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Michael Jackson Vs. Prince: An Oral History (Pg. 3)

BRUCE SWEDIEN: Prince is wonderful…just an incredible talent. Both he and Michael had a cordial relationship. They even hung out a few times. It’s common knowledge that the song “Bad” was written to be a duet between Michael and Prince. But as you know it never came together. When Prince left the studio after we were working on “Bad” he decided to pull out of it. He left the control room and as he turned around to go he said to us all, “Don’t worry, this record will be a big hit even if I’m not on it.”

ALAN LEEDS: But the thing about Michael coming to Prince and wanting him to do “Bad,” that really pissed him off. Prince was like, “Oh, he wants to punk me out on record. Who does he think I am, crazy?” He couldn’t get outside himself enough to realize that it was the kind of thing that probably could have benefited both of them. Still, it would have forever been Michael’s video with Prince as just a guest. So that captured what the relationship couldn’t be. They were like Ali vs. Frazier. And the media couldn’t get enough of pitting these guys against each other.

CYNTHIA HORNER: I take credit for that [laughs]. Right On! was a fan magazine, so I could get away with some of the things that I did. Michael and Prince were not actually battling each other on a serious level.  But because I knew that was something the public found fascinating and everybody always talked about it, I wanted to have both of them on the cover together to project that element of Prince vs. Michael.

TEDDY RILEY (Longtime Michael Jackson producer): We looked at Michael and Prince as Gods. I still remember getting the first call from Michael to work on the Dangerous album. I was trying to get Q-Tip to let me use his studio in Sound Works on 21st St. I had the whole floor booked out. In one room, I was working on Jane Child’s “Don’t Want To Fall In Love,” the other room was Keith Sweat’s “Make You Sweat” and the other one was Guy’s “Why You Wanna DOG Me Out.” And I went into the other room and created “Remember The Time.” I brought Michael back to our world—the young, black, New Jack Swing world. That was the moment that people said “Michael is R&B again.” He wasn’t just the King of Pop. He was the King of R&B. And Prince was the king of funk-rock.

QUESTLOVE: You recall that ill-fated duet Eddie Murphy did with Michael called “Whatzupwitu?” I have five hours of raw footage during filming for that video. Michael and Eddie had a green screen behind them, so somewhere in that second hour, the conversation turns to Prince. And Eddie is like, “Yeah man…Prince is a bad motherfucker. I’m glad I’m working with you, but another dream I have is working with him too.” And I don’t even think that Mike knew the camera was on him and he goes, “Yes, he’s a natural genius.” And then four beats later, Michael says, “But I can beat him [laughs].”

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Famous Dex Explains Why He Fell Asleep During Instagram Live

Famous Dex had his legion of fans concerned when he abruptly knocked out during a live stream with fans. After concerns of drug use sprouted from social media, the rapper has spoken out about the incident.

Getting back on Instagram Live Tuesday (Dec. 18), the rapper blamed his work ethic–not opioids or lean–as to why he dozed off. "First [off], I'm a human being," he said. "I work my a** off and once you put in overtime overnight and come in at 4am in the morning and go live, then hey. I'm not going to lie, I was tired and high at the same time."

In the wake of the deaths of Mac Miller and Lil' Peep as well as the recent rehab stint of Soundcloud rapper Lil' Xan, drug abuse in hip-hop is becoming a hot-button topic.

"Don't let the world trick you and be fooled," Dex said to the camera.

Dex has not held his tongue when it comes to admitting that he used several drugs in the past including lean which led to him being hospitalized.

Famous Dex falls asleep during his Instagram Live broadcast. ☹️ pic.twitter.com/9hztdIlqEC

— HipHopDX (@HipHopDX) December 18, 2018

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READ MORE: Hip-Hop Has An Opioid Problem Too, And It's Time People Cared

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Eve Says Her Record Label Had Trepidation About 2001 Gwen Stefani Collaboration

In 2001, Philly rapper Eve finally earned her breakthrough hit on the pop charts with "Let Me Blow Ya Mind," a bouncy hip-hop collaboration with No Doubt's lead vocalist Gwen Stefani. However, E-V-E revealed on CBS' The Talk that her record label at the time had doubts regarding Stefani's feature.

On Monday (Dec. 17), Stefani appeared on the show. Sharon Osbourne asked co-host Eve what she remembers from their first musical encounter 17 years ago to which Eve said, "I just loved Gwen. I was a huge fan, and I was like this is gonna work. Although, the label didn't think it would work."

Stefani responded, "Really? I thought it was the opposite. I thought they said, 'You need to have her on the record.' " Eve continued stating that she had to "fight" for Stefani and was "happy it happened."

 

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So fun being on @thetalkcbs @therealeve @sherylunderwood @sharonosbourne @carrieanninaba & @carnie68! #YouMakeItFeelLikeChristmas #thetalk #everybodytalks

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In 2002, just a month after the Dr. Dre-produced song took home the Grammy Award for Best Rap/Sung Collaboration, Eve knew the duet was meant to be, telling VIBE, "Gwen and I had an instant connection both artistically and spiritually. We could have been sisters in another life."

"Let Me Blow Ya Mind" became one of many songs to enter the music industry stratosphere in the 2000s where black R&B/hip-hop stars worked with white pop/rock acts that would eventually expand each other's demographic.

Despite the song's success, it wouldn't be the last time the two artists worked together. Eve was featured on Stefani's top 10 hit "Rich Girl" in 2004 off her debut multi-platinum-selling solo album Love. Angel. Music. Baby., and served as her opening act on Stefani's This Is What the Truth Feels Like Tour 12 years later.

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XXXTentacion attends the 2017 BET Hip Hop Awards.
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XXXTentacion's Posthumous Album 'Skins' Tops The Billboard 200

XXXTentacion's posthumous album Skins has topped the Billboard 200 albums chart, which marks the second time this year the late-20-year-old has held the number one spot. XXXTentacion was killed in Florida in June.

"The set, which was released on Dec. 7 via Bad Vibes Forever/EMPIRE, is XXXTentacion’s second No. 1, and it earned 132,000 equivalent album units in the week ending Dec. 13, according to Nielsen Music," reports Billboard of the news. "Of that sum, 52,000 were in album sales."

Skins is the first posthumous number one album since Prince's The Very Best of Prince, which catapulted to the top of the charts after his death in April 2016. XXX's album ? went No. 1 back in March 2018, and his first studio album 17 debuted at No. 2 in 2017.

The album featured one guest collaboration by Kanye West, who provided a controversial bar on the track "One Minute." He spits “Now your name is tainted, by the claims they paintin'/The defendant is guilty, no one blames the plaintiff.” A representative for West states that he was not defending XXXTentacion "or anyone in particular" on the song. At the time of his death, the young man. was awaiting trial for several domestic violence allegations against his then-pregnant girlfriend.

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