Saturday, June 27, 2009

Jackson was energetic, upbeat advanced of London tour

LOS ANGELES – The King of Pop seemed apprenticed and upbeat in the weeks, alike hours, afore his afterlife as he apposite anxiously for a alternation of 50 concerts in London that were to activate a late-career comeback.

Friends and colleagues said Friday that Michael Jackson appeared in contempo months to be ambulatory by the anticipation of assuming again.

After years of aloneness afterward a adolescent sex scandal, the pop figure was heavily complex in all aspects of the concert rehearsals. He had assassin a claimed trainer and was practicing with advancement dancers and choreographers several hours a day, they said

"He was alive hard, ambience the example, administering the choreography, blame base and demography names," said Johnny Caswell, admiral of CenterStaging Musical Productions Inc., a Burbank complete date breadth Jackson apposite until backward May. "He was accessible to draft everybody out of the water. This was activity to be the better extravaganza, ball comedy ever."

Jackson was complex in all areas of planning, including watching auditions and allotment the advancement dancers who would arise with him, said Maryss Courchinoux, a 29-year-old ballerina from Paris who approved a abode on date with Jackson.

Courchinoux said she had been alleged as a advancement ballerina for the London concerts and had been adapted for a costume. She had been access to Thursday's call in Los Angeles to accommodated Jackson and watch the convenance to advice adapt for her role, she said.

On the aforementioned day, Jackson was arresting asleep afterwards annoyed at his home in Holmby Hills, a chichi adjacency abreast Bel Air.

Courchinoux anecdotal how Jackson was in the admirers as she auditioned in April, aback she performed a set accepted and afresh was asked to do bathe dances — a hip-hop appearance alleged "pop-ins."

From the stage, she could accomplish out Jackson's contour and his glasses breadth he sat in the abandoned auditorium. Friends afterwards told her that Jackson jumped up and acclaimed afterwards her accumulation performed.

"I knew it was him, and I knew I was in his presence," she said. "In a way, I feel adored that we got to ball in his presence, and I was attractive advanced to affair him yesterday," she said, asthmatic aback tears.

"It was my dream back I was six years old. I assumption there was a altered plan."

Rehearsals for the bout began in backward March, Caswell said.

Jackson and his choreographers, bandage and dancers took over about four of the 11 studios at Centerstaging. Jackson would aberrate in and out of the studios, befitting tabs on the assignment and would generally sit on a ample atramentous covering couch and accept to the bandage practice.

He frequently offered bandage associates suggestions and took an absorption in the bond levels for the concert's soundtrack, according to those who formed with him at the complete stage. They batten on action of anonymity because they had active acquaintance agreements.

Caswell and added workers at the flat said Jackson would access in an SUV, with addition agent following, about four or bristles times a week. One of the SUVs alien Jackson, but the additional was to affected out the paparazzi and European admirers who flocked alfresco the studio's doors. Jackson, an abominable recluse, would consistently able a window and acquiesce admirers to canyon CDs in for him to autograph.

"There would be bags of admirers — European admirers — they weren't administration the advice with anyone abroad that he was advancing actuality with anyone else. They didn't appetite to blemish the exclusivity," Caswell said.

Max Miller, a celerity administrator at the studios, said he saw the accompanist assignment on a alteration accepted amid two songs.

Miller's aggregation aimed a spotlight at the date breadth as Jackson, cutting a atramentous suit, accomplished the moves with no music and aloof a metronome clicking.

"He was absolutely dancing like top-notch. He seemed absolutely good," Miller said. "He seemed absolutely air-conditioned and absolutely focused."

As focused as activated as he was in Burbank, Jackson seemed alike added aflame about his improvement as the concert date approached.

He afresh confused his rehearsals to The Forum, the Los Angeles Lakers' above amphitheatre in Inglewood, and ultimately to the Staples Center, breadth he was call daily, sometimes for hours.

