28 June 2009

Addenda about MJ

Just some random stuff that has come forth since Michael Jackson's death:

  • Last Monday, June 22, was the 40th anniversary of Judy Garland's death. I was actually trying to find the clip of Liza Minnelli singing "And the World Goes 'Round" from the movie New York, New York in order to commemorate the occasion but I couldn't find it (she used Judy as her model for her character in the film), so I failed to post about it. But there are some eerie connections between Judy Garland and Michael Jackson, besides the proximity of their dates of death. They were both child stars who started out performing with and outshining their older siblings. Garland, whose birth name was Frances Gumm, performed on vaudeville as part of The Gumm Sisters before signing to MGM while Jackson was the lead singer of his family's group, The Jackson Five, on Motown Records. Both were known at young ages for their preternaturally mature singing voices. And both were in movies based on L. Frank Baum's most famous book; Garland played Dorothy in 1939's The Wizard of Oz while Jackson starred as the Scarecrow in the all-black version called The Wiz in 1978. The two performers also complained bitterly throughout their adulthoods of missing out on a more normal childhood experience, as they had spent all of their youth performing. Each developed financial problems as well as an addiction to prescription drugs and both died relatively young (Garland had just turned 47), each survived by three children. Garland's oldest, the aforementioned Liza, had been friends with Jackson for years. In fact, she would often accompany him to Studio 54 in the late '70s. Michael's older brother Tito was a school friend of Liza's fourth husband, David Gest; Michael and Tito both served as Gest's best men when he married Minnelli in 2002.
  • This may also be eerie if you take any stock in it. I was first alerted to this tidbit by Solange Knowles' tweet on TMZ.com the night Michael died and I received a text message the next day with the same information. OK. Michael (and Farrah Fawcett, of course) died on June 25. James Brown died on Christmas Day, or December 25. Aaliyah was killed on August 25 while a songwriter/producer she worked with, Static Major, passed on February 25. And Lisa "Left Eye" Lopes of TLC died in a car crash on April 25. Some may say that this is more than a coincidence. Me, I dunno. Maybe if Bob Marley, Jimi Hendrix, Curtis Mayfield, or Philip Lynott had also died on the 25th of a month, I might read more into it (their dates of death were 11 May 1981, 18 September 1970, 26 December 1999, and 4 January 1986, respectively). Nonetheless, for those who may be interested, the principles of numerology dictate that 25 be simplified to a 7 in order to be interpreted.
  • Michael has been described as the seventh of nine children when actually he was the eighth of ten (or eleven if you want to include the half-sibling that resulted from his father's affair with a Jackson Five fan). Older brother Marlon was born with a twin named Brandon (Marlon and Brandon- get it?) who died shortly after birth. Click here if you don't believe me.
  • MTV sucks. Well, I already knew this but this week, the point has been reinforced. It took the death of one of the major artists to put the fledgling Music Television channel on the map in order for them to abandon their "all-reality" shit-shows (albeit for only 24 hours) and play music videos again. Like I said, MTV sucks. They suck donkey. They suck rhino.
I also wanted to give links to my favorite MJ tributes; they're my faves because they came out while he was still alive to enjoy them and enjoy them he did! He had a great sense of humor and loved Weird Al Yankovic's parodies of his songs "Beat it" and "Bad" and he gave a big thumbs up to Alien Ant Farm's hard-rocking treatment of "Smooth Criminal" a few years back. I'm sure MJ dug all the references to his work that pop up in the video. How many can you spot?

Yo! Ding-dong, man! Ding-dong, ding-dong, yo!
Heh. That still cracks me up.

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