Once at a record store in San Francisco, over a thousand kids showed up," he said in
a hushed tone. "They all pushed forward and broke a window. A big piece of glass
fell on top of this girl. And the girl's throat..." he paused for effect, "was slit." Michael
swiftly ran his index finger across his neck.

"Michael, don't do that. That's gross," his youngest brother, Randy, said.
Michael ignored Randy and continued with his story. "She just got slit. And I
remember there was blood everywhere. Oh God, so much blood. And she grabbed her
throat and was bleeding and everyone just ignored her. Why? Because I was there and
they wanted to grab at me and get my autograph." Michael sighed. "I wonder
whatever happened to that girl."

"Probably dead," Tito muttered. Jackie tried to stifle a laugh. Fans were as much a curse as a blessing. "We got three guard dogs. One is Heavy, one is Black Girl, and the other one don't got no name," Michael said. "We have to have them," he insisted. "See, once a lady jumped over the gate and into the house and sat down in the den. We came home, and she looked at us and what did she say?" He turned to Marlon for help. "What'd that lady say?" "She said, 'I'm here cause God sent me,'" Marlon replied. "Yeah, God sent her," Michael repeated.

Jackie laughed again. "Yeah, God sent her to sit in the Jackson 5's den and wait for
them to get home so she can get their autograph, and maybe her picture with em too.
She was on a divine mission. Man, that's funny."

"And then once, a whole family managed to get into the estate somehow, and they
toured the whole house," Michael continued. "Lookin' all in our stuff. Findin' all our
most private things. And Janet was here all by herself. It was scary. And sometimes,
fans ask weird questions. They don't think you're real. Once a fan asked me the most
embarrassing question and in front of everyone. She said, "Do you go to the
bathroom?" I was so embarrassed."

In the middle of the interview, the good-natured ribbing among the brothers turned
nasty when someone brought up the subject of nicknames.

"Mike has a nickname," Jackie mentioned. "It's a real good one."
Michael's smiling face suddenly turned dead serious. "Don't, Jackie," he warned. He
looked away.
"We call him-"
"Please, you guys!" Michael pleaded.
"Big Nose," Jackie continued, oblivious to Michael's embarrassment.
The brothers laughed among themselves. Michael's face became flushed.
"Yeah, Big Nose," Marlon repeated, grinning. "We call him Big Nose." Marlon
reached over and punched Michael on the arm playfully. "What's happenin', Big
Nose?"

But Michael was not laughing. He seemed to curl up inside himself. The others
ignored him, continuing their game until Michael seemed close to tears. He would
hardly say anything the rest of the afternoon.

"That ain't funny, guys," Tito said in his monotone.

After the interview, we walked outside to take photographs in the warm California
sunlight. Father Joseph Jackson, a hulking six-footer with a mole on his face, a pencilthin
mustache, and a pinky ring with a diamond the size of a marble, came
swaggering into the yard. "The boys aren't taking any pictures," he said to
photographer Whyman.

"But the publicist from Epic said for us to come dressed for pictures," Marlon
protested.
"Maybe we can get a couple of shots with you in them," Whyman offered, hoping to
charm Joseph.

Joe considered the offer. He took a deep breath and puffed up his chest. "Let's take
some pictures, boys." After the picture session, the photographer and Michael went
off to the aviaries nearby, which were stocked with large, colorful birds. Joseph
Jackson approached me.

"You see, I have a philosophy about raising children," he suddenly said, although I
hadn't asked him a question. "My father was strict. He was a schoolteacher, and he
treated me like I was one of his students, not like I was his son. I never got any special
treatment from him. And I'm glad that happened. I got a strict raising when I was
young, and I've been able to accomplish a lot because of that. And my kids have
gotten a strict raising, and look at what they've accomplished. I think children should
fear their parents more. It's good when they fear you a little. It's good for them, and
it's good for the parents too. I did my best with those boys, the best I could do."

"Have they ever disappointed you?" I asked.
Joe pondered the question. "Lots of times," he said. "Look at the thing with Jermaine.
Jermaine's over there with Berry at Motown instead of with us. Chose Berry over me.
Do you know how that makes me feel? It hurts deep. It hurts right here." Joe thumped
the left side of his chest with a clenched fist.

"I've been disappointed lots of other times too," he continued. "But I don't think I have
ever once let my boys down. If I did, too bad for them. You do the best you can do,
raising kids. It helped that they had something to look forward to.

"My boys, they always had entertainment, and me to rehearse them. And they also
play character-building sports like football and baseball," he said proudly. "Did they
tell you that? Jackie coulda been a baseball player if he wanted to. In the majors.
Chicago White Sox. They're all good at sports. Except for Michael. Never picked up a
bat in his whole life." Joe smiled. "Wouldn't know what to do with a baseball bat. We
tease him about it, but he don't like that too much. Michael has always been very, very
sensitive.

"Another thing you should know about Michael," Joe said, "is that ever since he was
four, he wanted to be an entertainer. And he always wanted to be number one. That's
why sports upsets him so much, cause his brothers can whip him and outdo him at
sports and he can't be number one. But in music, Michael knows he's number one.
Number one," Joe repeated, nodding his head. "That's what Michael has always
wanted to be. Number one.

"And speakin' of Michael, Marlon told me what happened. You're not gonna write
that part about Michael's nickname, are you?" he asked.
I told him I wasn't certain how I would handle it.
He doesn't like that nickname they gave him. Liver Lips."
"Liver Lips? They told me his nickname is Big Nose."

"Oh, yeah," Joe said. "That boy's so sensitive about his nose. Do you see anything
wrong with his nose?"
I shook my head. "No, not at all."
"Me neither," Joe said. "But that's all he ever talks about. His damn nose. Threatened
to have it fixed. What can he do with it?" Joe looked perplexed. "I told him I'd break
his face if he ever had it fixed." He laughed. "You don't fix something that ain't broke.
He's got a great nose. It looks like mine."

Afterwards, Michael returned to the living room for some final thoughts about his life
and career. As the photographer and I watched, he crossed his left leg over his right
knee and began absentmindedly picking at his toenails.

"When I'm not onstage, I'm not the same. I'm different," he observed. "I think I'm
some kind of stage addict. When I don't get onto a stage for a long time, I have fits
and get real crazy. I start crying, and I act weird and all freaked out. No kiddin', I do. I
start to dancin' round the house."

He began to talk rapidly. "It's like a part of me is missin' and I gotta get it back, cause
if I don't, I won't be complete. So I gotta dance and I gotta sing, you know? I have this
craving. Onstage is the only place I'm comfortable. I'm not comfortable around...," he
paused, searching for the right word, "normal people. But when I get out onstage, I
really open up and I have no problems. Whatever is happening in my life don't matter
no more. I'm up there and cuttin' loose and I say to myself, "This is it. This is home.

This is exactly where I'm supposed to be, where God meant for me to be." I'm
unlimited when I'm onstage. I'm number one. But when I'm off the stage," he
shrugged his shoulders, "I'm not really..." Again he paused, trying to find the right
word. "Happy."

Earlier in the day, I had conducted an interview with Sidney Lumet, director of The
Wiz. "Michael Jackson is the most gifted entertainer to come down the pike since, I
guess, James Dean," Lumet told me. "He's a brilliant actor and dancer, probably one
of the rarest entertainers I have ever worked with. His talent is awesome."

I shared Lumet's observation with Michael. He seemed embarrassed for a moment.
"Who's James Dean?" He asked.

Later, he began talking about his role as the Scarecrow in The Wiz. "What I like about
my character," he observed, "is his, I guess you could call it, his confusion. He knows
that he has these, uh, these problems, I guess you could call them. But he doesn't
know exactly why he has them or how he got that way. And he understands that he
sees things differently from the way everyone else does, but he can't put his finger on
why. He's not like other people. No one understands him. So he goes through his
whole life with this, uh...," he paused, "confusion."

Michael Jackson looked away from his toenails for a split second. "Everybody thinks
he's very special," he concluded thoughtfully, "But, really, he's very sad. He's so, so
sad. Do you understand?" He asked urgently. "Do you understand his sadness?"


Last edited by Admin on Wed Aug 08, 2012 8:35 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Interview #2 Part 1 ~ Rolling Stone Interview February 17, 1983

Post by Admin on Fri Aug 03, 2012 11:25 am

Interview #2 Part 1

Rolling Stone Interview February 17, 1983

Michael Jackson: Life In The Magical Kingdom by Gerri Hirshey

IT'S NOON, AND SOMEWHERE IN THE SAN FERNANDO Valley, the front
shades of a row of condos are lowered against a hazy glare. Through the metal gate,
the courtyard is silent, except for the distance splat of a fountain against its plastic
basin. Then comes the chilling whine of a real-life Valley girl. "Grandmuther. I am
not gonna walk a whole block. It's humid. My hair will be brillo."
And the soothing counterpoint of maternal encouragement: "Be good pup, Jolie. Make
for mama."

All along the courtyard's trimmed inner paths, poodles waddle about trailing poodlecut
ladies on pink leashes.
"Not what you expected, huh?" From behind a mask of bony fingers, Michael Jackson
giggles. Having settled his visitor on the middle floor of his own three-level condo,
Michael explains that the residence is temporary, while his Encino, California, home
is razed and rebuilt. He concedes that this is an unlikely spot for a young prince of
pop.

It is also surprising to see that Michael has decided to face this interview alone. He
says he has not done anything like this for over two years. And even when he did, it
was always with a cordon managers, other Jackson brothers and, in one case, his
younger sister Janet parroting a reporter's questions before Michael would answer
them. The small body of existing literature paints him as excruciatingly shy. He
ducks, he hides, he talks to his shoe tops. Or he just doesn't show up. He is known to
conduct his private life with almost obsessive caution, "just like a hemophiliac who
can't afford to be scratched in any way." The analogy is his.

Run this down next to the stats, the successes, and it doesn't add up. He has been the
featured player with the Jackson Five since grade school. In 1980, he stepped out of
the Jacksons to record his own LP, Off the Wall, and it became the best-selling album
of the year. Thriller, his new album, is Number Five on the charts. And the list of
performers now working with him--or wanting to--includes Paul McCartney, Quincy
Jones, Steven Spielberg, Diana Ross, Queen and Jane Fonda. On record, onstage, on
TV and screen, Michael Jackson has no trouble stepping out. Nothing scares him, he
says. But this....

"Do you like doing this?" Michael asks. There is a note of incredulity in his voice, as
though he were asking the question of a coroner. He is slumped in a dining-room
chair, looking down into the lower level of the living room. It is filled with statuary.
There are some graceful, Greco-Roman type bronzes, as well as a few pieces from the
suburban birdbath school. The figures are frozen around the sofa like some ghostly tea
party.

Michael himself is having little success sitting still. He is so nervous that he is eating--
plowing through--a bag of potato chips. This is truly odd behavior. None of his
brothers can recall seeing anything snacky pass his lips since he became a strict
vegetarian health-food disciple six years ago. In fact, Katherine Jackson, his mother,
worries that Michael seems to exist on little more than air. As far as she can tell, her
son just has no interest in food. He says that if he didn't have to eat to stay alive, he
wouldn't.

"I really do hate this," he says. Having polished off the chips, he has begun to fold and
refold a newspaper clipping. "I am much more relaxed onstage than I am right now.
But hey, let's go." He smiles. Later, he will explain that "let's go" is what his
bodyguard always says when they are about to wade into some public fray. It's also a
phrase Michael has been listening for since he was old enough to tie his own shoes.
LET'S GO, BOYS. With that, Joe Jackson would round up his sons Jackie, Tito,
Jermaine, Marlon and Michael. "Let's go" has rumbled from the brothers' preshow
huddle for more than three-quarters of Michael's life, first as the Jackson Five on
Motown and now as the Jacksons on Epic. Michael and the Jacksons have sold over a
100 million records. Six of their two dozen Motown singles went platinum; ten others
went gold. He was just eleven in 1970 when their first hit, "I Want You Back,"
nudged out B.J. Thomas' "Raindrops Keep Fallin' on My Head," for Number One.
Michael says he knew at age five, when he sang "Climb Ev'ry Mountain" in school
and laid out the house, that something special was going on. Back then, such
precocity frightened his mother. But years later it soothed hearts and coffers at Epic
when Off the Wall sold over 5 million in the U.S., another 2 million worldwide and
one of its hit singles, "Don't Stop 'Til You Get Enough," won him a Grammy. The LP
yielded four Top Ten hit singles, a record for a solo artist and a feat attained only by
Fleetwood Mac's Rumours, and by the combined efforts on the Grease and Saturday
Night Fever soundtracks.

If a jittery record industry dared wager, the smart money would be on Michael
Jackson. Recent months have found him at work on no fewer than three projects: his
own recently released Thriller; Paul McCartney's work-in-progress, which will
contain two Jackson-McCartney collaborations, "Say, Say, Say" and "The Man"; and
the narration and one song for the storybook E.T. album on MCA for director Steven
Spielberg and producer Quincy Jones. In his spare time, he wrote and produced Diana
Ross' single "Muscles." This indeed a young man in a hurry. Already he is looking
past the album he is scheduled to make with the Jacksons this winter. There is a
chance of a spring tour. And then there are the movies. Since his role as the scarecrow
in The Wiz, his bedroom has been hip-deep in scripts.

At twenty-four, Michael Jackson has one foot planted firmly on either side of the
Eighties. His childhood hits are golden oldies, and his boyhood idols have become his
peers. Michael was just ten when he moved into Diana Ross' Hollywood home. Now
he produces her. He was five when the Beatles crossed over; now he and McCartney
wrangle over the same girl on Michael's single "The Girl Is Mine." His showbiz
friends span generations as well. He hangs out with the likes of such other kid stars as
Tatum O'Neal and Kristy McNichol, and ex-kid star Stevie Wo nder. He gossips long
distance with Adam Ant and Liza Minnelli, and has heart-to-hearts with octogenarian
Fred Astaire. When he visited the set of On Golden Pond, Henry Fonda baited
fishbooks for him. Jane Fonda is helping him learn acting. Pen pal Katharine Hepburn
broke a lifelong habit of avoiding rock by attending a 1981 Jacksons concert at
Madison Square Garden.

