August 29, 1958 – June 25, 2009

Michael Joseph Jackson was an American singer, songwriter, dancer, actor and artist, called the King of Pop. His contributions to music, dance, and fashion, along with his publicized personal life, made him a beloved, iconic, global figure in popular culture for over four decades.

Born on August 29th 1958, he was the eighth child of Katherine and Joseph Jackson , he started performing (dancing and singing) at a very young age. Michael debuted on the professional music scene in 1968 at the age of 10 along with his elder brothers Jackie, Tito, Jermaine, and Marlon as the  lead singer of the The Jackson 5. He showed remarkable range and depth for such a young performer, impressing audiences with his ability to convey complex emotions in his songs.

At the age of 13, Jackson launched a solo career in addition to his work with the Jackson 5. He made the charts in 1971 with "Got to Be There" from the album of the same name. His 1972 album, Ben, featured  a ballad about a rat. The song became Jackson's first solo No. 1 single.

Michael Jackson and the Jackson 5 maintained a busy tour and recording schedule, under the supervision of Berry Gordy and his Motown staff.. After leaving Motown for CBS, and starring in the Wiz, a black musical rendition of the Wizard of Oz, Jackson teamed up with producer, Quincy Jones and released what was considered his first adult solo album "Off The Wall" in  1979.

In the early 1980s, Jackson became a dominant figure in popular music. with the release of his 1982 Thriller album, and The music videos for his songs, including those of "Beat It", "Billie Jean", and "Thriller", were credited with breaking down racial barriers and with transforming the medium into an art form and promotional tool. Michael referred to his videos as 'Short films"  The popularity of these videos helped to bring the then-relatively-new television channel MTV to main stream fame. With videos such as "Black or White" and "Scream", he continued to innovate the medium throughout the 80's and 90's as well as forging a reputation as a touring solo artist. Through stage and video performances, Jackson popularized a number of complicated dance techniques, such as the robot, popping and the moonwalk, to which he gave the name. His distinctive sound and style has influenced and inspired numerous hip hop, post-disco, contemporary R&B, pop and rock artists.

Jackson's 1982 album Thriller is still to this day the best-selling album of all time. His other albums, including Off the Wall (1979), Bad (1987), Dangerous (1991), and History (1995), also rank among the world's best-selling. Jackson is one of the few artists to have been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame twice. He was also inducted into the Songwriter's Hall of Fame and the Dance Hall of Fame as the first and only dancer from pop and rock music. His other achievements include multiple Guinness World Records; 13 Grammy Awards as well as the Grammy Legend Award and the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award; 26 American Music Awards, including the "Artist of the Century" and "Artist of the 1980s"; 13 number-one singles in the United States in his solo career,more than any other male artist in the Hot 100 era; and the estimated sale of over 700 million records worldwide. Jackson has won hundreds of awards, making him the most-awarded recording artist in the history of popular music. what would have been Jackson's 52nd birthday on August 29, 2010, he became the most downloaded artist of all time in Nokia Music Store. Jackson became the first artist in history to have a top ten single in the Billboard Hot 100 in five different decades when "Love Never Felt So Good" reached number nine on May 21, 2014.

His other achievements include multiple Guinness World Records, Including "the Best Selling Artist of All Time" Jackson traveled the world over on tour, attending events, vising hospitals and orphanage's and honoring his humanitarianism endeavors through his Heal The World Foundation.  In 2000, the Guinness World Records recognized him for supporting 39 charities, more than any other entertainer, with donations totaling over $300.million.

Aspects of his personal life, generated significant  media scrutiny and controversy. Including what some called  eccentric behavior, his changing appearance (partially due to his skin disorder, Vitiligo) His surprise marriage to Lisa Marie Presley and Debbie Rowe.  In 1993 Jackson  was accused of child sexual abuse. The criminal investigation was closed due to lack of evidence. The family pursued a civil $$ suit instead. Jackson settled the case out of court with the boy's family, but maintained his innocence. He experienced health concerns through the  early 1990s  and conflicting reports regarding the state of his finances starting in late 1990s. He  married twice and fathered three children. In 2005, Jackson was tried and found not guilty of child sexual abuse allegations and other related charges. He was acquitted on all counts. But the allegations, trial costs and controversy were a huge blow to his popularity and finances. Jackson  left the country in late 2005 with his children to get away from the media scrutiny and returned to the USA in December of 2006 to begin reviving his musical career. He continued working on recording his music but  turned down several offers to perform during that time and finally signed with AEG in 2008 for a concert series in London.

While preparing for his comeback concert series titled 'This Is It.'. Michael Jackson died at the age of 50 on June 25, 2009, after suffering a cardiac arrest, caused by acute propofol and benzodiazepine intoxication. The Los Angeles County Coroner ruled his death a homicide, and his personal physician Conrad Murray was tried and convicted of involuntary manslaughter and sentenced the maximum of 4 yrs. He served 2 yrs due to prison overcrowding.  All his case appeals to overturn the verdict have been denied.

Jackson's sudden death triggered a outpouring of public grief all over the world and the  broadcast of his public memorial service held at Staples center in LA was viewed globally.

Michael Jackson's Mother, Katherine and his 3 children, Paris Prince and Blanket are supported by his Estate per his wishes and his legacy is thriving, due to very successful entertainment projects and album releases since his death. Since 2009 Jackson has been named Forbes highest deceased earner bar one year 2011 when Elizabeth Taylor held the record. His earnings for 2014 alone topped 300 Million.

Michael Jackson still reigns as the King of Pop and his fan base is growing by leaps and bounds. Years after his death, he is still adored by his fans around the world and is a force to be reckoned in the music and entertainment  industry. His death brought down the curtain on his extraordinary life, but did not end his reign as the King of Pop. He lives on through his amazing body of work, which will ensure that his regal status lives on.  Now immortalized on this earth like all the greats, for his huge contributions to the arts and his philanthropic efforts... Legends Never Die

Source: Wiki, MTV and various MJ fansites. 

Michael Jackson Catalog

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