South East Wales

Michael Jackson Cardiff show: Brothers criticise timing

Two of Michael Jackson's brothers have criticised a planned tribute concert to the pop superstar in Cardiff as "inappropriate" and "ill-timed".

Jermaine and Randy Jackson are unhappy that it will clash with the trial of Conrad Murray, the doctor charged in relation to their brother's death.

The 8 October gig at the Millennium Stadium was announced by producers Global Live Events on Monday.

But the event has won the backing of the late singer's mother Katherine.

Jackson died in June 2009 aged 50 while rehearsing for his This Is It tour.

When plans for the concert were announced it was reported that Mrs Jackson, and the singer's sister La Toya and brothers Tito, Marlon and Jackie, were in support of it.

At a press conference Mrs Jackson said: "Michael gave his entire life to the world through his love, his music and his devotion to healing the planet."

'Worthy celebration'

She said she was positive that the event would "form a worthy celebration of Michael's life."

Jermaine and Randy Jackson. Pics: AFP/Getty
Jermaine and Randy Jackson said there would come a time and place for such a tribute

She revealed that "as many members of my family that are available" would attend the event.

However following the press conference the two brothers released a statement saying that while they supported "the spirit" of a tribute concert, in choosing the timing of it the promoter had "disrespected" their opinions and wishes.

"In light of this, we feel it is inappropriate to be involved with such an ill-timed event and its promoter, Global Live," the statement said.

No acts have been announced for the concert yet but a notice on the event's website promises "the world's greatest performing artists" will appear.

There are plans for the concert to be broadcast around the world to 30 countries in 2D and 3D.

It will raise money for three charities including the Los Angeles-based Aids Project.

Announcing the concert on Monday, Roger Lewis, group chief executive of the Welsh Rugby Union, which owns and operates the stadium, said the "extra special" concert would pay tribute to one of the world's greatest pop icons of all time and benefit US and UK charities.

He added it was "fantastic news for music fans all over the world" and that it would be "a huge boost for Wales to host this spectacular one-off show."

Global Live Events LLP has worked with a range of artists including Abba, The Beatles, Eric Clapton, Madonna, Placido Domingo, and Jackson himself.

When the concert was revealed Chris Hunt, the firm's president, said: "We wanted to do something decent and worthy of Michael's musical genius yet something fun and authentic that you would envision Michael attending with excitement and joy surrounded by talent that he respected and loved."

Meanwhile, a Los Angeles judge has ruled that footage of Jackson rehearsing for a concert just days before his death will not be show in court.

Rehearsal footage

Prosecutors wanted to show several hours of unedited tapes filmed for the movie This Is It in an effort to prove Jackson was healthy before he died of a drug overdose in 2009.

The footage was not actually included in the movie, which was released four months after the singer's death in 2009.

Sony Pictures, the studio behind the film, argued that showing the unseen footage in a public court may hurt its potential commercial value.

Sony Pictures said it screened more than 100 hours of raw footage for the lawyers and the judge in the case.

Judge Michael Pastor concluded on Monday that it would not help the defence and that "it was a waste of my time."

But the jury will be shown clips that were used in the film which show the star rehearsing for a series of comeback concerts in London.

Dr Murray has pleaded not guilty to involuntary manslaughter. His trial is due to start in September.

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