Michael Jackson- The original Benjamin Button
“…The other brothers were laughing and goofing off, chasing young girls. But little Michael would sit for hours and study tapes of James Brown and Wilson Picket. He was like an old man trapped in a boy’s body…”
Rare video of Wilson Picket: “Mustang Sally”
I have not yet watched the movie: “The curious case of Benjamin Button”, but if I understand the premise; Brad Pitt’s character starts out as an old man and ages backward, until he dies of old age: as a baby.
This is the best way that I can explain: Michael Jackson.
As a teenage boy, Michael spent his time doing things and taking on more responsibility than most adults carry in their lifetime.
Yet, as a forty year old man; Michael was living in an amusement park, surrounded by animals and children. Spending his days playing children’s games.
Michael Jackson aged backwards.
A few years back, (when Michael Jackson was having his “legal” problems), I made a sad prediction…
I said: “..Michael Jackson will end up like Elvis Presley. Jackson will die young from a drug overdose or die secluded like Howard Hughs…”
(My last such prediction was in a post on this web site, called: “Bailout Fever- (bail baby bail).” It is the second story in that post and I wrote the following:
“…Maybe what Michael Jackson needs right now is religion? (Any religion.) I have always worried that Jackson was heading for self- destruction, and possible suicide. Religion could possible straighten Jackson out? (No pun intended.)..”
Has there ever been a sadder story than Michael Jackson..??
(With the exception of all of the other famous people who die “way too young” from drugs and depression.)
I am hopeful that the Jackson family do NOT try and hide the conditions surrounding Michael’s death. There are many lessons to be learned.
The one lesson that I need to learn from the MJ story is that money (and fame) do not solve all of your problems and make you happy.
No one can say that Michael Jackson was “happy.” At one time, Jackson had plenty of money and no one was more famous.
I constantly fight the feeling that if I just had more money, I could buy “more stuff” and I would be “more happy” with all of this new stuff.
But once I obtain this “stuff”, (new car, swimming pool, motorcycle, new fancy phone, etc) the happiness is short lived and it becomes another thing to care for, fix, and sink money into.
The second lesson, (which I learned many years ago) is that drugs do not make you happy. They cause you to be more depressed.
I thought about talking about Michael Jackson’s career. How great he was and how far he fell…
But I am not going to do that.
(Besides, TV and the Internet are doing a great job of reviewing MJ’s career.)
I just wanted to point out a couple of points that I had noticed in his life.
Having been a Disc Jockey during my 20’s and 30’s, I had a bird’s eye view of Michael Jackson’s career.
No one can deny that MJ had talent.
For me, Michael’s downfall started around the release of the “Bad” album.
This is when MJ started grabbing his crotch, spitting on the ground, and chasing women. (As opposed to having women chase him.)
It was as if some producer told Michael that people didn’t think that he was “manly enough.”
So Michael started singing songs about how “Bad” he was, or how “Dangerous” he is. Guys grab their crotches, right..!!
So naturally the “manly Michael Jackson” started to spit, grab is “stuff” and bust car windows out with a club.
That’s what men do, right..??
But this wasn’t Michael Jackson.
That is when he started wearing a mask.
Michael never let us see behind that mask that he wore, ever again.
What a shame.
If I had to pick the Michael Jackson video that means the most to me, right now; I would pick- “Scream.”
Thriller was good, (but being a night club disc jockey, I had to play that video 2 times a night, every night, for freaking ever.) Billy Jean was good, Smooth Criminal was great, Black and White was a come back. Jackson had so many great videos.
“Scream” is the one video that means the most to me, now that Michael is gone.
I wanted to embed the video here, but the Jackson Family have the Embed function off, so I will leave a link to it.
“Scream” features Michael and Janet Jackson together. It is the MOST expensive video ever made (7 million dollars.)
“Scream” is filmed in black and white. It is shot on a spaceship. Both Michael and Janet have fancy games and toys that you would only find in a science fiction movie. From art that magically transforms into something else, to games that allow you to bust up vases, to dancing on the ceiling.
The Jackson’s have all this stuff…
And yet they seem bored to tears.
They seem lonely and lost. Just trying to fill their time.
In this “spaceship”, isolated from the rest of the world; the Jackson’s are singing about all the “pressure” in their life.
So much pressure that it makes them want to “Scream.”
That is the way I view Michael Jackson. A boy that was “cut off from the rest of the world”, who had more money than he knew what to do with it; who had more talent then many, who died lonely and poor.
One would hope that the Michael Jackson story would teach future generations that you can make it if you try, and that drugs and depression can kill.
In one of Michael Jackson’s songs (Black or White), one lyric states that MJ is not: “going to spend his life being a ‘color.”
Michael Jackson transcended race, color, gender, and just about everything else.