The ringing of a telephone cut sharply through my sleep. I fumbled for the receiver.
'Hello?' A soft, highpitched voice echoed down the line to me.
‘Hello,’ it repeated. ‘Is that Adam Ant?’
The voice had an American accent and sounded vaguely familiar, but my fuzzy brain reacted angrily.
‘Terry,’ I said, thinking it was one of the Ants’ drummers playing a prank. ‘Stop p****** about. It’s 4am and I’m trying to sleep.’
‘No, it’s not Terry,’ said the voice. ‘It’s Michael. Is that Adam Ant?’ ‘Very funny, Terry, now f*** off.’ I slammed the phone down, rolled over and tried to get back to sleep.
The phone went again. ‘Hello,’ I barked into the receiver. ‘Hi, no, really, it is me, Michael Jackson,’ said the funny voice, ‘and I just want to ask you…’ ‘Terry, if you don’t stop this I’m going to come over there and f****** thump you.’ Bang. Again the phone went down.
Again I rolled over. Again the phone rang. I grabbed the receiver and shouted: ‘Terry! That’s IT!’
‘Er, hi, is that Adam Ant?’ This time the voice was deep, sonorous, American and calm. It didn’t sound anything like Terry. ‘Oh, oh,’ I stammered.
‘Yes, this is Adam. Who are you?’ ‘I’m Quincy Jones, calling from LA. Sorry, we probably woke you, but I’m here with Michael Jackson and he’d like to speak with you. Is that OK?’ A pause, and then that same soft voice. ‘Hi, Adam, it’s Michael. Sorry if we woke you.’
‘Oh, no, sorry to have been so rude,’ I apologised. He said he had just seen the video for our song Kings Of The Wild Frontier. ‘It’s great,’ he said. ‘How did you get the tom-tom sound?’ ‘Oh, thanks. Well, we use two drum kits and then add loads of other percussion on top…’
‘That’s great, Adam,’ Michael interrupted. ‘I really like your jacket. Where’d you get it?’
'Huh? My jacket?' I tried to think. 'Berman's and Nathan's in London's Covent Garden. They supply costumes for movies.'
'Wow. That's great,' he replied. 'How do you spell that? Bowman's and who?' 'No, B-E-R-M-A-N-apostrophe-S and N-A-T-H-A-N-apostrophe-S.'
‘Great, thanks. Let’s meet up next time you’re in America, huh? Bye.’
The line went dead.
I got invited over to LA and I went to his family home, because he was still living with his mum and dad. All his brothers and sisters were there and I just spent the day walking round the house with all the snakes and llamas. I actually followed him onstage right after he did the moonwalk for the first time.
Adam Ant recalling moments with Michael Jackson.