Happy Hanukkah to all those who celebrate!
Michael Jackson (born 29.8.1958; died 25.06.2009)
Net Worth: The Michael Jackson Estate net worth was $600 million in 2013. (Celebrity Net Worth)
The seventh child of the Jackson family, Michael Jackson begun his career aged 11, as a member of the family pop group, Jackson 5. He later went on to become one of the most successful solo performers of all time. Both his career and turbulent personal life have been a dominant part of pop culture since the 1970s. Guiness World Records have cited him as the "Most Successful Entertainer of All Time" and his album Thriller holds the record for the best-selling album ever. In 1984, Michael Jackson won 8 Grammy Awards in a single night and he has charted 13 number one singles in the Billboard Hot 100.
Michael Jackson's changing appearance and controversial behaviour, however, have affected his album sales, which have declined since the 1990s.
Childhood: In 1964, Michael Jackson joined his brothers, playing congas for their group. He later became their background singer and occasional dancer before eventually climbing to the position of lead singer when he was eight years old.
The band toured Indiana and won a local talent show, which then led to them playing a string of professional gigs, many of which were in black clubs known as the 'chitlin' circuit.'
They signed a contract with Motown Records and their first four singles ('I Want You Back', 'ABC', 'The Love You Save' and 'I'll Be There') shot them to stardom. Jackson released four solo studio albums on Motown whilst still a member of the group.
Following a name-change to The Jacksons, due to legal wranglings with Motown, Michael was the lead songwriter from 1976 to 1984 and during this time, he made acquaintance with Quincy Jones, who agreed to produce Jackson's first solo album in four years
Solo albums: Off The Wall - Invincible
Off the Wall (1979): This album made music history by being the first ever to contain four top ten hits. Stevie Wonder and Paul McCartney both have writing credits on the album. The album eventually sold over 20 million copies worldwide.
Thriller (1982): Thriller is the best selling album of all time and sent Jackson's fame global. It also became the first album in history to contain seven top-ten hits on the Billboard Hot 100. The video for 'Billie Jean' was the first video by a black artist to receive regular MTV airplay, whilst the 13-minute video for 'Thriller' was revolutionary for its time and became the best-selling music home video ever, when it was packaged with the featurette Making Michael Jackson. Whilst performing 'Billie Jean' in 1983, he debuted his signature dance move, the 'Moonwalk.'
Bad (1987): Bad received over two million advance orders before it was released and was his final album to be produced by Quincy Jones, who forced him to cut the 30-strong collection of Michael Jackson songs down to 11. The album generated more Billboard number 1 hits than any other album ever released. His accompanying tour had record-breaking attendance figures, playing 123 concerts to over 4.4 million fans. The level of fame that he now enjoyed drew parallels to The Beatles and Elvis Presley.
Dangerous (1991): The anticipation of Dangerous was marked by the theft of 30,000 copies of the album being stolen at Los Angeles International Airport before it was officially released. The biggest hit from the album was 'Black or White', which was accompanied by a controversial video, which featured several scenes which were construed as having a sexual and violent nature. The 14 minute video was edited to remove the offending scenes. The video was premiered in 27 countries simultaneously and had the largest ever viewing figures for a music video (around 500 million)
HIStory (1995): HIStory received four Grammy nomination and won one Grammy. It sold over 18 million copies worldwide, which earned it the title of the biggest selling multiple disc album of all time by a solo artist. More than four and a half million people attended the accompanying promotional tour. The first disc was a greatest hits package, whilst the second contained fifteen new numbers. At the Brit Awards, Michael Jackson was awarded the title Artist of a Generation, but his performance at the ceremony was interrupted by Jarvis Cocker, singer of the band Pulp, who leapt onstage and made rude gestures. Cocker was arrested on suspicion of assault but released without charge.
Invincible (2001): Debuting at number one in 13 countries, Invincible went on to sell nearly eight million copies worldwide. Shortly before the album's release, Michael Jackson told Tommy Mottola, the head of Sony Music Entertainment, that he would not be renewing his contract with them. All subsequent single releases, video shoots and promotions for the album were then cancelled. This led to Jackson tagging Mottola as a 'devil' who did not support African American Artists, and used black artists for his own personal gain. His increasingly eccentric image and the lack of promotion for the album conspired to make this album less successful than his previous releases.
In September 2001, Usher, Whitney Houston, 'N Sync, the Jacksons and Slash performed at Jackson's 30th Anniversary celebration at Madison Square Gardens.