Even E.T. would be attracted to such a gentle spirit. according to Steven Spielberg,
who says he told Michael, "If E.T. didn't come to Elliot, he would have come to your
house." Spielberg also says he thought of no one else to narrate the saga of his
timorous alien. "Michael is one of the last living innocents who is in complete control
of his life. I've never seen anybody like Michael. He's an emotional star child."

CARTOONS ARE FLASHING SILENTLY ACROSS THE GIANT screen that
glows in the darkened den. Michael mentions that he loves cartoons. In fact, he loves
all things "magic." This definition is wide enough to include from Bambi to James
Brown.

"He's so magic," Michael says of Brown, admitting that be patterned his own
quicksilver choreography on the Godfather's classic bag of stage moves. "I'd be in the
wings when I was like six or seven. I'd sit there and watch him."

Michael's kindergarten was the basement of the Apollo Theater in Harlem. He was
too shy to actually approach the performers the Jackson Five opened for--everyone
from Jackie Wilson to Gladys Knight, the Temptations and Etta James. But he says he
had to know everything they did--how James Brown could do a slide, a spin and a
split and still make it back before the mike hit the floor. How the mike itself
disappeared through the Apollo stage floor. He crept downstairs, along passageways
and walls and hid there, peering from behind the dusty flanks of old vaudeville sets
while musicians tuned, smoked, played cards and divvied barbecue. Climbing back
tothe wings, he stood in the protective folds of the musty maroon curtain, watching
his favorite acts, committing every double dip and every bump, snap, whip-it-back
mike toss to his inventory of night moves. Recently, for a refresher course, Michael
went to see James Brown perform at an L.A. club. "He's the most electrifying. He can
take an audience anywhere he wants to. The audience just went bananas. He went
wild--and at his age. He gets so out of himself."

Getting out of oneself is a recurrent theme in Michael's life, whether the subject is
dancing, singing or acting. As a Jehovah's Witness, Michael believes in an impending
holocaust, which will be followed by the second coming of Christ. Religion is a large
part of his life, requiring intense Bible study and thrice-weekly meetings at a nearby
Kingdom Hall. He has never touched drugs and rarely goes near alcohol. Still, despite
the prophesied Armageddon, the spirit is not so dour as to rule out frequent hops on
the fantasy shuttle.

"I'm a collector of cartoons," he says. "All the Disney stuff, Bugs Bunny, the old
MGM ones. I've only met one person who has a bigger collection than I do, and I was
surprised--PaulMcCartney. He's a cartoon fanatic. Whenever I go to his house, we
watch cartoons. When we came here to work on my album, we rented all these
cartoons from the studio, Dumbo and some other stuff. It's real escapism. It's like
everything's all right. It's like the world is happening now in a faraway city.
Everything's fine.

"The first time I saw E.T., I melted through the whole thing," he says. "The second
time, I cried like crazy. And then, in doing the narration, I felt like I was there with
them, like behind a tree or something, watching everything that happened."

So great was Michael's emotional involvement that Steven Spielberg found his
narrator crying in the darkened studio when he got to the part where E.T. is dying.
Finally, Spielberg and producer Quincy Jones decided to run with it and let Michael's
voice break. Fighting those feelings would be counterproductive--something Jones
had already learned while producing Off the Wall.

"I had a song I'd been saving for Michael called "She's Out of My Life," he
remembers. "Michael heard it, and it clicked. But when he sang it, he would cry.
Every time we did it, I'd look up at the end and Michael would be crying. I said, 'We'll
come back in two weeks and do it again, and maybe it won't tear you up so much.'
Came back and he started to get teary. So we left it in."

This tug of war between the controlled professional and the vulnerable, private
Michael surfaces in the lyrics he has written for himself. In "Bless His Soul," a song
on the Jacksons' Destiny LP that Michael says is definitely about him, he sings:
Sometimes I cry cause I'm confused.

Is this a fact of being used?
There is no life for me at all
Cause I give myself at beck and call.

Two of the Jackson-written cuts on Thriller strengthen that defensive stance. "They
eat off you, you're a vegetable," he shouts on "Wanna Be Startin' Somethin'." "Beat
It," a tense, tough dance cut, flirts with paranoia" "You have to show them that you're
really not scared/You're playin' with your life, this ain't no truth or dare/ They'll kick
you, then they beat you/Then they'll tell you it's fair."

Yes, he says, he feels used, declining specifics, saying only that in his profession,
"They demand that, and they want you to do this. They think thay they own you, they
think they made you. If you don't have faith, you go crazy. Like not doing interviews.
If I talk, I say what's on my mind, and it can seem strange to other peoples' ears. I'm
the kind of person who will tell it all, even though it's a secret. And I know that things
should be kept private."

For his own protection, Michael has rigged himself of a set of emotional floodgates,
created situations where it's okay to let it all out. "Some circumstances require me to
be real quiet," he says. "But I dance every Sunday." On that day, he also fasts.
This, his mother confirms, is a weekly ritual that leaves her son laid out, sweating,
laughing and crying. It is also a ritual very similar to Michael's performances. Indeed,
the weight of the Jacksons' stage show rests heavily on his narrow, sequined
shoulders. There is nothing tentative about his solo turns. He can tuck his long, thin
frame into a figure skater's spin without benefit of ice or skates. Aided by the burn
and flash of silvery body suits, he seems to change molecular structure at a will, all
robot angles one second and rippling curves the next. So sure is the body that his eyes
are often closed, his face turned upward to some unseen muse. The bony chest heaves.
He pants, bumps and squeals. He has been known to leap offstage and climb up into the
rigging.

At home, in his room, he dances until he falls down. Michael says the Sunday dance
sessions are also an effective way to quiet his stage addiction when he is not touring.
Sometimes in these off periods, another performer will call him up from the audience.
And in the long, long trip from his seat to the stage, the two Michaels duke it out.
"I sit there and say, 'Please don't call me up, I am too shy,'" Jackson says. "But once I
get up there, I take control of myself. Being onstage is magic. There's nothing like it.
You feel the energy of everbody who's out there. You feel it all over your body. When
the lights hit you, it's all over, I swear it is."

He is smiling now, sitting upright, trying to explain weightlessness to the earthbound.
"When it's time to go off, I don't want to. I could stay up there forever. It's the same
thing with making a movie. What's wonderful about a film is that you can become
another person. I love to forget. And lots of times, you totally forget. It's like
automatic pilot. I mean--whew."

During shooting for The Wiz, he became so attached to his Scarecrow character, the
crew literally had to wrench him from the set and out of his costume. He was in Oz,
and wasn't keen on leaving it for another hotel room.

"That's what I loved about doing E.T. I was actually there. The next day, I missed him
a lot. I wanted to go back to that spot I was yesterday in the forest. I wanted to be
there."

Alas, he is still at the dining-room table in his condo. But despite the visible strain,
he's holding steady. And he brightens at a question about his animals. He says he talks
to his menagerie every day. "I have two fawns. Mr. Tibbs looks like a ram; he's got
the horns. I've got a beautiful llama. His name is Louie." He's also into exotic birds
like macaws, cockatoos and a giant rhea.

"Stay right there," he says, "and I'll show you something." He takes the stairs to his
bedroom two at a time. Though I know we are the only people in the apartment, I hear
him talking.

"Aw, were you asleep? I'm sorry...."
Seconds later, an eight-foot boa constrictor is deposited on the dining-room table. He
is moving in my direction at an alarming rate.
"This is Muscles. And I have trained him to eat interviewers."

Muscles, having made it to the tape recorder and flicked his tongue disdainfully,
continues on toward the nearest source of warm blood. Michael thoughtfully picks up
the reptile as its snub nose butts my wrist. Really, he insists, Muscles is quite sweet.
It's all nonsense, this stuff about snakes eating people. Besides, Muscles isn't even
hungry; he enjoyed his weekly live rat a couple of days ago. If anything, the stranger's
presence has probably made Muscles a trifle nervous himself. Coiled around his
owner's torso, his tensile strength has made Michael's forearm a vivid bas-relief of
straining blood vessels. To demonstrate the snake's sense of balance, Michael sets him
down on a three-inch wide banister, where he will remain, motionless, for the next
hour or so.

"Snakes are very misunderstood," he says. Snakes, I suggest, may be the oldest
victims of bad press. Michael whacks the table and laughs.
"Bad press. Ain't it so, Muscles?

The snake lifts its head momentarily, then settles back on the banister. All three of us
are a bit more relaxed.
"Know what I also love?" Michael volunteers. "Manikins,"

Yes, he means the kind you see wearing mink bikinis in Beverly Hills store windows.
When his new house is finished, he says he'll have a room with no furniture, just a
desk and a bunch of store dummies.

"I guess I want to bring them to life. I like to imagine talking to them. You know what
I think it is? Yeah, I think I'll say it. I think I'm accompanying myself with friends I
never had. I probably have two friends. And I just got them. Being an entertainer, you
just can't tell who is your friend. And they see you so differently. A star instead of a
next-door neighbor."

He pauses, staring down at the living-room statues.
"That's what it is. I surround myself with people I want to be my friends. And I can do
that with manikins. I'll talk to them."

All of this is not to say that Michael is friendless. On the contrary, people are
clamoring to be his friend. That's just the trouble: with such staggering numbers
knocking at the gate, it becomes necessary to sort and categorize. Michael never had a
school chum. Or a playmate. Or a steady girlfriend. The two mystery friends he
mentioned are his first civilians. As for the rest....

"I know people in show business."
Foremost is Diana Ross, with whom he shares his "deepest, darkest secrets" and
problems. But even when they are alone together, their world is circumscribed. And
there's Quincy Jones, "who I think is wonderful. But to get out of the realm of show
business, to become like everybody else...."
To forget. To get out of the performing self.

"Me and Liza, say. Now, I would consider her a great friend, but a show-business
friend. And we're sitting there talking about this movie, and she'll tell me all about
Judy Garland. And then she'll go, 'Show me that stuff you did at rehearsal.'" He feints
a dance move. "And I'll go, 'Show me yours.' We're totally into each other's
performance."

This Micahel does not find odd, or unacceptable. It's when celebrity makes every
gesture stars simply make up their minds to get on with things, no matter what. Diana
Ross marched bravely into a Manhattan shoe store with her three daughters and I had
them fitted for running shoes, despite the crowd of 200 that convened on the sidewalk.
Michael, who's been a boy in a bubble since the age of reason, would find that
intolerable. He will go to only one L.A. restaurant, a health-food place where the
owners know him. As for shopping, Michael avoids it by having a secretary or aide
pick out clothes for him. "You don't get peace in a shop. If they don't know your
name, they know your voice. And you can't hide."

He won't say love stinks. But sometimes it smarts.
"Being mobbed hurts. You feel like you're spaghetti among thousands of hands.
They're just ripping you and pulling your hair. And you feel that any moment you're
gonna just break."

Thus, Michael must travel with the veiled secrecy of a pasha's prized daughter. Any
tourism is attempted from behind shades, tinted limo glass and a bodyguard's somber
serge. Even in a hotel room, he hears females squeal and scurry like so many mice in
the walls.

"Girls in the lobby, coming up the stairway. You hear guards getting them out of
elevators. But you stay in your room and write a song. And when you get tired of that,
you talk to yourself. Then let it all out onstage. That's what it's like."

No argument -- it ain't natural. But about those store dummies? Won't it be just as
eerie to wake up in the middle of the night to all those polystyrene grins?
"Oh, I'll give them names. Like the statues you see down there." He motions to the
living-room crowd. "They've got names. I feel as if they know them. I'll go down
there and talk to them."

A restless rhthym is jiggling his foot, and the newspaper clipping has long been
destroyed. Michael is apologetic, explaining that he can sit still for just so long. On an
impulse, he decides to drive us to the house under construction. Though his parents
forced him to learn two years ago, Michael rarely drives. When he does, he refuses to
travel freeways, taking hour-long detours to avoid them. He has learned the way to
only a few "safe" zones--his brothers' homes, the health-food restaurant and the
Kingdom Hall.

First, Muscles must be put away. "He's real sweet," Michael says as he unwinds the
serpent from the banister. "I'd like you to wrap him around you before you go."
This is not meant as a prank, and Michael will not force the issue. But fear of
interviews can be just as deep-rooted as fear of snakes, and in consenting to talk,
Michael was told the same thing he's telling me now: Trust me. It won't hurt you.
We compromise. Muscles cakewalks across an ankle. His tongue is dry. It just tickles.
Block out the primal dread, and it could be a kitten whisker. "You truly believe," says
Michael, "with the power of reason, that this animal won't harm you now, right? But
there's this fear, built in by the world, by what people say, that makes you shy away
like that."

Having politely made their point, Michael and Muscles disappear upstairs.

Pictures:

MJ with "Muscles"
[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]

Mj and E.T.
[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]


Last edited by Admin on Wed Aug 08, 2012 8:35 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Interview #2 Part 2 ~ Rolling Stone Interview February 17, 1983

Post by Admin on Fri Aug 03, 2012 12:37 pm

Interview #2 Part 2
Rolling Stone Interview February 17, 1983

Michael Jackson: Life In The Magical Kingdom by Gerri Hirshey
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Part 2 cont.

"HI, MICHAEL." A few such girlish messages are scratched into the paint of a
somber security sign on the steel driveway gate at his house. There is a fence, dogs
and guards, but girls still will loiter outside, in cars and in bushes.

