Michael Jackson The Story June 13, 2012
Dubbed the King of Pop, singer-song writer Michael Jackson was born in Gary, Indiana on August 29, 1958. As a child, he was lead singer of the Jackson family’s popular Motown group, The Jackson 5.
Michael Joseph Jackson, born August 29, 1958 and died June 25, 2009. His contribution to music, dance, and fashion, along with a much-publicized personal life, made him a global figure in popular culture for over four decades.
A musical prodigy, Michael’s singing and dancing talents were amazingly mature, and he soon became the dominant voice and focus of The Jackson 5. An opening act for such soul groups as the O-Jays and James Brown, it was Gladys Knight (not Diana Ross) who officially brought the group to Berry Gordy’s attention, and by 1969, the boys were producing back-to-back chart-busting hits as Motown artists (“I Want You Back,” “ABC,” “Never Can Say Goodbye,” “Got to Be There,” etc.).
Michael Jackson’s use of music video to promote his hit songs of “Beat It”, “Billie Jean”, and “Thriller”, were responsible for transforming the video medium into an art form and a hugely popular promotional tool. The success of these music videos help bring the relatively new television channel MTV into popularity.
In the 1990s, the downside as an 1980s pop phenomenon began to rear itself. Michael grew terribly child-like and introverted by his peerless celebrity. A rather timorous, androgynous figure to begin with, his physical appearance began to change drastically, and his behavior grew alarmingly bizarre, making him a consistent target for scandal-making, despite his numerous charitable acts. Two brief marriages — one to Elvis Presley’s daughter Lisa Marie Presley Lockwood — were forged and two children produced by his second wife during that time, but the purposes behind them appeared image-oriented.
Disappointed his fans by singing a few lines from “We Are the World”, accompanied by a children’s choir, after he had been rumored to perform his 1982 hit “Thriller” as a triumphant comeback at the World Music Awards at Earls Court, London. Jackson left the stage to audible boos from the audience – some of his fans had paid up to 500 a ticket to see him perform. (15 November 2006).
His death triggered an outpouring of grief. Fans gathered outside the UCLA Medical Center, his Holmby Hills home, the Apollo Theater in New York, and at Hitsville U.S.A., the old Motown headquarters in Detroit where his career began, now the Motown Museum. Streets around the hospital were blocked off, and across America people left offices and factories to watch the breaking news on television.
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