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Concert Company Denies Claims Over Jackson's Death

AEG Live reject Katherine Jackson's claims that they choose Dr. Conrad Murray and pressured Jackson despite his illness

September 17, 2010 2:33 PM ET

AEG Live — the concert promoter behind the shows Michael Jackson planned before his death — has roundly rejected the claims by Michael's mother Katherine, who filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the company, blaming them for hiring Dr. Conrad Murray and forcing Jackson to rehearse even though he was ill. In a statement, AEG called the lawsuit "inaccurate, unsubstantiated and meritless," Billboard.biz reports.

Look back at Michael Jackson's life in photos.

AEG Live's main issue: the allegation that the company brought on Murray, who has been charged with involuntary manslaughter in Jackson's death. "Dr. Murray was Michael's personal physician," AEG said. "Michael wanted him to go to London and asked AEG to pay for him as an expense of the tour. We would have preferred to hire a doctor in London, as it would have been more cost effective, but Michael insisted on Dr. Murray."

Michael Jackson: The Rolling Stone Covers

AEG Live is still linked to the Michael Jackson estate through some business affairs (the two created the concert rehearsal film This Is It), so the company refused further comment on the lawsuit.

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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.”

More Song Stories entries »
 
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