TIME

“There are a lot of pictures I never published because they’re for me, [they’re] something personal, something I’m attached to,” Alix Dejean tells TIME.

The Haitian-born photographer, who has been a fixture in New York City’s music scene for more decades than he wants you to know, began photographing the Jackson family in the mid-1970s, at a time when the Jacksonmania was in full swing and when Michael Jackson was starting his solo career. Dejean, who was already well-known for photographing the likes of Stevie Wonder and Aretha Franklin, swiftly developed a relationship with the Jackson family after being introduced to Michael by Mamadou Johnny Sekka, director of Jackson 5 in Africa, at the film’s premiere.

At that time, record labels hired Dejean to shoot the rockstars, but he cherished the moments in between, when he looked for the raw emotions – Michael quietly anticipating a show in his dressing…

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