Jackson criticized his label, Sony, for failing to promote his most recent album, last year’s Invincible, as well as for not releasing a September 11th charity song he had recorded. Jackson singled out Sony Music Entertainment head Tommy Mottola, calling him a “racist” and “devilish,” accentuating his point by brandishing a poster of Mottola with horns superimposed on his head, a tail on his posterior and a pitchfork in hand. The poster accompanied Jackson on a tour bus through the city which circled the Sony building.
Jackson’s criticism of Mottola triggered a defense of the Sony bigwig from Sharpton, who told the New York Post that Mottola was a friend and had “always been supportive of the black music industry.” Sharpton, Jackson and attorney Johnny Cochran formed a coalition in May that planned to protect the rights of black artists within the industry.
Sony issued a statement calling Jackson’s comments about Mottola “ludicrous, spiteful and hurtful.”