Michael Joseph Jackson
was an American recording artist, entertainer, and businessman. The seventh child of the Jackson family, he debuted on the professional music scene at the age of 11 as a member of The Jackson 5
and began a solo career in 1971 while still a member of the group. Referred to as the "King of Pop" in subsequent years, five of his solo studio albums became some of the world's best-selling records: Off the Wall
(1991) and HIStory
(1995). Michael Jackson sold over 750 million records during his career, thus becoming the "Most Successful Entertainer Of All Time", according to the Guinness Book. Acknowledged as "The Artist Of The Century" by the American Music Awards, Jackson's life was a mixture of success and controversy.
- Know what I also love? Mannequins. I guess I want to bring them to life. I like to imagine talking to them. You know what I think it is? Yeah, I think I'll say it. I think I'm accompanying myself with friends I never had. I probably have two friends. And I just got them. Being an entertainer, you just can't tell who is your friend. And they see you so differently. A star instead of a next-door neighbor. That's what it is. I surround myself with people I want to be my friends. And I can do that with mannequins. I'll talk to them.
- I sit there and say, 'Please don't call me up, I am too shy.' But once I get up there, I take control of myself. Being onstage is magic. There's nothing like it. You feel the energy of everybody who's out there. You feel it all over your body. When the lights hit you, it's all over, I swear it is.
- Snakes are very misunderstood. Snakes, I suggest, may be the oldest victims of bad press.
- I wake up from dreams and go, 'Wow, put this down on paper.' The whole thing is strange. You hear the words, everything is right there in front of your face. And you say to yourself, 'I'm sorry, I just didn't write this. It's there already.' That's why I hate to take credit for the songs I've written. I feel that somewhere, someplace, it's been done and I'm just a courier bringing it into the world. I really believe that. I love what I do. I'm happy at what I do. It's escapism.
- Like the old Indian proverb says, do not judge a man until you've walked 2 moons in his moccosins [sic]. Most people don't know me. That is why they write such things in wich [sic] most is not true. I cry very very often because it hurts and I worry about the children, all my children all over the world, I live for them. If a man could say nothing against a character but what he could prove, history could not be written. Animals strike not from malice but because they want to live. It is the same with those who criticize, they desire our blood not our pain. But still I must achieve, I must seek truth in all things, I must endure for the power I was sent forth, for the world, for the children. But have mercy, for I've been bleeding a long time now. M.J.
- Consciousness expresses itself through creation. This world we live in is the dance of the Creator. Dancers come and go in the twinkling of an eye but the dance lives on. On many an occasion when I am dancing, I have felt touched by something sacred. In those moments, I felt my spirit soar and become one with everything that exists. I become the stars and the moon. I become the lover and the beloved. I become the victor and the vanquished. I become the master and the slave. I become the singer and the song. I become the knower and the known. I keep on dancing and then, it is the eternal dance of creation. The Creator and the creation merge into one wholeness of joy. I keep on dancing — until there is only ... the dance.
- "The Dance" - from inlay sleeve of Dangerous (1991)
- If you enter this world knowing you are loved and you leave this world knowing the same, then everything that happens in between can be dealt with.
- I have begun to see that even my father's harshness was a kind of love. An imperfect love, to be sure, but love nonetheless. He pushed me because he loved me, because he wanted no man to ever look down at his offspring. Now with time, rather than bitterness I feel blessing.… My initial fury has slowly given way to forgiveness.
- "Heal the Kids" speech at the Oxford Union (2001)
- I put a lot of mannequins in my room in the past, and I still have mannequins in my room, because I used to be very lonely, painfully lonely. You have no idea. I used to walk the streets looking for people to talk to. I'm talking about the height of one's career…. I would walk up to them, strangers, and say, "will you be my friend?" They'd go, "my god, Michael Jackson!" and that's not what I wanted.
- The Michael Jackson Interview: The Footage You Were Never Meant to See (2002)
- The record companies really do conspire against the artists. They steal. They cheat. They do whatever they can, especially the black artists.… Sony's Tommy Mottola is the president of the record division. He is mean. He is a racist, and he's very, very, very devilish.
- Remarks at National Action Network headquarters (6 July 2002)
- The minute I started breaking the all-time record in record sales—I broke Elvis's records, I broke Beatles records—the minute it became the all-time best-selling album in the history of the Guinness Book of World Records, overnight they called me a freak. They called me a homosexual. They called me a child molester. They said I bleached my skin. They made everything to turn the public against me.
- Remarks at National Action Network headquarters (9 July 2002)
- I know my race. I just look in the mirror. I know I'm black.
- Remarks at National Action Network headquarters (9 July 2002)
- I am speechless about the idea of putting music fans in jail for downloading music. It is wrong to illegally download, but the answer cannot be jail. Here in America we create new opportunities out of adversity, not punitive laws, and we should look to new technologies like Apple's new Music Store for solutions. This way, innovation continues to be the hallmark of America. It is the fans that drive the success of the music business.
