Friday, 23 November 2012

Thoughts on 'Michael Jackson: The Magic and the Madness' by J. Randy Taraborrelli

I've been a fan of Michael Jackson's music and in awe of him as an entertainer from a young age, but it's only until very recently, as an adult - at 28 years old, that I've become interested in him as a person. At this particular time in my life, I have become curious to learn and read about the most influential and interesting people in history. For example: Martin Luther King, Nelson Mandela, Mother Teresa, Malcolm X, Winston Churchill and so on. Michael Jackson seemed like a logical choice when compiling my list. He was, it could be argued, the most influential and most successful entertainer that has ever lived, and a very curious character with a very unique life's journey.

I am not and never have been one of the 'crazed fan' types who put Michael on a pedestal, believing he could do no wrong. I believe if I did so, I'd have been a contributor to his premature demise. That is to say, ultimately I believe certain factors, which include the 'god' worshiping of and the propaganda by the tabloids to paint a picture of Michael as a 'freak', led to the dehumanisation of Michael Jackson and ultimately his death.

One of the biggest conclusions that J. Randy's book left me with, was that what Michael really needed was some 'tough love' from someone whom was unswayed by his status and wealth. For every person that told Michael 'no' there was a person that would say 'yes'. There was his family, of course, but unfortunately it would appear they had their own selfish agendas to control Michael for their own means. Thus, understandably, Michael pushed them further and further away. Then there was Lisa Marie Presley, probably the only person that could have potentially made a difference, and she did, for a time.

But I'm afraid the salvation of Michael evidently was impossible. If you didn't give Michael what he wanted, he'd find someone that did. Hell knows there's enough greedy and selfish people in the world as there are good ones.

When I began reading this book, I was skeptical, skeptical that the author was maybe just another 'tabloid junkie' writing more sensationalist and bias garbage. However, after completing around 30 pages I began to realise that maybe, just maybe, this author was doing his utmost to be objective and withholding his personal biases (if there were any).

Overall I found the book an interesting read. I'd suggest, however, taking everything that is stated as fact with a grain of salt. Unfortunately the real truth only Michael knew. God rest his soul.

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