Jackson Hits Studio With will.i.am For New Album

Michael Jackson and Black Eyed Peas producer/rapper will.i.am have begun collaborating on material for Jackson's as-yet-untitled album, due late next year via the Bahrain-based Two Seas Records. It wi

Michael Jackson and Black Eyed Peas producer/rapper will.i.am have begun collaborating on new material for Jackson's as-yet-untitled album, due late next year via the Bahrain-based Two Seas Records.

The pair recently entered a studio in Ireland. "I like what he is doing and thought it would be interesting to collaborate or just see how the chemistry worked," Jackson told Access Hollywood in an interview airing this week. "I think he's doing wonderful, innovative, positive, great music."

The new offering will be the pop star's first release since 2001's "Invincible," which bowed atop The Billboard 200. But Jackson, who currently resides in Bahrain, says he has still been writing in the interim. "I am always writing a potpourri of music," he says. "I want to give the world escapism through the wonder of great music and to reach the masses."

Next month, Jackson will make a rare appearance at the World Music Awards in London to receive the Diamond Award, for selling more than 100 million albums. Previous recipients include Rod Stewart, Mariah Carey, Bon Jovi and Celine Dion.

The awards, which are based solely on record sales, will be handed out Nov. 15 at Earls Court, hosted by Lindsay Lohan. Beyonce, Mary J. Blige and Andrea Bocelli are among the performers.