As Michael conducts the tour of the two-story Tudor-style house, it's clear that the
room he will sleep in is almost monkish compared to those he has had designed for
his pleasures and the ones reserved for his sisters Janet and LaToya, who pored over
every detail of their wallpapered suites. "Girls are fussy," he explains, stepping over a
power saw in his bedroom. "I just don't care. I wanted room to dance and have my
books."

The rooms Michael inspects most carefully are those marked for recreation. "I'm
putting all this stuff in," he says, "so I will never have to leave and go out there." The
"stuff" includes a screening room with two professional projectors and a giant
speaker. And then an exercise room, one for videogames and another with a giantscreen
video system. In addition, there is a huge chamber off the backyard patio,
which has been designated the Pirate Room. It will be not so much decorated as
populated. More dummies. But this set will talk back. Michael has been consulting
with a Disney technician, the very man who designed the Audio-Animatronics figures
for the Disneyland ride Pirates of the Caribbean. If all goes well, he will install
several scowling, scabbard-waving buccaneers, wenches and sea dogs right here.
"There won't be any rides," Michael says. "But there will be a pirate shootout,
cannons guns. They'll just scream at one another and I'll have the lights, sounds,
everything."

Pirates is one of his favorite rides in the Magic Kingdom. And Disneyland is one of
the few public spots even he cannot stay away from. Sometimes Michael stops at a
magic booth and buys one of those Groucho Masks -- fake glasses with nose attached.
But it's better when the staff leads him through back doors and tunnels. It's murder to
cross the Court of Sleeping Beauty's Castle in daylight. "I tried to go just last night,
but it was closed," he says with some disbelief. "So was Knott's Berry Farm."
If you live in the funhouse, you usually don't have to worry about such things.

Michael has sung it himself:
Life ain't so bad at all, if you live it off the wall.

WHEN WE ARRIVE BACK AT THE condo, Michael finds that a test pressing of
"The Girl is Mine" has been delivered. This is business. He must check it before
release, he explains, as he heads for a listen on the stereo in the den. Before the record
is finished, he is puching at phone buttons. In between calls to accountants and
managers, he says that he makes all his own decisions, right down to the last sequin
on his stage suits -- the only clothes he cares about. He says he can be a merciless
interviewer when it comes to choosing management, musicians and concert promoters.

He assesses their performances with the rigor of an investigative reporter,
questioning his brothers, fellow artists and even reporters for observations. Though he
truly believes his talent comes from God, he is acutely aware of its value on the open
market. He is never pushy or overbearing, but he does appreciate respect. Do not ask
him, for insurance, how long he has been with a particular show-business firm. "Ask
me," he corrects, "how long they've been with me."

Those who have worked with him do not doubt his capability. Even those to whom he
is a star child. "He's in full control," says Spielberg. "Sometimes he appears to other
people to be sort of wavering on the fringes of twilight, but there is great conscious
forethought behind everything he does. He's very smart about his career and the
choices he makes. I think he is definitely a man of two personalities."

When Michael was looking for a producer for his solo album, Quincy Jones was
happy to hear from him. Jones knew Michael was in a special class. A few things
tipped him off, he says. First there was the Academy Awards ceremony at which
Jones watched twelve-year-old Michael deliver a trash-flick love song to a fascist
rodent ("Ben") with astounding poise. Years later, while working with him on The
Wiz soundtrack, Jones says, "I saw another side. Watching him in the context of being
an actor, I saw a lot of things about him as a singer that rang a lot of bells. I saw a
depth that was never apparent, and a commitment. I saw that Michael was growing
up."

In the studio, Jones found that his professionalism had matured. In fact, Michael's
nose for things is so by-your-leave funky that Jones started calling him Smelly.
Fortunately, when corporate rumblings feared the partnership too unlikely to work,
Smelly hung tough and cocked an ear inward to his own special rhythms.

Indeed, Off the Wall's most memorable cuts are the Jackson-penned dance tunes.
"Working Day and Night" with all its breathy asides and deft punctuation, could only have been
written by a dancer. "Don't Stop 'Til You Get Enough," the album's biggest-selling
single, bops along with that same appealing give-and-go between restraint and
abandon.

The song begins with Michael talking in a low mumble over a taut, singlestring
bass bomp:
"You know, I was wonderin'...you know the force, it's got a lot of power, make me
feel like a...make me feel like...."

Ooooooh. Fraidy cat breaks into disco monster, with onrushing strings and a sexy,
cathartic squeal. The introduction is ten seconds of perfect pop tension. Dance boogie
is the welcome release. The arrangement -- high, gusting strings and vocals over a
thudding, in-the-pocket rhythm -- is Michael's signature. Smelly, the funky sprite.
It works. Such a creature as Michael is the perfect pop hybrid for Eighties. The
fanzine set is not scared off by raunchy lyrics and chest hair. But the R-rated uptown
dance crowd can bump and slide right along the greasy tracks.

Thriller is eclectic enough to include African chants and some ripping macho-rock guitar work by Eddie Van Halen. It is now being called pop-soul by those into marketing categories.

Michael says he doesn't care what anybody wants to call it. Just how it all came about
is still a mystery to him--as is the creative process itself.

"I wake up from dreams and go, 'Wow, put this down on paper,'" he says. "The whole
thing is strange. You hear the words, everything is right there in front of your face.
And you say to yourself, 'I'm sorry, I just didn't write this. It's there already.' That's
why i hate to take credit for the songs I've written. I feel that somewhere, someplace,
it's been done and I'm just a courier bringing it into the world. I really believe that. I
love what I do. I'm happy at what I do. It's escapism."

Again, that word. But Michael is right. There is no better definition for good, wellmeaning,
American pop. Few understand this better than Diana Ross, that Tamla teen
turned latter-day pop diva. Her closeness to Michael began when she met the
Jacksons.

"No, I didn't discover them," she says, countering the myth. Motown head Berry
Gordy had already found them; she simply introduced them on her 1971 television
special. "There was an identification between Michael and I," she says. "I was older,
he kind of idolized me, and he wanted to sing like me."

She has been pleased to watch Michael become his own person. Still, she wishes he
would step out even more. She says she had to be firm and force him to stay in his
role as producer on "Muscles." He wanted them to do it jointly. She insisted he go it
alone.

"He spends a lot of time, too much time, by himself. I try to get him out. I rented a
boat and took my children and Michael on a cruise. Michael has a lot of people
around him, but he's very afraid. I don't know why. I think it came from the early
days."

Michael's show-business friends, many of them women not thought of as especially
motherly, do go to great lengths to push and prod him into the world, and to keep him
comfortable. When he's in Manhattan, Ross urges him to go to the theater and the
clubs, and counteroffers with quiet weekends at her Connecticut home. In notes and
phone calls, Katharine Hepburn has been encouraging about his acting.

Michael has recorded much of this counsel in notebooks and on tape. Visiting Jane
Fonda -- whom he's known since they met at a Hollywood party a few years ago--on
the New Hampshire set of On Golden Pond proved to be an intensive crash course. In
a mirror version of his scenes with the stepgrandson in the movie, Henry fonda took
his daughter's rockstar friend out on the lake and showed him how to fish. They sat on
a jetty for hours, talking trout and theater. The night Fonda died, Michael spent the
evening with Fonda's widow, Shirlee, and his children Jane and Peter. He says they
sat around, laughing and crying and watching the news reports. The ease with which
Michael was welcomed into her family did not surprise Jane Fonda. Michael and her
father got on naturally, she says, because they were so much alike.

"Dad was also painfully self-concious and shy in life," she says, "and he really only
felt comfortable when he was behind the mask of a character. He could liberate
himself when he was being someone else. That's a lot like Michael.

"In some ways," she continues, "Michael reminds me of the walking wounded. He's
an extremely fragile person. I think that just getting on with life, making contact with
people, is hard enough, much less to be worried about whither goest the world.

"I remember driving with him one day, and I said, 'God, Michael, I wish I could find a
movie I could produce for you.' And suddenly I knew. I said, 'I know what you've got
to do. It's Peter Pan.' Tears welled up in his eyes and he said, 'Why did you say that?'
with this ferocity. I said, 'I realize you're Peter Pan.' And he started to cry and said,
'You know, all over the walls of my room are pictures of Peter Pan. I've read
eerything that [author J.M.] Barrie wrote. I totally identify with Peter Pan, the lost boy
of neven-never land.'"

Hearing that Francis Coppola may be doing a film version, Fonda sent word to him
that he must talk to Michael Jackson. "Oh, I can see him," she says, "leading lost
children into a world of fantasy and magic."

In the book, that fantasy world lies "second to the right star, then straight on til
morning" -- no less strange a route, Fonda notes, than Michael's own journey from
Indiana.
"From Gary," she says, "straight on to Barrie."

ALL CHILDREN, EXCEPT ONE, grow up. This is the first line of Michael's favorite
book, and if you ask Katherine Jackson if she finds this similar to what happened in
her own brood of nine, she will laugh and say, oh yes, her fifth son is the one.
Five children -- Maureen, Tito, Jackie, Jermaine and Marlon -- are married and have
families. LaToya is a very independent young woman. At thirteen, Janet was starring
as a self-possessed ghetto twerp on the sitcom Good Times. Now she has a hit single
of her own, "Young Love," and appears in the sitcom Diff'rent Strokes. Youngest
brother Randy is already living on his own at twenty. Michael is sure he'd just die if
he tried that.

"LaToya once told me she thinks that I over protected them all," Mrs. Jackson says.
"But under the circumstances, I truly don't think so."

Marriage had brought her from east Indiana, just outside Chicago, to the chilly
industrial town of Gary. A growing family had forced Joe Jackson to disband the
Falcons, and R & B group he had formed with his two brothers. Playing Chuck Berry
and Fats Domino covers in local clubs was as far as they got. The guitar went to the
steel mills as a crane operator. The family budget didn t have a lot of slack for toys,
but there was an old saxophone, a tambourine, some bongos and a homey patchwork
of songs from Katherine's childhood. What she could remember, she taught her
children. "It was just plain stuff," she says, "like 'Cotton Fields' and 'You Are My
Sunshine.'

The breadth of the harmony grew with the family. Jackie, Jermaine and Tito started
singing together, with Tito on guitar and Jermaine on bass. Then Marlon climbed
aboard. Baby Michael, who liked to flail on the bongos, surprised his mother one day
when she heard him imitating Jermaine's lead vocals in his clear toddler's falsetto. "I
think we have another lead singer," she told her husband. The brothers agreed.

"He was so energetic that at five years old, he was like a leader," says Jackie, at thirtyone
the oldest brother. "We saw that. So we said, 'Hey Michael, you be the lead guy.'
The audience ate it up. He was into those James Brown things at the time, you know.
The speed was the thing. He would see somebody do something, and he could do it
right away."

"It was sort of frightening," his mother says. "He was so young. He didn't
go out and play much. So if you want me to tell you the truth, I don't know where he got it. He just knew."

By the age of seven, Michael was a dance monster, working out the choreography for
the whole group. Local gigs were giving way to opening slots at larger halls in distant
cities. Joe Jackson spent weekends and evenings as chauffeur, road manager, agent
and coach. He taught Michael how to work a stage and handle a mike. Michael does
not remember his father making it fun; the boys always knew it was work. Rules were
strict. Grades had to be kept up, even with five shows a night, or the offender would
be yanked off the road. When Motown called, Joe took the boys to Detroit, and
Katherine stayed in Gary with the rest of the children. She says she never really
worried about her children until she went to a show and heard the screams from the
audience. "Every time I'd go to a concert I'd worry, because sometimes the girls
would get onstage and I'd have top watch them tearing at Michael. He was so small,
and they were so big."

There have been some serious incidents, too, one so chilling and bizarre it landed a
young woman in a mental institution. So Katherine Jackson has made it her business
to talk to some of these wild, persistent girls. What is so very crazy, she says, is that
they do it in the name of love. "There are so many," she says. "You have no idea
what's really on their minds. That's why it's going to be so hard for my son to get a
wife."

Michael is aware of, if not resigned to, the impossibility of that task. He might like to
have children in the future, but says he would probably adopt them. For now, he has
only to walk into one of his brother's homes and he's instantly covered with nephews.
He says he gets along with children better than adults, anyhow: "They don't wear
masks."

Kids and animals can nose their way into Michael's most private reserves. It's the
showbiz spook show that makes his own growing up so public and hard. He has
borne, with patience and good humor, the standard rumors of sex-change operations
and paternity accusations from women he has never seen. But clearly they have
affected him. "Billie Jean," on Thriller, is a vehement denial of paternity ("the kid is
not my son"). In reality there has been no special one. Michael says that he is not in a
hurry to jump into any romantic liaison.

"It's like what I told you about finding friends," he says. "With that, it's even harder.
With so many girls around, how am I ever gonna know?"

"JUST HERE TO SEE A FRIEND." Michael is politely trying to sidestep an
inquiring young woman decked out with the latest video equipment. She blocks the
corridor leading to the warren of dressing rooms beneath the L.A. Forum.
"Can i tell my viewers that Michael Jackson is a Queen fan?"

"I'm a Freddie Mercury fan," he says, slipping past her into a long room crowded with
Queen band members, wives, roadies and friends. A burly man with the look of a
lineback is putting lead singer Freddie Mercury through a set of stretching exercises
that will propel his road-weary muscles through the final show of the group's recent
U.S. tour. The band is merry. Michael is shy, standing quietly at the door until Freddie
spots him and leaps up to gather him in a hug.

Freddie invited Michael. He has been calling all week, mainly about the possibility of
their working together. They've decided to try it on the Jacksons' upcoming album.
Though they are hardly alike -- Freddie celebrated a recent birthday by hanging naked
from a chandelier -- the two have been friendly since Michael listened to the material
Queen had recorded for The Game and insisted that the single had to be "Another One
Bites the Dust."