Since his death, two posthumous Michael Jackson albums have been released. In 2010, Epic Records and Sony Music Entertainment unveiled a collection of previously unreleased songs entitled 'Michael'. The album featured Akon, 50 Cent and Lenny Kravitz but received mixed critical reception.
In 2014, 'Xscape' was released. Featuring the singles 'Love Never Felt So Good' and 'Slave to the Rhythm', the album was received much more favourably.
Private Life: Jackson's father, Walter was a strict disciplinarian and many of the Jackson family have stated that they were spanked and whipped by their father for misbehaving.
In 1994, Michael Jackson married Lisa Marie Presley, the daughter of Elvis Presley. They divorced less than two years later, amid rumours that their marriage was a sham and had not been consummated.
Michael Jackson then went on to marry his dermatologist's nurse, Deborah Jeanne Rowe, with whom he had a son, Michael Joseph Jackson Jr. (also known as Prince) and a daughter, named Paris Katherine Jackson. The couple divorced in 1999. Jackson's third child, Prince Michael Jackson II (also known as Blanket) was born in 2002.
Michael Jackson attracted a media frenzy when he was pictured holding his baby outside a hotel window, with a cloth draped over the child's head. He was accused of being an irresponsible father, to which he responded "I love my children.I was holding my son tight."
Jackson's physical appearance has also garnered much press attention over the years. Throughout his youth, his skin was a medium-brown colour but in 1982, his skin started to become gradually paler. Some elements of the media claim that he was bleaching his skin, though he dismissed these claims on The Oprah Winfrey Show, stating that he had the disease vitiligo. The physical structure of his face also changed amid speculations that he has undergone several cosmetic procedures.
Child molestation charges were brought against Michael Jackson when he was reported to be allowing children to sleep over at his Neverland ranch. In 1993, Jordan Chandler, represented by a civil lawyer accused Jackson of child sexual abuse. The case was settled out of court for an undisclosed sum, rumoured to be US$20 million. The family then dropped the charges against Jackson.
Later in 2003, Jackson was charged with seven counts of child molestation and two counts of administering an intoxicating agent, all regarding one boy, named Gavin Arvizo, who was under 14 at the time of the incidents. Jackson was acquitted on all counts.
Finances: In 1985, Michael Jackson purchased ATV Music Publishing, which owns the publishing rights to The Beatles' songs, among others. In 1995, Sony Music Publishing merged with Jackson to create Sony-ATV. Jackson's 50% share is rumoured to be worth US$500 million. He also owns all of his own publishing, called MiJac which contains all of his own music catalogue and that of Sly & The Family Stone.
In 2006, state labor officials from California closed Michael Jackson's Neverland Ranch. He was fined US$ 69,000 for failing to provide employment insurance. He is also liable for up to 10 days pay for the 69 employees who are now no longer allowed to report to Neverland for work. Thirty Neverland employees have sued Michael Jackson for unpaid wages, totaling $US 306,000
Also in 2006, a federal judge allowed a $48 million claim against Jackson for unpaid fees and breach of contract, relating the refinancing of Jackson's debts and claiming a larger stake in the library of Beatles songs.
Death: On 25th June 2009, it was announced that Michael Jackson had died of a cardiac arrest. He had been at his rented home in Los Angeles when he stopped breathing. His personal physician was with him and attempted to resuscitate him but to no avail. He was pronounced dead at around 2:25 pm local time.
The incident happened less than a month before Michael Jackson was set to undertake a mammoth 50-date residency at the O2 arena in London.
A memorial was held for Michael Jackson on 7th July 2009 at the Staples Center in Los Angeles. Amongst the performers were Mariah Carey, John Mayer, Jennifer Hudson, Usher, Stevie Wonder and Lionel Ritchie.
The Trial of Conrad Murray: Michael Jackson's physician, Dr. Conrad Murray was charged with involuntary manslaughter in February 2010. The trial began at the end of September 2011 and one of the key pieces of evidence used against Dr. Murray was that he instructed Jackson's bodyguards to hide evidence of his medical drug intake before he instructed them to call the emergency services.
The guilty verdict arrived on 7th November 2011. Murray was later sentenced to four years' imprisonment, though it is unlikely that he shall serve the full term, due to over-crowding in the prisons.
LaToyah Jackson, Michael's sister, revealed her delight at the verdict, via her Twitter page.
A lot of hours of hard work went into her costume this year.
