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Akon 'Disagrees' With Will.I.Am's Criticism of Michael Jackson LP

I don't see anything disrespectful about it,' Akon says

November 16, 2010 1:49 PM ET

Will.I.Am has loudly voiced his opposition to Michael, the forthcoming posthumous Michael Jackson LP, calling its release "disrespectful." But Akon, who collaborated with Jackson on the just-released "Hold My Hand" single, disagrees.

"I think that's probably Will's thing," Akon told TMZ. "Me, personally, I think it's keeping the legacy alive. I don't see anything disrespectful about it.

"These albums would have come out if [Jackson] was alive or dead," he continued, "so I think this helps to keep his legacy alive. I honestly disagree with [Will]."

Check Out All of Rolling Stone's coverage in "Michael Jackson Remembered."

Akon said that working with Jackson was "really a dream come true of mine."

Will, who worked with Jackson in 2006, sounded off about the album last week, questioning how posthumous material by an artist as meticulous as MJ could ever be released.

"Michael Jackson songs are finished when Michael says they're finished," Will said. "Maybe if I never worked with him I wouldn't have this perspective. He was very particular about how he wanted his vocals, the reverb he used ... he was that hands-on."

Will added that the songs he worked on with Jackson will never see the light of day. "He kept his vocals and I kept the music," he said. "We had that understanding."

Akon: Will.i.am Is WRONG About MJ Album [TMZ]

Black Eyed Peas' will.i.am criticizes Sony for releasing new Michael Jackson album: 'It's disrespectful' [Entertainment Weekly]

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Song Stories

“Try a Little Tenderness”

Otis Redding | 1966

This pop standard had been previously recorded by dozens of artists, including by Bing Crosby 33 years before Otis Redding, who usually wrote his own songs, cut it. It was actually Sam Cooke’s 1964 take, which Redding’s manager played for Otis, that inspired the initially reluctant singer to take on the song. Isaac Hayes, then working as Stax Records’ in-house producer, handled the arrangement, and Booker T. and the MG’s were the backing band. Redding’s soulful version begins quite slowly and tenderly itself before mounting into a rousing, almost religious “You’ve gotta hold her, squeeze her …” climax. “I did that damn song you told me to do,” Redding told his manager. “It’s a brand new song now.”

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