- Lies run sprints but the truth runs marathons.
- Press statement (November 2003); quoted in "Michael Jackson Calls Child Molestation Charges 'Lies'" (8 December 2003) Jet
- In a world filled with hate, we must still dare to hope. In a world filled with anger, we must still dare to comfort. In a world filled with despair, we must still dare to dream. And in a world filled with distrust, we must still dare to believe.
- People all over the world
Are the same everywhere I go,
I give in to this, I give in to that,
Every day it bothers me so,
Am I in a bad situation?
People taking me to the extreme,
Am I being used? I just need a clue,
I don't know which way to go.
- I don't know what's gonna happen to you, baby,
But I do know that I love you,
You walk around this town with your head all up in the sky,
And I do know that I want you.
- Let's dance, let's shout!
Shake your body down to the ground.
- I try to do what's right for me,
But no-one sees the way I see,
And then I try to please them so,
But how far can this pleasing go?
- Sometimes I cry cause I'm confused,
Is this a fact of being used?
There is no life for me at all,
'Cause I give myself at beck and call.
- Lovely is the feeling now,
Fever, temperature's rising now,
Power is the force, the vow,
That makes it happen,
It asks no questions how.
- So let love take us through the hours,
I won't be complainin'
'Cause this is love power.
- Keep on with the force, don't stop
Don't stop 'til you get enough.
- She got me workin' day and night,
And I've been workin'
From sun-up to midnight.
- How could you leave, girl?
'Cause love for us was meant to be,
Then you must be seein'
Some other guy instead of me.
- Get on the floor and dance with me,
I love the way you shake your thing especially.
- And when the groove is dead and gone, yeah! You know that love survives, so we can rock forever on.
- All the colors of the world should be
Loving each other wholeheartedly,
Yes, it's alright,
Take my message to your brother and tell him twice,
Spread the word and try to teach the man
Who's hating his brother when hate won't do,
When we're all the same,
'Cause the blood inside me is inside of you.
- As we walked into the room
There were facing staring, glaring, tearing through me,
Someone said, 'Welcome to your doom,'
Then they smiled with eyes that looked as if they knew me,
This is scaring me.
- I said, you wanna be startin' somethin',
You got to be startin' somethin',
I said, you wanna be startin' somethin',
You got to be startin' somethin',
It's too high to get over,
It's too low to get under,
You're stuck in the middle,
And the pain is thunder.
- You're a vegetable, you're a vegetable,
Still they hate you, you're a vegetable,
You're just a buffet, you're a vegetable,
They eat off you, you're a vegetable.
- Mama se, Mama sa, Mama coo sa.
- Beat it, beat it,
No-one wants to be defeated,
Showin' how funky and strong is your fight,
It doesn't matter who's wrong or right.
Just beat it.
- You wanna show them that you're really not scared,
You're playing with your life, this ain't no truth or dare,
They'll kick you then they'll beat you then they'll tell you it's fair,
So beat it.
- She was more like a beauty queen from a movie scene,
I said, 'Don't mind, but what do you mean I am the one,
Who will dance, on the floor, in the round?'
- People always told me, 'Be careful what you do,
Don't go around breaking young girls' hearts,'
And momma always told me, 'Be careful who you love,
Be careful what you do, 'cause a lie becomes the truth.'
- Billie Jean is not my lover,
She's just a girl who claims that I am the one,
But the kid is not my son.
- If They Say -
Why? Why? Tell 'em that is human nature
Why? Why? Does he do me that way.
- Well, they say the sky's the limit,
And to me that's really true,
But, my friend you have seen nothing,
Just wait 'til I get through.
- And the whole world has to answer right now,
Just to tell you once again,
- The way you make me feel,
You really turn me on,
You knock me off my feet,
My lonely days are gone.
- I just can't stop loving you,
I just can't stop loving you,
And if I stop, then tell me just what will I do?
'Cause I just can't stop loving you.
- Annie, are you OK?
Annie, are you OK?
Are you OK, Annie?
You've been hit by, you've been struck by
A smooth criminal.
- 'Cause there's a time when you're right
And you know you must fight,
Who's laughing, baby? Don't you know?
And there's a choice that we make,
And a choice you must take,
Who's laughing, baby?
- So, just leave me alone,
Leave me alone,
Leave me alone,
Leave me alone, stop it,
Just stop doggin' me around.
- I have to find my peace 'cause no-one seems to let me be,
False prophets cry of doom, what are the possibilities?
I told my brothers 'There'll be problem times and tears for fears,
We must live each day like it's the last,
Go with it, go with it, jam!
- It ain't too much stuff,
Jam, it ain't too much,
It ain't too much for me to jam!
- Just promise me, whatever we say
Or do to each other,
From now, we make a vow to just
Keep it in the closet.
- Heal the world, make it a better place,
For you and for me and the entire human race,
There are people dying, but if you care enough for the living,
Make a better place for you and for me.