When it comes to Halloween costumes, nobody beats Heidi Klum. Each year with the help of artists and prosthetics, she thoroughly transforms into various unique guises and this year she's chosen a werewolf Michael Jackson from his hit video 'Thriller'. It's safe to say she completely nailed it.
Heidi Klum snapped at LAX
Apart from Dave Grohl's incarnation of David Letterman, Heidi Klum's MJ is probably the most thorough costume we've seen yet this year. Complete with a furry mask and prosthetics on her torso and hands, as well as an exact replica of Michael Jackson's outfit with his football jacket, she looked indistinguishable from the singer in the 1983 short film.
Continue reading: Heidi Klum Replicates Michael Jackson's 'Thriller' Look For Halloween
Is she as good as her late father?
It was always going to be a matter of time before Paris Jackson followed in her later father's footsteps and made her singing debut, and indeed she did so earlier this week when she joined her cousin Austin Brown on stage during his New York show.
Paris Jackson at a People Magazine event
The 19-year-old daughter of Michael Jackson showed her support for her 31-year-old cousin Austin Brown by turning up to his show at Soho House in New York City and singing along to an acoustic performance of his latest record 'Smile'. He shared a clip of the pair of them singing together on Instagram.
Continue reading: Paris Jackson Sings In Public For The Very First Time
The new album will be celebrated with special event in six world cities.
A brand new posthumous album release from Michael Jackson is set to hit shelves this September. Entitled 'Scream', it features thirteen songs in all including a bonus mash-up track by The White Panda and comes just weeks after 'Thriller' was premiered in 3D at Venice Film Festival.
Michael Jackson performing live
The Estate of the late Michael Jackson have worked alongside two record labels to release this collection of classic tunes, including an extra special medley called 'Blood on the Dance Floor X Dangerous' by electronic remix duo The White Panda.
Continue reading: Michael Jackson's Posthumous 'Scream' Album Release Date Revealed
The producer was awarded over $9 million after suing the singer's estate.
After a nearly four-year long legal dispute, this week Michael Jackson's long-term producer Quincy Jones is finally awarded nearly $10 million after he sued the estate for in unpaid royalties from music used in the star's documentary and two shows from Cirque du Soleil.
Quincy Jones at Netflix's 'Sandy Wexler' premiere
On Wednesday (July 26th 2017), the 84-year-old producer was handed a massive $9.4 million in damages for lack of royalties from music used in the 2009 'This Is It' documentary and two Cirque du Soleil shows. It's less than a third of the $30 million he originally sued for.
Continue reading: Quincy Jones Victorious In Michael Jackson Royalties Lawsuit
Paul McCartney has worked with some of the world's most talented acts.
Paul McCartney may be one of the greatest musicians on the planet as a solo artist, but whenever he gets together with another trailblazer, magic happens. From Michael Jackson to Kanye West, he has worked with so many greats - and it's likely there will be many more.
Paul McCartney performing at Desert Trip 2016
Here are our ten favourite Paul McCartney duets:
The 18-year-old writes music for herself, but doesn't see a recording career in her future.
Paris Jackson says she has no plans for a recording career, despite her musical heritage.
The 18-year-old daughter of Michael Jackson opened up to director Lee Daniels in a new interview with Carine Roitfeld’s Fashion Book, where she spoke about writing music and why she doesn't want to follow in her father’s footsteps.
Continue reading: Why Paris Jackson Won't Follow Her Family Into Music
Following the outcry over the first publicity pictures of Joseph Fiennes as Michael Jackson, Sky has decided to cancel the broadcast of the 'Urban Myths' episode in question.
Sky have announced that they’re cancelling the broadcast of an episode of the forthcoming ‘Urban Myths’ series following the outcry over the casting of Joseph Fiennes, a white actor, as Michael Jackson.
Paris Jackson, the late star’s 18 year old daughter, waded in on Twitter on Wednesday (January 11th) to express her outrage over the first casting pictures and trailers that were released at the start of this week, which showed Fiennes wearing facial prosthetics to make him resemble the King of Pop.
“I'm so incredibly offended by it, as I’m sure plenty of people are as well, and it honestly makes me want to vomit,” Paris tweeted.
Paris Jackson responded to the first images of Joseph Fiennes playing her father in the new series 'Urban Myths'.
Michael Jackson’s daughter Paris has added her voice to the backlash surrounding the ‘whitewashing’ in the casting of Joseph Fiennes, a white actor, as her father in the upcoming series ‘Urban Myths’.
