Insightful Words from Bob Jones

[b]BOB JONES: The Man Who Stands Firmly Behind the Man in the Mirror[/b] Los Angeles Sentinel Sept 2, 1993 By CAROLYN BINGHAM Entertainment Editor Do you believe in prophesy? I do. Now more than ever. Everyone is party to the fate that has befallen the legendary Michael Jackson recently, but no one, but perhaps Michael himself, feels it more than Bob Jones,vice president, MJJ Productions, Michael’s right arm. This didn’t start out to be a piece in defense of the famous pop icon, nor when the interview was taped, were either Bob Jones or myself aware of the charges that would soon be leveled against the young superstar. We talked Wednesday, Aug. 18, three days prior to Jones accompanying Jackson on his now infamous world tour. It started out to be a “what’s he really like” piece, but in light of recent events rearing their ugly head, I felt the public had a right to know Jones’ foreboding. He was a frightened man, but not in the way you’d suspect. Uncannily, although most probably, his fears were realized when he himself was least undupable. But herein lies Jones’ prophetic statements which in my naïveté, I thought his anxiety unfounded. After all, how could you stop the wake of Michael Jackson. But in his wisdom, he knew the inevitable. A curse came with Michael’s kind of stardom. A curse where he was damned if he did, and damned if he didn’t. In a roundabout fashion, Jones took me back to his first days on the job in Michael’s camp. Prior to that he worked public relations for Motown and prior to that public relations with the famous firm of Rogers and Cowan Public Relations. “I came to work for Michael in December of 1987 and have not regretted it one bit. And I thought having worked with the Supremes, the Temptations, the Commodores, Stevie Wonder, Smokey Robinson, the Four Tops–all of those people who were a part of the Motown stable–that I had seen it all. That I had seen everything America had to offer. “All of a sudden, we went to the first out-of-the-country date. We went to Rome, Italy, and we played the Coliseum in Rome to 55,000 people. We did three nights at 55,000 persons per show. It was mind-boggling. I had never seen anything like this. To see zero blacks there. It was mind boggling, and to see that one black man had drawn all these people in to see this show, I was awe struck. We not only played Rome, we played touring Italy. We went to Paris, France, and the audiences kept growing, and we went to London, England, and played five nights at Wembley Football Stadium at 72,000 persons a show. All coming out to see this one black man. I saw white folks passing out and fainting and all of this sort of stuff, and I couldn’t believe it. I couldn’t believe it, and it really frightened me.” I sat perplexed in Jones’ office by his diffidence, but now I see the farsightedness in his statements. “Because I’m aware and a believer in the system … when you sit back and know that you can take the president and our mayors and our governors and put them all in a stadium together, and you can’t draw 20,000 people, and to see a black man draw these kind of people, I became frightened, because I know how this system operates.” Now for the prophecy. “They are frightened. The system becomes frightened if they see a black man with this kind of power, and especially a black man that they don’t have total control over. That they have not given a white woman and who doesn’t have the white babies and the monies going back into the white system. A black man who is basically clean, that they can say nothing about, who neither smokes nor drinks. “The system is not ready to conceive of this and who ( Michael) is like a pied piper to white youth. Who if he decides to make a statement or take sides in situations, I’m sure the same system would remove. It becomes detrimental to what the system in America, in the world, is all about. Nobody but the Pope has followings like this.” We go off on another tangent, try to make him crazy. They try to do everything. The system would rather praise Elvis Presley, who we all know was a drug addict. They make every excuse in the world rather than say this man was a drug addict. He died from an OD of drugs. If they could just come back to the same sober fact. Jones feels Michael is in a league of his own, “He doesn’t deteriorate his body, his health. He’s a clean-liver, and if they could, I’m sure they would–well you read the press reports–they try to make him weird. They find Michael Jackson with a marijuana cigarette, forget all the other stuff, they’d destroy him. “Anything that the system can’t control, it does not allow to exist. We’re not all of those who have dared challenge the system. I’m a firm believer, we live in a society that is programmed–these people are walking idiots, programmed idiots. That idiot box tells us what to buy, when to go–it’s football time so come watch your television show–and the couch potato goes plop. It’s amazing how man no longer uses his mind to think, and the system is aware and the system knows it. So they take advantage of it. In politics. In everything else.” Jones intimate alliance with the standout superstar follows Michael Jackson for 30 years. He was there representing James Brown, and that was during the hey day of James Brown, when he had put out such records as ‘Say it Loud, I’m Black and I’m Proud,’ and he was the number one black man in America. I began to work on the Motown account. Among the acts that e Jackson Five first debuted their act in Los Angeles. He worked for Rogers and Cowan Public Relations when they were handling all the Motown acts. “I worked at Rogers and Cowan and learned from some of the best. At that time Rogers and Cowan was had the James Brown account. We had a party one night for James at The Playboy Club when it was on Sunset Boulevard. It was for an artist called Randy Crawford and a group called the De Felise Trio (excuse spelling). They were recording for James Brown’s sub label. “And we had a big press party at the Playboy Club which was from 6 to 9 p.m. At nine o’clock the same night, there was a party that Rogers and was also having at The Daisy Club to introduce a new group called the Jackson Five. So the people came to the party that I had for James, and then about 8:30-8:45, we shut down and everybody rushed over to The Daisy to be there for the debut of this young group that Motown was introducing. And that was the first night that I met The Jacksons and the first night that I saw them perform. “I was still at Rogers and Cowan at the time, but I worked on The Jackson Five account also. I was covering all their interviews, etc. That was the beginning of my association with The Jacksons, and even though I was working at Rogers and Cowan, I would tour with The Jacksons when they toured on their first tour dates.” That was the introduction of a lifelong cultivation of friendship between Jones and Michael. Of the juvenile Michael, Jones states, ” Michael was always a devilish little kid. He loved to play games and loved to run in your room and see what you had in there or if you had a beer or something in there because he was gonna go and tell the whole tour about it. He loved to pillow fight. He always loved animals and rodents and things like that. Actually, I don’t like rats and never have, and he had pet snakes, and I don’t like snakes, so he always made it a point to run me around. Rats and snakes, that was enough to get me out of that room and as far away from him as I could.” You can take sides if you chose to, and everyone has an opinion. I’ve met Michael, and I chose to believe the best about him. I saw his compassion and his loving kindness towards children. Yet, although I chose to believe all things, I know all things are not expedient for me. But Jones has lived with Jackson upwards of 30 years, and if there was an inkling towards misbehavior on Michael’s part, he would have gleaned it, or Michael is a darn good actor at espionage. In ending this first of a two-part story on Jones’ long association with Michael, and what happens when mega-minds converge, let me end on Jones’ words and Jesus’ and not Michael’s detractors for we’ll all have to wait until the final verdict is in. And then will we even know the thing-in-itself, Jones’ above statements make it abundantly clear, can we ever be really sure? Jones told me, “God has given him some kind of gift, and he ( Michael) believes in sharing that gift. And he realizes that there is something that God has given him that is special, and that is the reason he does and shares with the kids and the youth the way he does.” Truth. God knows. Michael has always let his moderation be known to all men. And in the immortal words of Jesus, “Let he who is without sin among you, cast the first stone.” CONTINUE TO PART 2 by clicking “READ MORE” Source: The Los Angeles Sentinel

April 2nd Hearing Coverage

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