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Queen and the King of Pop

One of Mercury’s longtime idols was the King of Pop himself, Michael Jackson. Mercury had admired Jackson all the way back to his Jackson 5 days, and in 1983, barely a year after Jackson’s Thriller had become the biggest album in the world, Mercury got the chance to collaborate with Jackson. They began recording three demos that were, sadly, never completed. Asked in 1987 why things didn’t work out, Mercury evasively blamed the fact that the two stars were never being in the same country long enough and commented that Jackson had “retreated into his own little world.” Another story emerged wherein Jackson had allegedly picked a fight with Mercury after catching him using substances during the recording session. A third explanation, from Queen manager Jim Beach, stated that Jackson brought his pet llama into the studio, which astonished and frustrated Mercury’s attempts to record. Turns out you shouldn’t ever meet your heroes.


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