Thursday, May 23, 2024

Clive Davis Confirms: Michael Jackson Plotted to End Brother Jermaine’s Career


In his wonderfully juicy new book, “Soundtrack of My Life,” Clive Davis — “the Man with the 45 RPM Ears” –confirms what has always been out there: Michael Jackson purposely tried to kill off brother Jermaine’s career. In the mid 80s, Davis signed Jermaine Jackson and had a couple of hits that  still stand up: “Do What You Do” and “Tell Me I’m Not Dreaming.” Michael didn’t like this.

When Clive hired Kenny “Babyface” Edmonds and LA Reid in the late 1980s to produce Jermaine’s fourth album at Arista Records, Michael had enough, Davis says. The King of Pop tied up Babyface for his own projects, ripping him away from Jermaine. Clive writes: “Jermaine couldn’t believe that Michael, his close brother, would hijack his producers’ material this way.”At a dinner in Paris, Clive recalls, Jermaine was “crying, indeed sobbing at times, so deeply hurt that his brother would do this to him.”

The older brother was so angry that he wrote his infamous song, “Word to the Badd,” which denounced Michael as shallow and selfish. Michael responded by calling Davis and demanding he take the song off of Jermaine’s new album.

read this about Jermaine’s unpublished book about Michael from 2003:

Davis was between a rock and a hard place, as they say. Jermaine leaked the track so the world could hear his bitterness. Clive “I felt it would be wrong for me to tell an artist to take a song off an album. This was a family and personal matter that they would need to resolve themselves.” Eventually a watered down version of the song was officially released. Davis’s story lines up with the one told by Michael’s longtime pr man, the late Bob Jones, in his book with Stacy Brown.

I’m sorry: this is the petty side of Michael Jackson that his fans don’t like to hear about. But now we have the same story from two people who never knew each other–Bob Jones, and Clive Davis. Bob Jones wrote that Michael systematically destroyed the careers of Rebbe and Jermaine, and even LaToya, but wasn’t fast enough to stop Janet.



Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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