"Now listens to me, right Freddie?"
"Righto, little brother."

The linebacker beckons. Freddie waves his cigarette at the platters of fruit, fowl and
candy. "You and your friends make yourselves comfortable."

Our escort, a sweet-faced, hamfisted bodyguard, is consulting with security about seat
locations. There had been girls lurking outside the condo when Michael sprinted to
the limousine, girls peering through the tinted glass as the door locks clicked shut.
This was all very puzzling to Michael's guest, who has waiting in the car.

he is a real friend, one of the civilians, so normal as to pass unseen by the jaded eyes
of celebrity watchers. He has never been to a rock concert, nor has he ever seen
Michael perform. He says he hopes to, but mainly, they just hang out together.
Sometimes his younger brother even tags along. Most of the time they just talk "just
regular old stuff," says the friend. For Michael, it is another kind of magic.

At the moment, though, it's show business as usual. Gossip, to be specific. Michael is
questioning a dancer he knows about the recent crises of a fallen superstar. Michael
wants to know what the problem is. The dance mimes his answer, laying a finger
alongside his nose. Michael nods, and translates for his friend: "Drugs. Cocaine."
Michael admits that he seeks out such gossip, and listen again and again as the famous
blurt out their need for escape. "Escapism," he says. "I totally understand."

But addictions are another thing. "I always want to know what makes good
performers fall to pieces," he says. "I alway try to find out. Because I just can't believe
it's the same things that get them time and time again." So far, his own addictions--the
stage, dancing, cartoons--have been free of toxins.

Something's working on Michael now, but it is nothing chemical. He's buzzing like a
bumblebee trapped in a jely jar. It's the room we're in, he explains. So many times,
he's stretched and bounced and whipped up on his vocal chords right here, got crazy
in here, pumping up, shivering like some flighty race horse as he wriggled into his
sequined suit.

"I can't stand this," he fairly yells. "I cannot sit still."

Just before he must be held down for his own good. Randy Jackson rockets into the
room, containing his brother in a bear hug, helping him dissipate some of the energy
with a short bout of wrestling. This is not the same creature who tried to hide behind a
potato chip.

Now Michael is boxing with the bodyguard, asking every minute for the time until the
man mercifully claps a big hand on the shoulder of his charge and says it: "Let's go."
Mercury and company have already begun moving down the narrow hall, and before
anyone can catch him, Michael is drawn into their wake, riding on the low roar of the
crowd outside, leaping up to catch a glimpse of Freddie, who is raising a fist and
about to take the stairs to the stage.

"Ooooh, Freddie is pumped," says Michael. "I envy him now. You don't know how
much."

The last of the band makes the stairs, and the black stage curtain closes. Michael turns
and lets himself be led into the darkness of the arena.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Pictures:
Michael with Quincy Jones/Freddie Mercury:

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MJ & FM demo: [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]


Last edited by Admin on Wed Aug 08, 2012 8:36 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Interview #3 Ebony Magazine (1984) December 1984 includes videos

Post by Admin on Sat Aug 04, 2012 6:26 pm

Interview #3 Interview with Ebony Magazine (1984) December 1984

The Michael Jackson Nobody Knows By Robert E. Johnson

As the kinetic and magnetic leader of The Jacksons, whose 1984 Victory Tour
attracted the largest concert crowds and sold the most tickets in the history of show
business, Michael Jackson is an extraordinary human being who is beyond category.
Although he has been out front and outstanding for 20 years, the 26-year-old
singer/songwriter/dancer and actor was not recognized as a super-super-star until his
Thriller album became the best-selling LP of all time. Since then, much has been
written about him, but the man behind the superstar is still a mystery and a media
enigma.

The White media’s Michael Jackson, portrayed mostly through gossip, rumors, hype,
and sometimes slander, is not the Michael I have watched and reported on since he
emerged from the anonymity of the steel town of Gary, Indiana in 1970. That Michael
Jackson - the Michael Jackson nobody knows - is warm, sensitive, vibrant, keenly
aware of the mysteries of life and the wonder and magic of children. Several months
ago he told me that he was tired of the wave of lies in the White press.

What he said then was reflected in the extraordinary and revealing statement he issued at a press conference through his manager, Frank Dileo:

“For some time now, I have been searching my conscience as to whether or not I
should publicly react to the many falsehoods that have been spread about me. I have
decided to make this statement based on the injustice of these allegations and the far reaching trauma those who feel close to me are suffering."

“I feel very fortunate to have been blessed with recognition for my efforts. This
recognition also brings with it a responsibility to one’s admirers throughout the world.
Performers should always serve as role models who set an example for young people.
It saddens me that many may actually believe the present flurry of false accusations.”

“To that end, and I do mean END -
“No! I’ve never taken hormones to maintain my high voice.”
“No! I’ve never had my cheekbones altered in any way.”
“No! I’ve never had cosmetic surgery on my eyes.”

“YES!! One day in the future I plan to get married and have a family. Any statements
to the contrary are simply untrue.”
“Henceforth, as new fantasies are printed, I have advised my attorneys of my
willingness to institute legal action and subsequently prosecute all guilty to the fullest
extent of the law.”

“As noted earlier, I love children. We all know that kids are very impressionable and
therefore susceptible to such stories. I’m certain that some have already been hurt by
this terrible slander. In addition to their admiration, I would like to continue to keep
their respect.”

Michael Joseph Jackson, whose middle name is his father’s first, earned respect the
old-fashioned way - the same way he earned the title “The World’s Greatest
Entertainer”.

His Thriller album has sold over 35 million copies and is still selling. He earns an
estimated $2 from the album’s $5 wholesale price and has pocketed some $70 million
from worldwide sales.

He organized and now heads corporations that handle his business affairs, including
Michael Jackson, Inc., which handles profits from his album and video royalties;
Experiments In Sound, which deals with new techniques in recording; and Optimum
Productions, which produces his music videos and video versions of records of other
artists.

The top winner of record and video awards, he received an unprecedented eight
American Music Awards, a record-breaking eight Grammy Awards, and the MTV
Video Award.

Born the fifth of six talented sons of Joseph and Katherine Jackson in Gary, Indiana,
26 years ago (August 29, 1958), he is a positive thinker and a creative artist who is
motivated by a deep concern for all of humankind and an unyielding love for his
profession. His love for fans who have become admirers is, perhaps, without parallel.
Love is what made Michael endure one of the most pressure-filled concert tours of his
career. Even though The Jacksons Victory Tour is expected to gross over $70 million,
he didn’t perform for the love of money. He said he did it for the love of family, fans,
and favorite charities. Although it was projected that his parents, who organized the
tour with boxing impresario Don King, could each earn $5 million and each brother
pocket about $7.5 million, Michael announced that his share of the concert earnings
would go to three worthy causes. They are the United Negro College Fund (UNCF),
Camp Good Times for terminally ill children, and the T.J. Martell Foundation for
Leukemia and Cancer research.

He is also giving earnings from a special album called Let’s Beat It, to charity. He is
doing it, he says, because children inspired him to write the hit single, Beat It,
“Children are my biggest inspiration in anything I do,” Michael told this writer. “I
adore children - crazy about them. I wanted to write a song, the type of rock song that
I would buy….I wanted the kids to really enjoy it, the school kids, as well as the
college kids,” said the sensitive songwriter whose two favorite songs are
Tchaikovsky’s Nutcracker Suite and Peter and the Wolf.

He spoke of the song, Be Not Always, which he wrote with a little help from his
brother, Marlon. In the sensitive, sentimental song recorded in The Jacksons’ Victory
album, Michael makes a tearful plea to change a world in which “mothers cry, babies
die helplessly in arms…” He observed that all of his brothers feel the same way about
children, “not just me.”

Recalling that the late superstar Josephine Baker, an entertainer he admired, had a
United Nations of children that she had adopted, Michael smiled broadly and said
with assurance:
“I’m going to have children of my own, but I’m going to adopt as many races as I can.
That is what I’m going to do. I love children. Like Emmanuel Lewis (tiny, 12-yearold
star of TV’s Webster series), he’s a real inspiration.”

Nothing, however, inspires the proud performer more than his family and fans. He
talked about this shortly after newspapers circulated reports that he had been spoiled
by the success of his Thriller LP and the proliferation of music awards, which
included EBONY’s American Black Achievement Award.

“Because I have achieved a lot of broken records with Off The Wall [album] and I’ve
been the lead singer for the longest and now with Thriller, which is the all-time best
and everything, I’m not planning on leaving,” he said of a rumor that he plans to leave
the Jacksons after the tour. “They are my brothers [Jackie, Jermaine, Tito, Marlon,
and Randy] and I love them all dearly and I think the media begin to look for
something to sell papers and they make up things and they twist them.”

Michael said at the beginning of the tour, “I’m doing it for the joy of touring and the
family as a whole, and for the kids out there who bought the records. I’m a stage
addict. I have to be on the stage.” Once during an interview at his California home,
where he still resides with his parents and sister, LaToya, Michael said, “I would like
you to put this in quotations: ‘My main love for what I do is the admirers. I love the
fans. Like when I’m doing a show and I see the fans out there dancing and screaming,
excited, and we’re bringing that joy to them, that’s what I love most. And it’s just the
greatest feeling in the world. You’re up there and you’re giving them that energy and
that love and they’re just throwing it right back at you. And it’s great. And that’s my
main love, the stage and making those admirers happy.’”

As the interview continues, Michael talks of many subjects that reveal things about
him that have been overlooked in the media’s rush for rumors. Here are some of his
views:

EBONY: You have to cope with a lot of stress and pressure in the entertainment
business. People make all kinds of requests of you and propositions come from
all directions. How do you cope with these stresses and pressures?

MICHAEL: I cope with it in a way and I’m not calling myself Jesus because I would
never even look at myself on the same level, but I’m comparing it to Jesus because
what god gave to him was for a reason and he preached and people came about him
and he didn’t get angry and push them aside and say leave me alone, I ain’t got time.

EBONY: But you must encounter some fans who pressure you and provoke you.
MICHAEL: I do get angry at times because there are those who will come up to you
with the worst attitude and will say to you, ‘Sit down, sign my baby’s paper.’ They’ll
throw it at you. I’ll say, ‘Do you have a pen?’ ‘You don’t have a pen? Well, go get
one.’ That’s what they’ll actually tell me….I’m amazed by some of the people. They
think they own you. And they’ll say to you, ‘Listen, I made you what you are.’ I say,
‘Wait a minute. You didn’t just buy it [album] to help me. You bought it because you
like it and that’s true.’

EBONY: You are looked upon as a role model. You once appeared at the
Chicago Public Library to encourage young people and adults to read, and a
book marker souvenir was distributed with a quotation from you. Do you still
enjoy reading?

MICHAEL: I love to read. I wish I could advise more people to read. There’s a
whole other world in books. If you can’t afford to travel, you travel mentally through
reading. You can see anything and go any place you want to in reading.

EBONY: Have you had a chance to do any reading related to the Black
experience or in terms of Black history?

MICHAEL: Oh, yes! I’m really thankful for what Mr. [John H.] Johnson has done in
bringing books through Johnson Publications….I think it’s good to show we are
contributing to the world in many ways. That’s what a lot of people think - that we
haven’t.

EBONY: How do you keep up with what Black people today are doing, saying,
and thinking? And who are some of the people, other than your family and close
associates, who influence your thinking?

MICHAEL: I love the way [John H.] Johnson runs his organization. Seems like
everybody’s really nice. I’m sure there are quarrels and things, but everybody’s very
nice….and have such an influence on the young. People rule their lives by JET and
EBONY. I mean, they get their information from those two magazines and the young
kids, too. I’ll say, where did you read it? I read it in JET. And they keep up with
what’s happening in JET and EBONY. And I think that’s wonderful…God, I admire
people like Johnson and [Walt] Disney. I think they’re phenomenal.

EBONY: You talk of the influence of books and people in your life. What part
does travel play in shaping your attitudes and outlook on life?

MICHAEL: I think before anybody gets married, they should really travel the world
if they can. It’s the most incredible education I’ve ever had. I think it’s phenomenal. I
mean just to see the different cultures of people, the different faces, to talk to people
and just to learn and see….When I traveled I was amazed. When we first went to
Switzerland, I almost started crying. I really did.

EBONY: What touched you about that trip to bring about that emotional
response?
MICHAEL: The beauty. It’s like, oh, God, it’s crying out in the sky. It’s an
incredible country and it inspires me to see these things - the mountains. The pictures
don’t do justice to Switzerland. Then there’s the Netherlands and France. Gosh,
they’re incredible, too!

EBONY: Obviously, when you travel, you are more than a tourist, you are an
observer.
MICHAEL: Well, a lot of people just stay in the cities when they travel. They should
get out and see the real country. Wherever you go, man-made things are man-made,
but you gotta get out and see God’s beauty.

EBONY: In your travels, what were some of the countries that impressed you
most?
MICHAEL: I’m gonna raise my hand on this one. I’ll say this. I always thought that
the Blacks, as far as artistry, were a talented race of people. But when I went to
Africa, I was even more convinced. They did some incredible things over there. [West
African countries, including Senegal]. We went to one place out in the flatlands where
all these Africans sell their crafts and everything. I went to this one hut where this guy
made incredible carvings….He took a piece of wood and a hatchet-like thing and
started chopping and I just sat there amazed. He carved a big face…dipped it in some
water…dried it off and he gave it to me and I paid for it.

EBONY: You seem impressed by African art but what about African music and
dance?
MICHAEL: When we came off the plane in [Dakar, Senegal] Africa, we were
greeted by a long line of African dancers. Their drums and sounds filled the air with
rhythm. I was going crazy, I was screaming. I said, ‘All right!’ They got the beat and
they got the rhythm….I just was so glad about the whole thing. This is it, I said. This
is where I come from. The origin….

