Sylvain/AFP/Getty ImagesToday would have been Michael Jackson‘s 60th birthday, and New Edition‘s Michael Bivins, Sister Sledge‘s Kim Sledge and Estelle are among the artists who are remembering the King of Pop.
New Edition was inspired by The Jackson Five, and group member Michael Bivins remembers why he admired MJ.
“I think his voice is one of the best,” he tells ABC Radio. “It’s synonymous with his dancing.”
Bivins also remembers when Jackson invited the group to his home in California.
“I think the day I really focused on Mike is when we met him at his house, because we got to see another side of Mike,” Bivins says. “He was running around slapping La Toya on the butt…all kinds of crazy stuff that I could relate to.”
Sister Sledge toured with The Jackson Five in the 1970s, and Kim Sledge remembers when the brothers would go incognito when they’d stop to eat late at night.
“They would have on their hoodies, and their sunglasses, and they kinda all walk in the road, and their sunglasses, and we would say, ‘I hope they don’t think that people going to recognize them,'” she laughs.
“It was just hilarious, and we would all crack up, the guys everybody,” Sledge says. “But I have to say, the nicest people you’d ever want to work with.”
Grammy Award-winner Estelle says she misses Michael, as well as many other legends who’ve left us, including Aretha Franklin and Luther Vandross.
“Prince is gone. Michael’s gone. Aretha’s gone, and Nina Simone. The world is no longer the same,” she says. “Luther’s gone. Like, what are we doing, and who is stepping up to take the mantle?”
“Before them,” she continues, “everyone was like, Dinah Washington‘s gone, and Ella Fitzgerald, and they stepped up, so there is somebody.”
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