UPDATED: Michael Jackson Mourned By Friends, Fans, Fellow Musicians
"I can't stop crying over the sad news. I have always admired Michael Jackson. The world has lost one of the greats, but his music will live on forever! My heart goes out to his three children and other members of his family. God bless." --Madonna
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“I am absolutely devastated at this tragic and unexpected news. For Michael to be taken away from us so suddenly at such a young age, I just don’t have the words. Divinity brought our souls together on The Wiz and allowed us to do what we were able to throughout the 80’s. To this day, the music we created together on Off The Wall, Thriller and Bad is played in every corner of the world and the reason for that is because he had it all…talent, grace, professionalism and dedication.He was the consummate entertainer and his contributions and legacy will be felt upon the world forever. I’ve lost my little brother today, and part of my soul has gone with him.” --Quincy Jones
"May God cover you Michael. We all lift your name up in prayer. I pray for the entire JACKSON family particularly Michael’s mother, children and all his fans that loved him so much. I would not be the artist, performer, and philanthropist I am today without the influence of Michael. I have great admiration and respect for Him and I’m so thankful I had the opportunity to meet and perform with such a great entertainer, who in so many ways, transcended the culture. He broke barriers, he changed radio formats! With music, he made it possible for people like Oprah Winfrey and Barack Obama to impact the mainstream world. His legacy is unparalleled. Michael Jackson will never be forgotten." --Usher
"The incomparable Michael Jackson has made a bigger impact on music than any other artist in the history of music. He was magic. He was what we all strive to be. He will always be the King of Pop! Life is not about how many breaths you take, but about how many moments in life that take your breath away. For anyone who has ever seen, felt, or heard his art, we are all honored to have been alive in this generation to experience the magic of Michael Jackson. I love you Michael." --Beyonce
"Yesterday was a day I will never forget, or want to remember. Michael was both weak and strong, clever and kind, talented beyond belief and equally insecure. He was a doting father, respectful son, loving brother, and caring uncle. He was my friend. I take great solace in the pride and confidence he exhibited during production rehearsals on Wednesday night. That is the memory I will cherish for the rest of my life." --Randy Phillips, President & CEO of AEG Live, producers of "This Is It.
Michael Jackson's personal crescendo of amazing power as an entertainer was clear and unmistakable -- and has never slowed to this very day! His passing will be grieved far beyond that of any other singer, composer, producer, dancer and choreographer, in the history of the world. Indeed, in my very firmest, personal, belief there will never, ever be another Michael Jackson! --Don Cornelius, Soul Train
"Michael was a great and wonderful artist and performer. We were privileged and honored to record him and his brothers here at Philadelphia International Records. We are very honored to have been a part of Michael Jackson’s music and creative career in helping to write and produce his own music with his brothers. We know his music and legacy will live on for a very long time." --Kenny Gamble and Leon Huff, Philadelphia International
"Peace to the King. I'm devastated by the passing of Michael Jackson; incredibly sad. He was one of my childhood idols. I salute you King of Pop. You made the whole world MoonWalk together." --LL Cool J
"Michael Jackson was a brilliant troubadour for his generation, a genius whose music reflected the passion and creativity of an era. His artistry and magnetism changed the music landscape forever. We have been profoundly affected by his originality, creativity and amazing body of work. The entire Sony family extends our deepest condolences to his family and to the millions of fans around the world who loved him." --Sir Howard Stringer, Chairman, CEO and President, Sony Corporation
"I woke up, like this is not happening. Still tearing up. I can't believe this, so crazy to listen to that right now. We recorded that in NY when hit factory was in NY in 2000. spent 2 weeks of my life with that man teaching me about life, period. Not just about music. He heard the demo that was done over the summer in 2000 in philly. Wrote in in 97 and no one was checking for it. it was a floetry demo that went out. He didn't want to touch my ad libs. For him to be mesmerized by my voice, I cant do it. he said, were just gonna keep you in there. 'I Cant Help It' was my favorite. I'm an 'Off The Wall' fan." --Marsha Ambrosius, Floetry
"Michael Jackson's unsurpassed artistry and beloved music brought joy to every corner of the world. We join today with his millions of fans in expressing our profound sadness and we offer our deepest condolences to his family and loved ones. It was a true privilege for all of us in the Sony Music family to work with one of the most talented superstars in the history of music. We will miss him greatly." --Rolf Schmidt-Holtz, CEO, Sony Music Entertainment
"Michael was the kind of amazing talent that comes along once in a lifetime. He was an incredible recording artist, an insightful businessman, an unmatched performer, and a true icon. To all of us at Sony/ATV Music Publishing, he was also a trusted and passionate partner, who was very proud of our accomplishments. He will be dearly missed. We wish his children and entire family our deepest condolences." --Martin Bandier, Chairman & CEO of Sony/ATV Music Publishing
"I'm shocked. He was a pioneer who transcended genre and race with the most unique talent and style the world has ever or will ever see." --Rob Thomas
