1. Early life and family
Michael Joseph Jackson was born on August 29, 1958, in Gary, Indiana. His father, Joseph Jackson, had been a former boxer, steelworker, and a guitarist but to provide for his family, he worked as a crane operator. His mother, Katherine Esther Scruse, was a devout Jehovah’s Witness, but also worked part-time at a departmental store. He had a big family with 3 sisters and 5 brothers.2. Fragile relation with his father
MJ’s father was violent with him and his brothers. He faced physical and emotional abuse during unceasing rehearsals, but, he also credited his father’s strict discipline for his success.
3. Inception of Jackson Brothers music
In 1965, his father made a band called “Jackson Brothers” with him and Marlon and included his brothers Jackie, Tito, and Jermaine as backup musicians.
4. Taste of success
In 1966, their group name was changed to the “Jackson 5”. Fortune turned for them, as the same year, they won a major local talent show with Jackson performing James Brown’s “I Got You”. From 1966 to 1968 they toured the Midwest, and performed as the opening act for Sam & Dave, the O’Jays, Gladys Knight, and Etta James. The Jackson 5 also performed at clubs and cocktail lounges. They also won a weekly amateur night concert at the Apollo Theater in Harlem.
5. Jackson 5 began their song recording
In the later 60’s and early 70’s , the Jackson 5 recorded many songs, such as Big Boy, The Love You Save, I’ll Be There, Got to Be There, I Want You Back, and many more hits.
6. From Jackson 5 to Jacksons
The whole 70’s proved to be a handful decade for the Jacksons.The band kept on touring worldwide, and released 6 more albums between 1976 and 1984. Song like Shake Your Body, This Place Hotel, Can You Feel It, and singles like Don’t Stop ‘Til You Get Enough, and Rock with You were among their biggest hits at that time.
7. Thriller was the turning point
In 1983, his album Thriller proved to be a worldwide hit by selling around 65 million copies.
8. Motown’s epic success
In 1983, with around 47 million viewer, Motown was a huge success where Jackson performed “Billie Jean” and showed his famous dance move called “The Moonwalk.”
9. Pepsi and Plastic surgery
After signing a $5 million deal with Pepsi-Cola, he got badly injured while filming a commercial for them. It caused burns to his face and scalp. When his injuries were getting addressed, he began experimenting with plastic surgery.
10. MJ is the most awarded artist
He has 23 Guinness World Records, 40 Billboard Awards, 13 Grammys, and 26 American Music Awards.
11. Produced the best selling album of all time
His album “Thriller” is the best selling album of all time with around 65 million copies.
12. Most expensive video ever
Michael Jackson and Janet Jackson were part of the most expensive video ever “Scream” with a whopping expense of $7,000,000.
13. The big come back!
Before his death, MJ was rehearsing for his greatest comeback with around 50 shows in London only.
MJ’s 1st marriage with Elvis Presley’s daughter Lisa Marie Presley in 1994 lasted for only 19 months. Later, he had his 2nd marriage in 1996, with Deborah Jeanne Rowe and had 2 kids, Michael Joseph Jackson Junior and a daughter, Paris Michael Katherine Jackson. This marriage also ended in 1999.
15. Big fan of comedy
MJ was a big fan of “The Three Stooges”, an American vaudeville and comedy act.
16. Heath issues
In 1993, MJ was diagnosed with Vitiligo, which is a rare skin disease in which the pigment is lost from areas of the skin, causing whitish patches.
17. Bad debt
Apparently, Michael Jackson left behind $1 billion in assets, $500 million in unpaid debts.
18. His Lean move was patented
MJ’s popular “lean” in Smooth Criminal was due to a special patented “anti-gravity illusion” shoe.
19. Twin Towers lucky escape
On the morning of 9/11, he had a meeting in one of the Twin Towers, but luckily missed it because he overslept.
20. Animal lover
Pets played an important part in his life. He had mice, snakes, birds, llamas, tigers, dogs and cats, but his favorite pet was Bubbles – the chimpanzee.
21. MJ wanted to be a Spiderman
In the late ’90s, he wanted to purchase Marvel Comics, which had filed for bankruptcy. He wanted to produce and act a Spiderman . But, it failed, and the role of Spiderman went to Tobey Maguire.
22. His sudden death
On June 25, 2009, Michael Jackson died because of acute propofol and benzodiazepine intoxication after a cardiac arrest at his home on North Carolwood Drive in the Holmby Hills.