King of pop, Michael Jackson, should have turned 60 this year. We don't think that age is something that could have held him back, but in any case, he still lives on as a musician, and as an inspiration.
He is still copied and impersonated around the world even by people who never saw him alive. Here you'll get to see rare and great photos and read unknown facts about Michael Jackson.
Michael Joseph Jackson was born on August 29, 1958, in Gary, Indiana. His father, Joseph Jackson, was a boxer, steelworker, and a guitarist. But he worked as a crane operator. His mother, Katherine Esther Scruse, was a devout Jehovah’s Witness, but also worked part-time at a departmental store. He had a big family with 3 sisters and 5 brothers.
Michael Jackson's memorial service was watched by over 2.5 billion viewers worldwide, which would make it the most watched live television broadcast in history worldwide. Although this number is not widely agreed upon, it was still a widely watched event.
Michael Jackson is The Most-Awarded Artist Of All Time. He won more awards than any other music alive or deceased. He's received 23 Guinness World Records, 40 Billboard Awards, 13 Grammys, and 26 American Music Awards.
Jackson's father, Joe Jackson, used to scare him when he was a child by using monster masks. Besides this, during an interview, Michael had revealed that his father used to beat him and his brothers with a strap and didn’t regret doing so.
Following Michael Jackson's death, 20% of his estate (more than $100 million) was donated to children’s charities, part of the more than $300 million Jackson donated to charity throughout his lifetime.
Through his “Heal the World” Foundation, Jackson spearheaded airlifts of food and medical supplies to war-torn Sarajevo, instituted mentoring, immunization and drug-abuse education programs and paid for a Hungarian child’s liver transplant.
These days: Prince Michael Jackson, born Michael Joseph Jackson Jr. is a motorcycle enthusiast and he graduated from The Buckley School in Calif. Paris has become an actress, model, and activist. She is also active on social media. Blanket, born Prince Michael Jackson II, goes by the nickname “Bigi.” He attends occasional events that honor his father and since he is a minor, he is still under guardianship.
Michael Jackson's famous dance move, the moonwalk, is said to have been based on the routine of mime artist Marcel Marceau. In 1983, with around 47 million viewers, Jackson performed “Billie Jean” and showed his famous dance move called “The Moonwalk” for the first time.
Eddie Murphy said about Michael Jackson: "He was just a person. A total eccentric and different, but I'd seen him around his family, his kids, his house, and at work in the studio, and he was just a real dude. He was showbiz, but he was a real dude. "
In 1965, Michael’s father made a band called “Jackson Brothers” with him and Marlon and included his brothers Jackie, Tito, and Jermaine as backup musicians. In the later 60’s and early 70’s, the Jackson 5 recorded many songs, such as Big Boy, The Love You Save, I’ll Be There, Got to Be There, I Want You Back, and many more hits.
The music video of his single Liberian Girl features an extraordinary ensemble of the era's stars including - John Travolta, Olivia Newton-John, Whoopi Goldberg, Steven Spielberg, Quincy Jones, Virginia Madsen, David Copperfield, Danny Glover and Dan Akroyd. He only appeared at the end of the video.
Justin Timberlake and Michael Jackson. Timberlake was inspired by Jackson throughout his career. He created a tribute for him and leaves hints and small Jackson moves in his videos.
The costumes for the "Thriller" video came from the Salvation Army. This scene, by the way, became a very popular internet meme, describing 'watching an escalating fight happening, or on the verge of happening.'
Lisa Marie Presley knew Michael wanted to have kids with Rowe, and she was fine with it as it was the end of their relationship. After he died, Lisa Marie Presley said that Michael had told her he was afraid he would end up like Elvis Presley, her father.
Michael attended the memorial service for the late Marlon Brando in August 2004, along with Jack Nicholson and Sean Penn. Three years earlier, Michael Jackson, Elizabeth Taylor, and Marlon Brando had jumped in a car together after 9/11—the three of them, no entourage—and drove to Ohio to escape New York City.
His middle name was Joseph - Michael Joseph Jackson. Michael Jackson began his solo career in 1971. He achieved worldwide success with numerous hit songs and number ones across the world.
Jackson is Nicole Ritchie's godfather. Lionel told Billboard the funny story of how he and Michael wrote "We are the world" back in 1985: "I’m at Michael’s house trying to write ‘We Are The World’ and his dog is barking and his Mynah bird is yelling ‘Shut up’ at the dog. I see albums falling over. I look again and see more falling over and there’s an albino python coming toward me. I will admit I was screaming like a white woman. Michael goes, ‘Oh my God, Lionel. There he is, he wants to play with you.’ That’s how it was for three days.”
