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Were The Lyrics Of Michael Jackson’s ‘Dirty Diana’ About Diana Ross?

By Mark Turgeon

The song, ‘Dirty Diana’, was a Number One hit on Michael Jackson’s ‘Bad’ album which was released in 1987. The press immediately found fresh ammunition to discredit Jackson, making claims that the song was about his mentor and best friend, Diana Ross. The lyrics are rather derogatory and refer to a woman trying to seduce him.

To say the least, Michael Jackson was not happy to hear this. He became even unhappier when other tabloids suggested that the song actually referred to Diana, Princess of Wales, who was also his friend. This prompted Quincy Jones, Jackson’s music producer, to make a public statement.

He said the song was about female groupies who followed The Jackson Five (Michael and his brothers) when they became famous. These girls were willing to even offer sexual favors to enable them to get close to the boys. He also stated that this was not the first time Michael had written about such women. His 1983 blockbuster hit ‘Billie Jean’ was also about a fan who had stalked him.

Michael was drawn to divas, and they were drawn to him. He had very close platonic friendships with a number of successful women. Some included the likes of Liza Minnelli, Brooke Shields, Elizabeth Taylor, Jane Fonda and Jackie Kennedy. However, Diana took first place. She had a significant influence on his life and career since he was a little boy.

Ross was the front line singer for the successful 1960s female group, The Supremes. When she first met Michael, she had just broken away from the group to start a solo career. The boys were performing at a charity function and the crowd was raving about the 10 year-old Michael, with an Afro hairstyle, as he sang and danced to standing ovations. He recalled looking into the audience and seeing Diana Ross.

After the performance, she met the group and told them that she had just been signed to the same recording studio as them. She promised to help further their careers. In her hand, she had copy of a telegram that she had sent to all her showbiz connections asking them to attend The Jackson Five’s next gig. The last sentence of the telegram read: ‘featuring the sensational Michael Jackson’.

The Jackson Five had been signed up by Motown Music. Its chief, Berry Gordy, was concerned about the well being of young Michael and asked Diana if he could stay at her house for a while. The boys had just arrived in Los Angeles and were checking in and out of numerous hotels. This was also of great concern to Michael’s mother, Katherine. She was very relieved when Diana agreed.

Jackson often said that, while living with her, Ross had a major influence on his success. Perhaps she only really recognized this after his death. She was named, in his will, as the person to be entrusted with his children should his mother become incapable. Bearing this in mind, one can hardly think that the degrading lyrics in ‘Dirty Diana’ are about Diana Ross, a woman with whom he had shared a special friendship that spanned more than 40 years.

Before you read anything online featuring Michael Jackson, make sure you check out Mark’s King of Pop’s website featuring Dirty Diana, and Michael Jackson Dirty Diana

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Article Citation
MLA Style Citation:
Turgeon, Mark "Were The Lyrics Of Michael Jackson’s ‘Dirty Diana’ About Diana Ross?." Were The Lyrics Of Michael Jackson’s ‘Dirty Diana’ About Diana Ross?. 10 Jul. 2010. uberarticles.com. 8 Aug 2014 <http://uberarticles.com/arts-and-entertainment/music/were-the-lyrics-of-michael-jacksons-dirty-diana-about-diana-ross/>.

APA Style Citation:
Turgeon, M (2010, July 10). Were The Lyrics Of Michael Jackson’s ‘Dirty Diana’ About Diana Ross?. Retrieved August 8, 2014, from http://uberarticles.com/arts-and-entertainment/music/were-the-lyrics-of-michael-jacksons-dirty-diana-about-diana-ross/

Chicago Style Citation:
Turgeon, Mark "Were The Lyrics Of Michael Jackson’s ‘Dirty Diana’ About Diana Ross?" uberarticles.com. http://uberarticles.com/arts-and-entertainment/music/were-the-lyrics-of-michael-jacksons-dirty-diana-about-diana-ross/


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