I suppose if Michael Jackson had stuck to his music and not become the eccentric figure he was in the latter part of his life, he might not have died quite so soon; but then again, popular culture would have been that much more bland without MJ to pick on. quirkstreet
expands on Michael's musical genius among other geniuses in his journal.
I have two distinct and more-or-less fond memories of Jackson's music:
• The summer when my roommate and ex-BF was practicing the bass guitar part of "I Want You Back" (alongside "The Impression That I Get" by the Mighty Mighty Bosstones) almost nonstop, in order to surprise his brother by playing along with the band at his wedding reception.
• The SMC "That '80's Show" concert in which I reprised Vincent Price's role in "Thriller". I still had the whole speech memorized from the original video all those years ago. It was always funny to me to hear Vincent intoning with great seriousness such expressions as "to terrorize y'all's neighborhood" and "without the soul for getting down".
It occurred to me last evening at dinner that MJ in my opinion was "more to be pitied than censured" as the old song goes. He was in a great sense the Peter Pan of our time who refused to grow up and was pilloried for that much of his life. May he rest in peace.