I’m late in posting this but as everyone around the world knows Michael Jackson passed away on Thursday June 25.
By Hank Stuever and Matt Schudel
Washington Post Staff Writers
Friday, June 26, 2009
Michael Jackson, 50, died yesterday in Los Angeles as sensationally as he lived, as famous as a human being can get. He was a child Motown phenomenon who grew into a moonwalking megastar, the self-anointed King of Pop who sold 750 million records over his career and enjoyed worldwide adoration.
But with that came the world’s relentless curiosity, and Mr. Jackson was eventually regarded as one of show business’s legendary oddities, hopping from one public relations crisis to another.
In the end there were two sides to the record: The tabloid caricature and the provocative, genre-changing musical genius that his fans will always treasure. There were those whose devotion knew no bounds, who visited the gates of his private ranch north of Santa Barbara, Calif., arriving at Neverland on pilgrimages from Europe and Asia, and who were among the first to flock to UCLA Medical Center as news of his death spread yesterday afternoon. Those were the same kind of fans who camped out at the Santa Barbara Superior Courthouse, to show their support during his 2005 trial. They released doves and wept when he was acquitted.
Then there was the other kind of fan, who preferred to keep memories of the singer locked firmly in his 1980s prime: Today’s young adults all have memories of being toddlers and grade-schoolers who moonwalked across their mother’s just mopped kitchen floors. Even the hardest rockers will easily confess to the first album they ever bought: “Thriller.”
“I am just dev-as-tated,” said Bridgette Cooper, 44, of Mitchellville, who was driving her children to math tutoring when her 12-year-old got the news by text. “I don’t ever remember not loving him. I have been a fan forever. Even through the turmoil and the public spectacle, I still loved him and his music.”
Mr. Jackson’s death set off an instant media frenzy befitting the later chapters of his celebrityhood. The singer suffered an apparent heart attack at one of his residences in Bel-Air. Paramedics said Jackson was not breathing when they arrived at 12:26 p.m. Pacific time. The singer was brought to the UCLA Medical Center at 1:14 p.m. PDT and pronounced dead at 2:26 (5:26 Eastern).
Web sites began reporting that the singer had been taken to the hospital. Soon, streets in the Westwood neighborhoods around the hospital were clogged with traffic as crowds of onlookers formed, much as they did wherever the singer had appeared. Soon enough, they were dancing and playing Mr. Jackson’s music, as a helicopter flew away with his body, en route to the coroner. All around the world, from Los Angeles to Adams Morgan to Times Square to Tokyo and beyond, people cued up Mr. Jackson’s songs — some digging out cassettes and LPs.
Mr. Jackson’s brother, Jermaine, told reporters that “it is believed [Mr. Jackson] suffered cardiac arrest” and that the star’s personal physician had tried to revive him. Jermaine Jackson then asked for something his family is unlikely to get in the next several days: privacy. “And may Allah be with you, Michael, always,” he said.
I’m still in shock. When I first heard about it I couldn’t believe it. I thought it was some internet rumor cause you know rumors about folks dying can easily get started on the internet. But I found out on a legit news site so I had to accept the truth.
Despite Michael’s odd ways you can’t take away the fact that the man was one of the most gifted and talented music artists to ever grace this earth. I’ve been a fan since his days in the Jackson 5. Yesterday I finally had time to go through my album and cd collection and pulled out all my Michael Jackson and Jackson 5 music. I own a lot. I popped in a few cds and had a Michael Jackson/Jackson 5 marathon going on yesterday. That includes playing the Jackson 5 Anthology cd which really brought back some memories.
Some of the songs from that cd that I love include Never Can Say Goodbye, Lookin’ Through The Window, I Am Love, I Wanna Be Where You Are and Forever Came Today. Check out I Am Love. This song is fantastic. It’s from the Jackson Five Dancing Machine album. Yes I still have that album 🙂
Another song I really enjoy is from the Jackson album/cd Triumph. I read that the song Heartbreak Hotel, another all time favorite, is now titled This Place Hotel. Well I still have the Triumph album and thankfully the original title still stands on that album.
It’s difficult to pinpoint my favorite Michael Jackson solo song. He had so many good ones. But some favorites include Billie Jean, Rock With You, I Can’t Help It, Man In The Mirror and Thriller. Check out Michael’s Billie Jean performance from the Motown 25: Yesterday, Today and Forever television special. Yes, I own the video.
Motown 25 was one of the first videos I bought after I started my video collection back in the 80’s.
Quite a number of sites have tributes and recollections of Michael. Check out Rolling Stone’s Essential Michael Jackson coverage, People Magazine’s Appreciation and CNN’s Special Report on Michael Jackson.
I’ve been watching The Jacksons: An American Family on TV One. Now I see why I prefer watching movies on non-commerical tv or dvd. Way too many commercials. I’m gonna order the movie through Amazon.com later next month. Hopefully they’ll have it back in stock by then.
My prayers go out to the Jackson family.