Special Guest: Richard Griffiths
So I headed off to Richards house to have a catchup. He’s worked at some of the best companies in the music industry, with some of the best execs and some of the best artists over the years. From Chris Blackwell to Celine Dion, Richard Branson to yours truly. His list of achievements is pretty impressive. Here’s a funny little story he told me about global superstar, Michael Jackson.
My Michael Jackson story.
The only thing that wasn’t fun was the BMG stuff. That was just not fun. Luckily, that was only for about two years.
The Virgin thing was incredible. Island was doing that stuff with Chris Blackwell.
I must say though, running a major label like Epic in the ’90s when CDs were taking off was amazing. Everything was selling.
We had Michael Jackson, we had Celine Dion. Should I tell you my favourite Michael Jackson story?
So… I go to Baden-Baden in Germany for the start of… It was the ‘Dangerous’ tour, or it could’ve been the HIStory tour.
I go backstage to meet Michael and I’m sitting there with him and we’re talking and, as you’ve seen, he talked very softly.
Anyway, the support act comes on, they’re a boy band from Australia, and there’s just this boom, boom, boom going, right?
So Michael is having a hard time hearing me, I’m having a hard time… So he motions over to one of his bodyguards, he whispers in his ear, I don’t hear what he says, and five minutes later, the boom, boom, boom stops.
And what he’s done is he’s told them to turn the PA off until we finish this meeting!
No sound for Jacko.
All of the sound for the support band was off. But they’ve got in-ear monitors on, so they think it’s all still going on as normal. So they’re prancing around on the stage and no-one can hear a thing!
I think Denis Handlin, who runs Sony Australia, I think, still hasn’t forgiven me for that. But – He was Michael Jackson, you know?
I have to say, in all my dealings with him, he was the legend that he is.