- Well, I believe in miracles,
And a miracle has happened tonight,
But if you're thinking about my baby,
It don't matter if you're black or white.
- And it doesn't seem to matter, and it doesn't seem right,
'Cause the will has brought no fortune, still I cry alone at night,
Don't you judge of my composure, 'cause I'm bothered every day,
And she didn't leave a letter, she just up and ran away.
- Love is a feeling,
Give it when I want it,
'Cause I'm on fire,
Quench my desire,
Love is a woman,
I don't want to give in,
Give in to me, give in to me.
- In our darkest hour, in my deepest despair,
Will you still care? Will you be there?
In my trials and my tribulations,
Through our doubts and frustrations,
In my violence and my turbulence,
Through my fear and my confessions,
And my anguish and my pain,
Through my joy and my sorrow,
In the promise of another tomorrow,
I'll never let you part,
For you're always in my heart.
HIStory: Past, Present & Future, Book I (1995)
- With such confusions, don't it make you wanna scream?
Your bash abusing victimize within the scheme,
You try to cope with every lie they scrutinize,
Oh, brother, please have mercy,
'Cause I just can't take it!
- Stop pressuring me, just stop pressuring me,
Stop pressuring me,
Make me wanna scream.
- Beat me, hate me
You can never break me
Will me, thrill me
You can never kill me.
- You know I really do hate to say it,
The government don't wanna see,
But if Roosevelt was livin'
He wouldn't let this be, no, no.
- Some things in life they just don't wanna see
But if Martin Luther was livin'
He wouldn't let this be.
- How does it feel,
When you're alone and you're cold inside?
- What about sunrise, what about rain?
What about all the things that you said we were to gain?
What about flowering fields, is there a time?
What about all the dreams that you said was yours and mine?
- Before you judge me, try hard to love me,
Look within your heart then ask,
Have you seen my childhood?
- People say I'm strange that way,
'Cause I love such elementary things,
It's been my fate to compensate
For the childhood I've never known.
- Just because you read it in a magazine,
Or see it on a TV screen
Don't make it factual.
- You can't believe it, you can't conceive it,
And you can't touch me, 'cause I'm untouchable,
And I know you hate it, and you can't take it,
And you can't break me, 'cause I'm unbreakable.
- Speechless, speechless,
That's how you make me feel,
When I'm with you I am far away,
And nothing is for real.
Televised Interview with Oprah Winfrey (1993)
- OK, number one. There, as I know of, there is no such thing as skin bleaching...I have a skin disorder that destroys the pigmentation of the skin, it's something that I cannot help, OK? But, when people make up stories that I don't want to be who I am, it hurts me...it's a problem for me, I can't control it.
- On the lightening of his skin.
- I think James Brown is a genius, you know, when he's with the Famous Flames, unbelievable. I used to watch him on television and I used to get angry at the cameraman because whenever he would really start to dance they would be on a close-up so I couldn't see his feet. I'd shout, "show him show him.", so I could watch and learn.
- On watching James Brown as a young child.
Ebony interview (2007)
- Bryan Monroe (December 2007) "A Q & A With Michael Jackson," Ebony
- I always wanted to do music that influences and inspires each generation. Lets face it, who wants mortality?
- On how he creates memorable music
- Music has been my outlet, my gift to all of the lovers in this world. Through it — my music, I know I will live forever.
- Ever since I was a little boy, I would study composition. And it was Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky that influenced me the most. If you take an album like Nutcracker Suite, every song is killer, every one. So I said to myself, 'Why can't there be a pop album where every...' — People used to do an album where you'd get one good song, and the rest were like B-sides, they'd call them "album songs" — and I'd say to myself 'Why can't every one be like a hit song? Why can't every song be so great that people would want to buy it if you could release it as a single?. So I always tried to strive for that. That was the purpose for the next album.
- The industry, It's at a crossroad, There's a transformation going on. People are confused, what's going on, how to distribute and sell music. The internet kinda threw everybody for a real loop. 'Cause it's so powerful, kids love it so much. The whole world is at their fingertips, on their lap. Anything they want to know, anyone they want to communicate with, any music, any movies... The thing is it just took everybody for a loop. Right now, all these Starbucks deals and Wal-Mart deals, direct to artists, I don't know if that's the answer. I think the answer is just phenomenal, great music. Just reaching the masses. I think people are still searching. There's not a real music revolution going on right now, either. But when it's there, people will break down a wall to get to it. I mean, 'cause before Thriller, it was the same kind of thing. People were not buying music. It helped to bring everybody back into the stores, so when it happens, it happens.
