Riley Hits Back At Jackson Song Critics

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November 10, 2010 | 2:25pm EST

Producer Teddy Riley has fired back at members of Michael Jackson’s family for questioning the authenticity of the King of Pop’s first posthumous single Breaking News, insisting there is “no doubt” the track’s vocals belong to the late superstar.
The song has been surrounded by controversy since Sony Records executives released a preview of the tune online on Monday, with some Jackson fans querying whether the featured voice actually belonged to the singer.

The scandal further hit the headlines when Jackson’s nephews, the former members of boyband 3T, Taryll, Taj and TJ, tweeted about the song and branded it a fake.

Taryll Jackson, son of Michael’s brother Tito, wrote on his blog, “I KNOW my Uncle’s voice and something’s seriously wrong when you have immediate FAMILY saying it’s not him.

“Don’t you have to wonder why? I have strong, undeniable points. They (record bosses) can’t give me answers, yet continue to move forward with lies and deception. Sounding like Michael Jackson and BEING Michael Jackson are two different things.”

But Riley, who worked with the late superstar on classic discs HIStory and Dangerous and helped to produce the track, has blasted critics for their skepticism.

In a statement issued on Wednesday, Riley says, “When I heard these songs, my heart cried hearing Michael again in good spirits. The vocals sounded very polished, very on key and processed. I have no doubts that these are Michael’s vocals.”

He adds to the Associated Press, “I did what Michael would expect of me with the tools I had to work with (vocal tracks featuring the star). This is his legacy. Let it live.”

And Jackson’s former manager, Frank DiLeo, has backed up Riley’s claims: “I spoke to Michael by telephone at (longtime Jackson friends Frank and Eddie) Cascios’ home studio several times while he was recording with them, and he was excited and enthused by the music and the experience.

“While listening to the tracks, especially the ones not heard by the general public, you can hear that he was having a great time!”

Breaking News is due to be released later this month and the album, which features songs recorded during Jackson’s final years, will hit music retailers on 14 December.