Remembering Michael Jackson

My sister told me of a co-worker who got a call from her husband informing her that Farah Fawcett died. Three hours later she got another call from her husband saying Michael Jackson died. She said, “You’re stupid,” laughed, and hung up on him. But before the end of the work day yesterday we all knew her husband wasn’t kidding. At 50 years old Michael Jackson died from cardiac arrest in his Bel-Air mansion. June 25, 2009 will be the day we remember.

I wanted to post a song today to document this unfortunate incident chronologically in my blogroll, as it’s a historically tragic moment. Michael Jackson reached so many fans for so many years. Thriller lingered substantially for more than a decade, and can still be heard on occasion. It was released in 1982, a year before I was born, yet I must have been 8 years old before my MJ phase began. Furthermore, a little boy named Brian, who was my neighbor and babysitting income source, ten years younger than me, asked to borrow my Michael Jackson VHS collection when I was probably 16. This goes to show that talent and innovation can prevail over time and impact multiple generations.

Yesterday, when I remembered the “King of Pop,” one song innitially came to mind. Maybe it’s not one of his music video legacies, but “Don’t Stop ‘Til You Get Enough” from 1979’s Off the Wall album is still a memorable one for me.

Numerous other artists respect, admire, and give influencial credit to Michael Jackson. The latest J5 tribute comes from Rostam Batmanglij of Vampire Weekend and Wes Miles of Ra Ra Riot. Their cover of “I Want You Back” to be released on July 7, 2009 can be found on their collaborative debut, Discovery.

[audio:I Want You Back.mp3]
“I Want You Back” by Rostam + Wes