Retro Action, March 23, 1999: Inspired By Mandela, The King of Pop Donates His Concert Proceeds
by Ung-Kyu Lee
Apparently just standing next to Mandela makes you a better person.
During a visit with the South African president — one of his personal heros — Michael Jackson dedicates the proceeds of his next two concerts to the Red Cross, UNESCO, and of course, the Nelson Mandela Children's Fund.
"I shall be undertaking two concerts in June-one in Seoul in the Republic of Korea and one in Munich..." said the late pop icon. "We discussed the concept of giving and the words 'What More Can I Give' kept coming into my mind. That will be a song of mine and a theme for these shows."
"We all have to give and we all have to do what we can to help end the needless suffering in the world."
Of course, when you're the bestselling musician in the world, you've probably doled out some of inspiration of your own along the way — something Mandela was in need of during his 27 year imprisonment on Robben Island.
“When you are behind bars with no hope of release, you need to find strength wherever you can…" said the Nobel laureate. "Personally, I found strength in Michael Jackson.”