The Reason Prince Turned Down Michael Jackson’s Collaboration Offer

During his extraordinary music career spanning over four decades, the King of Pop had countless accomplishments in every aspect of his art, including fashion looks, dance moves, and music. On top of these, Jackson is the most awarded music artist in history and one of the best-selling music artists of all time, with over 400 million records sold worldwide.

There’s a reason behind these accomplishments since the legendary musician had released numerous albums, all of which have enjoyed great fame and success. Jackson’s seventh studio album was released on August 31, 1987, and it was one of the most anticipated albums of its time. As expected, ‘Bad’ debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard Top Pop Albums chart and reached No. 1 in 24 other countries.

Nine songs were released as official singles, but the most favored one was the title track, ‘Bad.’ Although nearly the whole world knows and loves this track today, there was a time when Michael and Prince considered collaborating on it. Let’s take a look into the reason behind Prince’s rejection of this special offer.

Michael Jackson Wanted To Do A Duet Of ‘Bad’ With Prince

Michael Jackson first wrote and recorded ‘Bad‘ in 1986 as the title track on his eponymous seventh studio album, released in the following year. Before recording the song, Jackson intended to collaborate with Prince on the track and offered a duet to the singer. Surprisingly, his offer was declined.

After rejecting the offer, Prince asked the King of Pop if he wanted to sing a duet with him of his song, ‘Wouldn’t You Love To Love Me.’ Being previously turned down, Jackson didn’t want a collaboration. Thus the song was instead given to another musician, Taja Sevelle.

While teaming up with Michael Jackson would be the dream of many, it somehow didn’t appeal to Prince. He later revealed his reason behind the rejection during an interview with actor Chris Tucker back in 1997. Apparently, Prince’s decision had nothing to do with Jackson. It was about the lyrics of the song, the first line, to be more specific.

Since ‘Bad’ opens with a line that says, ‘Your butt is mine,‘ Prince didn’t know who would sing that line to whom. After feeling uncomfortable with the song’s concept despite being one of the biggest androgynous icons ever, Prince decided not to participate in the song as a singer, which wasn’t a loss for Jackson since the track became one of the biggest successes of his career.

In the 1997 interview, Prince told Chris:

The first line of that song is ‘your butt is mine’. Then I said, ‘Who’s going to sing that to who? Because you sure aren’t singing that to me and I sure ain’t singing that to you…'”

You can listen to ‘Bad’ by Michael Jackson below.