Pop icon Michael Jackson will appear Wednesday (Jan. 9) on the 29th annual American Music Awards (AMA) to accept the Artist of the Century Award. Confirmation of his appearance during the ceremonies comes after weeks of turmoil that reached a boiling point last month when AMA executive producer Dick Clark filed a $10 million lawsuit against Recording Academy president Michael Greene, who oversees the annual Grammy Awards.
Jackson had originally agreed to take part in the AMA ceremonies, but backed out, allegedly because of what Clark claims is Greene’s policy that artists who appear on the AMAs are not allowed to participate in the Grammys telecast. Clark specifically cited Jackson’s original change of plans in announcing his lawsuit. “Mr. Greene has caused me a lot of pain and a lot of stress,” he said at the time. “I’ve known Michael Jackson since he was a kid … To have another party interfere in that relationship makes me very, very angry.”
As previously reported, Alicia Keys leads the AMA field with five nominations. Britney Spears, Mick Jagger, Cher, Toby Keith, Kid Rock, Lenny Kravitz, Shaggy, Brooks & Dunn, Yolanda Adams, and show co-host Sean “P. Diddy” Combs will perform. The show will be broadcast live on ABC.
Fans can vote in the category of Internet Artist of the Year via the AMA’s official Web site. Destiny’s Child, Keys, Janet Jackson, Tim McGraw, Shaggy, and U2 are the nominees.