EBONY: You were obviously impressed by your musical roots, so where do you
think the Africans derived their musical influence?
MICHAEL: Music started with nature. Music is nature. Birds make music. Oceans
make music. Wind makes music. Any natural sound is music. And that’s where it
started….You see, we’re just making a replica of nature, which is the sounds we hear
outside.

EBONY: Did your travels have any influence on the way you think about races
of people?
MICHAEL: The main thing that I hate most is ignorance, like the prejudice problems
of America. I know it is worse in some other countries. But I wish I could borrow,
like from Venezuela or Trinidad, the real love of color-blind people and bring it to
America….

EBONY: You are making some observations with intense feelings. Please
continue.
MICHAEL: I’m prejudiced against ignorance. That’s what I’m mainly prejudiced
against. It’s only ignorance and it’s taught because it’s not genetic at all. The little
children in those [countries] aren’t prejudiced. I would like for you to put this in
quotes, too. I’m really not a prejudiced person at all. I believe that people should think
about God more and creation….Look at the many wonders inside the human body -
the different colors of organs, colors of blood - and all these different colors do a
different thing in the human body. It’s the most incredible system in the world; it
makes an incredible building, the human being. And if this can happen with the
human body, why can’t we do it as people? And that’s how I feel. And that’s why I
wish the world could do more. That’s the only thing I hate. I really do.

EBONY: What you have just said is not only compassionate but compelling.
How do you communicate such feelings since you don’t make public appearances
to express your views in public forums?

MICHAEL: I try to write, put it in song. Put it in dance. Put it in my art to teach the
world. If politicians can’t do it, I want to do it. We have to do it. Artists, put it in
paintings. Poets, put it in poems, novels. That’s what we have to do. And I think it’s
so important to save the world.

EBONY: Stevie Wonder apparently shares similar feelings, judging by some of
his musical messages.
MICHAEL: That’s why I love Stevie Wonder’s biggest-selling album called Songs
in the Key of Life. He has a song on that album called Black Man….I just jumped up
screaming when I heard that record because he’s showing the world what the Black
man has done and what other races have done, and he balanced it beautifully by
putting other races in there, what they have done. Then he brings out what the Black
Man has done. Instead of naming it another thing, he named it Black Man. That’s
what I loved about it….And that’s the best way to bring about the truth, through song.
And that’s what I love about it.

EBONY: You don’t seem to have any objections to messages in music as long as
the messages are positive. Your music, unlike some artists, stays clear of
messages glorifying drugs. But drugs are a reality. How do you view it?

MICHAEL: In the field I’m in, there is a lot of that and it gets offered to me all the
time. People even go as far as to just…stick it in your pocket and walk off. Now, if it
was a good thing, they wouldn’t do that….I mean, would somebody drop something
beautiful in my pocket and just walk off? But I don’t want to have anything to do with
any of that. I mean, as corny as it sounds, but this is how I really believe: Natural
highs are the greatest highs in the world….Who wants to take something and just sit
around for the rest of the day after you take it [drugs], and don’t know who you are,
what you’re doing, where you are? Take in something that’s gonna inspire you to do
greater things in the world.

EBONY: Do you put God or religion in that process of a natural high?
MICHAEL: Oh, yes, God, really. I believe in the Bible and I try to follow the Bible.
I know I’m an imperfect person….I’m not making myself an angel because I’m not an
angel and I’m not a devil either. I try to be the best I can and I try to do what I think is
right. It’s that simple. And I do believe in God.

EBONY: Do prayers or praying play a role in your life?
MICHAEL: I pray every night. I don’t just pray at night. I pray at different times
during the day. When I see something beautiful, whenever I see beautiful scenery -
like when I’m flying or something -- I say, oh, God, that’s beautiful. And I always say
little prayers like that all through the day. I love beauty.

EBONY: Speaking of beauty, you have been associated in a public way with
many beautiful people, including your beautiful sisters, LaToya, Rebbie, and
Janet, but also Diana Ross, Tatum O’Neal, and Brooke Shields. You have been
linked romantically with the latter two. Someone said you and Tatum had a lot
in common: the parents of both of you are protective - she’s a daddy’s [Ryan
O’Neal] girl and you’re a momma’s [Katherine Jackson] boy.

MICHAEL: I want all those people who read JET and EBONY to just know that
we’re mainly good friends. That’s the main thing. I think for guys, girls make the best
friends. And for girls, guys make the best friends.

EBONY: What is your relationship with Brooke? When did you meet and has
that relationship developed?
MICHAEL: We met at the Academy Awards. She asked me to dance because I was
not going to ask her. You know, I’m really shy and embarrassed. So she says, ‘I got to
dance with you tonight.’ I said, great. So we got together on the dance floor and
danced. They were playing that old-fashioned Benny Goodman, Tommy Dorsey
music, which wasn’t much of a groove. First, you’ve got all these bald-headed old
people on the floor slow dancing, the Lawrence Welk sound. We really couldn’t get
into it so we got to talking and got to know each other. We switched numbers and had
phone conversations back and forth and we became real good friends.

EBONY: Does this mean that Brooke has replaced Tatum as a special friend?
MICHAEL: Tatum calls me all the time and I hope she reads this interview because
I’m sorry I couldn’t get all of her calls. But she’s still a wonderful friend of mine.

EBONY: Both Tatum and Brooke are fine actresses. You did all right in The
Wiz. What’s in the future for you now in films?
MICHAEL: I’m very excited about a lot of things that I want to do and that I’m
going to do in films and things. I really can’t wait….Since The Wiz, incredible offers
have come to me, things that are still in the making.

EBONY: You once said that you will be careful about choosing your next role so
that you won’t be typecast anymore. You said that since The Wiz, some people
still call you Scarecrow because of that character role you played.

MICHAEL: Whatever role you play, people link it with your personality. But it’s
acting. You’re portraying another person….I wish it wasn’t called acting because I
don’t really like actors. I mean, the word acting.

EBONY: Please elaborate.
MICHAEL: I don’t think acting should be acting. Acting, if you’re acting, you’re
imitating realism. You should create realism. It should be called believing. You see, I
always was against it when I thought about acting. I don’t want to see an actor. I want
so see a believer. I don’t want to see anybody that’s gonna imitate the truths. It’s not
real then. I want to see a person that’s gonna believe the truth….That’s when you
move an audience.

EBONY: What kind of questions do you wish you would be asked but nobody
ever asks you?
MICHAEL: That’s a good question. Probably about children or writing, or what I
just talked about….You don’t make a better world of minds and things when people
put the wrong things in their lyrics and give the wrong views on stage and everything.
It’s just so important and I think this can lead so many people astray, because an artist
can be built up so big in his career that this could change the whole world by what he
does and thinks. They’ll listen to him before the President or any of these big
politicians. You have to be careful. They could change these peoples’ way of life by
what they say and do. That’s why it’s important to give off love vibes and that’s why I
love what I do….When Marvin Gaye put out the album, What’s Going On, so many
Blacks as well as Whites - but mainly Blacks-were educated. ‘Wake up. What’s going
on? Wake up.’ I mean the ones that don’t watch the news, don’t read the papers to
really dig in the depths of humanism. What’s going on? Wake up.

EBONY: There have been some campaigns against so-called dirty lyrics songs by
some popular musical groups. Do you have any views about such groups and
their lyrics?

MICHAEL: Sometimes they go too far. They don’t leave anything for the
imagination. If I just walked out on stage naked, there’s no imagination. I’m not
letting them imagine what I look like without the clothes. But you see, they overdo
it….We got to leave them something to imagine. People go too far at times. I think
it’s important to set the right example because there are so many kids who look up to
us.

As the most productive year of his entertainment career comes to a close and his
talents helped him gross about $100 million, Michael is not content to rest on his
laurels or his loot. He faces a future guided by two observations, both of which he
made: “I’m interested in making a path instead of following a trail and that’s what I
want to do in life - in everything I do,” Michael told this writer in an interview on July
13, 1979.

He made the other observation in his role as Scarecrow in The Wiz, a movie in which
he co-starred with one of his dearest friends - Diana Ross.
In a scene near the end of the film, Michael spoke these words through his Scarecrow
character: “Success, fame, fortune - they are all illusions. All there is that is real is the
friendship that two can share.”

Those are the thoughts of the Michael Jackson nobody knows.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Courtesy of Ebony/JET and Hulu, a long lost and forgotten 13+ minute video interview with Michael Jackson, King of Pop. This interview was filmed year 1987.

Part 1- [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]

Part 2- [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]

If you haven’t heard this song yet-this is Michael at his absolute most heartfelt ~

Be Not Always - The Jacksons: [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]

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Interview #4 ~ MJ's Interview with Oprah Winfrey (1993)

Post by Admin on Sat Aug 18, 2012 5:53 pm

Interview #4 Interview with Oprah Winfrey (1993)

Oprah: Ladies and gentlemen, Michael Jackson.
[Michael Jackson enters the living room of his home. They shake hands and Michael
kisses Oprah on the cheek.]

Oprah: How nervous are you?
Michael: How what?
Oprah: How nervous are you right now?
Michael: I'm not nervous at all, actually.
Oprah: You really aren't?
Michael: No, I never get nervous.

Oprah: Not even for your first interview and it's live around the world? I thought
you'd be a little nervous but you're not and that's great because if you're not nervous I
won't be nervous. I just wanted to let the world know that when we agreed to do this
interview you said you would be willing to talk to me about everything.
Michael: That's true.

Oprah: Very true. I was watching you in the background there watching you in the
video of the early years. Did that bring back memories for you?

Michael: It made me giggle because I haven't seen that footage in a long time. Did it
bring back memories? Yes, me and my brothers who I love dearly and it's just a
wonderful moment for me.

Oprah: I saw you laugh when you saw yourself singing Baby, Baby, Baby.

Michael: Yeah, I think James Brown is a genius you know when he's with the Famous
Flames, unbelievable. I used to watch him on television and I used to get angry at the
cameraman because whenever he would really start to dance they would be on a
close-up so I couldn't see his feet. I'd shout, "show him show him.", so I could watch
and learn.

Oprah: So he was a big mentor for you?

Michael: Phenomenal, phenomenal.
Oprah: Who else was?

Michael: Jackie Wilson who I adore as an entertainer, and of course music, Motown.
The Bee Gees who are brilliant, I just love great music.

Oprah: When I look at those tapes of you, and heaven knows, putting this together I
think I've seen every piece of video ever done of you, and watching those tapes when,
especially in the younger years, you seem to really come alive on stage. Were you as
happy off stage as you appear to be on stage?

Michael: Well, on stage for me was home. I was most comfortable on stage but once I
got off stage, I was like, very sad.
Oprah: Really?
Michael: Yes.

Oprah: And sad from the beginning, sad since it first started, sad?

Michael: Lonely, sad, having to face popularity and all that. There were times when I
had great times with my brother, pillow fights and things, but I was, used to always
cry from loneliness.
Oprah: Beginning at what age?

Michael: Oh, very little, eight, nine.
Oprah: When you all first became famous?

Michael: Yes.
Oprah: So it wasn't what it appeared to be to the rest of the world, all of us. I
remember I was a little black child, wanted to marry Jackie Jackson, your brother, so I
mean to all of us we thought this was the most wonderful thing in the world, who
wouldn't have wanted that life?

Michael: It was wonderful; there is a lot of wonderment in being famous. I mean you
travel the world, you meet people, you go places, and it’s great. But then there's the
other side, which I'm not complaining about. There is lots of rehearsal and you have
to put in a lot of your time, give of yourself a lot.

Oprah: Do you feel... I talked with Susan de Passe the other day, and Susan de Passe
worked with you at Motown and really groomed you all and found the outfits for the
Ed Sullivan Show. We talked about whether or not it was really lost, was it?

Michael : Well, especially now I come to realize - and then - I would do my schooling
which was three hours with a tutor and right after that I would go to the recording
studio and record, and I'd record for hours and hours until it's time to go to sleep. And
I remember going to the record studio there was a park across the street and I'd see all
the children playing and I would cry because it would make me sad that I would have
to work instead.

Oprah: I want to go to this and show some pictures of you as a little boy.

Michael: OK.

Oprah: Susan said it was a heavy price. I want to know how big of a price it was,
losing your childhood or having this kind of life?

Michael: Well, you don't get to do things that other children get to do, you know,
having friends and slumber parties and buddies. There was none of that for me. I
didn't have any friends when I was little. My brothers were my friends.

Oprah: Was there ever a place where - because you know children - because I
remember talking to myself and playing with my dolls - was there.. and I think every
child needs a place to escape into, a child's world, a child's imagination, was there
ever a time you could do that?

Michael: No. And that is why I think now because I didn't have it then, I compensate
for that. People wonder why I always have children around, because I find the thing
that I never had through them, you know Disneyland, amusement parks, arcade
games. I adore all that stuff because when I was little it was always work, work, work
from one concert to the next, if it wasn't a concert it was the recording studio, if it
wasn't that it was TV shows or interviews or picture sessions. There was always
something to do.

Oprah: Did you feel, Smokey Robinson said this about you, and so have many other
people, that you were like an old soul in a little body.

Michael: I remember hearing that all the time when I was little. They used to call me a
45-years-old midget wherever I went, I just used to hear that and wherever I went ..
just like when some people when you were little and you started to sing did you know
you were that good? And I say I never thought about it, I just did it and it came out. I
never thought about it really.

Oprah: So here you were, Michael Jackson, you all had hits, you all had so many hits,
four hits in a row, and you were crying because you couldn't be like other kids.
Michael: Well, I loved show business and I still love show business, but then there are
times you want to play and have some fun and that part did make me sad. I remember
one time we were getting ready to go to South America and everything was packed up
and in the car ready to go and I hid and I was crying because I really did not want to
go. I wanted to play. I did not want to go.