He made international headlines after he was photographed and filmed dangling his son Prince from over a Berlin hotel balcony in 2002. He later stated that he made “a terrible mistake.”
As you can see here, Blanket grew up to be a fine young man, and he doesn't have any issues with windows.
He had lavish taste and the means to satisfy it. He bought the Best Picture Oscar awarded to David O. Selznick for Gone With The Wind for $1.5 million in 1999.
Jackson was close friends with actor Macaulay Caulkin and appeared in the video of Black Or White. He is also the godfather to Jackson's children Prince and Paris.
He had a deep love of children - perhaps because of his lost childhood due to his early singing career. He would wear a black (or red) armband to remind people of suffering children around the world.
Jackson hired Martin Scorsese to direct the “Bad” music video. When the video aired, it sparked controversy because Jackson’s skin color changed. It was so noticeable in the video that the entire press took out widespread coverage and claimed that Jackson had bleached his own skin.
Two other best-selling records of the world of his also include 'Bad' and 'Dangerous'. Counting Jackson 5 LPs and his solo work, Thriller was Michael's 19th studio album.
Michael was presented with an “Artist of the Decade” award by Elizabeth Taylor in 1989, proclaiming him “the true king of pop, rock and soul.”
Some of his favorite pastimes were water balloon fights and climbing trees. He wrote several songs sitting in his favorite tree at Neverland, which he called Giving Tree, because it was so inspiring.
Michael Jackson invented and patented special boots that allowed the wearer to lean so far forward that it seems to defy gravity. He used these for the famous "lean" in the "Smooth Criminal" music video.
Jackson was charged with seven counts of child sexual abuse and two counts of administering an intoxicating agent in order to commit a child sexual abuse felony against Gavin Arvizo in 2003, who was under 14 at the time. Earlier that year, a Granada Television documentary, called Living with Michael Jackson, showed the pop star holding hands and discussing sleeping arrangements with Arvizo. Jackson was found not guilty but this ultimately affected his music career.
The single white glove (later covered in silver sequins) made its television debut on Michael's left hand during his stunning performance of "Billy Jean" at Motown's 25th anniversary TV special in 1983. It became the King of Pop's wardrobe icon for the rest of his career, worn by Jackson and his multimillions of adoring fans the world over.
Michael Jackson and Oprah Winfrey January 1993. In the interview on Oprah Winfrey's show, the singer spoke of a traumatic childhood including suffering from loneliness.
MJ’s 1st marriage with Elvis Presley’s daughter Lisa Marie Presley in 1994 lasted for only 19 months. Later, he had his 2nd marriage in 1996, with Deborah Jeanne Rowe and had 2 kids, Michael Joseph Jackson Junior and a daughter, Paris Michael Katherine Jackson. This marriage also ended in 1999.
Billie Jean is based on a true story. Michael claims an obsessive fan tried to say he was the father of her child. Billie Jean was the first music video by a black artist to air on MTV. Billie Jean was the second single from Michael Jackson's sixth solo album, "Thriller."
He was fond of pets. He had a python called Crusher, two llamas called Louis and Lola and his most famous pet was Bubbles, the chimpanzee.
After Michael’s death, Madonna and Diana Ross said they could not stop crying. Madonna called her date with MJ ‘the best date ever’. They went to the 1991 Oscars together.
The pop icons went to the ceremony back in 1991, after the ‘Like A Virgin’ star was nominated for her song ‘Sooner or Later’ for the film Dick Tracy. That evening, she would take home the award for Best Original Song.
The gold coffin seen at his memorial is a rare design called the Promethean. It cost $25,000 and is made of solid bronze, plated with 14-carat gold. The coffin was hand-polished to a mirror finish and lined with velvet. It’s identical to the coffin used to bury James Brown in 2006.
For beauty purposes and to live longer, Michael Jackson used to sleep in an oxygen tent. He later donated the bed to a Californian medical center as a therapeutic aid for burn victims.
He said he had only two cosmetic surgery procedures, one on his nose and the other on his chin. Jackson broke his nose during a complex dance routine in 1979 and underwent rhinoplasty surgery which was not a success as he said he had problems breathing. Many believe that he used this as an excuse to get a nose job. His extreme physical transformation suggests that he's had more than just two, however.
When Michael Jackson listened to his songs from his days in "The Jackson 5"; he said he sounded like "Minnie Mouse."
How it began: In 1965, the Jackson 5 won a talent contest at a high school. During 1968 the group played in strip clubs to earn extra cash. In December 1969 they released their first album, Diana Ross Presents The Jackson 5 . In 1975 The Jackson 5 moved to another record label called CBS Records and changed their name to The Jacksons.
