Janet Jackson Refused To Perform At Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame In Protest Of ‘Leaving Neverland’

April 1, 2019

Jamie McCarthy / Getty Images

Janet Jackson was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame on Friday (March 29) where she urged organizers to “induct more women” into the foundation.

She also reportedly refused to perform at the ceremony because of HBO’s involvement with the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. The premium cable giant is also behind the controversial “Leaving Neverland” documentary, in which two men allege her late brother, Michael Jackson, sexually abused them as children.

Variety reports that a source said Jackson was siding with her family, who deny the allegations levelled against Michael.

“A source tells Variety she declined to participate in a customary musical number because the event will be filmed for later broadcast on HBO, the cable network that aired Leaving Neverland,” the report read.

During her acceptance speech on stage at the Barclays Center in New York Friday night, the singer thanked her friends, family and her “beautiful son,” Jackson said: “He wakes me up every single morning singing his own little melodies. He’s only two, you guys. I want you to know that you’re my heart, you’re my life and you have shown me the meaning of real, unconditional love. Mama loves you.”

Janet now joins her famous family in the Hall, as  The Jackson 5 were inducted in 1997, while the King of Pop was inducted as a solo artist in 2001.

“In 1997, my brothers were recognized for their musical passion by being inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame,” she told the audience. “I was so, so proud. As you saw in the clip, I was always crashing their rehearsals. I was always tagging along, always with my brothers.”

Jackson also made a point to thank famed producing duo Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis.

“Can you guys please stand up?,” she asked the pair. “In the mid-80s, you came to A&M Records and you were asked if there was any artist you would want to produce, who would it be? And you guys said Janet. That’s a real story. You guys are my two dads and so much more. You are brilliant producers, incredible songwriters, wise teachers and my great friends. I salute you tonight for the body of work that we created together, but also for your contribution to the world of music. I love you guys.”

Watch her acceptance speech via the clip below: