Jackson surprised the world when he announced he was going to be a father in 1996 with his wife at the time Debbie Rowe. Prince Jackson was born February 13, 1997, followed by siblings Paris Jackson, and Blanket Jackson.
During an interview just six months after Prince’s birth, his proud father spoke candidly about looking after his son.
The Billie Jean singer was interviewed by Barbara Walters at ABC just days after his close friend Princess Diana died.
He was first asked how he liked being a father, to which he explained “he loved it”.
Jackson then added: “I’ll tell you this much, when he’s crying to keep him from crying you have to do one thing.”
After being urged to continue by Walters, the 13 Grammy Award-winning singer continued: “I have to stand in front of him and dance.”
The star caught himself laughing at the anecdote, before continuing: “Yes, he stops crying and his tears turn to laughter.
“He starts to be happy and smile, I do all sorts of moves… and he stops crying.”
On whether he does it often, Jackson responded: “I do a lot of dancing [at home] yeah.”
Just two years later in 1999 Rowe and Jackson divorced, and she signed over custody of both Prince and Paris to their father.
The third of Jackson’s children, Blanket, was born in 2002, and was the result of a surrogate mother
During the same interview with Barbara Walters Jackson spoke about how he learned about the passing of his friend Princess Diana.
He first recalled: “I woke up, and my doctor gave me the news. And I fell back down in grief, and I started to cry.
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Jackson continued: “The pain I felt – it was inner pain in my stomach and in my chest.”
The star went on to say how he struggled to deal with the news.
He continued: “I said: ‘I can’t, I cannot handle this! It’s too much. Just the message, and the fact that I knew her personally.'”
After finding out about Princess Diana’s death Jackson cancelled a concert he was due to play.
When he later returned to the stage after mourning the Princess, he dedicated the entire show to her.
Jackson explained how he put photos of the late Princess on the large screens behind him.
He added that, during the concert, “in his heart” he was saying: “I love you Diana. Shine and shine on forever. You are the true princess of the people.”
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