Dawud Wharnsby Ali – The Passing of Michael Jackson

From the same source of life – we all come, and inevitably so we must all return.

The passing of artist and performer Michael Jackson yesterday was quite a shock to many. My thoughts and prayers are with the Jackson family during this difficult time – and especially with Micheal’s young children. May they be protected from the media machine that so tragically tore up much of Michael’s life, while ironically celebrating him as one of the world’s most incredible and dynamic performers.

Like many of my generation, the music and public persona of Michael Jackson were a great part of my youth. My serious interest in music began at age 10 when I first saw Michael perform on television, shortly after his “Thriller” album had swept the world. His charisma, uninhibited passion for his art and his unique style filled my head with dreams of one day being able to share my own music with the world.

Few can come close to claiming even a fraction of what Michael accomplished during his career – from child-star as lead singer of the Jackson 5, through his work in “The Whiz” and onward to a solo career as an artist in an absolutely unparalleled musical/performance domain. Michael’s work and music bridged the world and generations. His choreography, concert formats, music videos, album production, charity efforts (”We Are The World” in specific) all set a standard that few could rise above.

Over the years the media scrutiny, mockery and sensationalizing of his personal life always angered me. During the very difficult times of his career I always supported and defended Michael – admiring him for remaining artistically driven and gracious to his supporters.

Each day people with tremendous lives pass from this world – farmers, students, cab drivers, children, elderly retired teachers, soldiers and parents. Who are we to judge the degrees of their “success” or the levels to which their lives touched the lives of others? Each day we should morn the losses of the world’s valuable contributors, and each day we should celebrate the positive achievements of all our earth’s inhabitants.

With that in mind, I write these expressions not because “Michael Jackson the Super Star” has passed onward, but because a guy named Michael inspired me to sing, dance, smile, be gracious with those who shared my art with me and above all (as Michael would say whenever accepting an award) “Thank God” for all the wonderful adventures of life.

May Michael’s music carry on for many, many more generations – inspiring people to dance, dream and hope for a better world.

Lastly – many have been in touch with me over the past year to inquire about my personal relationship with Michael Jackson. A November 21, 2008 Sun (UK) article spread internationally stating that Michael had adopted the religion of Islam through friendship with both myself and my colleague Idris Phillips during recording sessions in Los Angeles.

For the record: Though our professional circles did cross-over slightly with various common professional acquaintances – I never had the honour or pleasure of meeting Micheal Jackson personally, nor did we ever correspond on matters of our professions, personal lives or faiths.

dawud wharnsby


7 Replies to “Dawud Wharnsby Ali – The Passing of Michael Jackson”

  1. Imam Zaid said Dawud Wharnsby Ali and Michael Jackson worked together and that’s how he accepted Islam, but here Dawud said he never met Michael Jackson?

    “He had been working on an album with the well-known Muslim musician, Dawud Warsby, and another Muslim performer, and the two, sensing Michael’s troubled and depressed state had invited him to Islam. He accepted their invitation. Michael was no stranger to the religion, having been exposed to it by his brother Jermaine, who had converted to the faith in 1989.”

  2. Imam Zaid says;
    ” * An earlier version of this article mentioned that Dawud Warnsby had assisted in Michael Jackson’s conversion to Islam. He has denied that. This article has been amended to exclude that claim. In writing this essay, I was given information from sources I considered reliable that Michael had indeed become Muslim. Obviously, the part about Dawud Warnsby is not true. However, there have been many reports throughout the media concerning Michael becoming Muslim. Allah knows best as to their veracity.”

  3. I guess the only one to know for sure and actually state would be his brother Jermaine since I know he had been a big help in pushing him towards Islam.

  4. Quoting Enis:

    So is he not a Muslim? (
    InshaAllah he died as a Muslim, i hope..

    Yeah….you hope all the Muslim High School kids can officially call Mohammad and Ahmed gay.

    Why don’t you hope Barack Obama dies as a Muslim?
    Or Joe Liberman?
    Or Raviv Ulman?
    Or Slim Shady?
    Or Kofi Anon?
    Or Joe Stewart?
    Or O’Riely?

    Micheal! of all people!~

  5. micheal jackson had become a Muslim in 22nd of november. its not all that he is a Muslim or not. its about that , we praied he died as a muslim so he can get jannah. and we know if we all praied from ALLAH for his forgiveness he might be in heaven. MAY ALLAH SHOWERED HIS BLESSINGS ON HIM. rest in peace.

  6. salaam,

    mj is not a muslim ive known jackson for quiet some time and he never said to me nor have i heard him say that hes a muslim. the media is makin all that up. so please brothers and sister dont get fooled by what you read..

    ma salama

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