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Good girl gone bad

GREAT NIGHT: Jas enjoyed Bad 25

SONY MUSIC recently threw a bash to celebrate the 25th anniversary of Michael Jackson’s legendary album Bad. The event featured a screening of Bad 25, a film made by renowned US director Spike Lee.

Spike was granted exclusive access to all of the footage held by Michael Jackson’s estate, which showed the making of the Bad album and music videos. There were even whole sections of Jackson in the studio with various singers and producers like Siedah Garrett and Quincy Jones. Footage of Michael behind the scenes is extremely rare and fascinating to watch, especially because he was so private.

Bad gave Michael nine number one hit singles, it reached 40 million in album sales, and the tour was seen by a record breaking 4.4 million people over two years. I remember it fondly, as it was the first live music concert my dad ever took me to at Wembley.

Spike turned up to greet this specially invited audience at the Odeon, Leicester Square, wearing a classic Michael Jackson t-shirt, white tracksuit top, his now classic fisherman hat, specs and sneakers.

The film features many who were in Michael’s life, including musicians, studio session players, and performers like Jeffrey Daniels, who taught MJ the moonwalk, as well as friends like Mariah Carey and Sheryl Crow.

The film was interesting in so many ways. Michael refused to refer to his music videos as anything other than “short films” and you could tell that thinking was indoctrinated into his entourage’s minds as well.

The rivalry between Michael and Prince and Michael and Stevie Wonder was also documented. One scene refers to a time when Michael and Prince met. Michael was convinced that a box Prince brought along with him had a voodoo spell that would affect him, so he avoided the Purple Rain hitmaker thereafter!

In another scene, we see a very young Michael and Stevie singing a duet together. They were both bemused on camera and trying to out-sing each other with their respective styles. It was a hot mess and they both seemed to know it!

The hard work Michael put in – spending hour after hour watching all the old classic greats like Bob Fosse, in order to influence his stage routines and costumes – was simply amazing. He wrote notes to himself that were shown in the film; notes that said things like ‘watch the best, work harder than them to be the best.’

There were sad and poignant moments as well as hilariously funny sections of the film, such as scenes showing Michael dressing up in disguises so that he could go out in public. He looked like he had a lot of fun dressing up as a tramp or an old man. He even dressed as a Jehovah’s Witness and knocked on doors!

The film is amazing. It’s beautiful that the family and his estate have allowed the world to see more of the fascinating private life of this legend.
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ALL GO FOR KOJO


HERE COMES THE BOYS: Ricky Norwood, WQretch 32 and Kojo (l-r)

COMEDY king Kojo threw a VIP, invite-only party for the launch of his DVD Live N Kicking. Earlier this year, the UK funnyman performed a great live show at Hackney Empire and the DVD captures all the excitement from the show, plus backstage moments.

The launch was full of the industry’s movers and shakers from both the comedy and music worlds. It was a great event attended by artists including Wretch 32, Misha B, Mclean, Ricky Norwood, Perri Shakes Drayton and Loick Essien to name a few.

Live N Kicking provides so many laughs, and for those who missed the live show, it’s well worth purchasing the DVD.

Kojo’s also about to embark on his first UK tour, Special Delivery, where he’ll perform in nine cities, followed by an epic show next year. There’s just no stopping him!
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THAT'S WHAT FRIENDS ARE FOR


KISSES: Alan Carr and Jas

ALL OF my recent excitement hasn’t been as fun as it usually would be, as my dad is still unwell and hospitalised. But work is keeping me sane and otherwise distracted some of the time.

He went in having suffered a heart attack, sleep apnea, respiratory issues and a dislocated shoulder. All of his symptoms have now becoming more severe, and he also developed a blood infection called Sepsis, which can be deadly.

One day he’s alert enough to demand his coffee and the next he’s barely conscious or screaming in pain. It’s been a real rollercoaster of emotions and exhaustion, but I know life has pain to give and this is my painful time.

My family, friends and industry family (too many to mention including Lord Paul Boateng, Kojo, the mad Alan Carr and more) have been so attentive and kind. I really can’t ask for any more. Thank you God.

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