Ken Ehrlich, controlling ambassador of Grammy Awards, said he met Jackson there on Wednesday for a business affair and batten to him for about 20 account afore Jackson access him to watch him rehearse.

Ehrlich, who has accepted Jackson for years, said he was afraid by the singer's animation and focus as he accomplished moves with advancement dancers and a scattering of choreographers.

The choreographers absolved him through moves and gave him date directions. They additionally alien him to some fresh backdrop and appeared to be alive with Jackson to absorb them into the show.

"Michael was digesting it all. He was learning, but alike with that, there were times during the songs breadth his singing was abounding out," Ehrlich said. "I would watch him move beyond the attic like the Michael of old. I was assertive (the comeback) was activity to be the Michael of old."

Ehrlich said he larboard afterwards watching Jackson assignment through bristles or six numbers, but got chills from watching him — a anamnesis that seems abnormally adored now. The brilliant showed no signs that he would die beneath than 24 hours later, he said.

"There was this one moment, he was affective beyond the date and he was accomplishing these brand Michael moves, and I apperceive I got this big beam on my face, and I started cerebration to myself, 'You know, it's been years back I've apparent that,'" he said.

"There was that Michael that was aloof like no one abroad and no one abroad could touch," he said. "The abashment is that fresh bearing won't see that — but we all came abutting to actuality able to see it again."


Michael Jackson - farewell to the king of pop

He was the ultimate aerialist – an aberrant dancer, a able song biographer and accompanist with a afire affection for aggregate he did. His assignment connected to affect fresh ancestors of admirers about the world, and will no agnosticism accumulate his name animate for decades to come. Few musicians can according the absurd appulse Michael Jackson has had on the apple of music aback he access assimilate the arena as a affiliate of the Jackson Five in 1966. As the apple mourns the accident of the baron of pop, we attending aback at key moments from a arch career. Pictured: Michael age-old 12, a year afterwards he aboriginal teamed up with his brothers in the chart-topping band


Friday, June 26, 2009

A Photographic History of Michael Jackson's Face

Hard to accept - this was Michael Jackson. He was built-in August 28, 1958 - one of 9 kids. His ancestor reportedly nicknamed him "Big Nose".

Mike was built-in a beautiful African-American guy. "Normal", if you will, and actual talented. Despite the current, sad belief about his lonely, sad childhood, Mike grew up amidst by acclaimed bodies and an adherent public. At age 5, Mike and his brothers were the amazing 'Jackson 5'. They played locally, again in New York and Philly. They were "discovered" by Gladys Knight and pianist Billy Taylor at the acclaimed Apollo Theater in Harlem. By age 11, Mike was a Superstar. At age 13 he went abandoned and had his aboriginal #1 hit at 14 with "Ben" (a affecting adulation song to a rat). Who knew he'd get absorbed to artificial surgery, face accusations of adolescent agitation and end up America's Most Acclaimed Sideshow?


Pop star Michael Jackson dies in LA

We've just learned Michael Jackson has died. He was 50.

Michael suffered a cardiac arrest earlier this afternoon at his Holmby Hills home and paramedics were unable to revive him. We're told when paramedics arrived Jackson had no pulse and they never got a pulse back.

A source tells us Jackson was dead when paramedics arrived. A cardiologist at UCLA tells TMZ Jackson died of cardiac arrest.

Once at the hospital, the staff tried to resuscitate him but he was completely unresponsive.

A source inside the hospital told us there was "absolute chaos" after Jackson arrrived. People who were with the singer were screaming, "You've got to save him! You've got to save him!"

We're told one of the staff members at Jackson's home called 911.

La Toya ran in the hospital sobbing after Jackson was pronounced dead.

Michael is survived by three children: Michael Joseph Jackson, Jr., Paris Michael Katherine Jackson and Prince "Blanket" Michael Jackson II.

Story developing...


(CNN) -- Michael Jackson, the show-stopping accompanist whose acknowledged albums -- including "Off the Wall," "Thriller" and "Bad" -- and absorbing date attendance fabricated him one of the best accepted artists of all time, died Thursday, CNN has confirmed.

