One of my fondest memories of Michael Jackson is the first time he and I sat down to write out a set list for his 'This Is It' tour. Michael showed me a computer printout of what the fans voted as the songs they most wanted to hear and then he showed me his own hand written list of what he wanted based on that information. He asked me my opinion and I told him I liked it so far but he didn't have any J5 or Off The Wall stuff on the list. He said 'I don't?'
MJ grabbed the list, looked at it, balled it up and threw it away. LOL...we had a very difficult time trying to get that list together. If we did all of his hits, he would have been on the stage for about 2 weeks. What was great about the time we had together that day was seeing the love and passion he had for pleasing his fans and wanting to make sure they were getting what they wanted from our show, first hand. I don't think I have ever worked with an artist that loved his fans more, Ever!
When I found out I was on the short list of music director hopefuls for MJ's tour, surprisingly I was somewhat reluctant. I had been the music director for so many big stars in my career and wanted to pursuit other musical endeavors closer to home. However, when it's Michael Jackson calling you have to at least explore the possibilities.