One of his fellow nominees, Jamie Foxx, is honored just to hear his name mentioned with the King of Pop.
"You think about all the great music that he left us with," said Foxx. "It's an honor to be in that category."
Michael's brothers will be attending and their little sister, Janet, will be opening the show. She's among a big crowd of stars who'll be in the audience.
Jennifer Lopez will be there too. She's among more than a dozen performers set for the ceremony.
Adam Lambert will sing for this all-star crowd, and for this newcomer it can be a little daunting.
"I did see some of those little place cards when I was looking out. I was like, 'Oh my gosh, this is going to be so surreal,'" said Lambert. "But I look at experiences like this that are surreal where you're getting to look and perform for your idols, people that I grew up listening to, and instead of letting it freak me out it makes me happy, it makes me like 'Wow, this is amazing.'"
As far as who Lambert's looking forward to seeing perform, he's gaga for a certain lady.
"Not only do I like her music, but I think she really embodies the spirit of rock n' roll. Even though she's a dance-pop artist, she's the spirit of rock n' roll and she's a rebel and she's a non-conformist and she takes risks and she's got that raw, fiery energy. So I am looking forward to that," said Lambert. "Rihanna's gorgeous. Whitney performing is going to be great. Janet's awesome. And then the past idols that have come off the show, Kelly Clarkson can sing her face off, I can't wait to see her and Carrie and Daughtery. I think it's going to be a great night."
The ceremony will be broadcast live from the Nokia Theatre at 7 p.m. Sunday on ABC.