India loves Michael Jackson. Sure, because of his music, but also partly because Michael Jackson loved India right back. The singer made a tonne of stops to the country in the years before his death, most notably in November 1996, when he staged a huge concert in Bombay and refused to accept a penny from proceeds. Instead, 85% of ticket sales went towards creating 270,000 jobs for young people in Maharashtra – a move that earned him a special Humanitarian Award at the 1999 Bollywood Awards. It was here he gave what was one of his most poignant speeches, talking briefly and calmly about the crushing pressure of fame that would eventually cost him his life.
16 years later in the country, he’s still revered, with a dancefloor influence that continues to spill into Bollywood culture, from Remo D’Souza’s homage-paying 2013 blockbuster movie Anybody Can Dance to the below video, which is spreading across the internet today faster than you can shriek “EEEHH-HEEEE!” whilst grabbing your balls. Mixing 1979 classic hit ‘Don’t Stop ‘Til You Get Enough’ with Bollywood track ‘Chaiyya Chaiyya,’ which featured in the 1998 film Dil Se starring Shah Rukh Khan, the clip’s a cool tribute to Jackson’s love affair with India, created by American artists Kurt Hugo-Schneider, Sam Tsui, Shankar Tucker and Indian vocalist Vidya Iyer. Apologies in advance for getting this massive earworm lodged in your head.