Jermaine was the first performer at the IIFA Rocks held Friday night at the Ricoh Coliseum. It is a fashion and music event held as part of the ongoing IIFA celebrations here. The occasion was the eve of the second death anniversary of his younger brother Michael Jackson. But despite Jermaine's effort, MJ's magic was missed by the audience.
After a short welcome by filmmaker Karan Johar, Jermaine took the stage, and belted out three of his numbers. He did little jigs and pelvic thrusts as male dancers swayed behind him wearing black hats a la those popularly worn by MJ. But none could compare the poise, the flexibility, the style and the enthusiasm of Michael, who died June 25, 2009.
"Michael was of a different league...His moves were so amazing, his stage presence was unmatched...But it is really nice of Jermaine to have agreed to perform for a Bollywood show," Sunita Arya, an Indian living in Toronto, told IANS after Jermaine's performance.
Jitendra Singh, another Bollywood enthusiast who came for the show, said: "The performance was good. When an international singer comes and performs at an Indian event, it just goes to show how far our Hindi film industry has reached. We are far from our country, but these small moments make us feel very proud."
Jermaine, who sang three of his numbers including "Can you feel it", also teamed up with Indian singer Sonu Niigaam to present a tribute song for Michael and said it was a "special moment" for him to perform at the IIFA. The duo performed a track "This is it" against a backdrop full of glimpses from Michael's life. The song was written and composed by Niigaam following Michael's death.
"I thank Jermaine Jackson for singing this song that I wrote teary-eyed when Michael Jackson died. And see the magic...Michael sent his most respected elder brother to sing this song with me," said Niigaam, dressed in a black jacket, with metal embellishments. For the tribute song, Jermaine changed his bright red jacket into a more subtle white jacket.