In the 24 hours since news broke that pop icon [artist id="1102"]Michael Jackson[/artist] died suddenly on Thursday in Los Angeles, many of the legendary singer’s friends, colleagues and family members have paid tribute to the late singer. On Friday (June 26), the memories kept coming, as Brooke Shields, Slash and little sister Janet remembered Jackson as a friend, brother, music pioneer and, obviously, the King of Pop.
“[artist id="1090"]Janet Jackson[/artist] is grief-stricken and devastated at the sudden loss of her brother,” manager Kenneth Crear said in a statement to MTV News. “She is in pre-production on a film and is flying immediately to California to be with her family.” Since Jackson released her statement, she has been seen in Los Angeles.
“My heart is overcome with sadness for the devastating loss of my true friend Michael,” Brooke Shields, who dated Jackson in the ’80s, said in a statement to MTV News. “He was an extraordinary friend, artist and contributor to the world. I join his family and his fans in celebrating his incredible life and mourning his untimely passing.”
Jackson’s longtime pal, Emmanuel Lewis, according to his agent is “sincerely devastated at this time,” adding that the loss is “very personal and very emotional”: “Former ‘Webster’ star Emmanuel Lewis, who befriended singer Michael Jackson in the 1980s, has been profoundly impacted by the singer’s death on Thursday afternoon.”
Slash and Jackson teamed up for a legendary 1995 VMA appearance . In a statement to MTV News, the former [artist id="846"]Guns N’ Roses[/artist] guitarist said, “Michael Jackson was one of the most talented and dynamic performer/singer/songwriters I ever had the pleasure of working with, he was amazing. Unfortunately, the controversy surrounding his personal life in recent years overshadowed his unparalleled contributions to the music world, which is a tragedy in and of itself. But his music will live on forever no matter what and his memory will be adored and admired for years to come.”
[artist id="1230523"]Kanye West[/artist] took to his blog Friday and posted a photo of Jackson and then left the simple comment: “Thank you for everything, Mike.”
Legendary acts like Smokey Robinson and Tina Turner are also remembering Jackson. “It is always hard to lose a friend. I will miss Michael and all that he brought to the world through his music and his creative genius,” Robinson told MTV News in a statement. “I know that his legend will live on and that the world will miss him dearly.”
“I am shocked and saddened by Michael’s passing,” Turner, who worked with Jackson on the now-classic charity single “We are the World,” told Spinner. “I, along with his millions of fans, looked forward to seeing him tour one more time. Now, may he rest in peace.”
MTV will be paying tribute to MJ throughout the weekend with music videos, exclusive performances and calls and tweets from celebrity admirers and friends.
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