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By Christine Jean-Pierre

CSMS Magazine Staff writer

June 25, 2009 is the date that will undoubtedly remain unforgettable to many around the globe, for it is the date when the world has unexpectedly lost music’s most iconic figure of the 21st century. Michael Jackson, age 50, suddenly died from cardiac arrest at his home in Bel air, California. In his own autobiography, Michael Jackson conceded he wanted to live to be 100 years old. Unfortunately and inexplicably, he’s only lived to be half of that. But his legacy will definitely live for over a thousand years. No other entertainer has even come close to achieving what the man the world has come to call the king of pop has achieved. For over 4 decades, MJ has worked to instill in the hearts and minds of his fans—scattered across the globe—the infinite bliss that will forever craft his memorabilia as a surreal shrine.  

            Beloved in sub-Saharan Africa, worshiped in Europe, Asia, the Middle East, Latin America and the Caribbean, Michael Jackson is the embodiment of true success in the hectic music industry. His accomplishments, over the years, have literally eclipsed or overshadowed Michael’s enigmatic and sometimes controversial behaviors. In an interview with ABC NEWS magazine Nightline, Haitian-American singer Wyclef Jean admitted the passing of the king of pop is “the worst thing that could happen to his life.” Wyclef went on to say that it will take him some time “to come to grip with the voice that lit the bundle joy in the life of so many and that has just been extinguished.”

            Across the globe, news of MJ’s death has sent shockwaves. Parisian shoppers near the Champs Elizé froze on the news as it spread like a wild fire striking without notice in the still of the Parisian night. According to our Paris correspondent Marie-Jeannine Myrthil, at one point, Downtown Paris looked like a place frozen in time, and the people looked like outdoor manikins in the glamorized Paris streets. Everyone was speechless.            

            Michael Jackson is the entertainer that had the versatility to experiment with various themes and genres. Michael’s music videos were very creative. In the music video industry, Michael Jackson was the first to come up with the ideas of short story themes, about 12 minutes, and strategically calling them “the short films.” Michael Jackson was also a philanthropist. The Humanitarian efforts that Jackson displayed over the years ranged from money donations for poor villages in Africa to visiting the inner-city youth in hard stricken neighborhoods in The United States.

            Michael Jackson was born on August 29, 1958 in Gary, Indiana.  Jackson was the seventh child of Joseph and Katherine Jackson. Jackson began his career as a lead singer with his brothers for the famous Motown band the Jackson 5. Michael released his first solo album under Motown called Got to be there in 1971 which featured the ever popular top 40 single Ben which was about his pet mouse. The second album after the Jackson 5 and under the Epic Label was the famously remembered album Off the wall which was released in 1979 with hit singles such as Rock with you and the number one smash hit Don’t stop till you get enough. The album Off the Wall introduced Jackson as not just the little cute boy who sung lead for the Jacksons but as the entertainer who would soon be known as the future icon of music and dancer for all music genres.

            In 1982 Michael Jackson released the world’s most top selling album to date, which would be the eternal Thriller album that sold 28 million copies. The album featured hit top ten singles such as the title track Thriller, Human Nature, Beat it and Bille Jean. The Thriller video introduced a new genre of short films in the small screen broke down color grounds on the MTV channel and made the new millennium music genre what it is today.

            The Passing of Michael Jackson shocked the hearts of many celebrities, fans such as Madonna quoted from an interview with People Magazine saying I can’t stop crying over the sad news, I’ve always admired Michael Jackson. The world has lost one of the greats, but his music still lives on! Justin Timberlake said We lost a genius and a true ambassador of not only pop music but for all music.  Rapper Ludacris from his Twitter page posted   His music and legacy will live on Forever RIP Michael.  Haitian actor and director Tony Delerme from his Facebook page posted RIP Michael. I will not mourn your death, but I will celebrate your life, as humans we tend to forget that death is part of life. From the minute that you are born, you are one step closer to death. Keep in mind that treating people with love and respect is very important because you never know when your time will come.

            Michael Jackson is survived by his three children, his close relatives and ultimately his millions of fans around the world.  

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