31. Michael Jackson

Ed’s Note: It makes perfect sense to start White Men’s Week off with a black man who has spent his adult life trying to be white.

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Transformer: Genius in disguise?

Dear King of Pop:

I finally realize why you are the world’s greatest musical icon. The logic came to me after I read about you selling out your final tour in four hours. In 240 minutes, you sold 750,000 tickets at a minimum of $105 a pop (the GA price). The simple math: at least $75 million made in four hours in the middle of a worldwide recession.

But it makes sense: You are the most genius crazy man the world has ever known.

What I’m trying to understand, though, is why you didn’t do this farewell concert tour four years ago in America. You made close to $200 million in a four-hour span off concert sales in England, a country with one-fifth of the population of the United States. Can you imagine what the receipts would have been on this side of the pond?

You could have kept The Beatles catalog and paid off Neverland Ranch. But I’m not writing this to belabor those points. I’m writing you to acknowledge your whacked-out genius.

I’ve come to the conclusion that you decided long ago to sacrifice some of your blackness with excuse. Yes, you’re still undeniably black. Mike, you were two hours late to your own press conference, your favorite food is KFC skinless chicken and you enjoy Crown Royal (see: Michael Jackson: The Magic and The Madness by J. Randy Taraborelli). But you blended your outer image to do the greatest good for the greatest number of people through your musical image.

Because I don’t want anyone thinking that I’m scheduling plastic surgery soon, I’m going to point out that I’m being facetious. Think about it, though. You’ve transformed yourself from an Afro-wearing, wide-nosed, dark-skinned black man into … the picture above on the far right. I’m not calling you white, but don’t you have a song titled “Black or White” where you transformed people’s faces in the video to prove a (valid and salient) point? It seems like what you’re doing with yourself.

Now that was genius. We should hope to live in a colorblind world, but we know we never will (see: The Lady & The Nutty Chimp). Maybe, that’s part of your transformation/genius. Who knows?

Thing is, your career was already off the ground before the surgeries. But it burst into a stratosphere unknown to most artists when you began chipping away at your nose and your “skin condition” started settling in.  Then you went Al Sharpton with your hair. Think about it: Off The Wall, Thriller and Bad. Your most successful era came after you started “experimenting” with plastic surgeons.

Does Michael know the man in the mirror? Either way, he's a man in the money today.

Does Michael know the man in the mirror? Either way, he's a man in the money today.

(Note: This letter doesn’t condone plastic surgery as a means to improve your image for monetary gain. Again, the love of money is the root of all evil.)

And because of what you’ve become — as well as your classic dance moves and Quincy Jones — your musical image has sustained itself for nearly 40 years. You continue to sell records — and 750,000 concert tickets in four hours.

No black man who accepts himself for who he is could ever do that. Need a list? James Brown, Ray Charles, Prince (a close second), Sammy D., R. Kelly, Kanye West, Jay-Z, etc. None of them could sell 750k in tickets in 48 hours.

Even white men come close, but fall short of the four-hour, 750k-ticket window: Bruce Springsteen, Elton John, Paul McCartney, Frank Sinatra, Eminem and Vanilla Ice. OK, Ice was a joke. But even he sold records because of a blended image. And he had as much talent as Milli Vanilli’s members … combined.

You see my point? There’s just cause behind people calling you Wacko Jacko, but also reasoning people see you as a genius. I wish you the best success with your one-location farewell tour (that makes no sense). And please, no pyrotechnics.

Sincerely,

Damon

P.S. Please, sell one of these concerts to CBS, ABC or HBO so we can see it here in America. Hell, even PPV.
P.S.S. “Man in the Mirror” is your greatest/my favorite song of yours. The world is forever indebted to Siedah Garret and Glen Ballard for writing it.

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29 responses to “31. Michael Jackson

  1. I’ve been reading your blog for a while now and its so funny! (I’m one of those people who overuse exclamation points but I’m a teenage girl so I have an excuse).

    Anyway, maybe Michael wanted to achieve a more androgynous look-like Grace Jones?

  2. @JacqueRoxx: Thanks. I will give you a one-time pass for overuse of exclamation points (joking). But it is an epidemic throughout our nation. It’s kinda scary.

    On Michael, he’s just crazy. That’s the answer plain and simple. I’m not gonna hate on anyone who feels the need to have cosmetic surgery for aesthetics purpose (that’s a lie), but “you’re a sandwich short of a picnic” if you do. … i.e., I’ll just call that person crazy.

  3. Too bad it didn’t do the same for Lil’ Kim….

    I also really hope someone broadcasts the concert because I love MJ and I want to see his final concert. I wonder if considering how much money this one has generated if he will change his mind and do another one here in the states.

