Here is his press statement: I am shocked at the untimely passing away of Michael Jackson, one of the greatest musicians of our time.
MJ, for most of our generation was an icon who made uncompromising music. He pushed the milestone of Pop music to unbelievable levels through the 80s and 90s. I am yet to find an artiste with that energy, perfection and vision.
I met him personally after the Oscars in Los Angeles and we vibed very well. He said that he loved India and the Indian people. He said he heard good things about me and he was praising the chord progression of Jai Ho's chorus.
He was bursting with energy and told me that every dance move he did, came from his soul and did a five second stunning example. It was like a lightning strike. He was concerned about developmental issues such as Global Warming and about wars and its damages to the human community.
He asked me to compose a unity anthem on the likes of "We are the World " for him. I nodded in awe ...!
He introduced me to his three lovely bright Kids. The kids told him, "I love you dad" and he replied, “I love you more" as a proud father. I wished him well for his concerts and he said “God Bless you".
After hearing the shocking news I wished it was another rumour which would fade away soon. It took me time to believe that he is no more.
I remember, my late sound engineer Sridhar had brought me a video of the premiere of "Remember the Time" when I was recording "Kadal Rojave" for my first movie Roja. Seeing it inspired all of us that afternoon. Now, there is no Sridhar and no Jackson anymore.
I hope all of us value people's existence more and respect them when they are alive.
LIFE IS SHORT...! Artists and their art live for ever. Jai Ho, MJ ! We love you for your music, regardless of all the controversies!
- AR Rahman, Chennai.