Michael Jackson

Michael Jackson by J. Randy Taraborrelli

Book: Michael Jackson by J. Randy Taraborrelli Read Free Book Online
Authors: J. Randy Taraborrelli
pleasure of introducing a young star who has
     been in the business all of his life. He's worked with his family, and when he sings and dances, he lights up the stage.’
    At that moment, Sammy Davis, Jr., came bounding out on to the stage for a comic bit. He supposedly thought Diana was introducing
     him, but she explained that she was actually referring to – and then she made the introduction – ‘Michael Jackson and The Jackson
     5.’
    At that, the curtain opened and The Jackson 5 bounded out, singing the Sly Stone composition, ‘Sing a Simple Song’. The fellows
     were dressed alike in the costumes they had worn for their debut appearance at the Daisy: pale, lime-green, double-breasted,
     wide-lapelled, sleeveless jackets with matching bell-bottom slacks and suede boots in exactly the same shade. Their shirts,
     with the full-gathered sleeves, were gold. (While many observers assumed that these outfits were paid for by Motown, actually
     they were purchased off the rack by Joseph and Katherine back in Gary.)
    As they sang, according to set designer Jack Lewis, Joseph Jackson and Berry Gordy became embroiled in a heated argument,
     backstage.
    ‘What's this “Michael Jackson and the Jackson 5” stuff?’ Joseph demanded. ‘No one told me about that. No one cleared that
     with me.’
    Berry shrugged his shoulders. ‘It wasn't written that way on the cue card,’ he explained. ‘Diana just blurted it out. She's
     that way. She does what she wants to do. Been trying to tell her what to do for years,’ he said with an easy smile. ‘It ain't
     gonna happen.’
    ‘Well, I don't like it,’ Joseph fumed. ‘All the boys are equal. We're not singling Michael out from the rest. It'll just cause
     problems.’
    ‘But, look, Joe, he's obviously the star.’ Berry said, not taking his eyes off the performance. ‘Come on! Look at him. You
     gotta be kidding me?’
    ‘No, they're
all
stars,’ Joseph countered.
    ‘Well, it's too late now,’ Berry said, shrugging his shoulders, again. Then the two of them watched the rest of the performance,
     Berry with a big smile and Joseph with a sour frown.
    When the brothers finished their next two songs – ‘Can You Remember?’ and ‘I Want You Back’ – the applause, led by Diana, was
     generous. They made a solid impression, there was no doubt about it.
    After the show, there was pandemonium backstage, with the boys whooping and hollering, slapping one another on the back, jumping
     up and down and hugging each other. Joseph was in the middle of it all, enjoying a sweet moment of victory with his sons.
    Diana walked into the backstage area and went right to Michael. ‘I am so proud of you,’ she enthused. ‘You are the best! Just
     the greatest. You're gonna be a big,
big
star.’ She took such pride in Michael's achievement; one might have thought she was his actual mother, not just a figure-head
     in his life. Then, she turned from her ‘son’.
    ‘Will someone please get me a towel?’ Diana asked no one in particular. She raised her voice. ‘There should have been a towel
     back here waiting for me.
I want a towel.
Now, where is it?
Somebody?

    ‘I'll get you one, Miss Ross’ Michael offered. He disappeared for a moment and came back with a fluffy white towel.
    Diana smiled and took it. ‘Thanks, Michael,’ she said, patting him on the head.
    He beamed and ran off.
    Berry walked over to Diana and, as Jack Lewis listened, he asked, ‘What was with that introduction, “Michael Jackson and The
     Jackson 5”?’
    Towelling off her bare shoulders, Diana looked at Berry with a proud expression. ‘Oh, I threw that in myself,’ she said. ‘Pretty
     good, huh?’
    ‘I figured. But the father was really pissed off about it,’ Berry said.
    Diana looked at Berry as if he were daft for caring what ‘the father’ thought… ‘So what?’ she asked. ‘Here, take this,’ she
     said, handing him the towel as if he was her assistant instead of the president

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