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The Baby Boomer Who Changed the Face of Music

It's hard to believe he's gone. Michael Jackson was one baby boomer I thought was larger than life. Who cares that he was 50 years old. If he could still shake his body down to the ground, I would still watch.

I grew up with Michael and his brothers--when they were known as the Jackson 5. I first saw them on TV in 1969 when they appeared on The Ed Sullivan Show. I then saw them in person in 1971 at the Ohio State Fair. I remember screaming hysterically along with thousands of other little girls in the crowd.

When Michael decided to go solo, it seems as though his fan base became even larger. Michael actually changed the face of music on MTV. Before the debut of his "Thriller" video, MTV was not playing music by black artists. After that debut, Michael didn't stop and we couldn't get enough.

The more popular Michael became, however, the more his life became exposed. Allegations of child molestation followed him throughout his adult life. He was called a WACKO JACKO by members of the media who, I believe, sensationalized his life beyond repair.

But you know what? I choose to remember Michael Jackson for the musical gifts he gave to his adoring fans. For the rest of you who want to continue to harp on the negative, you can just BEAT IT!

Comments

Eco-office Gals said…
I don't think the negative should be harped on, but he not only had his strange dark side, but with the extensive surgeries, alleged alcohol & narcotic abuse, did anyone think he would live to a ripe old age? He was physically destructive. He should be honored for the accomplishments in his life, but should he monopolize the nightly news for 2 days... IMO no. I can see Entertainment Tonight for a week, yes. I just find it strange that he was out of sight out of mind until last night. JMO
Beverly said…
Eco-office Gals,

I am with you on the coverage of MJ's death. It is way over the top--especially since he's been out of sight--out of mind for so long. Once again, this is the media taking a story and finding a million and one ways to keep it in the public's view...the same thing they did with Anna Nicole Smith and she wasn't nearly as famous or successful as Michael.
Eco-office Gals said…
Oh well tomorrow they'll remember the rest of the world exists... maybe! :)
Anonymous said…
Beverly thanks for the tribute. Although Michael was out of mind lately, his music and musical contributions are with us almost daily and now every time we hear a song by him, we will go back to that place in time and in our memories when we heard it for the first time.

Rest in peace, Michael Jackson

Heidi Richards Mooney, Publisher
WE Magazine for Women
Debbie Stevens said…
I absolutely agree with you Bev, re:media and all their horrible allegations & speculations!
I've NEVER once taken any of that 'on-board', and pray forgiveness, to all those who tried so hard to drag Michael's name down-

Like you, I too grew up with the days of the Jackson 5, and watched in awe, as Miachael stepped out on his own, creating an entire new and wonderful generation of music!
I bopped-till-I-dropped, at various disco's across Sydney's club-circuit...and sang along with his beautiful ballads.

One fan put it so well yesterday, when she said: "It's such a crying shame, that it took his death, to give him the REAL appreciation he so deserved!"

I will be remembering the time, the man, the humanitarian, that gave new meaning to the world of music.
Sleep well & in peace, Michael.
Karen O'Bannon said…
I have always been a Michael Jackson fan and a strong defender of his innocence regarding the child abuse charges, especially after a very public trial could not find the evidence to find him guilty of any wrong doing. No one has been able to out do him in the music industry and might I add he is a strong contender as a humanitarian as well. As far as I'm concerned, he deserves every bit of the publicity he is currently getting. May he rest in peace.
Beverly said…
Karen,

What I find so appalling is the fact that the media is seizing the opportunity to bring up every little thing about Michael's life. I'm personally sick of three days of coverage about the WACKO JACKO & child molestation charges. They could better utilize that time by playing his music or just doing what they did with Farrah and end it. No one is spending any time talking about Farrah having a baby out of wedlock, her alleged sexual behavior to get roles and the troubled life her son had over and over and over again. It's all in how you spin it.
Eileen Williams said…
Yes, like you I was saddened by Michael's passing. But, mostly I was shocked! I'm older than you and closer to Farrah's age so her death, although expected, hit me rather hard.
I always thought of Michael in terms of the young boy fronting for his brothers and then later as the young man who created the monster hit, Thriller. So, when I heard the news, I just couldn't believe it.
June 25, 2009 was certainly a day of loss as we really did say goodbye to two icons of the entertainment world.
Debra Stokes said…
I, too, was saddened by Michael Jackson's tragic death. He was truly gifted and had a profound and lasting impact on the music industry. But I mourn for his personal life - whether what was portrayed was real or media-spawned - because he never appeared to "get there" . . . wherever "there" was for him. I pray for his family - especially his children - and for all the others like him who may be struggling with life.
Pam Archer said…
People have thought I was naive or crazy, when I maintained Michael's innocence on the child molestation charges.

Think about it. He was famous from age 9, after that his life was so enclosed and protected that he wasn't able to lead a child's life. He desperately wanted other children to have a childhood. That's why he build Neverland and had children into his home. He knew he could trust them, unlike the adults who wanted to hitch to his star. He basically lived in a prison. How would any of us act? Don't we all do weird things that could be called Wacko?

Dangling his baby from a balcony trying to show him to his fans wasn't a smart thing to do, but I believe he knew he had a good hold on him, and didn't realize he was holding him out so far.

The saddest thing is that he searched for peace and God, but never found him in Christ Jesus.

I believe he was a pure and gentle soul, who loved music. I hope that his estate will multiply, and that it will go to help lots of worthy charities as well as his children and family, and not to some scoundrel attorney or record company wishing to cash in.
Susan Adcox said…
Michael Jackson might have been forgotten by the mainstream media in favor of many less-talented, but he was never forgotten by real fans of music and dance. Just a couple of months ago my granddaughter taught her dance team the Thriller dance during a sleepover, and they had a ball with it. I still find it impossible to watch his videos without being amazed at his talent. Rest in peace, MJ.
Rhea said…
Michael Jackson and I were born in the same year, just two months apart. So I have always used him, among others, to measure how my life was progressing. It's strange to think he's gone already.
Beverly said…
Rhea,

For me its been scary to think how close I am to my own ending. I thought people like Michael Jackson would just live on forever.

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