La Toya Jackson’s ex-fiance Jeffre Phillips reveals that Rick often told him that ‘Billie Jean’ was ‘actually taken from his song ‘Ghetto Life’ from his ‘Street Songs’ album.’
It looks like Donna Summer wasn’t the only victim of Michael Jackson’s stealing. After Quincy Jones alleged that Michael stole the songstress’ song for his hit “Billie Jean”, La Toya Jackson’s ex-fiance Jeffre Phillips claimed that Michael ripped off Rick James’ song too.
“Rick told me on many occasions that the song ‘Billie Jean’ was actually taken from his song ‘Ghetto Life’ from his ‘Street Songs’ album,” he told Page Six. “Michael called [Rick] to tell him how great the album was. He was like, ‘I want to come to the studio to see how you do your thing.’ And then ‘Thriller’ came out.”
Jeffre continued, “Rick knew right away [that he stole it.] He confronted Michael about it at an award show — and Michael just laughed and said, ‘Good to see you, Rick.’ ” However, Rick allegedly “was never upset about it and didn’t go after him legally because he liked Michael and all of the brothers.”
The claim came a week after Quincy said in an interview that the late musician used to steal songs from other musicians to create his music. “I hate to get into this publicly, but Michael stole a lot of stuff. He stole a lot of songs,” he revealed, before citing Donna’s “State of Independence”. “The notes don’t lie, man. He was as Machiavellian as they come.”
Quincy went on explaining that the “Beat It” hitmaker stole songs because he was “greedy.” He shared, ” ‘Don’t Stop ‘Til You Get Enough’ — Greg Phillinganes wrote the c section. Michael should have given him 10 percent of the song. Wouldn’t do it.”
In another part of the interview, Quincy also dubbed The Beatles “the worst musician in the world.” Recalling their first meeting, he said, “Paul [Paul McCartney] was the worst bass player I ever heard. And Ringo [Ringo Starr]? Don’t even talk about it.”