Mary J. Blige, Akon, Natalie Cole, Angela Bassett and Sister Sledge featuring Kathy Sledge are early musical acts for Michael Jackson tribute concert in Vienna.
Jermaine Jackson has finally revealed performers line-up for his brother Michael Jackson tribute concert at a packed news conference in Vienna's city hall. The confirmed musical guests for the gig are Mary J. Blige, Akon, Natalie Cole, US 5, Angela Bassett and Sister Sledge featuring Kathy Sledge.
Chris Brown also appears in the performers list. However, his publicist denied his involvement in the show telling E! Online, "Chris is not confirmed to perform or participate in any capacity for this show."
Other performers are expected to be announced at another press conference later this week in Berlin and London, according to the event promoter Georg Kindel. "This is not the final lineup - maybe some of the names you mentioned you will hear within the next couple of days," he said. Jermaine added, "We're very excited - the list is growing more and more." He stated that "many major Bollywood names" and artists from the Middle East will also make contribution to the tribute.
Ray Chew, the musical director of the BET and Grammy Awards, has been billed to work on this gig. The gig's songs set include "Man in the Mirror", "Billie Jean", "Beat It" and "Thriller". As a closing performance, all stars will take the stage together and bring either "Heal the World" or "We Are the World".
As a surprise for those attending the gig, "Michael Jackson will come on stage one last time. Just the way his fans worldwide loved him. And he will sing once again - together with brother Jermaine." Words are, Michael will be featured on a giant video but nothing has been shared regarding this matter. What Jermaine has to say about the surprise is that "it will be a magic moment for all who loved his [Michael] music."
The tribute show was initially staged at London's Wembley Stadium on August 29 to celebrate what would have been Michael's 51st birthday, but Jermaine decided to bring it to Vienna. The decision was made because the Austrian capital is "a very dear place" for his brother, so Jermaine said on "Larry King Live" on August 7. "He loved castles. And we're going to have this huge celebration in front of a castle," Jermaine added.
There is a chance that this gig, which is aimed to be held as a "global" farewell to Michael, will be televised as it was previously confirmed that negotiations are ongoing with networks over rights to air the event. A substantial portion of the proceeds attained by the tribute will be donated for charity.