  4. @tam: that’s a valid point. It didn’t work for Kim. And they didn’t necessarily give her high praise in the film “Notorious,” either. Guess she has her shot for redemption on Dancing With The Stars. I won’t be watching.

    And it would be a travesty if they didn’t broadcast one of those concerts over here. A travesty. It could be as big as the SuperBowl.

  5. LMAO. I didn’t know KFC had skinless chicken!

  6. blackgirlinmaine

    LOL…good post. Whenever I see a picture of Michael, I just shake my head…why???? I mean a few cosmetic changes I can understamd though I don’t condone but to end up like whatever it is he resembles now is just madness.

  7. @nickysunshine: I didn’t either. But apparently you can order it up that way. lol.

    @blackgirlinmaine: Michael is the reason all of Hollywood and some of America is obsessed with plastic surgery, and it’s sad because he looks like a clown. Still love his music, though. It’s tough to deny the artist on the first piece of vinyl ever purchased for you (The “Bad” album).

  8. I don’t care what anyone says, black or white, strange or normal, big nose or thin nose,….etc……MICHAEL LIKES THEM LITTLE BOYS (has anyone heard about the items at his Neverland Ranch auction…..smh)

    Like Kat Williams said, we’ve been making excuse after excuse for his weird azz forever and he just keeps getting weirder and weirder….I’m over Mike….FOR REAL!

  9. I can consciously listen to all his albums before ‘Blood on the Dancefloor’ and feel good about myself…anything after that makes me cringe… (ok, but I do still love the song ‘Butterfly’)

  10. @JLBD: make sure Pearl reads this, please. lol. Even if she hates me afterward.

    And why did you have to bring the little boys into the conversation? I purposely left them out of this. Everybody knows that’s part of Mike’s Crazy. We didn’t need you to point out the obvious. lol.

  11. @thismayconcernyou

    I brought it up because it’s kind of like the R. Kelly thing, people get so caught up in the greatness of an artist’s music that they forget about the fact that the artist has a serious sickness that needs to be addressed and diagnosed. Just like Mike is the greatest pop artist of all time, I think R. Kelly is the greatest R&B artist of our time. But, the irony is that I cannot listen to either artist with the same set of ears as I did before the controversy. So, I brought it up to express my personal indifference to the number of tickets sold or money made or hoopla expressed….Mike needs to sit his azz down somewhere and get some Jesus in his life (pun intended, I know he’s a Jehova’s Witness newly converted to Muslim or whatever other religion he chooses to dabble in for show)

  12. thecomebackgirl

    “You made close to $200 million in a four-hour span off concert sales in England, a country with one-fifth of the population of the United States. Can you imagine what the receipts would have been on this side of the pond?”

    he made 200 million in england??

    do you think he REALLY could have done those numbers over here ..when Janet can’t even reinvent herself. I think the US musical taste is far more fickle…

  13. @thecomebackgirl: Yes. Maybe more than $200 million in England. I’m just guesstimating. But people in this country are absolutely NUTS about MICHAEL JACKSON. Most of my sane friends would pay to see him in concert. I would pay to see him in concert.

    Most anybody from 25-50 would pay to see him perform. Trust, if he can sell out 750,000 tickets in England in four hours he’d sell out 20 shows at Madison Square Garden in 120 minutes.

    @JLBD: I know what you mean. I’m clearly don’t mind you bringing it up. Just pointing out that I purposely left it out for someone else to bring up. lol. And would you explain to TheComebackGirl about your MJ-loving friend? There are too many people who would pay to see this dude in this country.

  14. Your post was funny, but I was still sad at the pics.

    So sad.

  15. @thecomebackgirl

    At the request of thismayconcernyou, I have to inform you about my former roommate. She is literally a Michael Jackson fanatic. I’ll give you a top ten rundown:

    1. She has pictures of him hanging in her home as if he is a family member.

    2. She photoshopped a picture of her and her ex-fiance’ to be her and Michael Jackson.

    3. She has a picture of him on her keychain.

    4. She has a picture of him at her desk at work, again, like he is a family member (or as she would hope, her man).

    5. She said that she would drink his bath water.

    6. She and I have gotten into an argument over him because I took exception to her claiming that she would not be surprised if he was ‘the messiah’.

    7. She has dressed up as him on Halloween (skin make-up and everything)

    8. She said that he should never be broke because all he would have to do is sell his toenails or something….surely someone will pay a gajillion dollars for them…

    9. She has stated that if ever given the opportunity to meet him, she would probably never get the chance to talk to him because she would pass out before the conversation would start.

