Music

Five Must-See Larry King Interviews with Music Royalty

Revisiting the late talk show host’s chats with iconic musicians.

Journalist, talk show host, and inquisitive everyman, Larry King died on Saturday morning at the age of 87. Known for his candid questioning, broad interests, and an unbridled fandom of his guests, King found a slot for himself in every news cycle iteration since the mid-50s.

During his first 30 years in years in journalism, King jumped from radio to print to a primetime slot on CNN with Larry King Live in 1985, quickly establishing himself as the face of the network. King’s namesake program ran for 25 years and featured over 6,000 interviews with everyone from Jerry Seinfeld to The Dalia Lama to Amber Rose to Mike Tyson (several times over,) to every US president since Ford. And somewhere in the mix, King managed to fit in a UFO truther (or twelve), making for some stellar conspiracy theory fodder over the years.

After retiring from CNN in 2010, King went on to found his own digital media company, Ora TV, where he continued to interview some of the most notable names in entertainment, sports, and politics, on Larry King Now. It was on Ora that King finally began to dig deeper into contemporary music after years of only peppering his schedule with musicians. That said, he did sit with some of the most impactful singers and musicians of any generation between his two shows. And most of them made for riveting and occasionally outright adorable TV moments. As we celebrate King’s legacy, there’s no better time to revisit some of his chats with music icons.

Scroll on to see Larry King chop it up with Prince, Beyoncé, Janet Jackson, Stevie Wonder, and Mac Miller.

Prince

Weeks out from the close of the 20th century (in the year he named an album after,) Prince addressed his feud with Warner Bros., why he chose to change his name to a mere symbol, and the ways spirituality was informing his life, in the calmest and most collected of tones sitting beside King on his nightly CNN program.

Stevie Wonder

An early guest on King’s Ora TV program, Stevie Wonder stopped by Larry King Now in 2013 for a career-spanning chat, touching on his musical inspirations, his life-long relationship with Quincy Jones, and the sentiments behind some of his biggest hits. They even join forces for a brief duet of “For Once In My Life.”

Tina Turner

“I’m as big as Madonna in Europe,” Tina Turner tells King in this 1997 interview, discussing her cross-pond relocation and the peace she’s found since divorcing Ike Turner and falling out of public life.

 

Janet Jackson

In another throwback to the late-90s, Janet Jackson hops into the guest chair, running through the tedious nature of being integrally involved in the structuring of her Velvet Rope tour. At one point, Colin Powell calls in to thank Jackson for donating a portion of proceeds from the tour to a charity organization he was heading at the time.

Mac Miller

Finally, the late Mac Miller joined King to discuss his 2015 album, GO:OD AM, his struggles with depression, how well he’s coping with fame, and what success means to him.

zo

Zo is a staff writer at Okayplayer where he covers music.

Recent Posts

Allen Iverson Talks About the Time He Had to Explain His “Terrible Rap Album” to Ex-NBA Commissioner David Stern

While on Kevin Hart's Cold As Balls, Allen Iverson spoke on late NBA commissioner David Stern… Read More

December 5, 2022

SZA’s New Album ‘S.O.S.’ Will Feature Ol’ Dirty Bastard, Travis Scott & More

SZA has dropped the tracklist for her upcoming album, S.O.S. SZA has finally revealed the… Read More

December 5, 2022

Ice Cube Wants to Regain Ownership of ‘Friday’ Franchise From Warner Bros.

While on podcast Hotboxin' With Mike Tyson, rapper and business mogul Ice Cube spoke about… Read More

December 5, 2022

Best Hip-Hop Videos To Drop Last Week: Westside Gunn, Black Star, Latto & More

Last week video releases from Metro Boomin, Westside Gunn, Latto, and GloRilla were revealed. Westside… Read More

December 5, 2022

Watch the First Trailer for Upcoming Eddie Murphy Comedy ‘You People’

Eddie Murphy, Jonah Hill, Nia Long, Lauren London and Julia Louis-Dreyfus star in upcoming Kenya… Read More

December 5, 2022

Fans Went Crazy Over the ‘Kenan & Kel’ Reunion on Saturday Night Live’

On the recent episode of Saturday Night Live, Kenan Thompson and Kel Mitchell revived their… Read More

December 5, 2022