Michael Jackson, “King of Pop”

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A Star was born- 1958

The eighth child of the Jackson family, Michael Jackson is no question the most iconic entertainer of all time. Although his lifetime was limited to a short 51 years, MJ left his mark in this world as prominent figure in fashion, dance, music and philanthropy. Today, he is recognized by the Guinness World Records as the most successful entertainer of all time. Say what you want about his life or character flaws, but you cannot deny the man’s skills.

MJ was born on August 29th, 1958 in a suburb 25 miles outside of downtown Chicago. MJ had a rough childhood filled with physical and verbal abuse from his father. Despite the many negative impacts this had on Jackson’s life, it helped cultivate one of the greatest talents this great world has ever seen.

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The Jackson Five- 1968

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“The Jackson Five,” a band formed by brothers Jackie, Tito, Jermaine, Marlon and Michael signed with Motown Records in 1968. The first four singles dominated the charts, each reaching number one on the Billboard Hot 100. The Jackson Five not only raced onto the scene as musical talents, but also led the new wave as black crossover artists rocking their Afros and stylin’ bell bottoms. Although The Jackson Five is estimated to have sold over 100 million records worldwide with Motown Records, The Jackson Five were never allowed creative control of their music. As a result, the partnership ended in 1975, and TJ5 signed with Epic Records.

The Wiz – 1978

The late 1970’s were transformational years for the Jacksons. It was in these years that the prolific Michael Jackson was first unleashed to the public. But, he would first have to act as a Scarecrow in the musical The Wiz. Although it failed horribly in the box office, it led MJ to meet up with world class record producer and Grammy Legends Winner, Quincy Jones.

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Michael Jackson, “Off The Wall” – 1979

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Michael Jackson’s first solo album “Off The Wall” was produced by Quincy Jones and released by Epic records in August, 1979. It sold almost 20 million copies worldwide. Not bad for a 21st birthday present, eh? A year later, MJ solidified his status as a legendary music icon by securing a Grammy for Best R&B Male vocal performance.

Thriller – 1982

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Released in November, 2013, Thriller sold over 100 million copies worldwide. 7 of the 10 singles from the album reached the Billboard Hot 100 and thanks to Michael Jackson, we can all get down to songs like “Beat it,” “Billie Jean,” and of course “Thriller” itself.

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The Moonwalk- 1983

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Jackson debuts his signature dance move while performing “Billie Jean.”

Michael Jackson moonwalk on whosthebomb.com

Although previously performed by David Bowie, James Brown and many other musical talents prior to Jackson, Michael Jackson not only perfected this as his own, but also threw in a tasteful crotch grab for your viewing pleasure. This combination of dance-move awesomeness has since become the most epic dance move of all time.

We are the World- 1985

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Michael Jackson and Ronald Reagan on whosthebomb.com MJ_LetterFromWhiteHouse

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Pictured above, MJ gets some love from President Reagan for supporting a campaign against Drunk driving. Reagan was once quoted saying “Your Success is an American dream come true.”

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In 1985, Michael Jackson, Lionel Richie collaborated to write the song “We are the World” and ended up performing it with the great Ray Charles, Billy Joel, Bruce Springsteen, Diana Ross and Cyndi Lauper. The resulting product was dedicated to aid the hunger relief efforts in Africa and ended up raising over $60 million in charity donations.

 

Bad- 1987

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Five years after “Thriller,” Jackson released his seventh studio album titled “Bad.” Once again, MJ bulldozed his way to success by becoming the first artist in history to ever have five number-one singles from one album. The album sold over 30 million copies worldwide and landed Michael Jackson two more Grammy’s.

Black or White- 1991

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Described as a rock n roll dance song supporting racial harmony, “Black and White” was released in November, 1991. The one and only Slash from Guns n’ Roses opened the song up with a heavy riff elevating the songs potential for head banging the night away. The electric single from the album “Dangerous” fused dance, rap, rock n roll and sat at the top of the charts for seven weeks and was represented at the number one spot in 20 countries across the world! The music video was contagious as it premiered in 27 countries and today still stands as the most watched music video of all time (500 million viewers).

Rock and Roll Hall of Fame- 2001

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RIP Michael Jackson:

 

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