Michael Jackson Biography
Michael Joseph Jackson was "The King of Pop," and his untimely death on 25th June 2009, at the age of 50, robbed millions of fans all over the world of the iconic star. It also disappointed thousands of British fans who were looking forward to seeing him live at the 02 Arena in Greenwich.
Paramedics were called to his home shortly after midday when he stopped breathing, and he was pronounced dead at the UCLA Medical Centre two hours later. It was believed he had suffered a cardiac arrest. He was buried in the mausoleum at the Glendale Forest Lawn Memorial Park in California on September 3rd 2009.
It was just two weeks before his comeback tour was due to begin at the former Millennium Dome on July 13th, and he had been filmed in rehearsal looking as fit and healthy as ever. The family did not believe his death was caused by natural causes, and called for further investigation.
Their suspicions proved correct, and on January 6th 2010 Michael Jackson's death was officially ruled as murder, and his death certificate was amended to read homicide, after months of speculation.
The document stated that he had died from acute Propofol intoxication, due to an intravenous injection from another.
On February 2nd 2010 Jackson's private medical advisor Dr Conrad Murray was charged with involuntary manslaughter. Murray's defence is the singer killed himself with Propofol when he left the room to go to the toilet, but Jackson had said publicly that he was looking forward to the concerts in London, and the pre-concert films showed he was as good as ever. Dr Murray is currently on $75,000 bail awaiting trial.
The release of Jackson's first single since his death was released on November 15th 2010, and it has caused a furore with the Jackson family. They claim the tracks on the posthumous album, due to be released in December, are false.
The release also angered Black Eyed Peas star Will.i.am. "Hold My Hand," a duet with Akon, is one of the tracks on the album, and Will.i.am has branded the release as disrespectful. Both the singer and the Jackson family believe the album is only being released to profit from the singer's death. Jackson's estate has fought back, forming a "listening party" from people who worked with him to check the authenticity of the tracks.
Born on 29th August 1988, Jackson was recognised as the most successful entertainer of all time by the Guinness World Records. The 8th child of the Jackson family he became a member of the Jackson 5 in the mid 1960s at the tender age of 5-years-old.
He began his solo career in 1971, and he dominated popular music from the early 1980s until his untimely death.
On May 14th 1984 he was invited to the White House to receive an award from President Ronald Reagan for his support of charities that help people overcome alcohol and drug abuse. In the summer of 1993 he faced his first accusation of Child Sexual Abuse filed by 13-year-old Jordan Chandler's father, dentist Evan Chandler. The Chandler family demanded payment from Jackson and when he refused they went to the police.
Dr Chandler made tape recordings of his discussions, saying he intended to pursue charges, and he said he would win big time and Michael Jackson's career would be over. But Jordan's mother was adamant that Jackson had done nothing wrong, and the singer used the recording as evidence the father's only goal was to extract money from him.
Later in the year his home was raided by police, and he was submitted to a 25 minute strip search. Friends say he never fully recovered from the humiliation. Investigations proved inconclusive, and no charges were filed. On January 1994 his insurance company settled with the Chandlers out of court for $22 million.
Ten years later Jackson's lawyers filed a memo stating the settlement to the Chandlers had been made without the singer's consent.
In May 1994 Jackson married Elvis Presley's daughter Lisa Marie. They had first met in 1975 when she was 7-years-old and went to one of the Jackson family shows at the MGM Grand Hotel and Casino. They met again through a mutual friend in early 1993 and talked every day on the phone.
She has since said it was a perfectly normal marriage in every way. She gave Jackson emotional support throughout the sexual abuse allegations, and she became increasingly concerned about his health and drug addiction. He proposed to her over the telephone in the Autumn of 1993, and they had a secret wedding in the Dominican Republic.
The marriage lasted two years and ended in an amicable divorce, but their relationship continued on and off for four years after the divorce.
During his most successful tour, which began on September 7th 1996 and ended on October 15th 1997, he married his long-time friend Debbie Rowe who worked as a dermatology nurse. They were married in an impromptu ceremony in Sydney, Australia when Rowe was six months pregnant with their first child.
They had not planned to marry, but Jackson's mother Katherine persuaded them to do so for the sake of the baby.
Michael Joseph Jackson Junior, known as Prince, was born on February 13th 1997 and his sister Paris Michael Katherine Jackson was born a year later on April 3es 1998. The couple divorced in 1999 and Jackson eventually got full custody in 2006.
In March 2003 British viewers had an insight into his life and home after a documentary film crew, led by Martin Bashir, followed him everywhere he went.
In the documentary he was seen holding hands and discussing sleeping arrangements with a young boy. As soon as the programme was shown Santa Barbara's County Attorney's office began a criminal investigation. Jackson was arrested in November 2003 and charged with seven counts of administering an intoxicating agent to the 13-year-old boy in the film. Jackson denied the charges saying the sleepovers were not sexual. The People-v-Jackson trial began on January 31st 2005 in Santa Monica, California and lasted five months.
On June 1st 2005 he was acquitted on all counts, but he was soundly shaken by the experience. He went to Bahrain in the Persian Gulf as a guest of Sheikh Abdullah. Because of the trial his popularity as a recording artist slipped and the main house on the Neverland Ranch was closed as a cost-cutting exercise. The Come Back Tour was supposed to recoup the loss of earnings incurred during the trial.