Black Eyed Peas frontman will.i.am yearns for fans to hear the songs he recorded with the late Michael Jackson before he died, because the collaborative experience was "awesome". The hip-hop star was one of a handful of producers who hit the studio with the "Thriller" legend in the months leading up to his untimely death in preparation for his big pop comeback.
But Jackson passed away in June 2009 and will.i.am vowed to keep the unfinished tracks under wraps out of respect for the perfectionist. The rapper recently blasted the release of Jackson's first posthumous album, "Michael", insisting the superstar would never have wanted fans to hear the songs before they were officially complete.
He said, "Whoever put it out and is profiting off of it, I want to see how cold they are. To say that what (Jackson) contributed during his life wasn't enough. He just wasn't any ordinary artist. He was a hands-on person. To me it's disrespectful. Michael Jackson songs are finished when Michael says they're finished. Maybe if I never worked with him I wouldn't have this perspective. He was very particular about how he wanted his vocals, the reverb he used... he was that hands-on."
And although will.i.am wishes he could showcase some of his work with Jackson, he is adamant it will never happen. He tells London newspaper Metro, "I actually wish the songs could come out but that's like wishing Michael was alive - and I know he didn't want them to (be released unfinished)."
"Working together was awesome. Michael was meticulous, mega-critical: 'Turn that snare down, bring that microphone down - can you bring me some ice?' And it was dope (amazing). I swear to God, that happened."