    10. She literally had a glittering glove and an unopened Michael Jackson collector’s doll box on display in her bedroom.

    These are just the top ten of many other unbelievable things that she has done in regards to the king of pop….. the scary thing is…i’m sure she’s not alone…

  16. @BigMan: as funny as it is, it is truly depressing that the world’s greatest pop icon is a myriad of those pictures.

  17. thecomebackgirl

    “Most of my sane friends would pay to see him in concert. I would pay to see him in concert. ‘

    @ JIBD/This May

    yall gonna need more people..i do believe there are still hard core fans..but most of those people are closeted..

    i mean are you tellin me hard azz dudes are going in the MJ concert in the states with a members only jacket on and a jheri curl..

    NO..they aren’t going on at all. i hate to be a bearer of bad news. I think MJ’s people ran the numbers here and it didn’t make sense.

  18. @thecomebackgirl

    For some reason I don’t agree with you. Although his popularity in the states has somewhat dwindled, I do still think people here would pay to see him. Even with all the stuff I said before, I would still go see him if given the opportunity. Would I seek him out and pay tons of money and drive my car to a far away city….ummm, no…..but if he did a tour in my city and the ticket prices were no more than what they were in the UK, I would definitely go. I’ve actually been to a Michael Jackson concert here in my hometown when he still liked the U.S. (this was during his ‘Bad’ tour), and it’s definitely an experience. I just think Mike feels more comfortable in Europe, because as soon as his ‘Dangerous’ album came out, he stopped touring in the states and hasn’t turned back…

  19. @thecomebackgirl: Wow … The hardcore dude probably won’t care to see him perform, but I promise you he knows the lyrics to “Bad” and “Smooth Criminal” … then again, the hardcore dudes really are outnumbered by all of the crazy white people who will spend an entire paycheck to pass out in the front row.

    Need proof?

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_best-selling_music_artists

    I know Wikipedia isn’t the best source. But hey, what can you do?

    Only the Beatles, Elvis and Bing Crosby (both dead in 1977) are even in his stratosphere. He’d sell out over here with the quicks.

  20. I thought this piece was funny, I am a long time MJ fan. I’ve been to his Victory tour and Bad tour, and by the grace of God spent 3hrs fighting with Ticketmaster.uk from 3am-6am( during the presale) 2 secure 2 tickets for his upcoming show. I hope he comes here to the U.S., but I wasn’t going to take any chances so I will be going across the pond 2 see him.. If he does perform over here I will be fighting with TM once again.
    Lmao@MJ sipping on that brown Crown.. However during the trial it was stated that he likes wine and vodka…lol…

  21. @mizvain: for disclosure and to prove my argument, where do you live? In the US or outside?

    And I heard about the wine and vodka, but the Crown was in his biographer’s book … lol.

  22. I have a close friend that live in the U.S. – North Carolina to be more specific and she went through some process to get the online codes to be eligible to order tickets for MJ’s upcoming concert in Europe and then she sat on Ticketmaster refreshing until she was able to get the seats she wanted.

    So not only is she paying to go to the concert but also to fly over there and stay in what is probably going to be an expensive hotel. He’d sell out in the U.S. without a doubt.

  23. point is, Michael could turn into a gorilla and as long as he was able to lip sync “Thriller” and do the Moonwalk, people in the US would still pay to see him perform.

  24. So sad what happened to Mik…or what Mike and his weirdo fam did to him. He was actually a handsome young man. Now he just looks scary. But I agree that in spite of that people here and across the pond would still go apesh!t for one of his concerts.

  25. Someone mentioned this on another blog and I think it’s important to mention given the fact that I brought up his affiliation with pedophilia. The best kept secret in his life is who actually molested him when he was a child?….No one ever actually takes the time out to think about how he was a little boy when he came into the business, came from a very strict religious family (mother) and was around industry people all the time. There’s no telling what happened to Mike and it will possibly come out later in life…ya never know….

  26. This might be one of my favorites — great post.

  27. lmao this was hilarious!

    However …who the hell would wanna see Michael in person NOW? He scares the shit out of me. I’d only go to his farewell fiasco if he planned on remaining backstage the entire time with a mic. No need to see the melting man on stage live. Seeing it on tv is well enough for me. And you know he’s gonna try and dance. Nose debris flying everywhere ..no stanks, Michael. No stanks.

  28. This post right here almost mad me lose my job cause I was laughing so hard, but in reality its sad that this man did all this to himself to fit into a mode that society (american) has deemed the norm…

  29. @JLBD

    Leave the man alone he was found not guilty on all counts. He went through a hellish trial/ investigation that lasted over 2 years

    What does he have to do to be innocent?

    I think Justice was done. The man’s innocent. He always was.

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