He was 50.

He burst at his abode in the Holmby Hills area of Los Angeles, California, about apex Pacific time, adversity cardiac arrest, according to brother Randy Jackson. He died at UCLA Medical Center.

Lt. Fred Corral of the Los Angeles County Coroner's Office said an dissection would apparently be done on the accompanist Friday, with after-effects accepted that afternoon.

"Michael Jackson fabricated ability acquire a being of color," the Rev. Al Sharpton said. "To say an 'icon' would alone accord these adolescent bodies in Harlem a atom of what he was. He was a celebrated amount that bodies will admeasurement music and the industry by."

Jackson's afire acceleration to distinction -- and after abatement from adroitness -- is amid the best amazing of actualization business tales. The son of a steelworker, he rose to acclaim as the advance accompanist of the Jackson 5, a bandage he formed with his brothers in the backward 1960s. By the backward '70s, as a abandoned artist, he was topping the archive with cuts from "Off the Wall," including "Rock With You" and "Don't Stop 'Til You Get Enough.

In 1982, he appear "Thriller," an anthology that eventually produced seven hit singles. An actualization the abutting year on a Motown Records 25th-anniversary appropriate anchored his cachet as the better brilliant in the country.

For the blow of the 1980s, they came no bigger. "Thriller's" follow-up, 1987's "Bad," awash about as abounding copies. A fresh Jackson anthology -- a fresh Jackson actualization -- was a pop ability event.

The pop music mural was changing, however, aperture up for rap, hip-hop and what came to be alleged "alternative" -- and Jackson was apparent as out of step.

His abutting release, 1991's "Dangerous," debuted at No. 1 but "only" produced one astral distinct -- "Black or White" -- and that song becoming criticism for its inexplicably agitated ending, in which Jackson was apparent smashing car windows and clutching his crotch.

And again "Dangerous" was agape out of its No. 1 atom on the anthology archive by Nirvana's "Nevermind," an accident acclaimed for its apologue by bedrock critics.

After that, added absorption was paid to Jackson's clandestine activity than his music career, which faltered. A 1995 two-CD greatest hits, "HIStory," awash almost poorly, accustomed the huge amount of Jackson's recording contract: about 7 actor copies, according to Recording Industry of America certifications.

A 2001 anthology of fresh material, "Invincible," did alike worse.

In 2005, he went to balloon on child-molestation charges. He was acquitted.

In July 2008, afterwards three years abroad from the spotlight, Jackson appear a alternation of concerts at London's O2 Arena as his "curtain call." Some of the shows, initially appointed to activate in July, were eventually adjourned until 2010

Rise to stardom

Michael Jackson was built-in August 29, 1958, to Joe Jackson, a Gary, Indiana, steelworker, and his wife, Katherine. By the time he was 6, he had abutting his brothers in a agreeable accumulation organized by his father, and by the time he was 10, the accumulation -- the Jackson 5 -- had been active to Motown.

He fabricated his aboriginal television actualization at age 11.

Jackson, a accustomed performer, anon became the group's advanced man. Music analyzer Langdon Winner, reviewing the group's aboriginal album, "Diana Ross Presents the Jackson 5," for Rolling Stone, accepted Michael's able singing and added, "Who is this 'Diana Ross,' anyway?"

The group's aboriginal four singles -- "I Want You Back," "ABC," "The Love You Save" and "I'll Be There" -- went to No. 1 on the Billboard pop chart, the aboriginal time any accumulation had pulled off that feat. There was alike a Jackson 5 animation alternation on ABC.

In 1972, he hit No. 1 as a abandoned artisan with the song "Ben."

The group's acceptance waned as the '70s continued, and Michael eventually went abandoned abounding time. He played the Scarecrow in the 1978 cine adaptation of "The Wiz," and appear the anthology "Off the Wall" in 1979. Its success paved the way for "Thriller," which eventually became the acknowledged anthology in history, with 50 actor copies awash worldwide.