Oprah: Were your brothers jealous of you when you started getting all the attention?
Michael: Not that I know of, no.

Oprah: You never felt a sense of jealousy?
Michael: Oh, let me think - no. No, I think they were always happy for me that I could
do certain things, but I've never felt jealousy among them.

Oprah: Do you think they are jealous of you now?
Michael: I wouldn't think so. I don't think so, no.

Oprah: No. What's your relationship like with your family? Are you all close still?

Michael: I love my family very much. I wish I could see them a little more often than
I do. But we understand because we're a show business family and we all work. We
do have family day when we all get together, we pick a person's house, it might be
Jermaine's house or Marlon's house or Tito's house and everyone will come together
in fellowship and love each other and talk and catch up on who's doing what and....

Oprah: You weren't all upset about LaToya and LaToya's book and the things that
LaToya has said about the family?

Michael: Well, I haven't read LaToya's book. I just know how to love my sister
dearly, I love LaToya and I always will and I always see her as the happy, loving
LaToya that I remember growing up with. So I couldn't completely answer on that.
Oprah: Do you feel that some of the things that she's been saying are true?
Michael: I couldn't answer Oprah, honestly I haven't read the book. That's the honest
truth.

Oprah: Well, let's go back to when you were growing up and feeling all of this, well, I
guess it's a sense of anguish, I guess, so there was no one for you to play with other
than your brother's, you never had slumber parties?

Michael: Never.

Oprah: So I'm wondering for you, being this cute little boy who everybody adored and
everybody who comes up to you they're pulling your cheeks and how cute, how
adolescence going through that duck stage where everything's awkward, and I'm
wondering when you started to go through adolescence having been this child
superstar, was that a particularly difficult time for you?

Michael: Very. Very, very difficult, yes. Because I think every child star suffers
through this period because you're not the cute and charming child that you were. You
start to grow, and they want to keep you little forever.

Oprah: Who are they?
Michael: The public. And um, nature takes its course.
Oprah: It does?

Michael: Yes, and I had pimples so badly it used to make me so shy, I used not to
look at myself, I'd hide my face in the dark, I wouldn't want to look in the mirror and
my father teased me and I just hated it and I cried every day.
Oprah: Your father teased you about your pimples?

Michael: Yes and tell me I'm ugly.
Oprah: Your father would say that?
Michael: Yes he would. Sorry Joseph.
Oprah: What's your relationship like with him?
Michael: I love my father but I don't know him.
Oprah: Are you angry with him for doing that? I think that's pretty cruel actually.
Michael: Am I angry with him?

Oprah: Because adolescence is hard enough without a parent telling you that you're
ugly.

Michael: Am I angry with him? Sometimes I do get angry. I don't know him the way
I'd like to know him. My mother's wonderful. To me she's perfection. I just wish I
could understand my father.

Oprah: And so let's talk about those teen years. Is that when you started to go inside
yourself? Because obviously you haven't spoken to the world for 14 years. So you
went inside, you became a recluse. Was it to protect yourself?

Michael: I felt there wasn't anything important for me to say and those were very sad,
sad years for me.

Oprah: Why so sad? Because on stage you were performing, you were getting your
Grammies. Why so sad?

Michael: Oh, there's a lot of sadness about my past and adolescence, about my father
and all of those things.

Oprah: So he would tease you, make fun of you.
Michael: Yes.
Oprah: Would he ... did he ever beat you?
Michael: Yes.
Oprah: And why would he beat you?

Michael: He saw me, he wanted me ... I guess I don't know if I was his golden child or
whatever it was, some may call it a strict disciplinarian or whatever, but he was very
strict, very hard, very stern. Just a look would scare you, you know.

Oprah: And were you scared of him?

Michael: Very. Like there's been times when he'd come to see me, I'd get sick, I'd start
to regurgitate.

Oprah: As a child or as an adult?
Michael: Both. He's never heard me say this. I'm sorry, please don't be mad at me.
Oprah: Well, I mean, I suppose everybody has to take responsibility for what they've
done in life. And your father is one of those people who also have to take
responsibility.
Michael: But I do love him.

Oprah: Yes, I understand this.
Michael: And I am forgiving.
Oprah: But can you really forgive?

Michael: I do forgive. There's so much garbage and so much trash that's written about
me it is so untrue, they're complete lies, and those are some of the things I wanted to
talk about. The press has made up so much ... God ... awful, horrifying stories it has
made me realize the more often you hear a lie, I mean, you begin to believe it.

Oprah: Um, we talked about all of the rumors just before we went to the break and
there are so many. First of all, I have been in this house getting prepared for this and
I've been all over the house upstairs when you weren't looking, looking for that
oxygen chamber and I cannot find an oxygen chamber anywhere in the house.

Michael: That, that story is so crazy, I mean it's one of those tabloid things, it's
completely made up.
Oprah: Okay, but you are in something there, there's a picture of you, where did that
come from? How did it get started?

Michael: That's ... I did a commercial for Pepsi and I was burned very badly and we
settled for one million dollars and I gave all the money ... like we built this place
called the Michael Jackson Burn Center and that's a piece of technology used for burn
victims, right, so I'm looking at the piece of technology and decide to just go inside it
and just to hammer around, somebody takes the picture, when they process the picture
the person who processes the picture says, "Oh, Michael Jackson," he made a copy
and these pictures went all over the world with this lie attached to it. It's a complete
lie, why do people buy these papers. It's not the truth and I'm here to say. You know,
do not judge a person, do not pass judgment, unless you have talked to them one on
one, I don't care what the story is, do not judge them because it's a lie.

Oprah: You're right, that story, it was just like it had legs.

Michael: It's crazy! Why would I want to sleep in a chamber? [Laughing]
Oprah: Well, the rumor was that you were sleeping in the chamber because you didn't
want to grow old.

Michael: That's stupid. That's stupid. It's completely made up and I'm embarrassed.
I'm willing to forgive the press, or forgive anybody, I was taught to love and forgive,
which I do have in my heart, but please don't believe these crazy, horrifying things.
Oprah: Did you buy the Elephant man's bones, were you trying to get them for ...

Michael: No that's another stupid story. I love the story of the Elephant Man, he reminds me of me a lot and I could relate to it, it made me cry because I saw myself in
the story, but no I never asked for the ... where am I going to put some bones?
Oprah: I don't know.

Michael: And why would I want some bones?
Oprah: I don't know. So where did that come from?
Michael: Someone makes it up and everybody believes it. If you hear a lie often
enough, you believe it.
Oprah: Yes and people make money selling tabloids.
Michael: Yes

Oprah: All right. Just recently, there was a story and I know one of your attorneys
held a news conference, there was a story about you wanting a little white child to
play you in a Pepsi commercial.

Michael: That is so stupid. That is the most ridiculous, horrifying story I've ever
heard. It's crazy. Why, number one, it's my face as a child in the commercial, me
when I was little, why would I want a white child to play me? I'm a black American, I
am proud to be a black American, I am proud of my race. I am proud of who I am. I
have a lot of pride and dignity. That's like you wanting an oriental person to play you
as a child. Does that make sense?

Oprah: No.
Michael: So, please people, stop believing these horrifying stories.

Oprah: Okay, then let's go to the thing that is most discussed about you, that is the
color of your skin is most obviously different than when you were younger, and so I
think it has caused a great deal of speculation and controversy as to what you have
done or are doing, are you bleaching your skin and is your skin lighter because you
don't like being black?

Michael: Number one, as I know of, there is no such thing as skin bleaching, I have
never seen it, I don't know what it is.

Oprah: Well they used to have those products, I remember growing up always hearing
always use bleach and glow, but you have to have about 300,000 gallons.

Michael: Okay, but number one, this is the situation. I have a skin disorder that
destroys the pigmentation of the skin, it's something that I cannot help. Okay. But
when people make up stories that I don't want to be who I am it hurts me.
Oprah: So it is...

Michael: It's a problem for me that I can't control, but what about all the millions of
people who sits out in the sun, to become darker, to become other than what they are,
no one says nothing about that.

Oprah: So when did this start, when did your ... when did the color of your skin start
to change?
Michael: Oh boy, I don't ... sometime after Thriller, around Off the Wall, Thriller,
around sometime then.
Oprah: But what did you think?

Michael: It's in my family, my father said it's on his side. I can't control it, I don't
understand, I mean, it makes me very sad. I don't want to go into my medical history
because that is private, but that's the situation here.

Oprah: So okay, I just want to get this straight, you are not taking anything to change
the color of your skin ...

Michael: Oh, God no, we tried to control it and using make-up evens it out because it
makes blotches on my skin, I have to even out my skin. But you know what's funny,
why is that so important? That's not important to me. I'm a great fan of art, I love
Michelangelo, if I had the chance to talk to him or read about him I would want to
know what inspired him to become who he is, the anatomy of his craftsmanship, not
about who he went out with last night ... what' wrong with ... I mean that's what is
important to me.

Oprah: How much plastic surgery have you had?

Michael: Very, very little. I mean you can count on my two fingers, I mean let's say
this, if you want to know about those things, all the nosey people in the world, read
my book Moonwalk, it's in my book. You know, let's put it this way, if all the people
in Hollywood who have had plastic surgery, if they went on vacation, there wouldn't
be a person left in town.

Oprah: Mmm, I think you might be right.
Michael: I think I am right. It would be empty.
Oprah: Did you start having plastic surgery because of those teen years because of not
liking the way you looked?

Michael: No, not really. It was only two things. Really, get my book, it's no big deal.
Oprah: You don't want to tell me what it is? You had your nose done, obviously.
Michael: Yeah, but so did a lot of people that I know.
Oprah: And so, when you hear all these things about you, and there have been more...

Michael: I've never had my cheekbones done, never had my eyes done, never had my
lips done and all this stuff. They go too far, but this is stuff that happens every day
with other people.
Oprah: Are you pleased now with the way you look?

Michael: I'm never pleased with anything, I'm a perfectionist, it's part of who I am.
Oprah: And so when you look in the mirror now and so the image that looks back at
you are there days when you say I kinda like this or I like the way my hair ...

Michael: No. I'm never pleased with myself. No, I try not to look in the mirror.
Oprah: I have to ask you this, so many mothers in my audience have said to please ask
you this question. Why do you always grab your crotch?

Michael: [Giggle] Why do I grab my crotch?

Oprah: You've got a thing with your crotch going on there.

Michael: I think it happens subliminally. When you're dancing, you know you are just
interpreting the music and the sounds and the accompaniment if there's a driving base,
if there's a cello, if there's a string, you become the emotion of what that sound is, so
if I'm doing a movement and I go bam and I grab myself it's... it's the music that
compels me to do it, it's not saying that I'm dying to grab down there and it's not in a
great place you don't think about it, it just happens, sometimes I'll look back at the
footage and I go ... and I go did I do that? So I'm a slave to the rhythm, yeah, okay

After a commercial break, some of Michael's major achievements are shown:

# 1 Album of All Time
# 2 Album of All Time
Biggest Concert in History
More Music Awards Than Any Other Artist
The 80's Most # 1 Hits
Biggest Endorsements Deal Ever - 15,000,000 dollars
Billion Dollar Entertainment Contract
Entertainer of the Decade

Oprah: When you have broken all those records, when you have the number one
album ever sold, when you've broken every record there is to break, when you
become an icon of an industry, is there always the pressure to do something bigger
and something better.

Michael: Oh gee, that is something, um, it makes it harder each time to follow up.
You try to be as original as you can be without thinking about statistics, just you go
from the soul and from the heart.

Oprah: And so when you think of that what do you do, you go, you meditate, you
think, well I will now do the Super bowl.

Michael: No, I just create out of my heart, really.

Oprah: Liz Taylor said you were king of pop, rock and soul. Where did this whole
notion that you proclaimed yourself king of pop come from?

Michael: Well, I didn't proclaim myself to be anything. I'm happy to be alive, I'm
happy to be who I am, king of pop was first said by Elizabeth Taylor on one of the
award shows.

Oprah: And that's where this all started?

Michael: Yes, and the fans ... all the stadiums that we played at they'd bring banners
saying king of pop and jackets that say king of pop and T-shirts that say king of pop
and they chanted outside my hotel, so it just became something that just happened all
over the world.

Oprah: Do you go out, do you date?
Michael: Yes.
Oprah: Who do you date?

Michael: Well, right now it's Brooke Shields. Well, we try not to be everywhere, go
everywhere, it's mostly at home, she'll come over, I'll go to her house, because I don't
like going out in public.

Oprah: Have you ever been in love?
Michael: Yeah.
Oprah: With Brooke Shields?
Michael: Yes, and another girl.

Oprah: And another girl? Let me ask you this, and it's embarrassing for me to ask you
this, but I'm gonna ask you anyway, are you a virgin?

Michael: Uhhhhh, how could you ask that question?
Oprah: I just want to know.
Michael: I'm a gentleman.
Oprah: You're a gentleman?
Michael: I'm a gentleman.

Oprah: I would interpret that to mean that you believe that a lady is a lady and
therefore..

Michael: That's something that's private, I mean, it shouldn't be spoken about openly.
......... You can call me old fashioned if you want, but, you know I mean that's very
personal.

Oprah: So, you're not going to answer it?
Michael: I'm embarrassed.

Oprah: Well, we would like to know whether or not there is a possibility that you are
going to marry one day and have children?

Michael: I would feel my life is incomplete if I do not 'cause I adore the family life, I
adore children and I adore that whole thing. And I would love to, that's one of my
dreams, but I couldn't right now because I'm married, I'm married to my music and
there has to be that closeness in order to do the kind of work that I want to do and ...

