Fat Joe looked no further than Michael Jackson when it came time to pay tribute to his mother, Maria. XXLMag.com recently chopped it up with the Bronx rapper to find out how the King of Pop was responsible for making the track happen.

While many MCs have dedicated songs to their mothers on wax, the story behind Joey Crack’s homage is anything but typical. Producer Streetrunner lifted MJ’s soulful vocals from “Mariah (You Were the Only One)” for Joe’s dedication “Bendicion Mami” off his 2006 album Me, Myself and I . Problem was, when it came time to clear the sample, the label wasn’t budging. “They went ‘We’re not really clearing [samples] right now,’” he said.

Luckily Joe was able to pull on Jackson’s softer side. “I was like, ‘Yo but this is for my mother,’” he continued. “And they went back to [Mike and] he was like ‘Nah we gotta clear that.’”

A longtime fan of MJ, Joe feels like the media should be held accountable for exploiting the iconic singer to make money. “Michael Jackson to me is the epitome of everything,” he said. “His voice is so beautiful, he music was beautiful and I think he was a beautiful and talented person. And people were profiting making him look like a lunatic. I mean he did some weird things, but that was all that gossip shit. That’s that new age of how to sell a paper and I don’t believe in that."

The deceased singer is getting a public dedication of his own this afternoon in L.A.’s Staples Center. Featuring musical tributes by Mariah Carey, Usher, Stevie Wonder, Justin Timberlake, Jennifer Hudson and Smokey Robinson, the star-studded Jackson memorial is currently being aired now on all major network TV stations. –Elan Mancini with reporting by Rob Markman