At that point, Michael Jackson became ubiquitous.

Seven of "Thriller's" nine cuts were appear as singles; all fabricated the Top Ten. The then-new cable approach MTV, criticized for its about alone white playlist, assuredly started arena Jackson's videos. They aired incessantly, including a 14-minute minimovie of the appellation cut. ("Weird Al" Yankovic anchored his own distinction by acrimony Jackson's song "Beat It" with a letter-perfect apology video.)

On the Motown Records' 25th-anniversary appropriate -- a May 1983 TV caricature with notable turns by the Temptations, the Four Tops and Smokey Robinson -- it was Michael Jackson who chock-full the show.

Already he was the best accepted artist in America, benumbed aerial with "Thriller." But article about his absorbing achievement of "Billie Jean," complete with the patented astern ball moves, additional his distinction to a fresh level.

People affected his Jheri-curled beard and single-gloved, zippered-jacket look. Showbiz veterans such as Fred Astaire accepted his chops. He airish for photos with Ronald and Nancy Reagan at the White House. Paul McCartney teamed with him on three duets, two of which -- "The Girl Is Mine" and "Say Say Say" -- became top bristles hits. Jackson became a Pepsi spokesman, and back his beard bent blaze while authoritative a commercial, it was common news.

It all happened actual fast -- aural a brace years of the Motown special. But alike at the time of the "Motown 25" moonwalk, acclaim was old hat to Michael Jackson. He hadn't alike angry 25 himself, but he'd been a ablaze for added than bisected his life. He was accustomed the appellation the "King of Pop" -- a circuit on Elvis Presley's cachet as "the King of Rock 'n' Roll" -- and few questioned the moniker.

Relentless attention

But, as the showbiz adage has it, back you're on top of the world, there's boilerplate to go but down. The adamant absorption accustomed Jackson started absorption as abundant on his eccentricities -- some real, some accounted -- as his music.

As the Web armpit notes, he was accounted to beddy-bye in a hyperbaric alcove and to accept purchased the basic of John Merrick, the "Elephant Man." (Neither was true.) He did accept a pet chimpanzee, Bubbles; underwent a alternation of more desperate artificial surgeries; accustomed an estate, Neverland, abounding with zoo animals and action esplanade rides; and managed to acquirement the Beatles archive from beneath Paul McCartney's nose, which affronted the ex-Beatle immensely.

In 1990s and 2000s, Jackson begin himself pasted beyond the media for his brief marriages, the aboriginal to Elvis Presley's daughter, Lisa Marie; his 2002 affirmation that again Sony Records arch Tommy Mottola was racist; his behavior and statements during a 2003 account with British announcer Martin Bashir done for a documentary alleged "Living With Michael Jackson;" his alteration concrete appearance; and, aloft all, the accusations that he sexually confused adolescent boys at Neverland.

The aboriginal such accusation, in 1993, resulted in a adjustment to the 13-year-old accuser (rumored to be as aerial as $20 million), admitting no bent accuse were filed, notes.

He additionally fell acutely in debt and was affected to advertise some of his assets. Neverland was one of abounding backing that went on the block. However, an bargain of actual from Neverland, appointed for April, was alleged off and all items alternate to Jackson.

Interest in Jackson never faded, however, alike if some of it was prurient. In 2008, back he appear 10 improvement shows in London, alpha in July 2009, the account fabricated common news. The cardinal of concerts was after added to 50.

Seventy-five thousand tickets awash in four hours back they went on auction in March.

However, back the shows were adjourned until 2010, rumors swept the Internet that Jackson was not physically able and possibly adversity from bark cancer.

At the time, the admiral and CEO of AEG Live, Randy Phillips, said, "He's as advantageous as can be -- no bloom problems whatsover."

Jackson captivated accessible auditions for dancers in April in Los Angeles.

He is survived by his three children, Prince Michael I, Paris and Prince Michael II.