Three days after the death of [artist id="1102"]Michael Jackson[/artist], Ne-Yo took the stage at the BET Awards to croon a melodious tribute to the fallen King of Pop with a cover of "She's Out of My Life." He then returned to the stage alongside Jamie Foxx with a piano-driven rendition of "I'll Be There."
"I love you and I miss you," Ne-Yo declared during the show, citing Jackson as his artistic inspiration.
Less than two weeks from now, "Michael Jackson's This Is It," the documentary about the singer's final days as he prepped for his London comeback concerts, opens for a two-week theatrical run. As Ne-Yo told MTV News during a recent interview, he's itching to check out MJ on opening night.
"All I've seen is what they've shown on TV — the little trailer, that's all I've seen," he said. "But I'm definitely looking forward to being one of the first in a theater somewhere to check that out."
As the R&B singer explained, Jackson not only provided Ne-Yo with his original musical guidance — MJ also continues to be the artistic ideal that Ne-Yo strives to achieve. "I've said on numerous occasions that Michael Jackson is half the reason I even sing," he said. "I've talked about how I learned to sing listening to Mike and Stevie Wonder and people of that nature. He's still an inspiration to me. I aspire to be what he was, as far as musically, as far as philanthropy and you name it, Michael Jackson was cream of the crop and I'm just trying to follow in his footsteps."
Don't miss "Michael Jackson's This Is It" Premiere Special, airing on MTV and VH1 on Tuesday, October 27 at 8:30 p.m. ET! "Michael Jackson's This Is It" opens in a limited engagement on October 27 and and wide on October 28.
Check out everything we've got on "Michael Jackson's This Is It."