Wednesday, July 15, 2009

The Michael Jackson Hysteria

I've been wanting to write about the ridiculous hysteria following Michael Jackson's death for weeks. I've been going back and forth on how to talk about it. The reaction to his death is baffling and confusing to me. Was he a great music artist, of course. In fact I'm listening to PYT(Pretty Young Thing) right now. Did he have a significant impact on music? Yes, of course he did. Has he done anything noteworthy other than being a freak in the last 15 years or so, not really.

I just wrote about bandwagon fans in sports, and in a lot of ways it's the same idea here. All these people come out of the woodwork claiming to be Jackson's biggest fan and that their lives were changed by him. I wonder if their lives were changed by him on June 24th or any day before he died, probably not for half of those people. It's just this fakeness in people that I don't understand. First of all, if Michael Jackson had that much impact on your life without meeting him in person, you have some issues that should be handled by professionals. Second of all, I bet half of these people were calling him a freak and child molester for the last 20 years.
I guess when someone dies everything is forgiven. I just don't get how more people aren't seeing this.

Let's talk about the good first. The guy was an amazing music artist. His music crossed racial and economic lines. His Thriller Alum was maybe the best album ever. His music videos broke down racial barriers on MTV. In fact, I would put his best 10 songs against anyone elses. I'm listening to "Man In the Mirror" right now. What a piece of music that is. The guy was a great singer, performer, and blessed with great producers and writers. I wasn't even born at his peak but I've heard when Thriller came out it was a Beatles like craze. The guy deserved all the accolades back then.

The fact is, you can't separate a person's life in two parts without recognizing both parts equally. If you can talk about the good, you can talk about the bad. It seems like the media and public are giving him a mulligan for the last 20 years. I'm confused, wasn't this guy the butt of every joke for a long time. When is the last time he had a hit song? Sure, he had a terrible father and had virtually no real childhood, but so do a lot of people. The guy was a freak show. He started off as a good looking African American man and through a million plastic surgeries ended up looking like a scrawny, pale, skeleton. I guess now that he is gone all that is forgotten. Sometimes I wish I had blinders on like so many other people.

The guy was accused of child molestation, and let's be honest, does anyone really think he didn't at least do something. The guy paid a $25 million settlement to clear his name. Some will say he was tired of dealing with it. If you were accused of something like that and innocent would you just settle it like that. It is a bunch of BS as far as I'm concerned. He had 12 and 13 year olds sleep over his ranch. If you had a son would you let him sleep at Michael Jackson;s ranch without supervision. If you say yes, you are either lying or a pretty damn twisted.

Why is Michael Jackson's death getting more coverage than the economy, war, and every other issue actually important in this country? It's almost like news has now become more about being popular than reporting relevant information. Look, it would be one thing if Jackson was murdered or stricken with cancer. The fact is though, he didn't take care of his body and took about 100 different pills. His defenders will say well what do you expect when you have an upbringing like he had. Okay, well a lot of people have shitty upbringings and don't turn into people like him. They also don't have millions of dollars to get help with their problems. Sorry, I'm not going to feel sorry for Michael Jackson.

We will probably never see anyone like Michael Jackson again, for better or for worse. He was an amazing music artist, but you can't just forget about everything else just because he died. Jackson was a tragic figure. He was a person who was constantly in the spotlight and eventually was overcome by it. It is okay to think what you want about him, but if your opinion has changed just because he's dead that is just sad. Looking to get some hate mail from all those bandwagon Michael fans.

Below are my favorite Michael Jackson songs. With all the negative things I've said, the guy has some damn good party jams.

1. Pretty Young Thing
2. Rock With You
3. Man In the Mirror
4. Don't Stop Till You Get Enough
5. Wanna Be Starting Something
6. Thriller
7. Billie Jean
8. The Way You Make Me Feel
9. Beat It
10. Black or White

Next Blog: My thoughts on the bar scene

No comments:

Post a Comment