Enigmatic singer-songwriter Sky Ferreira doesn’t give interviews very often, but in a new piece out today in Pitchfork, Ferreira discussed her upcoming music, what she’s been up to since 2013, and everything in between. The singer, whose last album Night Time, My Time came out six years ago, detailed the complicated writing and mixing process of a couple songs she has coming out soon — one of which is expected to be released this week.
But apart from the present, Ferreira also discussed her past. The singer, who lived with her hairdresser grandmother as a child, spent a lot of time with adults, including some of her grandmother’s famous clients. As a seven-year-old, she sang for one of them, who told her she should join a gospel choir. The man was Michael Jackson.
Jackson gave Ferreira some career advice she holds dear. “He was like, ‘Don’t focus on things that are just around you — you need to look back to the history of music,’” Ferreira recounted. “And that’s what I did.”
Ferreira also said she visited Jackson’s Neverland Ranch (and his other homes) many times throughout her childhood, striking up a friendship with the much older singer. Ferreira’s conversation with Pitchfork took place a few days before HBO’s Leaving Neverland documentary aired, detailing the years of trauma and alleged sexual abuse that two individuals who spent time with Jackson suffered.
Ferreira claims not to have witnessed any abuse in her time with Jackson. “It wasn’t just because I was a girl,” Ferreira said. “I was around a lot of other kids.”
Ferreira didn’t comment about the specific instances detailed in the documentary, but the singer said Jackson’s attention and encouragement was formative to her. “I was really quiet [as a child], but when someone sees something in you…,” Ferreira said. “I had a connection to him, but I’m not, like, his family.”