Freddie Mercury discusses meeting Michael Jackson and friendship in rare interview clip
5 July 2022, 14:45
The Queen frontman gave an interview in which he discussed his friendship with the King of Pop and gave an insight into MJ's private life.
- Michael Jackson and Freddie Mercury's long-lost duets are heart-wrenchingly good
- Freddie Mercury unseen photos: Brian May releases new-found private images of Queen bandmates
- Michael Jackson's best albums ever, ranked in order of greatness
Speaking to famed American music journalist Lisa Robinson, author of There Goes Gravity: A Life in Rock and Roll, the Queen star spoke about his bond with Michael and how it had evolved.
“In the early days, I mean like three or four years ago, he used to just come and see our shows at The Forum in LA. And I guess he likes us, so I got to meet him and he kept coming to see us and then we started talking.
- Remembering Freddie Mercury's incredible final performance with Queen - video
- Queen: Rare video of Freddie Mercury playing the drums at a band rehearsal in 1977 is phenomenal
- Watch Michael Jackson's mind-blowing last performance 48 hours before his death
"I think he would actually go out, he would go out and have dinners – I remember going to dinner with him – and I think now he just stays at home and doesn’t like coming out at all, that’s what he says. He says whatever he wants he can get at home, because anything he wants he just buys," reveals the bemused Queen star.
“Have you talked to him about, just in terms of being an artist, in terms of… to stay in the house like that, that kind of isolation that’s so scary, isn’t it?" asks Ms Robinson.
Freddie grimaces at the thought, saying: “I know, that’s not me. But you know, that’s his bag. I wouldn’t do that, I’d be bored to death.
"I mean, I have to go out every night. I hate staying in one room for too long anyway, I just like to keep moving. It’s just an individual approach, you know,
"I guess it’s because he started when he was very young. I mean when you think about it, when I’m talking to him I think 'my God, he’s 25, I’m 37, yet he’s been in the business almost longer than I have."
The mutual respect between the pair was also confirmed by Michael Jackson himself, as per a statement made by MJ documented in a 1983 Rolling Stone story during one of Jackson’s backstage visits to see Queen.
A reporter is said to have blocked his path and asked Michael, “Can I tell my viewers that Michael Jackson is a Queen fan?” he replied back, “I’m a Freddie Mercury fan.”
- The moment Michael Jackson did his first moonwalk on TV and changed music history forever
- The Freddie Mercury tribute concert: A guide to the greatest gig of the ‘90s
- Freddie Mercury in private: 20 rarely seen photos of the star behind closed doors
As the '80s progressed, MJ's appearances at concerts and public events became few and far between, yet the gregarious Freddie Mercury would be famed for setting the night scene alight.
The Queen star was famous for frequenting bars in southwest London, a stone's throw from his famed Garden Lodge home in Kensington, and rumour has it he even once took Princess Diana on a raucous night out to the famous Vauxhall Tavern – dramatised (with some poetic licence) in the Sky Arts series Urban Myths.
The story goes that Freddie and comedian Kenny Everett dressed Diana up as a man, and took her to the iconic venue. Whether it actually happened or not is still a mystery, but various people have spoken about it, including the comedian Cleo Rocos.
In her book The Power of Positive Drinking, Rocos claimed that Diana requested to come on a night out with Freddie and got dressed up like "a rather eccentrically dressed gay male model."
Cleo wrote: "When we walked in… we felt she was obviously Princess Diana and would be discovered at any minute. But people just seemed to blank her. She sort of disappeared. But she loved it."
Sadly it was harder for Michael Jackson to 'just disappear'.
The star become more and more reclusive in the late eighties and early nineties, often spending weeks at a time in his famed Neverland Ranch and Holmby Hills home in LA, the latter where he died in 2009.