Michael Joseph Jackson August 29, 1958 — June 25, 2009 was an American singer, songwriter, artist, and dancer who became one of the most famous and successful entertainers in the world. He was often referred to as the King of Pop for his contributions to the popularization of the genre.
Michael was born in Gary, Indiana, and was the eighth of ten children in the Jackson family. He showed an early interest in music and drawing. Michael began performing with his older brothers in a group called The Jackson 5. The Jackson 5, consisting of Michael and his brothers, achieved great success in the late 1960s and early 1970s. Their hits included I Want You Back, ABC, and I’ll Be There.
Michael parents are Katherine Esther Jackson née Scruse and Joseph Walter Jackson. Katherine is the matriarch of the Jackson family. She married Joseph Jackson in 1949 and played a significant role in raising their ten children. Katherine has been involved in various philanthropic activities and has been a central figure in the Jackson family’s public life.
Joseph, who passed away on June 27, 2018, was a steelworker and aspiring musician. He played a key role in the early management and development of his children’s musical careers. Joseph managed The Jackson 5 and guided Michael solo career during its early stages. While he was instrumental in the success of his children, Joseph management style and relationships within the family were sometimes characterized as strict and demanding.
Michael often spoke about the influence of his parents on his life and career. Despite the challenges and controversies the Jackson family faced, they played a crucial role in shaping Michael’s early years and providing the foundation for his remarkable career in the music industry.
Michael had nine siblings, and together they formed the musical group known as The Jackson 5.
1.Maureen Reillette Rebbie Born: May 29, 1950
2. Sigmund Esco Jackie Born: May 4, 1951
3. Toriano Adaryll Tito Born: October 15, 1953
4. Jermaine La Jaune Born: December 11, 1954, Jermaine was an original member of The Jackson 5 but stayed with Motown when the group moved to Epic Records and continued his solo career.
5. La Toya Yvonne Born: May 29, 1956
6. Marlon David Born: March 12, 1957
7. Brandon Marlon’s twin who died shortly after birth Born: March 12, 1957
8. Steven Randall Randy Born: October 29, 1961, Randy replaced Jermaine in The Jackson 5 when Jermaine stayed with Motown. Like his siblings, he also pursued a solo career.
9. Janet Damita Jo Born: May 16, 1966, Janet is the youngest of the Jackson siblings and, like her brothers, became a highly successful and influential artist in her own right.
Michael had three children. Michael Joseph Jackson Jr., and he was born on February 13, 1997. He is commonly known as Prince. Paris Michael Katherine Jackson. She was born on April 3, 1998. Paris is Michael only daughter. Prince Michael Jackson II Blanket. Born on February 21, 2002, his full name is Prince Michael Joseph Jackson II. He is commonly known as Blanket. The mother of Michael first two children, Prince and Paris, is Debbie Rowe, while the identity of Blanket’s mother is not publicly disclosed.
Michael went on to have an incredibly successful solo career. His fifth studio album, Off the Wall 1979, marked the beginning of his adult solo career and was a critical and commercial success. In 1982, Michael released the album Thriller, which became the best selling album of all time. It included iconic tracks such as Billie Jean, Beat It, and the title track, Thriller.
Michael was known for his groundbreaking music videos, particularly for Thriller, which featured elaborate dance routines and special effects. The video is considered a milestone in the history of music videos. Michael popularized the Moonwalk, a dance move that became one of his signature moves and is still associated with him.
In addition to his musical achievements, Michael was involved in various humanitarian efforts. He supported numerous charities and causes, including children’s hospitals, HIV/AIDS research, and disaster relief.
Michael was not only a talented musician, dancer, and performer, but he was also known to be an amazing artist. He expressed himself through various forms of art, including drawing. Michael drawings often reflected his creativity and unique perspective. He loved the number 7 as he was the 7th child. Michael spent over 25 years drawing magnificent art pieces, which inspired him with his career. Many of his artworks are on presidential archive paper which was given to him by President Ronald Reagan. Michael studied under great art masters such as Sir Strong and Andy Warhol. He kept his artistic journey very private which started when he was only a child. His brushworks and genre’s are magnificent. Each artwork he created has its own story. he loved Walt Disney and the Mickey Mouse character. One of his masterpiece artworks is Mickey holding President Abraham Lincoln hand on a large presidential archive paper with the seal of the white house.
Michael incorporated his drawings into some of his projects. For instance, the cover artwork for his 1995 double album HIStory Past, Present and Future, Book I featured a painting of himself surrounded by historical figures. This painting was created by David Nordahl, an artist who collaborated with Michael on several projects. Michael drawings are part of the multi-faceted artistic expression that characterized his life.
Michael received numerous awards and accolades throughout his illustrious career. His awards spanned multiple categories, including music, humanitarian efforts, and contributions to the entertainment industry.
Michael won 13 Grammy Awards during his career, including the Grammy Legend Award and the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award. Michael won 26 American Music Awards, making him the artist with the most AMA wins in history. Michael received several MTV VMAs, including the Video Vanguard Award for his significant contributions to the art of music video.
Michael won numerous World Music Awards, including the World’s Best-Selling Pop Male Artist of the Millennium. Michael holds several Guinness World Records, including the best-selling album of all time with Thriller.
Michael was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame twice once as a member of The Jackson 5 and once as a solo artist. Michael received multiple NAACP Awards for his contributions to the entertainment industry. In 1988, Michael received an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degree from the United Negro College Fund. Michael was honored with the Presidential Humanitarian Award in 1990 for his philanthropic efforts.
Michael was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2002. Michael sold over 75 million albums just in the US alone and 900+ millions albums sold worldwide. Michael boasts a staggering fan following of over 4.8 billion worldwide.
Michael impact on the music industry and popular culture is reflected in the numerous accolades he achieved, making him one of the most celebrated and influential artists in history.
Michael passed away on June 25, 2009, at the age of 50, due to acute propofol and benzodiazepine intoxication. His death was ruled a homicide, and his personal physician, Dr. Conrad Murray, was convicted of involuntary manslaughter.
Michael impact on the music & Art is immense, and he is remembered as one of the greatest entertainers in history. His contributions to music, dance, art, and fashion continue to influence artists across genres.
I highly recommend you read my blog on Andy Warhol as well.
Written by Nouriel Gino Yazdinian