- What I do when I write is that I'll do a raggedy, rough version just to hear the chorus, just to see how much I like the chorus. If it works for me that way when it's raggedy, then I'll know it will just work... Listen to that, that's at home. Janet, Randy, Me... Janet and I are going "Whoo, Whoo... Whoo, Whoo..." I do that same process with every song. It's the melody, it's the melody that's most important, If the melody can sell me, then I'll go to the next step. The idea is to transcribe from what's in your mentality onto tape. If you take a song like "Billie Jean," Where the bass line is the prominent, dominant piece, the protagonist of the song, the main driving riff that you hear, getting the character of the riff to be just the way you want it to be, that takes a lot of time. Listen, you're hearing four basses on there, doing four different personalities, and that's what gives it character, but it takes a lot of work.
- On listening to an early version of Billie Jean on an iPhone
- When I was a kid, I was denied not only a childhood, but I was denied love. When I reached out to hug my father, he didn't hug me back. When I was scared on an airplane, he didn't put his arm around me and say, "Michael, don't worry. It's going to be OK." When I was scared to go on stage, he said, "get your ass on that stage." … I will never deny a child love. If it means that I have to be crucified or put in jail for it, then that's just what they're going to have to do.
- Remark to producer Cory Rooney, as repeated to Chris Yandek (http://thesportsinterview.com/mjackson.html)
Quotes about Jackson
- Listed alphabetically by author
- He always wanted to just bring people together… And the concept came about holding hands, like uniting, making this long chain, people getting together…that connection as one. … "This life don’t last forever" (verse from song) ... you gotta make the best of it and leave something behind that people can really cherish.
- Akon, on the unreleased song "Hold My Hand"
- You're an angry dancer. There's rage in your feet.
- We're close, he's a good friend of mine, we definitely have a connection that most people don't have...
- In some ways Michael reminds me of the walking wounded. He's an extremely fragile person. I think that just getting on with life, making contact with people, is hard enough, much less to be worried about whither goest the world.
- He was so energetic that at five years old, he was like a leader. We saw that. So we said, 'Hey, Michael, you be the lead guy.' The audience ate it up. He was into those James Brown things at the time, you know. The speed was the thing. He would see somebody do something, and he could do it right away.
- It was sort of frightening. He was so young. He didn't go out and play much. So if you want me to tell you the truth, I don't know where he got it. He just knew.
- He is a very smart cookie, Michael. He knows what he wants, he knows what he is doing. I have nothing but admiration. Also, he is a very kind person.
- Elton John, interviewed on 100 Greatest Artists of Rock & Roll (1 May 1998)
- I'm upset at the way he's being treated in the media. I think they're really trying to slander his name, and I really think that's unfair for the way that he's contributed to the American culture since the day he was born. I think he deserves much more than that.
- What I'm asking is whether this is still a country where a peculiar person such as Michael Jackson can get a fair shake and be considered innocent until proven guilty ... or is this just a 21st-century American barnyard where we all feel free to turn on the moonwalking rooster ... and peck it to death?
- This came down to a prosecutor either so sure Jackson was bad or so offended by Jackson's combination of celebrity and wackiness that he rushed into a case that looked shaky from hello. It looked worse as Tom Sneddon went along, and had become nearly ludicrous by the time Jackson's ex-wife left the stand. No matter how pure Sneddon's motives may have been (and I'm not saying they were, believe me), he began to look like a man pursuing a vendetta, one whose chief hope of securing a conviction lay in the obvious fact that the trial was a sideshow and the accused was ... well, a freak.
- The media first turned the trial into a freak-show by emphasizing Jackson's peculiarities rather than his humanity, and stoked the ratings with constant, trivializing coverage while other, far more important stories went under-reported or completely ignored in Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan, North Korea, and Washington, D.C. The press might respond by saying, We gave the people what they wanted. My response would be, My job is to give them what they want. When he steps into a recording studio, it's Michael Jackson's job to give them what they want. Your job is to give the people what they need.
- I always looked up to him--and my dad--since I was a little boy.
- He dances with the breathtaking verve of his predecessor James Brown, the beguiling wispiness of Diana Ross, the ungainly pathos of Charlie Chaplin, the edgy joy of a man startled to be alive.
- He is not Peter Pan. He is a full-grown freak. And he must pay.
- Andrea Peyser, "Guilty: Don't Let the Freak Fool You". New York Post (March 2005), after two days of trial testimony in People v. Jackson
- We stand up and the judge leaves, and Michael turns to me and says, "Bob, the jury system is much older than 200 years, isn't it?" I said, 'Well, yeah, it goes back to the Greeks." He says, "Oh yeah, Socrates had a jury trial, didn't he?" I said, "Yeah, well, you know how it turned out for him." Michael says, "Yeah, he had to drink the hemlock." That's just one little tidbit. We talked about psychology, Freud and Jung, Hawthorne, sociology, black history and sociology dealing with race issues. But he was very well read in the classics of psychology and history and literature.
- He's sort of a fawn in a burning forest. It's a nice place where Michael comes from. I wish we could all spend some time in his world.