Oprah: What kind of woman makes you - in the video we're going to see later, we
premier the world video, there's a line where you talk about being quenched, so what
kind of person does that for you?

Michael: [Sings] Quench my desire ... Well Brooke, I've always liked her and when I
was little I used to stay with Diana Ross, me and my brother stayed with her for years
and I never said, but I always had a crush on her.

Oprah: You did?
Michael: Yes.

Oprah: I heard too, this was another one of those rumors that you had proposed to
Elizabeth Taylor at some point.

Michael: Elizabeth Taylor is gorgeous, beautiful, and she still is today, I'm crazy
about her.
Oprah: Yeah, but did you propose to her?
Michael: I would like to have.

Oprah: Well, Elizabeth Taylor is here. Liz? Can we bring Liz out now? Liz had said
she wanted to be here to hold your hand through this. You don't look like you need
your hand held. Elizabeth Taylor!

Michael: Hi, Elizabeth.
Oprah: Hi.
Elizabeth: Hi.
Oprah: Have a seat.
Elizabeth: Thank you.
Oprah: Did Michael ever propose to you?
Elizabeth: No! And I never proposed to him.

Oprah: Never did! What do you think is most misunderstood about Michael Jackson?
Elizabeth: All the things you mentioned. He is the least weird man I have ever known.
He is highly intelligent, true, intuitive, understanding, sympathetic, generous almost
to a fault, of himself.
Oprah: Uh-huh.

Elizabeth: Uh, and he just, if, if he has any eccentricities, it's that he is like larger than
life and some people just cannot accept that or face it or understand it. His talent on
stage, why I call him the King of pop, rock, soul, music, entertainment, whatever,
Oprah: Yes.

Elizabeth: there's nobody that can come near him. Nobody can dance like that, write
the lyrics like that, the music, uh, cause the kind of excitement that he does.

Oprah: And why do you think you all are such good friends? What has brought about
this kind of bond? Because people try to make this weird.

Elizabeth: Well, it's not. I mean, our childhoods are very similar, and we have that
from the very beginning in common. Um, I was a child star at nine, had an abusive
father, um, and that kind of brought us close together in the very beginning.

Oprah: And what is it, I am going to ask Michael this question later on, but, what is it
you most want the world to know about him?

Elizabeth: What a wonderful, giving, caring, generous man he is and how good he is.
Oprah: And he's funny, too.
Elizabeth: Oh, he's wildly funny.
Oprah: He can crack some jokes, I tell you.
Elizabeth: Yes, but he is a good man.
Oprah: When we come back - Thank you for joining us too -
Elizabeth: That's fine.

Oprah: ...cause I know you did not want to be on camera at first, but thank you.

Coming up next, Michael is going to give us not only a tour of his incredible
amusement park and movie theater, but also a very special dance performance. For all
of you who say he is faking the Moonwalk with mirrors, we've got some proof
coming up in a minute.

[Cut to dance clips for intermission]

Announcer: Live from Santa Inez, California. Michael Jackson talks to Oprah.

Oprah: Now this is what's shocking to me, that you even drive. What we're doing,
everybody, is that we are coming from Michael's house down to this amazing
amusement park, which is, oh, about several hundred yards from the house. And this
is, it's incredible.

Michael: Thank you.

Oprah: And I want to know whether or not you did this for yourself or did you do it
for all the children that you entertain here?

Michael: For myself and the children. Every three weeks we - terminally ill children
that come to - uh-
Oprah: To the house?
Michael: Yes, yes.

Oprah: Make a wish foundation, Dream Street, Starlight, yes?
Michael: Every three weeks - and these are sick children, children with cancer. And I
entertain them.
Oprah: Uh-huh.
Michael: And they come here to enjoy themselves.

Oprah: This is unbelievable. What I have to say is, these are, as I was talking to some
kids that were here, these are not just grandma rides here. These are some major rides.
Michael: [laughs]

Oprah: I mean the Sea Dragon, the Ferris Wheel, and there's that Zipper over there.
Michael: The Wipeout.
Oprah: Yeah, the Wipeout, and there are Bumper cars here, it's really-

Michael: Thank you. Well, it brings out the child that lives in everybody. I love rides
and things like that and I share it with the children.

Oprah: Were you able to do that when you were a kid?
Michael: Not really. Sometimes, sometimes, but not often enough.
Oprah: But now you can anytime.
Michael: Every day. It's right in my back yard.
Oprah: How often do you actually come out here and do this?
Michael: Whenever I'm here I come out and I go on the rides.

Oprah: Well, is this a part of you, what we were talking about earlier, the pain of
growing up and not being able to experience all the things that kids normally
experience and so now you are fulfilling all those fantasies.
Michael: To compensate, yes.
Oprah: Really.
Michael: Yes, it is very true.
Oprah: Do you think you can ever really recapture it though? Does it feel the same? I
mean, I don't know.
Michael: [laughs] It's more fun.
Oprah: Really?
Michael: I wouldn't change the past if I could. I'm enjoying myself.

Oprah: And here we are inside the theater. I had one too many sugar babies at the
candy counter.
Michael: [laughs]
Oprah: But the candy is here for all the kids. Pinocchio is here, ET is here. Did you -
what's fascinating to me about you is that obviously you have this childlike aura about
you and I see children with you and they play with you like you are one of them. But,
a child did not do this.
Michael: [laughs]

Oprah: A child did not put this together. This is really magnificent.
Michael: Well, thank you. I - I love to do things for children and I try to imitate Jesus
- and I am not saying I am Jesus, I'm not saying that.
Oprah: Yes, we're clear on that.

Michael: Right, I'm trying to imitate Jesus in the fact that he said to be like children,
to love children, to be as pure as children, and to make yourself as innocent and to see
the world through eyes of wonderment and the whole magical quality of it all and I
love that. And we'll have like a hundred bald headed children, they all have cancer,
and they're all running around.
Oprah: Um-huh.

Michael: And they are enjoying themselves and it makes me cry happy tears that I
was able to do this for them, you know.
Oprah: Um-huh.
Michael: Makes me so pleased inside.

Oprah: Well, when I came here to, um, about a month ago to shoot a commercial with
you for promoting tonight's event, one of the things that really impressed me the most,
I hope you guys are getting shots of this. I don't know how you are, if all the cameras
are on us, but, oh, we got other cameras - is that there are, built inside the walls here beds-beds for some of those sick children who come. And what I realized when I saw
this is that you have to be a person who really cares about children to build it into
your architecture.

Michael: Yes, yes. We have children that come who are - who intravenously - they
are very sick, bedridden-
Oprah: They can't sit up.

Michael: Right. They can't sit up and these beds, they are hospital beds, you push a
button, you go up or you go down and they are able to watch. We have a magic show,
we show the current films, there's cartoons, anything you know, anything so they can
escape to that world of magic that they don't have a chance to experience, the world I
was deprived of when I was little.

Oprah: Now let me ask you this. You know I believe everything happens in people's
lives for a reason. Do you think that had you not missed a lot of, uh, the life and fun
and fantasy of childhood that you would be so in touch with children today. Would
you relate to them as you do?

Michael: I probably would, but not as much. That's why I wouldn't change a thing-
Oprah: Really?

Michael: Because I am happy with the way things are and my caring for young people
and everything.
Oprah: Are you really happy now, because you seemed so sad for a long time.
Michael: [laughs] I was sad for years and years and years. But I'm happy, I'm getting
there. Yes, I'm very happy.

Oprah: And what has made you happier.
Michael: Being able to give back, you know, and to help other people.
Oprah: Uh-huh.
Michael: Heal the World Foundation which I've formed which helps children in
healing in the world. We're doing Heal L. A., which is uh, we have three primary
goals in mind: Immunization of children, mentoring - a big sister, big brother
program, and education in drug abuse. And Jimmy Carter has teamed up with us to do
Heal Atlanta and we're going to go from state to state healing - you know we've gone
to Sarajevo, we've done lots of places.

Oprah: I know, I know, we have photographs of you from all over the world where
you are with all these children. One of the things I was saying before we went to the
last break, before the alarm went off in the house and all that-
Michael: Yeah -

Oprah: is that, uh, we were talking about the rumors. One of the strangest ones I heard
was that when you're Moonwalking, you're faking it, that you have some mirrors in
your socks someplace.
Michael: Oh, boy!
Oprah: And it's not really real.
Michael: No, that's not true.

Oprah: How did you, first of all, you know we've spent so much time trying to dispel
the rumors, trying to get the truth out that I haven't had a really opportunity to talk to
you about how you conceive your music, how you conceive the dance. Where did the
Moonwalk come from?

Michael: Well, the Moonwalk came from these beautiful children, the black kids who
live in the ghettos, you know, the inner cities, who are brilliant, that just have that
natural talent for dancing any of these new - the running man - any of these dances.
They come up with these dances, all I did was enhance the dance.
Oprah: O.K. I want to see you dance.

Michael: Oh, God, no, no.
Oprah: I want to see you dance. I want to see you dance, live.
Michael: No, no. I can show you a step or two, but, I'm a little rusty right now.
Oprah: A little rusty?!
[Michael goes on stage and dances to Dangerous.]

Michael: That's the Moonwalk - wait, you need to catch it from the - sideways.
Oprah: You gotta turn sideways?
Michael: Are you from the front?
Oprah: Yeah, we got ya!
Michael: Catch it from the sideways.
Oprah: O.K. Just show me slow motion. Could you show me slow motion?

Michael: O.K., wait, it's like, it's pushing and then there's like a popping type of thing.
[Michael stops dancing and comes down from stage.]
Michael: I'm sorry.
Oprah: [applauding] Well, I saw it live, I saw it live, I saw it live. And so you took it
from the kids who were doing it.
Michael: Yeah, because, um, I think they are the real dancers.
Oprah: Yeah! And when you are, for instance, when we were here before, when we
were here before to shoot that commercial, you were--

Michael: You were supposed to do this with me! [laughing]
Oprah: I don't know how to do this!
Michael: [laughing]
Oprah: You know I don't know how to do this!

Michael: [laughs]
Oprah: You know what? I mean all the things that were printed in the tabloids, the
only thing that's ever been true was when they said I couldn't dance. Now that's the
truth!

Michael: [laughs]
Oprah: When we were here the last time shooting the commercial, you were like in
between shots running off and conceiving the dance, choreographing the dance, you
were up all night dancing.

Michael: For the Super Bowl.
Oprah: Yes, yes.
Michael: Yes, well, I'm never satisfied. Even when I see something that I've done and
people say oh it was so phenomenal - when I did Motown 25 and I did the Moonwalk
for the first time, I was backstage crying afterwards.
Oprah: Why?

Michael: Because I was unhappy.
Oprah: You cried after Motown 25??

Michael: After Motown 25, yes. But, then as I was walking to the car there was this
little boy, he was like 12, was a little Jewish kid, and he said, "Oh, you were amazing.
Who taught you to ever dance like that?". And for the first time, I felt I did a good
job, because I know children don't lie and I just felt so good about it then.

Oprah: You wanted to, you felt so good, you probably wanted to say- [imitating
Michael] HEH-HEH!
Michael: [laughs] Heh-heh!
Oprah: I want you to sing something acapella for me, if you can.
Michael: Oh, no! What could I sing?

Oprah: Who is it, you know do that whole little beat thing, since we're here in the
theater.
Michael: Um, oh, boy, what could I sing? Who Is It?
Oprah: Where did that Heh-heh thing come from? Heh-heh.

Michael: Heh-heh! [starts the beat and makes instrument sounds to 'Who Is It?']
[sings] I gave my money, I gave my time, I gave her everything in life one heart could
find. It doesn't seem to matter and it doesn't seem right, but the will has brought no
fortune, still I cry alone at night. Don't you judge of my composure cause I'm bothered
every day, and she didn't leave a letter, she just up and ran away.

Oprah: OOOWWWW! Fabulous!
Michael: I mean, you wanted me to do it! I get embarrassed. I'm sorry. I get
embarrassed.
Oprah: I like it very much. Thank you very much for that. We're going to come right
back with more of Michael Jackson live - That was GREAT! [hugs Michael]

[Cut to clips for intermission]
Oprah: One of the reasons we wanted to look at that piece when we went to break
there was because music videos used to be you, used to just be people singing their
song until you came along and changed music videos. Did you know when you first
conceived your first one that's what you were doing? Michael : Yeah. The idea was to
make something that was a story so it had a beginning, middle and an ending.
Oprah: Uh-huh. Michael : So it felt like a mini movie, that's what I wanted to do. And
that is what we did with 'Beat It' and 'Thriller' and 'Smooth Criminal' and all those
type of things.
Oprah: So when you start to look at a piece of work or look at a piece of music, are
you already thinking about how you are going to -- Michael : Sometimes, yes, that is
very true.
Oprah: Uh-huh. I wonder what it feels like, I will never know since I cannot sing one
thing, but, what it feels like to be on stage with a sea of people, a sea of people. One
of the things that has impressed me in putting the pieces together for you, is all around
the world, the response to you is so incredible. I just wanted to, for the rest of you in
the world who haven't seen how people respond to Michael Jackson to take a look....
[Cut to concert clips and crowd scenes from around the world, with 'Will You Be
There' playing as background music.]

Oprah: So, when you're standing there and there's a sea of people responding to you,
screaming you name as they were, what does it feel like?

Michael: Love, you just feel lots of love and I feel blessed and honored to be able to
be an instrument of nature that was chosen to give them that, what I give them. I'm
very honored and happy about that.

Oprah: An instrument of nature - that's an interesting way to describe your- self.
Michael: Thank you, yes.
Oprah: Are you very spiritual?
Michael: In what sense?
Oprah: I mean, do you, do you meditate? Do you understand that there's something
bigger than yourself at work here?

