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‘Michael Jackson Stole A Lot Of Songs’: Quincy Jones In No-Holds-Barred Interview

American record producer, actor, music composer, and musician Quincy Jones, who is turning 85 next month, recently gave a tell-all interview with Vulture magazine, spilling the beans on his journey from rags to riches, on music, on working with Michael Jackson, and other celebrities.


Quincy, also known as Q, has been in the industry since the 50s, having his breakthrough moment in 1964 after he became the Vice President of Mercury Records – the first African American to hold this executive position. While racism was huge then, Quincy believes that not much has changed 50 years later.

“We’re the worst we’ve ever been, but that’s why we’re seeing people try and fix it. Feminism: Women are saying they’re not going to take it anymore. Racism: People are fighting it. God is pushing the bad in our face to make people fight back,” he tells Vulture. When asked if there’s something he would like fix in the world, he answers racism because while things have come a long way, “we’ve got a long way to go”.

“It’s (Donald) Trump and uneducated rednecks. Trump is just telling them what they want to hear. I used to hang out with him. He’s a crazy motherfucker. Limited mentally — a megalomaniac, narcissistic. I can’t stand him. I used to date Ivanka (Trump), you know,” he adds when talking about the subject, revealing that Ivanka was just born to “the wrong father”.

The interview also has interesting details about Michael Jackson, a singer he worked with for decades. Having first collaborated for the album Off The Wall in 1979, which sold over 20 million copies, the two went to work on other albums that Jackson was known for, including Thriller and Bad. But, Quincy reveals, Jackson had a different side to him.

“I hate to get into this publicly, but Michael stole a lot of stuff. He stole a lot of songs. [Donna Summer’s] State of Independence. The notes don’t lie, man. He was as Machiavellian as they come,” he says.

Speaking about the late music star’s plastic surgeries, he said: “I used to kill him about the plastic surgery, man. He’d always justify it and say it was because of some disease he had. Bullshit. He had a problem with his looks because his father told him he was ugly and abused himWhat do you expect?”

The interview also focuses on Quincy’s thoughts on the current music scene, where he feels producers now have gotten greedy and lazy.


“Producers now are ignoring all the musical principles of the previous generations. It’s a joke. That’s not the way it works: You’re supposed to use everything from the past. If you know where you come from, it’s easier to get where you’re going. You need to understand music to touch people and become the soundtrack to their lives.”

But, Quincy has some favourites too, particularly this year’s five Grammy award winner Kendrick Lamar. “Bruno Mars. Chance the Rapper. Kendrick Lamar. I like where Kendrick’s mind is. He’s grounded. Chance, too. And the Ed Sheeran record is great. Sam Smith — he’s so open about being gay. I love it. Mark Ronson is someone who knows how to produce,” he adds.

Quincy has a project in the pipeline – Qwest TV which is still in its Beta stage. Describing it as a “musical Netflix”, the subscription streaming service will be dedicated to footage of jazz performances and documentaries.


Feature Image: The Wrap