Michael Jackson was born in Gary, Indiana on August 19, 1958. Michael's father, Joe Jackson, worked as a crane operator at a steel mill. Both of Michael's parents loved music. His dad played guitar for an R & B band and his mother sang and played the piano. Growing up, all of the Jackson children were encouraged to study music
· The three older brothers (Jackie, Tito, and Jermaine) formed a band called the Jackson Brothers. Michael and his brother Marlon joined the band in 1964. Soon, the family realized that Michael was a gifted singer and dancer. At just eight years old, Michael began to sing lead vocals along with his older brother Jermaine.
· Joe Jackson realized that his children were very talented. He felt that they could become successful in music. They changed the name of the band to the Jackson 5 and began playing all around town. Then they began touring the Midwest where they played in bars and clubs. They won several talent shows and began to gain a name for themselves.
· While still singing with the Jackson 5, Michael had a number of solo albums. At first his solo career didn't take off, but he did have a few hit songs including "Ben" and "Got to Be There." However, in 1978 Michael met music producer Quincy Jones while working on the set of the movie The Wiz. He broke away from the family band and worked on his first "grown up" album. In 1979, Michael released the album Off the Wall
· Michael wanted to follow up Off the Wall with an even bigger album. This was going to be quite the task. He worked with Quincy Jones again and in late 1982 released the album Thriller. The album was a huge success. It had seven top ten singles and won eight Grammy awards. Eventually, Thriller would become the best selling album of all time. Michael had now become the biggest star in the music industry.
Although Michael's career peaked with the Thriller album, he released several more successful albums including Bad (1987), Dangerous (1991), HIStory: Past, Present and Future, Book I (1995), and Invincible (2001).
· Michael died of a heart attack on June 25, 2009. He was fifty years old. The heart attack was likely caused by drugs he was taking to help him sleep.
Interesting Facts about Michael Jackson
ü He was the best selling artist in the United States for 2009, the year of his death. Around 35 million of his albums were sold worldwide in the 12 months after he died.
ü He had two pet llamas on his ranch called Lola and Louis.
ü The album Thriller was number one on the Billboard Chart for 37 weeks.
ü He purchased the rights to the Beetles catalogue in 1985 for $47 million.
ü His skin doctor said that his skin tone changed because he had a disease called vitiligo.
ü He was burned when his hair caught fire during the filming of a Pepsi commercial.