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His achievements include a total of 13 Grammy Awards, 13 #1 singles in his solo career—more than any other male artist—and the sales of over 750 million albums worldwide.
A BRIEF HISTORY OF MICHAEL JACKSON
Pop Superstar Reigned Supreme During ‘80s and ‘90s
Let the tributes begin.

You can be sure Michael Joseph Jackson will be praised in death like he wasn’t late in life, where his bizarre lifestyle overshadowed his undeniable artistry.

Born August 29, 1958, in Gary, IN, he was the seventh child of the Jackson family, debuting on the professional music scene at the age of 11 as a member of the Jackson 5, signed to Motown Records, producing such smash hits as “I Want You Back,” “ABC,” “The Love You Save” and “I’ll Be There.”

By 1971, he began his solo career while still part of the group. Five of his solo albums, all recorded for Epic, starting with ‘79’s Off the Wall through ‘82’s Thriller, ‘87’s Bad, ‘91’s Dangerous and ‘95’s HIStory, are among the best-sellers of all time.

His March ’83 performance on the Motown 25: Yesterday, Today, Forever special introduced his signature dance move, the Moonwalk.

In the early ‘80s, his videos “Beat It,” “Billie Jean” and “Thriller,” once and forever broke the color barrier at MTV, transforming the genre into an art form. By the ‘90s, clips for “Black and White” and “Scream” made Jackson the self-declared “King of Pop.”

Jackson donated and raised millions of dollars for beneficial causes through his foundation and charity singles, including the “We Are The World” in 1985, which he co-wrote with Lionel Richie to benefit USA for Africa. He also donated $5 million from his Jacksons Victory Tour to charity.

Unfortunately, Jackson’s personal life began to take precedence over his achievements. He was accused of child sexual abuse in 1993, but the criminal investigation was closed due to lack of evidence, and Jackson was not charged. Jackson married twice, once to Lisa-Marie Presley, and fathered three children, all of which caused further controversy. In 2005, Jackson was tried and acquitted of further sexual abuse allegations and several other charges.

Jackson was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame twice, once as a solo act and the other time with his brothers, while his other achievements include a total of 13 Grammy Awards, 13 #1 singles in his solo career—more than any other male artist—and the sales of over 750 million albums worldwide.

At the time of his heart attack, Jackson was rehearsing at L.A.’s Staples Center for a series of 50 concerts at London’s O2 Arena next month promoted by AEG.

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