Yesterday, Today, & FOREVER The King of Pop

Michael Jackson: ‘I Feel … Very Young’ at 50

(Video Link @ ABC News

Michael Jackson Speaks Exclusively to ‘GMA’ About His Past, His Future, His Dreams for His Children

Watch "Good Morning America" Friday at 7 a.m. ET for more on this exclusive interview.

Aug. 28, 2008

He first became a star as a young boy, then endured superstardom,
scandals and a legal prosecution, but as he turns 50, Michael Jackson
told "Good Morning America" in an exclusive interview, he is "having a
wonderful time, just relaxing."

Speaking by phone from his home in California, at times so softly he
was barely audible, Jackson said he was listening to James Brown and
preparing for his 50th birthday Friday, when he will "just have a little cake with my children and we’ll probably watch some cartoons" — before he gets right back to work.

Does turning 50 mean he now has an AARP card?

"Not that I know of!" Jackson said, laughing.

He said he still can do all his famous dance moves and "more."

"I feel very wise and sage, but at the same time very young," he said.

Reflecting back, Jackson said the happiest time in his life was
probably when he was recording his hit solo albums "Thriller," released
in 1982, and "Off the Wall," released in 1979. Those albums — which
were accompanied by a string of hit singles and videos and corresponded
with the 1983 debut of his signature dance, the "moonwalk" — propelled
him to the height of his stardom.

meant very much to me and seemed to be received so beautifully by the
public and the world," he said. "I enjoyed it very much."

Asked to pick a single song as his greatest achievement, Jackson went back to the same period.

"Oh boy, that’s a hard one," he said, before singling out "We Are the World," "Billie Jean" and "Thriller."

But Jackson was not content to rest on his laurels, saying,
"I am still looking forward to doing a lot of great things."

He hopes to release new music and tour, though he doesn’t have dates set.

"I am writing all the time," he said. "I love composing and the
whole thing. But I am also raising my children and enjoying it and
teaching them to ride bicycles and how to read. I love it."

He said he hopes to "be myself" in his future work, but also that he is
"inspired by many great artists," noting he wished he could have worked
with James Brown or Fred Astaire.

He sees his influence in some of today’s artists, specifically mentioning Chris Brown.

He said he sacrificed his childhood with "a lot of hard work," and that he remembers "giving up your life for the medium."

But he’d do it all again.

"I think I would," he said. "It is very much worth it. I have always
loved show business and have always enjoyed making people happy through
that medium. I love the celebration of music and dance and art. I just
love it."

Asked if he’d like his two sons and daughter to have the same
sort of upbringing as him, he said he’d prefer to let them "enjoy their
childhood as much as possible."

"I let them go to the arcade and go to the movies and do
things," he said. "I want them to get to do the kind of things I didn’t
get to do. So, I fill them with a lot of enjoyment that way — a lot of
amusement. You know?

get pretty emotional when I see them having a wonderful time," he
added, "when they are on a ride and they are screaming and they are
happy. … It makes me emotional, ’cause I see they are having a real
good time."

Jackson said his kids "love music … they are very much into the arts," but that, "I don’t push them."

If he could go back and give himself some advice at age 9 or 10,
the approximate age of his oldest children, he would advise himself,
"if you are going to do it, commit yourself, know your craft and be
really involved." He’d say to be strong and to have "rhinoceros skin"
when it comes to dealing with the pressures of fame.

Perhaps Jackson learned to have a thick skin after enduring years of controversies.

Born Aug. 29, 1958, in gritty Gary, Ind., Jackson rose to fame
as the youngest member of the brother act, The Jackson 5. The group
released its first single on the Motown label in 1969, when Jackson was
11 years old, and enjoyed a string of hits in the early 1970s.

The group eventually became known as The Jacksons, and Jackson also had hits as a child solo artist and actor.

Google / ABC News


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any measure, Michael Jackson’s ‘Thriller’ is arguably one of the most
successful albums of all time.

It earned him eight Grammys in 1984.


The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Yes, Michael Jackson turns 50 this Friday, and it’s been more than 25 years since he released his finest album.
The years that surround Jackson’s 1982 magnum opus, “Thriller,”
marked major shifts in pop music, from the underground to the top of
the charts.

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