- Everyone's thinking they're the new W. Axl Rose, just running their mouths and living in this world where nothing is real. Like, it's really easy to write a couple of songs, but that doesn't mean you get to run your mouth. The only guy who can do that is Michael Jackson. He wrote Thriller, so he can say whatever the fuck he wants.
- I could never decide whether I wanted to be Michael Jackson or marry him. I don't care what people say about him now because he's a fucking genius. That's it - the end!
Remarks made after his death
- The world has lost an amazing man. A man that cared, and loved and gave everything he had for others.
- Michael Jackson is the reason why I do music and why I am an entertainer. I am devastated by this great loss, and I will continue to be humbled and inspired by his legacy. My prayers are with his family. Michael will be deeply missed, but never forgotten. He’s the greatest … the best ever. No one will ever be better.
- Words can't begin to describe my sadness for the loss of Michael Jackson. I was honored and humbled to have the opportunity to perform with him several times and he had a profound influence on my career. Michael forever changed the world of music and entertainment and I will always remember him for his kind and sweet spirit.
- JC Chasez, in US magazine (26 June 2009)
- I'm having a million different reactions I didn't expect I would feel. He was a great singer — God gives you certain gifts and this child was just an extraordinary child touched by this ability. He could sing like nobody else and he was able to connect with people. His genius can only be compared to Ray Charles's or Stevie Wonder's.
- Cher, on Larry King Live (26 June 2009)
- When we first met, around 1988, I was struck by the combination of charisma and woundedness that surrounded Michael. He would be swarmed by crowds at an airport, perform an exhausting show for three hours, and then sit backstage afterward, as we did one night in Bucharest, drinking bottled water, glancing over some Sufi poetry as I walked into the room, and wanting to meditate.
That person, whom I considered (at the risk of ridicule) very pure, still survived -- he was reading the poems of Rabindranath Tagore when we talked the last time, two weeks ago. Michael exemplified the paradox of many famous performers, being essentially shy, an introvert who would come to my house and spend most of the evening sitting by himself in a corner with his small children.
- Michael had read some of the details regarding Laura and Euna’s predicament. As was often the case with him and global events he read about – from famine in Africa to victims of natural disasters in far off countries, to orphans created by wars – he felt a deep sense of empathy for Laura and Euna. When I shared with him that Euna had a four-year-old daughter, he was even more anguished.
He asked me whether I had had any contact with Laura. I told him I had written her a few letters and had been assured they were getting through. Outside of that, her own family had only heard from her twice – brief monitored phonecalls – in the over three months they had been imprisoned. When I told him that, Michael paused.
“Do you think,” he said hesitantly, “that the leader of North Korea could be a fan of mine?”
I didn’t really know how to respond. Not much is known about the reclusive Kim Jong Il or “Dear leader” as he is called in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea. Over the years it’s been alleged he has a thing for Hollywood, certain NBA stars, Elvis, and specific liqueurs. Still, I’d never heard about any connection between Michael Jackson and Kim Jong Il. ... "I don’t really know,” I answered Michael. “But I can try and find out.”
“Please,” Michael responded without hesitantly, “because maybe if he was a fan, I could help get those girls home.”
I explained to Michael that there were larger geo-politics involved, nuclear programs, a new administration trying to assert its foreign policy strategy (Obama), and another one in NK possibly going through some sort of transference of power.
“Yeah,” Michael said wistfully, “but if someone wants to do something good, they just can. They don’t really need to worry about all that other stuff.”
- Michael and I shared an absolute love for children, and his heart cried about the pain children around the world faced. One day, while chatting with him about his upcoming Super Bowl performance, Michael was brainstorming how he could use the worldwide exposure for a greater cause, and the Heal The World Foundation was born. … I was so proud of the work we did in that short time, only to find that our good intentions came to a halt when Michael was accused the first time of child molestation. Over night, understandably so, non-profits backed away from our efforts and we quietly closed shop. My family always maintained our belief that Michael was innocent in both cases – for those that were close to Michael, all would admit he was quirky and had bad judgment at times. But to think Michael could abuse a child was unfathomable in my mind.
Over the last decade, my relationship with Michael continued to be focused on kids, but now our own. … It was amazing for me to witness in those early years how enamored Michael was with his children. He changed their diapers through the night, sang and played with them, rocked them to sleep, bathed them and had to change his own outfits when they threw up on him – the same routine that all parents know and love. In the few times we spoke, he would always reflect on the miracle of being a parent. He also protected them in a way that reflected his own lost childhood, and his paranoia about being taken advantage of. Paris, Prince and Blanket are three beautiful children. With Michael gone, I truly pray that they will find some peace and be spared the heart wrenching pain that their father faced time and time again in his life.
- I have always admired Michael Jackson. His music will live on forever.
- Michael Jackson was born in Gary, Indiana, and our hearts are heavy, heavy here. Michael Jackson was the world's greatest entertainer but more than that he was great humanitarian and a great, humble individual. The people of Gary, our hearts are full of tears because of the loss of Michael Jackson.
