Michael Jackson “couldn’t seem to cope with adult company at all,” Elton John wrote in his upcoming memoir.
Singer-songwriter Elton John has a new autobiography coming out and in it, he makes a number of statements regarding Michael Jackson, claiming that the controversial pop icon was “mentally ill” and “disturbing to be around.”
In John’s first ever memoir, “Me,” he wrote about his interactions with Jackson, who he said he’d known since Jackson was 13 or 14, according to the Independent. Although he described Jackson as being “the most adorable kid you could imagine,” he said that everything changed once Jackson began “sequestering himself away from the world” in the years that followed, the outlet reports.
“God knows what was going on in his head, and God knows what prescription drugs he was being pumped full of, but every time I saw him in his later years I came away thinking the poor guy had totally lost his marbles,” reads an excerpt. “I don’t mean that in the light-hearted way. He was genuinely mentally ill, a disturbing person to be around.”
“It was incredibly sad, but he was someone you couldn’t help: he was just gone, off in a world of his own, surrounded by people who only told him what he wanted to hear,” he continued.
John went on to recall Jackson, who he said “looked awful” at the time, wandering away from a party that John was hosting after refusing to eat, the outlet reports. They then found Jackson hours later, playing video games with the 11-year-old son of John’s housekeeper.
“For whatever reason, he couldn’t seem to cope with adult company at all,” John reportedly wrote.
“Me: Elton John” is set to be released on Oct. 15. Macmillan Publishers first announced the book, which it described as his “first and only official biography,” in April.
Jackson, who died in 2009, became the object of controversy in recent years following the release of HBO’s “Leaving Neverland,” a documentary that told the stories of two men — James Safechuck and Wade Robson — who claimed that Jackson routinely sexually abused them as children. Following its network premiere in January, the two-part series was met with both praise and criticism, with Jackson’s estate filing a lawsuit against HBO in February and accusing the documentary of being “one-sided.”
Jackson was acquitted of child molestation charges in 2005 and denied similar accusations against him during his lifetime.