Friday, 26 June 2009

Blame it on the boogie


The news outlets did not seem to know what to do with the Michael Jackson story. Should they stick to celebration? Should they question the manner of his death? Should they bring up the allegations that dogged his later life? A biographer on Radio 4 bizarrely actually described the controversy surrounding Jackson as 'boring'.

Jackson was my exact contemporary, which in itself seems very weird. When I was twelve it seemed exciting that there was this hugely talented kid, the same age as me - and so much cooler (well, everything is relative) than that other talented twelve year, old, Donny Osmond.

He provided part of the soundtrack to my college life, both with the Jacksons and solo. His music would be played at every disco and party and he was held in enormous affection I remember. It was infectiously happy music.The Jacksons were not exactly Funkadelic (you could do the Charleston to Blame It On The Boogie) but everyone seemed to genuinely like them, and Michael in particular.

By a spooky bit of prescience, I was showing my son the Thriller video on YouTube the other day - that and Beat It. I'm not quite sure what he made of it. I can remember staying up to watch the Thriller video. Everyone did. Jackson was already quite strange by then, though. He is arguably scarier as 'himself' than when he changes into the werewolf.

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