- While you guys are talking and laughing, you’re not hearing his words. You’re not listening to his words. I need you to hear what he’s saying! Listen to the message that he is telling us.
- From the beginning of my career, he was my idol in show business. He was a genius and an incredible artist!
- I come to you today with great sadness, acknowledging the loss of the greatest entertainer in the history of mankind. For me he was more than that, he was my idol, he was a role model, he was someone to cry to when my childhood was unbearable, he was a brother, he was a dear friend.
- I'm hurt. But I'm celebrating his life and his music. Dancing and crying and dancing in public. Holding heart-to-heart conversations with complete strangers about one of the things, if not the only thing, we share in common, That Is The Legendary MoonWalker Himself. A white guy in a pickup truck pulled alongside me on the expressway and shouted to me, had I heard about Mike?!? It's surreal and it's everywhere!!! Every time I feel like getting sad, one of his songs comes on, and I'm just filled with happiness and start singing and smiling. He was the best to ever do it. Salaams, Peace & Blessings. May Allah have mercy on his soul. We Love You MJ!!!
- He was a very caring guy who would go out of his way to help the sick. One night in London he wanted to see some homeless people. He sent them loads of pizzas in secret. The guy had a good heart.
- Matt Fiddes, former Bodyguard, on his Twitter Page
- I feel so thankful for him sharing his brilliance
- As a kid Michael was always beyond his years, he was an innovator, he was a genius at what he did. He had a knowingness about him. At 9 years old, when I first started working with him, he seemed to me like he had been here before. He was just so knowledgeable about life.
- Michael Jackson was not only loved by the people of the world, for his incomparable talent, he was loved by the magnificent wild animals for which he provided the most beautiful home at his Neverland Ranch in Santa Barbara, CA. We were thrilled to have Michael's beloved tigers, Thriller and Sabu, join our pride here at Shambala when Michael needed a good home for them. Thriller and Sabu will always remind us of Michael.
- It almost sounds crazy to say that the show wasn't about him, but ... he'd put it in perspective all the time, saying, "This is what we're here for, to spread a message of love and taking care of the planet, that we want people to understand it's very, very dear and not to take it for granted."
- The first album I ever bought with my own money was Thriller. His performance at the Grammys is a milestone in the history of American music. I watched it on TV and spent the next two weeks in my kitchen trying to learn how to moonwalk.
- Michael grew to understand why the world is in the state it is. He would ask “Why?” but not get trapped in trying to find reasons for each and every problem. His aim was finding solutions. His message was about solutions. Michael’s day-to-day thought process was: “How do I make the world a better place?” He dedicated his existence to responding to this question, and to giving a voice to those who can’t speak out for themselves.
Man in the Mirror, We are the World, Will You Be There – all these songs put forward a simple but powerful message: If someone is hungry, give them food, but also help them become self-sufficient. Michael taught us that when you do good, you start with the individual, then move onto a family, a neighborhood, a village, a nation.
- Michael always looked for the good in people, but he also wanted people to understand him, and what he was here for. This made the ridicule he endured so much harder to bear. How can someone who gave so much, be the subject of so much hate? Why is it, the more blessed we are, the tougher our times are destined to be?
My brother wasn’t a threat to anyone. He was at peace, and his peaceful state was a blessing from God. Michael was given the rare talent to entertain, sing and perform. But the true blessing God gave him was the ability to use his talents to do good for others. Michael’s songs inspired us to do better. That was his true gift.
We still feel Michael’s loss. But what will happen as time passes? What will happen to Michael’s real purpose for being? Who can carry on Michael’s work selflessly, without ulterior motive? Nations and governments are capable of good deeds, but those good deeds are too often done to exert control over others. Michael never wanted to control anybody, he only wanted to spread happiness and joy.
- Michael didn’t care if we knew everything he did for people, because God knows. God knows his intentions, and knows the results. I know my brother is in a very secure, serene, peaceful place. When we live on earth, we are judged not only by who we are, but also by what we do for others. When we leave, we take the good and bad deeds with us. Michael took nothing but good deeds with him.
Michael and I were raised to believe there is a Supreme Being. Having success told us God had a plan for us. Michael used his success in a positive way. He knew that it’s not what you get from others, it’s what you do for others. We all achieve things in life, but the greatest achievement is doing God’s work. Michael was a man of God because he was doing His work. Eternal life is the ultimate reward from God – and Michael has eternal life.
- I had just come back from Nigeria and he asked what I went to do in Nigeria because he had never visited Nigeria and I told him about the historical Badagry project that we are doing in Nigeria and he felt the same way I felt; he felt that the project must be done because it is imperative that we understand what our forefathers and fore mothers went through. He looked forward to the finishing of the project because he wanted to come and see it and I assured him that we would get the project done. The only thing is that when we do finish this project he will not be there physically, but he will be there in spirit."
- I am absolutely devastated at this tragic and unexpected news. He was the consummate entertainer and his contributions and legacy will be felt upon the world forever. I've lost my little brother today, and part of my soul has gone with him.
