Off-the-wall idea puts musos into Wacko Jacko's shoes

PUBLISHED : Friday, 12 June, 2009, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 12 June, 2009, 12:00am

Michael Jackson's comeback tour might not include Hong Kong, but that hasn't stopped RTHK producer Andrew Dembina from going wacko for Jacko. The Radio 3 producer rounded up six disparate local music groups to each do two songs by the 'King of Pop' - one assigned, the other of their choosing.

The covers will all be performed this Saturday at Grappa's Cellar for a show called Michael Jackson Hits, Hong Kong. The show will be broadcast later.

'The original idea was to do something with the local music scene, and I was looking for a peg,' Dembina said. 'With Jackson's recent comeback and tour, his music spans a few generations, so it gives it a wider listenership. I tried to get musicians of different styles. For example, Dirty Diana, which is really rocking, will be done by a Latin band.'

The gig is free and begins at 9pm. If you have reservations about the kitschy concept, you're not the only one. Some of the musicians thought it was off the wall too. 'One musician's first reaction was, 'what the hell am I going to do with this?' They have never performed any Michael Jackson, so they did have to think about it,' the radio producer said.

The wannabe thrillers are New Flying Machine, Violent Jokes, The Lovesong, Latino Jazz, Jeff Caylor and SoHo Collective.