"The first album I ever bought with my own money was Thriller. His performance at the Grammys is a milestone in the history of American music. I watched it on tv and spent the next two weeks in my kitchen trying to learn how to moonwalk." --Mark Hoppus, Blink 182
"Michael Jackson has been a part of my life for as long I have heard music. He in my mind is the ultimate entertainer of our generation. I can remember exact moments of my life based on Michael Jackson songs and videos." --Pete Wentz
"His death is a shock. I grew up being inspired by Michael Jackson's music and magic. He is a legend and his music and heart will forever inspire." --Ashlee Simpson Wentz
"Words can't begin to describe my sadness for the loss of Michael Jackson. I was honored and humbled to have the opportunity to perform with him several times and he had a profound influence on my career. Michael forever changed the world of music and entertainment and I will always remember him for his kind and sweet spirit." --JC Chasez
" The death of Michael Jackson came as such a surprise to me. At first I felt incredibly saddened, but as I sat and thought of Michael Jackson, the greatest entertainer of our time, it put a smile on my face. He was such a dynamic person who touched tonssssssssssssss of people with his talent! That’s incredible! A round of applause for Michael" --Vanessa Simmons
"It hasn’t hit me YET!!! I know when it does I will be a f**kin WRECK!!!!! I loved and still LOVE Michael Jackson!!!" --Brandy
Thank you Michael for your hard work, dedication, philanthropy & the sacrifice of your young spirit . Your vision and imagination live thru us. I don’t know what to say. --Erykah Badu
"I am so very sad and confused with every emotion possible. I am heartbroken for his children who I know were everything to him and for his family. This is such a massive loss on so many levels, words fail me." --Lisa Marie Presley, former wife of Michael Jackson and daughter of Elvis Presley
Michael Jackson showed me that you can actually see the beat. He made the music come to life!! He made me believe in magic. I will miss him! --Sean "Diddy" Combs
"I knew Michael as a child and watched him grow over the years. Of all the thousands of entertainers I have worked with, Michael was THE most outstanding. Many have tried and will try to copy him, but his talent will never be matched." --Dick Clark, host of "American Bandstand."
"Michael Jackson was clearly one of the greatest entertainers of our era. His influence dominated and defined our culture not only in music, but in fashion, dance, film and so much more. Often overlooked are his spectacular skills as a songwriter, composing both music and lyrics for his immense body of work. In an era in which most songs are composed by teams, Michael was the sole composer of dozens of songs that endeared him to audiences around the world. A BMI songwriter since 1976, his BMI catalog contains more than 150 songs, more than 20 reaching multi-million performance status on American radio and television." -Del Bryant, President & CEO, Broadcast Music, Inc. (BMI)
"The entire Apollo family is saddened to learn of Michael Jackson’s untimely passing. Michael first performed at the Apollo in 1969 with his brothers when he was only nine years old, winning Amateur Night, and catapulting their career as the Jackson 5. We will always remember Michael in our hearts as a true Apollo legend, known for his professionalism and grace. Our sympathy goes out to his entire family. He will be deeply missed." -Jonelle Procope, Preszident & CEO, The Apollo Theater Foundation, Inc.
"I was so excited to see his show in London. We were going to be on tour in Europe at the same time and I was going to fly in to see him. He has been an inspiration throughout my entire life and I'm devastated he's gone!" -Britney Spears
In this Billboard video clip, a Michael Jackson fan from Ohio reacts to the King of Pop's death outside the Michael Jackson press conference on June 25, where fans gathered to mourn. More MJ fan reaction videos are in our video player.
"Rarely has the world received a gift with the magnitude of artistry, talent, and vision as Michael Jackson. He was a true musical icon whose identifiable voice, innovative dance moves, stunning musical versatility, and sheer star power carried him from childhood to worldwide acclaim. A 13-time GRAMMY recipient, Michael’s career transcends musical and cultural genres and his contributions will always keep him in our hearts and memories. We are deeply saddened by this tragic news and our hearts go out to his family and to music lovers around the globe who mourn this great loss."--Neil Portnow, President/CEO, The Recording Academy
"Michael Jackson was my generation's most iconic cultural hero. Courageous, unique and incredibly talented. He'll be missed greatly." --Russell Simmons, hip-hop entrepreneur and founder of Def-Jam Records.
Other stars commented via Twitter:
@MCHammer: I will be mourning my friend , brother, mentor and inspiration.. He gave me and my family hope. I would never have been me without him.
@johncmayer: Dazed in the studio. A major strand of our cultural DNA has left us. RIP MJ.I think we'll mourn his loss as well as the loss of ourselves as children listening to Thriller on the record player.
@imogenheap: Noooooooo!!!! Michael Jackson was my childhood! I loved him. So so so so sad. So nearly saw him live. Just a couple of weeks. crying.
@RealTalibKweli: RIP Michael Jackson. Greatest performer ever.
@KELLY__ROWLAND: Michael you left such a legacy on this earth, have touched SO MANY!!! We thank you for such a driving inspiration in music & our lives!!
@MF Doom: A little bit of everyone died today, I can tell you a piece of me just did
@theboygeorge: Total shock and huge sadness about Michael Jackson, may he have some peace now. Amen!
@BlakeLewis: So many tears falling, my heart crushed, my idol no more. Micheal Jackson you will forever live in my heart. May you R.I.P. With James Brown