- Music will never be the same.
- This is such a tragic loss and a terrible day. The incomparable Michael Jackson has made a bigger impact on music than any other artist in the history of music. He was magic. He was what we all strive to be. He will always be the king of pop! Life is not about how many breaths you take, but about how many moments in life that take your breath away. For anyone who has ever seen, felt, or heard his art, we are all honored to have been alive in this generation to experience the magic of Michael Jackson. I love you Michael.
- My fifth birthday party was M.J. themed, I insisted. My mother found a lookalike to come sing happy birthday and I KNEW he wasn't MY Michael. Thank you Michael Jackson for being my FIRST of many! My mother took me to my FIRST concert, I was only two years old. I fell in love.
- I just found him a very giving and loving person.
- I personally can’t believe it. But it’s more unfortunate for the world of music. My love goes out to his family. … A sad day in history, not [just] music.
- If it were not for Micheal Jackson I would not be where or who I am today.
- Ludacris, on his Twitter page (26 June 2009)
- No one will be able to replace him. But I know that the light that he emanated from the stage will live on with all of us who saw him for what he was and always will be — a great teacher, pure musical inspiration. His death can only be compared to John Lennon's and Elvis'.
- Michael was filled with humility, sensitivity, reverence and respect for anyone and everyone. And most of all, the love that he had for his kids equalled the love that he had for his fans. He just was a guy that was beyond amazing, and it’s just sad to hear all the spurious stories that have been created about him.
- Al Malnik, godfather of Prince Michael II Jackson (Blanket), interviewed by Merideth Viera on The Today Show (1 July 2009)
- I can't believe. The most amazing entertainer of all Time just left. I just can't understand. We Will always love you Michael.
- A major strand of our cultural DNA has left us.
- He was a massively talented boy man with a gentle soul.
- I will be mourning my friend, brother, mentor and inspiration.. He gave me and my family hope. I would never have been me without him.
- MICHAEL JACKSON the first 2 english words i eva spoke. The future sucx!
- I am so sadened by MJs death. I clung to those records throughout my childhood. A complete musical hero of mine. May he rest in peace.
- I wish I got to tell him how much his music existence changed my life. He was my biggest inspiration and will forever live on in my heart.
- This guy had the biggest heart of anybody and really really did care about improving the human condition, especially for children, and that was part of his mission. While he was on tour, he always wanted to know what he could do in each place, so that when he left, he left a place better, having been there … and how many people can you say that about?”
- I did not find Michael weird, messed up, or anything you’ve ever heard about him. I want to say that I feel all of the allegations ever charged against Michael were false, and that in my discernment, he did not have the capacity to ever do anything except love children and let them know he would do anything to stand up for them, and help them. Just look at the magnificent work he did on their behalf in writing and co-producing “We Are The World,” and the 39 charities for children he gave to generously. That was Michael. I believe that during his trials he related to the suffering of Christ, and prayed for intervention, because he was being accused over what he loved most—children. This caused him perhaps more pain than anything in his life."
- Rarely has the world received a gift with the magnitude of artistry, talent, and vision as Michael Jackson. He was a true musical icon.
- When you were with him, you really felt like God was within him. He was an amazing, superhuman kind of person, but he always treated you as an equal. He would be your friend and he never asked for anything in return. ... I know that people looked at Michael and thought he was strange, but to me, he was fascinating. ... He was the most inspirational person in my life. His one dream was to cure all the sick children in the world. And when I'd say, "Isn't that impossible?" Michael would just start to cry. He was very emotional about things that moved him. I guess you'd have to say he was a pure innocent in a world that wasn't so innocent anymore.
- He read them a book every day. When we were in Virginia during the Invincible [sessions], there was not one day missed reading the children something. So that showed me right there that he was an incredible father. … He was like, 'I would never have them go through the same things ever (the similar childhood/upbringing) in their lives,' Riley said. "He was like, 'I think the best scolding for children was a time-out.' The best scolding for children was, 'Let's read a book.'"
- I don’t really think the music industry has taken a deep enough look at what Michael Jackson meant to everybody, all of us artists, producers, actors, actresses, all of us, entertainment as a whole. I don’t think that they took a deep enough look because everyone is too busy with their head up their own butt. When Michael was on trial, nobody…nobody stopped to go and support him at the trial. ... The guy is acquitted on ten counts of child molestation. No one said, "Sorry Michael.’ No one said, "Michael, we knew you were innocent." No one did a BET tribute to him then. Nobody played his music and did a marathon then. Nobody rallied up and did a concert. Why should Michael have to go on tour to raise money? How come all of the artists didn't band together and say, "Hey! You know what? Let's do a tour like Michael did the We Are The World Tour and let's raise some money. Let's get this thing going." No one did that. Tookie Williams is the founder of the Crips gang. ... They were trying to get him pardoned from the death penalty and half of Hollywood showed up for this man. What I can't understand is like, OK people didn't want to go near Michael Jackson when he was in trouble ... But they show up for a guy who executed families. A little girl begged for her life and he executed her. They said because he wrote in his time in prison he wrote children's books that he tried to turn his life around. He was nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize. Well, how about the millions of children Michael Jackson has helped over the span of his career? Yet two children come with some false allegations and those two children become the two children that destroy him. It’s crazy. It makes me look at the entertainment business and just say I’m surrounded by a bunch of hypocrites.
