Wed. Jul 24th, 2024
#StoryOfTheDay… Here in picture Michael Jackson, Janet Jackson and The Notorious B.I.G at the VMA 1995…for the story about the collaboration in the studio between Michael Jackson and The Notorious B.I.G, let’s recall the story of John VanNest recording engineer who worked on several projects with MJ and his brothers. He talks about the meeting between rapper The Notorius BIG and the King of Pop:
”I worked with Michael Jackson on many occasions… first in 1979, shortly after the release of “ Off The Wall , ” which was recorded at his old studio, Image Recording. I spent a lot of time in 1980 (or ’81?) with Michael recording demos for ” Thriller’ ‘ . That was great because it was just the two of us and it was a great experience working so close to him. An incredible experience… he danced up a storm while singing and did all those “grunt, oohs” vocals that would pepper his tracks.
The next few years, I recorded with the Jacksons on several tracks. I met all your brothers.
Bruce Swedien went back to Image Recording to record a song for the “Victory” album around 1983. Another great experience, as Bruce did (as I recall) all of Michael’s albums. Bruce is the best of all time. THE BEST.
I met Michael again in 1995 to work on the ” HIStory” album . We were all holed up in the Larrabee North studio, Eddie Delena recorded many of Michael’s vocals… but my memorable session happened with Dallas Austin recording with rapper The Notorious BIG the song “ This Time Around ” .
There I was, in a room with Dallas, Biggie and Michael. I will never forget this.
It was more or less like this…
Michael used to call people asking them to be on his albums. It was interesting to know that anyone on the planet would answer the phone if it was Michael calling. Anyway, I heard rumors that BIG was very excited to be able to participate.
I knew I would be the one recording it, because I had already recorded almost all of that song, “This Time Around”. So, Dallas and I were waiting for him and right on time, The Notorious arrived. He was quite an imposing figure when he walked in and I had no idea what to expect from him in terms of attitude, but he seemed pretty cool.
Almost immediately, he blurted out, “Hey, Dallas, can I meet Mike?” and went on to talk about how much this opportunity meant to him, as Michael was his hero. Anyway, Dallas told him, ”let’s rap first” , so Biggie gets in the booth and starts recording.
During the first take, Dallas and I looked at each other because it felt right. I was really impressed and so was Dallas.
As I recall, we recorded another take but I’m pretty sure we ended up using the first one. Then, Notorious arrives and asks again if he could meet Michael now. We sent word to another studio where Michael was working that Biggie had finished and wanted to meet him.
Simply for safety, Michael’s security would come in and make sure no one was in the room who shouldn’t be, and once that was confirmed (it was just me, Biggie and Dallas), Michael went in.
Biggie started crying…
I could tell how much this meant to him. Well, Michael could have that effect on anyone, even the toughest rappers! Biggie stumbled over his words, bowing and telling Michael how much his music meant to him. Michael as always, very humble, couldn’t stop smiling while Biggie continued talking about how much he loved him.
I watched Biggie become a big ball of butter — it was really beautiful to witness.
Michael finally asked to hear what we had done…”This Time Around”.
Michael LOVED it and said: “Let’s hear it again” . Michael absolutely loved it… and thanked Biggie for coming all the way from Philly.
Biggie shyly asked if he could take a photo, and Michael agreed. A photo was taken, we listened again and Michael thanked Biggie. Michael said goodbye and left, leaving Biggie standing there, completely stunned.

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Idolatry is not a thing of the past. Idol worship today might look different, but we have modern day idols all around us. Let's look at what these modern idols are and how we can overcome them.
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"For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves. It is the gift of God that no one shoud boast..." Ephs 2:8, 9

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