Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Remember The Time


It was the summer of 1983, I was 15 years old. My days were spent at my mother’s cottage just an hour outside of the city. I remember going to buy the Thriller album with my mom it was vinyl 33 and a third, CD’s were many years away let alone digital music. The album had already spun five top ten single and would go on for a record seven. It was Jackson mania, Billie Jean, Beat it, the moonwalk and those video’s were groundbreaking. I remember dancing on the balcony trying desperately to master the art of spinning around like Michael did. Anybody who knows me, can tell I learned to dance from the Michael Jackson school. This was my era my “time”, growing up in one of the most exciting and innovative times in music.

When his follow up “Bad” came out in 1987 I was already all grown up, and heavily into buying my own music. Bad is still my favourite Jackson album, unlike Thriller he wrote most of the album himself. I found the tunes had so much more energy and drive. Smooth Criminal is still my favourite video and song followed by Man In The Mirror penned by Siedah Garrett and Glen Ballard. How fitting that this week Man in the Mirror is the highest new entry at #11 on the UK charts and could be #1 next week.

Being a Jackson fan over the years was not easy as his life decayed into a circus of rumours, weirdness, and his face constantly morphing. Not much of it bothered me until the scandals and allegations of child abuse appeared. Now no one will ever know the truth. I actually stopped listing for a while. I felt ashamed every time I would hear Billie Jean at a wedding or event not knowing if I should dance or not.

June 25th had mixed emotions for me. It was the death of an era, my years growing up, a time of innocence. No doubt Jackson had a troubled childhood. He became the biggest star in the universe but I wonder was it all worth it to have it decay and fade out at 50. Was he really happy? His comeback was literally just around the corner with 50 concerts planned in the UK, but that was not meant to happen. A truly sad ending. Now I listen once again to those drums and the famous baseline that started it all...

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