When you ask me how would it affect them? I don’t even think they realize what this is. Everyone’s gonna do their tributes, but the tributes now if you look at it, it’s all because now everyone is going to get some spotlight, they’re gonna get some shine. Now all of the sudden everyone wants to say something good about him.
- No one talks about when he did the Victory tour, I remember as a kid Michael being on tour with the Victory tour right? And every night on the news they would announce that Michael Jackson donated his money from every city that he did, he donated it to a new charity. He donated his money from the Victory tour to charities. I thought that was amazing. I'm like, wow! This guy's donating millions of dollars every night to a new charity. Then he would stop in every city and every city he would stop at a hospital and visit kids that were burned, ill or whatever. He took the time to do all that.
- Michael Jackson was extraordinary. When we worked together on Bad, I was in awe of his absolute mastery of movement on the one hand, and of the music on the other. Every step he took was absolutely precise and fluid at the same time. It was like watching quicksilver in motion. He was wonderful to work with, an absolute professional at all times, and - it really goes without saying - a true artist. It will be a while before I can get used to the idea that he's no longer with us.
- We maintained our relationship for so long because it was never not real. People expect anything in entertainment or Hollywood to be transient, and it's not as interesting a story for us to have been lifelong friends. People want sordid details or they want big blowups, and the truth of the matter is, from the time we met when I was 13, we understood each other and became very good friends, and that was it, we didn't need to make it into anything else. ... I was just out of college, and wanting to fall in love and have a fairy tale, I was holding on to that. He just felt so bad that there were so many little children in Romania in these orphanages, and he wanted to try to give them homes, and I really wanted to be able to do that with him, but it would have divided my life too much.
I hope when you write this, it doesn't sound freakish. What it was was a young man who kept reaching to try to find happiness. I think he wanted to take his resources and make a difference to other people in their lives, and he knew that I wanted to do that in the world, too, so he would reach out to someone like me and say, "How can we make a difference, it's easier to adopt a child if you're two people." He never said, formally, "Will you marry me," it was never that for me, he never was that definitive, but I think he was a guy who kept searching for happiness.
The problem is when you try to bring that out and in this society, it turns into a tabloid sentence, which is, "He wanted Brooke Shields to live with him and adopt babies," and it sounds ridiculous. And it never was that clear-cut. He found people he loved in his life and he didn't want to let go of them and he wanted them all to live together because he didn't want to go out into the outside world, which was so cruel and too much to handle, and it makes sense.
- Michael Jackson was one of the most talented and dynamic performer/singer/songwriters I ever had the pleasure of working with, he was amazing. Unfortunately, the controversy surrounding his personal life in recent years overshadowed his unparalleled contributions to the music world, which is a tragedy in and of itself. But his music will live on forever no matter what and his memory will be adored and admired for years to come.
- Slash speaking to "MTV News" on the passing of Michael Jackson (26 June 2009)
- I was so excited to see his show in London. We were going to be on tour in Europe at the same time and I was going to fly in to see him. He has been an inspiration throughout my entire life and I'm devastated he's gone!
- We have lost a genius and a true ambassador of not only Pop music but of all music. He has been an inspiration to multiple generations, and I will always cherish the moments I shared with him on stage and all of the things I learned about music from him and the time we spent together. My heart goes out to his family and loved ones.
- I saw how kind he was and what a wonderful human being. I saw him with his children and I had never seen a better father. … He always said to me, "I want people to really know who I am after I'm gone."… He wanted to be remembered as a great human being and he wanted to create as many happy places for the children of the world as he could.
- "Dr." Tohme Tohme, Michael Jackson’s last business manager and spokesperson, in an Associated Press interview (4 July 2009)
- I would not be the artist, performer, and philanthropist I am today without the influence of Michael. I have great admiration and respect for Him and I’m so thankful I had the opportunity to meet and perform with such a great entertainer In so many ways he transcended culture. He broke barriers, he changed radio formats! With music, he made it possible for people like Oprah Winfrey and Barack Obama to impact the mainstream world. His legacy is unparalleled Michael Jackson will never be forgotten.
- I have never felt this before in my life. I could measure my childhood 2 now on an mj growth chart. if this is true. Rip. The last legend.
- Pete Wentz, on his Twitter page (26 June 2009)
- Now the King of Pop must bow his knee to the King of Kings.
- Rev. Lucious Smith, Michael Jackson's memorial service (7 July 2009)