Michael Jackson (1958-2009)
(Investigator 157, 2014
Jackson, the "king
of pop", died on June 26, 2009, aged 50, only days before his planned
singer, known in later
life as "wacko Jacko", was one of the most commercially successful and
talented entertainers of modern times. His album sales by 2005 totaled
130 million including Thriller (1982) 30 million, Bad
(1987) 23 million, and Dangerous (1991) 23 million. Such sales
put him in the same bracket as Elvis Presley and the Beatles.
At age 6
Jackson joined his
brothers Jermaine, Tito, Jackie and Marlon as the Jackson Five and had
his first hits with them in the 1960s. In 1969 the Jackson family moved
from Gary, Indiana, to California where the Jackson Five signed to the
Motown record label and had a string of hit singles.
In a TV
interview in later
life Jackson spoke of the strict training program which his father
enforced "with a belt … and with whatever lay around." Jackson said,
"We were terrified…we hated him." The terror made Jackson "vomit".
"The Jacksons" in
1975 the group recorded and performed into the 1980s. But Jackson's
greatest success was from 1979 to 1987 as a solo artist when the albums
Off the Wall (1979), Thriller (1982) and Bad (1987) marked him as not
just a great singer but also dancer, innovator and producer. Jackson
practiced for hours every day — every gesture, every step, every
co-wrote We Are
The World for the African famine relief campaign in the 1980s.
donated some of his
profits from albums and concerts to the Heal the World Foundation, a
charity he founded for underprivileged children. During his life
Jackson donated about $US300 million to 39 charities.
probably also donated to
Jehovah's Witnesses (JWs) until he left them in 1987.
eighth album Dangerous
(1991) saw his popularity begin to slide.
"wacko" label became
pervasive as Jackson:
skin color (attributed to lupus and vitiligo);
facial operations that changed his features;
in an oxygen chamber to extend his longevity;
to contact John Lennon's ghost;
monkey live in his house;
to get a British knighthood;
to buy the bones of the Elephant Man;
fantasy land where crowds of kids visited;
huge statue of himself;
addicted to pain killers;
on "charlatan doctors" and became drug dependent;
teenage boys to sleep in his bedroom and went to trial for child
molestation in 2005;
Reportedly converted to Islam;
Dissipated his huge fortune by impulse spending;
pushed around in a wheelchair in 2007, and disguised himself as a
reputation of being unreliable — "He tells barefaced lies … like
dealing with a sociopath." (The Weekend Australian Review 2009, June
20-21, p. 18)
TV production Michael
Jackson What Really Happened, Jackson's "right hand man", Tom
Jones, who accompanied him on tours for 17 years, claimed much of the
wackiness was a smokescreen. Jackson, he said, created a circus-like
character for the media attention it gained.
also paid off the
parents of some of the boys who slept in his bed. La Toya, a sister of
Jackson, publicly declared, "I have seen cheques to the parents of
these children." The 1993 incident cost $22 million to settle out of
the 2005 trial
Jackson went to Bahrain as guest of Sheik Abdullah bin Hamad the second
son of the king. Dozens of court cases were still pending and in 2007
the Sheik joined the queue. He had funded Jackson’s lifestyle but
Jackson then allegedly reneged on business deals.
his death Jackson
was living in a rented $100,000 a month mansion and rehearsing six
hours daily on a vegetarian diet and vitamins pills.
Jackson died in
June 2009 but the drama continued:
Jackson announced he would do a final concert, some observers claimed
his hands seemed bigger and his voice lower and this fueled rumors that
look-alikes did some of his concert routines.
Rowe (former nurse working for Jackson’s dermatologist) with whom
Jackson was married (1996-1999) and had two children (in 1997 and 1998)
claimed he was not the father — the marriage was unconsummated and a
sperm donor was used.
dangerous sedative Diprivan, used by anesthetists, was reportedly found
in Jackson’s home. (Sunday Mail 2009, July 12, p33)
Jackson’s bedroom was found outfitted with an intravenous drip
and oxygen tanks.
death Jackson had debts of $400 million and faced 30 lawsuits. The
autopsy revealed osteoarthritis of the vertebrae and damaged lungs and
that he had taken drugs to kill pain, to sleep, and to energize
himself. He had worn wigs since 1984 when burns left him partly bald.
Jackson’s doctor was convicted of involuntary manslaughter for
tackling Jackson's sleep problems by administering a drug that
suppresses breathing and lowers blood pressure. (The Australian 2009
July 29, p. 9)
regards Jackson's three
children, reports on the Internet implied Jackson's mother, Katherine,
was making respectable JWs of them:
Prince, 14 and Blanket, nine, were seen looking incredibly smart as
they accompanied their grandmother Katherine Jackson, their legal
guardian, to a Jehovah's Witness chapel at the weekend…
In 2013 the
Jackson got his
collar straightened by a family friend before he entered the church at
Woodland Hills, Los Angeles yesterday.
- real name
Prince Michael Jackson II - even had his long hair tied back in a
… was in a modest
black long-sleeve shift dress with white embroidery around the hem,
collar and cuffs…
Prince have decided to stop going door to door. Every Sunday, Paris,
15, and her brother Prince Michael, 16, would venture door-to-door in
Calabasas, Calif., collecting donations for Jehovah's Witness. However
… Paris … absolutely hated it!
For more information about
Michael Jackson's remarkable life including his involvement with JWs
see Investigator #103.