He won eight Grammy's in 1984 - the highest amount ever won by one person in a single year. He has two stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, one for himself and one for the Jackson 5.
The famous Michael Jackson 23 painting was created in 1984 by Andy Warhol as a screenprint to celebrate the massive popularity of Jackson's 1982 album, Thriller.
His song Beat It made it to "white radio" stations due to Eddie Van Halen's guitar solo on the track. Eddie Van Halen recorded his guitar solo for free!
The Thriller music video has its own Lego version. It's OWN Lego version!! It was created by Annette Jung, a Berlin-based comic artist.
In 1993, MJ was diagnosed with Vitiligo, which is a rare skin disease in which the pigment is lost from areas of the skin, causing whitish patches. The skin disease from which he suffered, affects 1 to 2 per cent of the population.
He suffered from a rare genetic disease called Alpha-1 antitrypsin deficiency. The inherited disorder that may cause lung disease and liver disease.
Jackson paid a staggering $47 million for the publishing rights to the Beatles back catalog in 1985 and sold a share of to Sony in 1995 for $95 million.
Michael Jackson is the highest-earning deceased artist. He has been recognized by the Guinness Book Of World Records in a new category for Highest-Earning Deceased Artist, gaining the top honor. In the first year after his passing in 2009, Jackson's estate raked in a reported $1 billion.
Mr. T was once Michael Jackson's personal bidyguard. He said: "He thought enough of me that I could protect him, and that was serious business. That’s where my tough attitude comes from — when I was a body guard, I gotta look mean, I don’t talk to nobody. The meanness and toughness is there."
The popular Thriller video that we've all come to know and love almost didn't make the cut. Michael wanted the "Thriller" video destroyed after he found out that the Jehovah's Witnesses heard he was doing a video about a werewolf. He later agreed to go ahead with it after a disclaimer was added to the video.
He moved to Bahrain, on invitation by the Sheikh of Bahrain, after he was acquitted of sexual abuse charges in 2005. He had not been seen in the two weeks after the trial before reports emerged from Bahrain that he and his children had landed there on a private jet as the guests of the Sheikh Abdulla Bin Hamad Bin Isa Al-Khalifa, the king's son, and a friend of Jackson's brother, Jermaine.
As a child, his favorite animated character was Pinocchio. His favorite books included Rip Van Winkle and The Old Man and the Sea. Michael Jackson was very ticklish as well. and when he was a kid, he used to put spiders in sister La Toyah’s bed.
He was once accused by a library of owing $1 million in overdue book fines! On the same subject, His first autobiography, Moon Walk, took four years to complete, but the book reached the top of The New York Times bestsellers’ list.
Jackson's first relationship was with Paper Moon Oscar winner, Tatum O'Neal, but O'Neal was not his lover. She was only 12 and he was 17. They both didn;'t know what to do as a couple and how to handle the press and fame as a couple, so it ended.
Thriller is the best selling album of all time. It sold 42.4 million copies and spent 122 weeks on the Billboard 200. The Thriller video was narrated by Vincent Price.
In 2001, Michael addressed the Oxford Union about child welfare as part of his “Heal the Kids” initiative. At times, Michael almost came to tears, especially when talking about his own childhood and his relationship with his father. Those who have studied Michael’s psychology often cite the speech as providing great insight into Michael’s views on children. The central theme of the address: children all around the world should be unconditionally loved by everyone.
In 1997, Jackson released an album titled “Blood on the Dance Floor: HIStory in the Mix.” He dedicated the album to his friend Sir Elton John, who had helped him through his addiction to prescribed painkillers. It went on to sell 6 million copies worldwide, making it the best-selling remix album of all time.
He performed his first public performance at the tender age of 5 and sang 'Climb Every Mountain'. He has two stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame; one for himself and one as part of the Jackson Five.
Jackson and Freddie Mercury. Jackson had an incredible memory. In fact, many people even claimed he had a photographic memory. He could remember names, stories, and information relating to encounters with people many years before.
He played a scarecrow in a The Wiz, a movie version of the Wizard of Oz. In another on-screen show, he acknowledged sharing his bed with children but described the practice as sweet, and not sexual
The Los Angeles mansion he was renting just before he passed away once belonged to Sean Connery. The home was in North Carolwood Drive in the Holmby Hills neighborhood of Los Angeles.
Before his death, MJ was rehearsing for his greatest comeback with around 50 shows in London only. Choreographer Kenny Ortega, who worked closely with Jackson on his comeback show testified that the pop icon was too ill to perform in the days before his death in June 2009.
On June 25, 2009, Michael Jackson died at his home on North Carolwood Drive in the Holmby Hills because of acute propofol and benzodiazepine intoxication which led to a cardiac arrest.