Saturday, June 27, 2009


While I understand the reasons people may have reservations about celebrating Michael Jackson, I don't believe it is possible for me to overlook the achievements of his career. What Elvis Presley and The Beatles were to country and rock-and-roll, Michael Jackson was to pop music and pop culture. He is THE pop culture icon. His influence spans all pop music stars who have come after him, from Britney Spears and Justin Timberlake to Chris Brown and Usher. He paved the way for what is now one of the most popular forms of music in our country (hence "pop music").
  • His record "Thriller" is the 2nd biggest selling record of all time - (trailing a greatest hits compilation of The Eagles)
  • "Thriller" stayed at No. 1 on the Billboard charts for 37 weeks - the only non-soundtrack album to do so
  • He has the most number 1 hits in the 1980's
  • He has sold over 100 million singles and albums
  • He is the first person in the history of the Billboard charts to enter in at No. 1 with "You Are Not Alone."
  • He has the most No. 1 hits on the Billboard "Hot 100" of any male artist
  • He has won more awards than any other artist
  • Jackson 5 were the first group to have 4 consecutive No. 1 singles
  • He is the only artist to have 5 No. 1 hits from one album - "Bad" (Bad, Dirty Diana, The Way You Make Me Feel, Man in the Mirror, I Just Can't Stop Loving You)
  • Throughout his life, he donated more than $300 million to various organizations.
Now, I'm not saying that I applaud his personal life, but I also don't believe I am in a position to judge his personal life. I mourn the loss of a pop culture icon whose music I can remember through every stage of my almost 25 years. I have been a Michael Jackson fan my entire life - as have my mom and dad. Also, coincidentally, we share the same birthday.

"Any man's death diminishes me, because I am involved in Mankind."
-John Donne

Paul McCartney: "I feel privileged to have hung out and worked with Michael. He was a massively talented boy man with a gentle soul. His music will be remembered forever and my memories of our time together will be happy ones."

Justin Timberlake: “I can’t find the words right now to express how deeply saddened I am by Michael’s passing. We have lost a genius and a true ambassador of not only pop music but of all music. He has been an inspiration to multiple generations and I will always cherish the moments I shared with him onstage and all of the things I learned about music from him and the time we spent together. My heart goes out to his family and loved ones.”

Fall Out Boy's Patrick Stump: "I feel like John Lennon got shot. This is sad like 'On the Waterfront,' sad like 'Raging Bull,' sad like 'The Wrestler.' Music rarely gets hits like this; this is almost unparalleled. Even people who didn't enjoy his music have to acknowledge his influences. He was to pop what Davis and Coltrane were to bop. He was to R&B what Neil Armstrong was to the moon: an explorer who discovered a whole world unto itself. He was the Nikola Tesla of dance moves."

More musicians react to his death.

1 comment:

Mama Smors said...

When Paris talked at the end of the memorial service I lost it.... above all, he was there dad. Oh so sad! I couldn't sleep that night because I was worried about his children!

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