Michael Joseph Jackson. 1958-2009

It was June 25th 2009.  For the past 2 years I had been locked away in my ‘Cave of Wonders’ creating, releasing, writing & recording. Sometimes weeks would go by and I would have never left my room, let alone my home. Midday I remember receiving a message on my phone and I had tweeted: “Don’t you f*cking die MJ… Much love to the King of Pop. Best wishes & get better.”   Within 15 minutes CNN had made an announcement and the blur began.  Sadly, we all know how the day ended. We had lost a star. I went immediately to UCLA followed by Vigils at MJ’s Carolwood residence & The Jackson Family home in Encino. I visited his star on Hollywood Blvd and said farewells at Forest Lawn. We sang, we cried, we shared stories and experiences. All for a man that No One will ever understand.

On July 7th there was a memorial service held at Staples Center in Los Angeles. Video cameras and even cell phones were not allowed inside Staples. I filmed and took photos but never posted or released any of them. In celebration of MJ’s “54th” birthday I would like to share with you a very intimate moment. Most of the videos I am sobbing like a little baby but I found this clip of Stevie Wonder singing a song for Michael and it is too beautiful not too share.


The Bangkok Five had been recording ‘Under The Covers’, an album of cover songs that were influential to us. I was watching a CNN interview with Smokey Robinson where the interviewer asked “If someone asked you to sing a song at a service for Michael, what would you sing?” Smokey thinks and poetically responded ‘Never Can Say Goodbye’. The interviewer  disrespectfully put Smokey on the spot to sing it. But he did. And it was monumental. A clip from the interview starts at 3:07 http://youtu.be/fQiJ44RYPUw?t=3m7s
Frost had been watching the same interview and we were both touched by this moment. We actually called each other to share with one another what we had just experienced only to discover we had both viewed the interview. We immediately added ‘Never Can Say Goodbye’ to our album Under the Covers.
Never Can Say Goodbye as recorded by The Bangkok Five with a tribute video I edited together for MJ.

Happy Birthday Michael Joseph Jackson. You were Gone Too Soon.
Thank you for the inspiration. I <3 You More! Ray Blanco I guess you even inspired us to cover your favorite songs. This was MJ's favorite song. 'Smile' as recorded by Michael Jackson Music by Charlie Chaplin

2 Responses

    • RayBlanco

      Thank You very Much! We knew we had to cover the song. But I gotta tell ya, when we actually started thinking about how we would do it, or what our interpretation would be like, we got a little nervous and almost aborted the recording session with the attitude of…. some songs need not be re-recorded. This may have been one of those songs but we gave it a shot anyways and I am very happy with how beautiful and powerful it became.
      Thanks for listening. xxx


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