During his lifetime, Michael Jackson had some varied Hip Hop collaborations. Most notably, the late King of Pop shared vocals with Notorious B.I.G. on the 1995 single “This Time Around,” and was brought onstage by Jay-Z during the 2001 Summer Jam. And while 50 Cent has been inserted in the conversation for the most commercially successful emcees, he was never able to record with Michael Jackson while he was still alive.
“My deejay, Whoo Kid, had an opportunity to actually meet Mike because he was interested in working with me,” 50 revealed. “He was interested in working with me because he had a song he created that would be perfect for us to collaborate on.”
The two chart-topping artists shared a mutual respect for each other. While Jackson is most known for moving 30 million copies of Thriller, 50 Cent’s Get Rich Or Die Tryin’ ranks as the sixth largest opening week since Nielsen SoundScan began tracking U.S. sales in 1991. However, when the two discussed the track that would eventually become “Monster,” the topic at hand was mutual respect not sales or chart positions.
“I don’t usually get nervous, because I really don’t care about other artists,” 50 explained. “Mike is special…he’s something different. I don’t even know how to explain it.”
Michael Jackson died before the pair had a chance to record “Monster” together, and his vocals were mastered and mixed in by producer Teddy Riley. While various members of the Jackson family and Joe Jackson’s attorney publicly opposed the release of material that will be featured on the upcoming Michael album, 50 looked at the collaboration differently.
“It was exciting,” 50 added. “For me I looked at it as an opportunity to do what we spoke about…I said, ‘This is a 2010 version of Thriller.’ It’s an opportunity be on a record with not just a great artist but a legend.”