There really isn’t anyone bigger in the music world than Michael Jackson.
People become fascinated with celebrity: bigger than life stars that lead seemingly much better lives than our own. It’s always fun to dream of being rich and famous: owning a private jet, buying fancy clothes, traveling the world. And yet, celebrities lack one thing the rest of us have in abundance: privacy.
Michael Jackson lived his life running from the cameras. He had millions of rabid fans and most would do anything to meet him. Jackson responded to his fame in weird ways to be sure. There was the plastic surgery, the skin issues, the Elephant Man...and the child molestation allegations. Those molestation allegations set to derail Jackson and his career – but really nothing will be able to cancel his legacy when it comes to his place in music history.
At his core, Michael Jackson was all about the music - and the money that came from it. Everything else was all secondary – and tabloid reporters were nearly rabid in their efforts to gain a juicy scoop on Jackson. In all those tabloids reports of Jackson’s eccentricity – his musical talents and all those Grammy Awards were forgotten.
We shouldn’t forget Jackson’s immense talent. In fact, he’s a once in a lifetime talent. A brilliant manipulator or both pop and rock. He was able to mold pop harmonies with rock guitar to create a bridge between the two genres. Metal fans might not point to Jackson as a favorite artist – but most of the musicians I’ve interviewed specifically list him by name as an influence.
As the news of Jackson’s death broke and details started to unfolded, I watched the news like everyone else – and then I went to work, reaching out to musicians and publicists to get their opinion on the matter. Jackson leaves behind an immense catalog of work. He was a pop culture icon, and deservedly so. The self-proclaimed King of Pop was about to embark on a 50 city European tour that sold out in seconds. Not many acts sell out shows these days – let alone in under a minute.
Of course, the days ahead will be most interesting. After the shock is over and news dissipates – the focus will shift to Jackson’s kids and his estate. Clearly, a long legal battle will ensue and the kids will most likely be bandied about in every different direction. That’s the real tragedy here.
Let’s not forget Jackson recorded with some of the musicians we love – especially Steve Stevens and Slash. A couple hours after Jackson’s death, Slash Tweeted “Really sad news about Michael, he was a talent from on high.” See, true music lovers appreciate talent across genres. Thank Glam we have so much music to enjoy.