The 18 year old wrote on Twitter in response to a question asked by a Michael Jackson fan podcast, saying that the first press release images showing what Fiennes looked like playing the King of Pop, which were released on Wednesday (January 11th), made her “want to vomit”.
Not the closest resemblance we've ever seen.
The first trailer for the upcoming Sky Arts comedy series 'Urban Myths' has arrived and it's our first look at Joseph Fiennes as the late Michael Jackson. He's virtually unrecognisable under heavy prosthetics, though it has to be said he doesn't resemble his character as much as the other actors resemble theirs.
Michael Jackson will be played by Joseph Fiennes
Joseph Fiennes and the show creators have been at the centre of a media storm for a year over the apparent 'whitewashing' of the role of Michael Jackson, who may have been born black but gradually got a more caucasian skin tone in the 80s when he was diagnosed with vitiligo.
Continue reading: First Look At Joseph Fiennes As Michael Jackson In 'Urban Myths' Series
Photoshop or proof that the King of Pop lives on?
Michael Jackson fans believe they’ve found proof that the iconic singer is still alive after ‘spotting’ him in the background of one of his daughter Paris’ selfies. One fan even went so far as to make a video to share the ‘proof’ that Jackson isn't actually dead after all.
Michael Jackson - Accomplishing this feat requires many photos of the famous person/character, plenty of time, and a great deal of skill... something that Cruz quite clearly has! - New York City, New York, United States - Thursday 17th July 2014
The songs have been updated by a range of top producers including Timbaland and Rodney Jerkins and the album is slated for release on 13 May (14). The title track, Xscape, was recorded for Jackson's last studio album, 2001's Invincible. - United States - Tuesday 1st April 2014
Date of birth
29th August, 1958
Happy Hanukkah to all those who celebrate!
The short film had a special sneak premiere before fans and celebrities at the TCL Chinese Theatre as part of the L… https://t.co/YQGkj9tCAY
The “Blood on the Dance Floor 2017” short film brings two worlds together: Michael’s original short film, and the M… https://t.co/JFKCh9qvrC
Director Jamie King, who is a dancer in the original “Blood on the Dance Floor” short film, was brought in to creat… https://t.co/9jCNRayZDH
For this year’s birthday celebration, the Michael Jackson ONE cast choreographed a performance that blended togethe… https://t.co/uxkULBDSJR
If you enjoyed today’s #BOTDF2017 Part 1 tune in tomorrow for Part 2 of 6!
Every year on the King of Pop’s birthday, the cast of Michael Jackson ONE creates a one of a kind performance as pa… https://t.co/22DE27VEu9
Grammy® nominations were released for the 2018 awards last week. Can you name the nominations that “Liberian Girl”… https://t.co/wcYh7hZCwr
Raise your hand if you ever imagined that Michael was singing “P.Y.T.” about you. https://t.co/TFny5x42lu
SPECIAL POST: Enjoy this exclusive “behind the scenes” moment from “Blood on the Dance Floor” from the Estate’s arc… https://t.co/8NQJVfotLn
Today is World AIDS Day. In 1993, Michael released the final single from Dangerous, “Gone Too Soon” to recognize th… https://t.co/KybAwdCO5B
‘Thriller’ celebrates its 35th anniversary https://t.co/UM07HkDVtn
#ThrowbackThursday: Michael Jackson was snapped with Aerosmith’s Steven Tyler and Studio 54’s Steve Rubell at Studi… https://t.co/2cqZyJLV13
Did you know that the B-side on the 7” vinyl single to “Say Say Say,” Michael Jackson’s duet with Paul McCartney, w… https://t.co/oylT7X588K
Deep cuts Tuesday: When is the last time you listened to, and considered the lyrics of “We Are Here To Change The W… https://t.co/lpgrvYFIPt
Michael Jackson was joined on stage by his friend Slash at the 10th Anniversary of MTV in 1991. Michael’s short fil… https://t.co/pt50aZI5Wh
“My mission for the world is healing. Pure and simple.” – Michael Jackson https://t.co/h7PHyXLAyp
Today is Thanksgiving in the United States. What are you grateful for, and what are you doing this weekend to help… https://t.co/6FXAzL0F8q
Does this lean by the Tin Man in The Wizard of Oz remind you of anything? https://t.co/ZUSD4TxpOH
“His clothing was both reflection of and companion to his lyrics, music, short films [music videos], special effect… https://t.co/YmzK5Wokcp