Last night...
Jason Gregory
19:01 27th June 2009

Beyonce fought back tears to pay tribute to Michael Jackson during a concert in Philadelphia last night.

The former Destiny’s Child star described Jackson as a “genius” and “my hero”.

The singer spoke at length about the King of Pop, who died on Thursday, before performing his hit ‘I Can’t Help It’.

She said: “This is going to be hard for me to perform tonight. My hero passed away. You know, the reason I’m here is because of Michael Jackson.

“I want to keep this to a good feelin’ so I have to say I’m very grateful for the memories that I’ve had watching and listening to the genius Michael Jackson.

“This is probably one of my favourite songs because as we all know Michael was magical, nobody could dance like him, nobody will ever manage to be Michael Jackson.”

Beyonce covers Michael Jackson's 'I Can't Help It' in concert.

Beyonce went on to note how Jackson’s unique voice and tone was evident in the song, which appeared on his 1979 album ‘Off The Wall’.

“I’ve studied everything about him so I just wanna sing a little piece of this for you Michael,” Beyonce added.

During the song, the singer also encouraged the crowd to sing the chorus, during which she included Jackson’s name.

Hundreds of musicians, celebrities and politicians have paid tribute to Jackson since his death on Thursday.

Fans have also held vigils – from Shanghai to Los Angeles – in memory of the star.

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Michael Jackson fans pay tribute

  • Michael Jackson fans surround his star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

  • Michael Jackson fans surround his star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

  • Michael Jackson fans surround his star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

  • Michael Jackson fans gather outside the UCLA Medical Centre, where the King of Pop died.

  • Michael Jackson fans gather outside the UCLA Medical Centre, where the King of Pop died.

  • michael Jackson's fans leave a message outside Jackson's Enico home.

  • Michael Jackson fans hold impromptu vigil in Hawaii.

  • Michael Jackson fans hold impromptu vigil in Hawaii.

  • Michael Jackson fans gather outside the Lyric Threatre in London, home of a tribute musical to the star.

  • A message outside the Lyrics theatre, London.

  • The O2 Arena in London on the day the world learnt of Michael Jackson's death. The venue was due to stage his 50-show pop comeback.

  • A fan looks at the Apollo Theatre's tribute to Michael Jackson in Los Angeles.

  • Fans in China hold a vigil for Michael Jackson

  • Fans in China hold a vigil for Michael Jackson.

  • Jesse Jackson outside the Jackson's family home in Encino.

  • The world's media wait outside the Los Angeles Coroner's Office for information about Michael Jackson's death.

  • Tributes outside Michael Jackson's home in Los Angeles

  • Tributes outside Michael Jackson's home in Los Angeles

  • Tributes outside Michael Jackson's home in Los Angeles

  • Tributes outside Michael Jackson's home in Los Angeles

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Photo: Splash News