Michael: I believe in God, absolutely, absolutely, very much.
Oprah: Uh-huh. And I believe that everybody comes to the world for a reason. I think,
um, most of us spend our lives trying to figure out what the purpose of our being here
is. What do you think yours is?

Michael: My purpose?
Oprah: Uh-huh.

Michael: Oh, boy, I think, um, to give in the best way I can through song, and through
dance and through music. I mean, I am committed to my art. I believe that all art has
as it's ultimate goal the union between the material and the spiritual, the human and
the divine. I believe that to be the reason for the very existence of art.
Oprah: Uh-huh.

Michael: And, um, I feel I was chosen as an instrument to just give music and love
and harmony to the world. To children of all ages, and um, adults and teenagers.
Oprah: Do you think that by talking now, setting the record straight for yourself, that
maybe people will be able to focus more attention on your music and not judge you
for anything other than the kind of music that you play?

Michael: I would hope so. I would love that.
Oprah: Well, I hope that comes out of this, too. I'm also excited that the world is
watching, and because the world is watching, we thought this was a good time to let
the world see the world premiere of Give In To Me.

[Cut to world premiere showing of 'Give In To Me' video.]
Oprah: So, we want to know how it starts on a piece of paper-quench my desire-and
turns into that.

Michael: Well, Give In To Me, I wanted to write another song, you know, that was
kinda exciting and fun and had a rock edge to it. You know, like when I did Beat It
and Black or White. And Slash, who's a dear friend of mine, we love animals and
things like that, he wanted to play guitar and I wanted him to play guitar. We got
together and we went to Germany and we shot this thing in just like two hours. We
had no time at all to shoot it. We wanted it to be exciting and fantastical and fans, you
know, like it's a rock concert and that's how it ends up, that's the result.

Oprah: You mentioned animals. I know everyone's going to ask me when I leave here,
where are all the animals? I said it in the opening, I expected chimps to be jumping all
over the living room and I didn't see any. Where's Bubbles?

Michael: [laughs] Well, the animals are everywhere. They're in their habitats. They're
all over the ranch. And they come out in the daytime and they play and jump around,
they have their own playground and area.
Oprah: Why, why were you so fascinated by animals, do you think?

Michael: Because I find in animals the same thing I find so wonderful in children.
That purity, that honesty, where they don't judge you, they just want to be your friend.
I think that is so sweet.
Oprah: I do, too. We'll be right back with Michael Jackson, live.
Oprah: We're live at Michael Jackson's house, in his theater and we asked NBC for
ninety minutes. I don't think it was enough time.
Michael: [laughs]
Oprah: I think we've cleared up all the rumors though. There are no chimps running
around the house-
Michael: [laughs]
Oprah: No oxygen tank in the house. I don't know, are you going to lay off the crotch
a little bit?
Michael: [laughs] Ask the music.

Oprah: Ask the music will you lay off the crotch. Oh, we didn't get about the
inauguration. Did you tell President Clinton that you had to be the only person there
singing?

Michael: That is horrible. That is the stupidest, craziest story that I have ever heard. I
mean, why would I just want me and nobody else could be on the show, just me.
That's so stupid, to me. I mean, it's crazy. That's not even in my heart. I would never
say any- thing like that. Again, somebody made it up and the whole world believed it.
It is so false, it's incredible.

Oprah: What do you want, want most - what do you want the world to know about
you most? I asked Liz that of you, what do you want them to know?

Michael: Like to be remembered for?
Oprah: Not to be remembered for - what about for now? Forget remembered.

Michael: Oh, known for now. As to be an artist, a great artist. I, I love what I do and I
would love people to love what I do and to be loved. I just simply want to be loved
wherever I go. All over the world, because I love people of all races from my heart,
with true affection.

Oprah: Hmm. You know, Gene Siskel who's a movie critic asked me this question
once. And I love the question, so I am going to ask you.
Michael: Yeah?
Oprah: You're 34 years old. What do you know for sure?

Michael: Hmm. What do I know for sure?
Oprah: What do you know for sure?

Michael: Oh, boy, I'm still learning. I mean, life is an education for me. I can't say that
I know anything for sure. I really believe that.

Oprah: I can't thank you enough for letting us in and I wish you all the happiness in
the world. I loved being here because it makes me feel like a child again and one of
the things I promised myself was that when this interview was over-live around the
world- I was going to go get on that Ferris Wheel!
Michael: [laughs]
Oprah: And that is exactly what I intend to do. I'm gonna take off my blue shoes and
I'm gonna ride that Ferris Wheel!

Michael: [continues laughing]
Oprah: I'm gonna have a good time and have myself a little popcorn, maybe, and
maybe when it's all over, you'll teach me how to do the Moonwalk - when
everybody's not looking!

Michael: O.K.! O.K.! That sounds good.
Oprah: Yeah! This was fun!
Michael: Yeah! Lots of fun!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
screenshots from the O interview:


"Give In To Me" MichaelJackson VEVO link
[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]


PEPSI SHOOT-

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Just an observation-I am trying to keep my opinions quiet and to myself for this thread-however this is not a controversial stand-This "O" interview (which I do remember very well) in 1993 was typically a negative approach on the part of Oprah-I saw baiting-confronting-accusatory tones-and often an attitude of flippancy toward Michael when he would deny-dispute or simply say whatever the topic of the moment happened to be was silly or turn it around to form a question back to "O" saying such things as "Now who would believe that-or-who would really think or behave that way?" This made her feel (and look) foolish and unfair-well "O" if the shoe fits!

I think MJ was really the only person who was intrinsically just honest-no "airs" or ego-this was "alien" to "O" who had been using that "gotcha" interview style for quite a while - with common people in show/music business- so if she was not able to coax at least 1 humiliating moment from that guest on the day on her "judge-jury-convict them" stage - well -her day was just ruined-

I was tickled and very impressed with Michael for he without any effort was able to look as he really was-honest and sweet-with honorable and good intentions-"O" was her regular sensationalistic seeking self with nothing really above mediocre skills and a flat base nature-

As most of us know-Oprah didn't "right her ship" and fairly report MJ anything-until suddenly after he passed-she knew that her ratings would take a giant hit-if she didn't make noise and a public comment of respect for MJ-and kindness toward the 3 children- It was a day late and a dollar short for me-I'm glad the 25 years of that O being on TV 5 days a week is nearly FINALLY over-

It is a shame about Oprah-her ways of going about her daily business and her personal life and how the years played out-she was actually pretty good when she was getting started-then she got louder and louder and the unfortunate part-she heard herself-listened and believed all the tripe she was yelling and carrying on about-bye O!

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Re: Michael Jackson Interviews (1970's through 2000's)

Post by Capricious Anomaly on Thu Sep 20, 2012 11:28 am

I am looking forward to more of the interviews! When will there be more posted? Thank you for sharing them admin! Razz
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Interview #5 Interview with Ebony Magazine October 1994

Post by Admin on Thu Sep 20, 2012 11:39 am


Interview #5 Interview with Ebony Magazine (1994) October 1994 by Robert E. Johnson (JET Associate Publisher)

>>>Introduction

In the first one-on-one interview the "King of Pop, Rock and Soul" Michael Jackson
granted after he shook up America with the announcement of his marriage to Lisa
Marie Presley, daughter of the late Rock 'n' Roller Elvis Presley, the megastar
revealed to EBONY where they met and how he proposed.

Some published reports said that the couple had known each other only eight months
before Lisa Marie Presley-Jackson issued a statement, saying: "My name is Mrs. Lisa
Marie Presley-Jackson. My marriage to Michael took place in a private ceremony
outside the United States [May 26]." She said the marriage was not formally
announced because "we are both very private people living in the glare of the public
media... I am very much in love with Michael. I dedicate my life to being his wife. I
understand and support him. We both look forward to raising a family and living
happy, healthy lives together. We hope friends and fans will understand and respect
our privacy."

It was their love of privacy that prompted media probes that resulted in published
stories that stated the couple knew each other only eight months before beginning
their romance that led to matrimony.

The truth is that Michael, now 36, and Lisa Marie, 26, were just a couple of
youngsters when they met in Las Vegas 20 years ago. He was 16 and she was 6. The
Jackson Five, with Michael out front as the lead singer, appeared at the MGM Grand
Hotel April 9 through 23, 1974, and August 21 through Sept. 3, 1974.

>>>Interview

Michael, taking time out from his studio recording session in New York to give
EBONY an exclusive interview, recalls:

"Her father [Elvis] used to bring her to catch our show where all nine of us [Jackie,
Tito, Jermaine, Marlon, Randy, Maureen 'Rebbie', LaToya and Janet, then 8] were
performing... It was a real family show -- the only family show in Las Vegas which
allowed children to come." He continued: "Elvis would bring his daughter, Lisa
Marie. She would sit right in the front and bodyguards would be right there.

Afterwards, she would be escorted backstage and I would meet her and we would
talk. This happened quite often. She would come again, again and again. It was quite
an event. "After that, I didn't see her for quite a while. You know, it was like ships
passing in the night -- hello and goodbye."

Lisa Marie married musician Danny Keough in 1988 and two children (Danielle, now
5, and Benjamin, 2) were born to this union. Differences that the couple did not
reconcile resulted in a "quickie" divorce in the Dominican Republic last spring.
Three years ago when he started the DANGEROUS album, which featured such hits
as "Why You Wanna Trip On Me," "Remember The Time," "She Drives Me Wild"
and "Can't Let Her Get Away," Michael said their relationship reached a new plateau.

"We sort of went out together. Then we would talk on the phone... I noticed that we
had come closer. We went to Las Vegas for The Jackson Family Honors [in 1993].
We later traveled to Atlanta for (former) President Jimmy Carter to visit children, but
no one knew that she was there with me.

The brilliant thing about us is that we were often together but did not let anybody
know about it. We got to see each other that way over the years. We were really quiet
and comfortable with each other. That's pretty much how the dating started
happening."

It was during this period that Michael said their relationship changed from being good
friends to lovers. As a sensitive songwriter who deals with feelings that run the range
of human emotions, Michael has an uncanny sense of the chemistry in writing songs.
For him, that chemistry is inspiration. If you listen to the lyrics of "Remember The
Time" and "I Can't Let Her Get Away," in the 1991 release of his 'Dangerous' album,
you conclude that Lisa Marie could have provided the inspiration.

She certainly provided the kind of support he needed in 1993 when he was going
through legal trials and tribulations. "I was on tour and it seemed like I was in
Armageddon -- Armageddon in the brains," Michael remembered. "All these horrible
stories were going around about me. None was true. It was unbelievable. Lisa Marie
would call. I could count my true friends on one hand. She was very, very supportive
the whole time. That really impressed me. She would call and be crying. She was
angry and really wanted to choke people.

"But, really, what impressed me was earthquake day in L.A. [June 28, 1993],"
Michael says with an air of excitement. "On earthquake day, my phone just happened
to be working. I was terrified -- almost out of my brains. I thought the world was
ending. I got a phone call that day and it was from her, right after the quake."

Later, in London, where he underwent treatment for addiction to prescription drugs,
Michael said that Lisa Marie gave him the impression that their relationship was
moving them toward each other in ties that bind. "She would call me, but she didn't
always get through to me. And that made it very frustrating for her. I got all the
messages... She was very concerned." It was after these experiences that Michael says
he came to that moment when he had to say "This Girl Is Mine" and "The Way You
Make Me Feel." (Michael chuckles at the play on the words of two of his best-selling
songs.)

"It kind of unfolded," he said of the moment of truth. "We spent a lot of time on the
ranch [his sprawling, multimillion-dollar Neverland] and just walked around and
talked. It happened! It unfolded all natural. We could feel the feeling we had for each
other without even talking about it. It was all in the vibrations, the feelings and the
look in our eyes."

After he recounted how a friendship turned to romance, Michael was asked: "Who
proposed, you or Lisa Marie?" He responded: "I proposed." Blushing at the
recollection, Michael said: "Well, first I asked -- I'm the shyest person in the world. I
said to her -- we were on the phone -- 'If I asked you to marry me, would you?' She
said, 'Of course!' Then there was silence. I said, 'Excuse me, I've got to go to the
bathroom,' he laughed sheepishly. "So I came back. I didn't quite know what to say.
But that's how it happened." Following the telephone proposal and acceptance, the
engaged couple promptly met at Neverland, where the romance started. It climaxed in
marriage on May 26 in the Dominican Republic, proving that love conquers all.

The couple honeymooned briefly in Budapest, Hungary, where the bride shared some
time with the groom on a film location, where he produced a promotional video for
his upcoming album, 'HISTORY.' They also spent some time doing what they both
love -- caring for children. They visited children's hospitals where they comforted the
young patients and distributed toys.

This was a prelude to the priority they have agreed upon. The priority is not recording
together, although Lisa Marie inherited her famous father's talent for singing and his
estate valued at over $150 million.

"All this talk about us recording together is a complete rumor," says Michael, whose
financial worth is estimated to be over $200 million. "The thing we want to do most is
centered around children. I never met anybody who cared so much about children the
way I do. I get real emotional about children. Lisa Marie is the exact same way.

Wherever we go, we visit children's hospitals. My dream is that when we go to South
Africa and India, we will aid children," he discloses. Asked about plans for their own
children, he replied: "It's already happening." Then the fifth born of the nine Jacksons
paused and added: "I want more children than my father [Joseph] has."


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Re: Michael Jackson Interviews (1970's through 2000's)

Post by ijustcan'tstoplovinguMJ on Sat Jun 22, 2013 6:42 pm

hey admin mind doing the interview michael did on November 13 1987? with ebony/jet? please i just adore that one!!!
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Re: Michael Jackson Interviews (1970's through 2000's)

Post by mjlover on Fri Nov 22, 2013 9:43 am

thank you for propagating these interviews.  

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