V Vintage: Michael Jackson 2001 Interview (Pg. 2)


Do you feel that there is a larger acceptance of black artists?
Of course, I think people have always admired black music since the beginning of time if you want to go back to singing Negro spirituals. Today the market is just accepting the fact that that’s the sound, international, from Britney to ‘N Sync, they are all doing the R&B thing. Even Barry Gibb of the Bee Gees, he always tell me, “Man we do R&B.” I said Barry, I don’t categorize it but it’s great music. I understand where he’s coming from. I love great music, it has no color, it has no boundaries, it’s all wonderful music. I love from the Beatles, to the Bee Gee’s, to the Mama’s and the Papa’s, to the Temptations, to Diana Ross and the Supremes, I love all of it. I love Queen, “Bohemian Rhapsody,” it’s a killer, I love it.

What’s life like as a single parent?
I never had so much fun in all my life. That’s the truth. Because I’m this big kid and now I get to see the world from the eyes of the really young ones. I learn more from them then they learn from me. It’s almost like hypothesis, because I’m constantly trying things and testing things on them to see what works and what doesn’t work. Children are always the best judges to monitor something, especially in my field or any other field. If you can get the kids, you’ve got it. That’s why Harry Potter is successful, it’s just a family oriented movie. You can’t go wrong there, you just can’t. That’s why I write lyrics when I write a song I try not to say things that offend parents because we want a wide demographic. I don’t want to be like that. We weren’t raised to be like that. No way, you know Mother and Joseph wouldn’t say stuff like that. You know them well enough.

Are the pressures of your celebrity status on your children?
Yes, absolutely, from the day that they were born.

What music do Prince and Paris listen to?
They listen to all my music and they love classical that plays all around the ranch. They like any good dance music.

How would you feel about your children becoming pop icons at 13 and 14 based upon your experience?
I don’t know how they would handle that it would be tough. I really don’t know. It’s hard because most celebrity children end up becoming self-destructive because they can’t live up to the talent of the parent. It’s hard. Fred Astair Jr., people used to say o him all the time, “Can you dance?” And he couldn’t dance. He didn’t have any rhythm. But his father as this genius dancer. It doesn’t mean that it has to be passed on. The competition is hard, it’s hard. I always tell them, you don’t have to sing, you don’t have to dance, be who you want to be as long as you are not hurting anybody. That’s the main thing. Don’t you think?

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