Michael Jackson's nephew calls Sam Smith 'ignorant, disrespectful and arrogant' over his King of Pop dis

Suzy Byrne
Editor, Yahoo Entertainment

The internet is not happy with Sam Smith.

While boating with Adam Lambert, the “Too Good at Goodbyes” singer, 26, was heard on video saying, “I don’t like Michael Jackson, but this is a good song” while the late pop great’s hit “Human Nature” played in the background. Lambert quickly deleted the video from his Instagram — but nothing really disappears on the internet, and now Smith is the World Wide Web’s punching bag.

The reactions haven’t been kind, and they quickly made their way to the Jackson family. T.J. Jackson, a performer like his uncle and his dad, Tito Jackson, called Smith’s comment “ignorant, disrespectful and arrogant.” Speaking directly to Smith, he added that while “everyone has opinions,” Smith shouldn’t “disparage a soul pioneer when they helped paved the way for you and your music.”

He shared a follow-up message as well.

The clapback getting the most attention, though, is from Grammy-winning singer and The Wiz actress Stephanie Mills, who had a brief relationship with Jackson. “@Samsmithworld Don’t come for MICHAEL JACKSON when you wish you have sold as many records and you wish you were the King of Pop like he was,” she wrote on Instagram. “I’m so tired of you people studying our music, and studying our artist and claiming that you don’t like our music. Go sit your 1 HIT WONDER ass down and learn how to finish a tour. When you can sell as many records as the king of Pop, Michael Jackson then maybe you can say something. So I say to you Mr. Smith have several seats and come for me if you want to.”

The criticism leveled at Smith was widespread.

Someone even called for BET to revoke Smith’s Best New Artist award from 2015.

Though he did get some support.

Smith has opted not to poke the bear and has remained silent on the matter. (Yahoo Entertainment reached out to him through his rep.) He did post a vacation photo, though, and wrote about how he spent most of his trip listening to music and laughing.

Of course, the best way to silence critics if you are a musician is to put out good music — and Smith made a surprise announcement that he has some coming. Amid the drama, he dropped the news that a collaboration called “Promises” with Calvin Harris will be released Friday. “I’m so excited for you all to hear this song,” he wrote. 

We bet — anything to change the current conversation.

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