Pop icon Michael Jackson was quite friendly with Princess Diana long before she devastatingly died in a car accident. In an interview. Jackson stated that he canceled one concert in honor of her and paid tribute to her in another concert.
Jackson's concert was supposed to be held in the Belgian coastal town of Ostend. He canceled it due to his shock Princess Diana's death, a spokeswoman for his record label stated.
"[Jackson] said he would have a difficult time performing and did not want to do the concert because of her sudden death," according to Hannelore Van Staen of Sony Epic Belgium, reported Irish Times.
The King of Pop felt that the Princess of Wales was a kindred spirit and believed she was one of the mere people who understood his ways.
Jackson and Princess Diana shared late-night phone calls as they found solace in each other's trifles in the public eye.
He admitted that he once took the song "Dirty Diana" out of his concert setlist because Princess Diana was in attendance at his show. The song was not inspired by Princess Diana but Jackson explained that he did not want to somehow disrespect her, reported World ABC News.
However, when Princess Diana later met with him, she demanded him to play the song.
Friendship Between Michael Jackson, Princess Diana
Michael Jackson and Princess Diana forged a strong friendship with the global music sensation because of her love of his songs, their shared experience of having their individual lives play out under the searing media, and their mutual passions for creating good in the world. Thus, it would make sense that he would cancel one concert to commemorate her.
Princess Diana was a huge man of the music artist as she reportedly listened to his albums "Thriller" and "Bad" constantly. The pair met on July 16, 1988, when, towing along with her then-husband Prince Charles, she was present at the Wembley Stadium for Jackson's "Bad" tour.
Michael Jackson's Reaction to Princess Diana's Death
In 1997, shortly following Princess Diana's death, he told in an interview with Barbara Walters regarding what he did next. He reportedly "collapsed in grief" when he was informed.
When he returned to the stage after canceling one of his concerts, his follow-up concert saw him honoring the entire performance to the Princess of Wales' memory.
According to him during the concert, "In my heart I was saying: 'I love you Diana. Shine and shine on forever. You are the true princess of the people.' In words I did not say, but I said it in three minutes by showing a big picture [of Diana] on the jumbotron screens," reported Express.
Michael Jackson had been staying in Paris but his spokeswoman stated that she could not confirm a report that he had been at the Ritz Hotel where Princess Diana and friend Dodi al-Fayed dined together prior to their fatal car accident and Jackson's canceling of his concert.