Why did Freddie Mercury Dislike Working with Michael Jackson?

Michael Jackson touted his admiration for Freddie Mercury and his Queen bandmates. He went often to see the rock outfit perform in the early ’80s. His affinity for the band culminated in booking some time with Mercury to record collaborative demos. Unfortunately, their stint working together sullied what could’ve been a good friendship between two musical icons. Find out why Mercury disliked working with Jackson, below.

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Why Did Freddie Mercury Dislike Working with Michael Jackson?

Both Mercury and Jackson were known for their idiosyncrasies. Mercury was known for his wild parties while Jackson had his fair share of wacky headlines. Nevertheless, Jackson’s penchant for strange pets was almost too much for the Queen frontman.

While recording some demos, Mercury got acquainted with Jackson’s pet Llama. As the story goes, he was not enthused. The distraction was enough to push Mercury into begging for a way out. “I’m recording with a llama,” Mercury once told his manager. “Michael’s bringing his pet llama into the studio every day and I’m really not used to it and I’ve had enough and I want to get out.”

Though it wasn’t a damning event in the pair’s relationship, it certainly put a blockade in their studio sessions that go around. Though they were both rock giants and extraordinary personalities, perhaps their uniqueness was at odds with one another.

“He doesn’t like coming out at all,” Mercury once said. “He says whatever he wants, he can get at home. Anything he wants, he just buys it. That’s not me, but that’s his bag. I wouldn’t do that. I would be bored to death. I go out every night. I hate staying in one room for too long anyway. I would just like to keep moving. Just an individual approach.”

A Llama wasn’t the only strange pet to enter the Jackson household. There are many things one could collect, but Jackson was focused on animals. According to reports, he had over “50 different species in his collection of at least 130 animals, including six giraffes, eight alligators, a bear, 20 exotic birds, three elephants, seven apes, four tigers, monkeys, snakes and lizards.”

“I think for the people that really knew Michael on a deeper level and saw his connection to the animals and everything there’s no doubt the compassion and the care and the sensitivity that he had towards his animals,” Mark Biancaniello, Jackson’s zoo trainer once said.

Despite Jackson’s clear affinity for wildlife, it wasn’t Mercury’s cup of tea. Check out a demo from the pair, below.

(Photo by David Redfern/Redferns)

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