The first album I ever bought with my own money was Dianna Ross Presents The Jackson 5. I listed to that album over and over and over. And over. And then a little more. Jackie, Tito, Jermaine, Marlon and Michael made music like I'd never heard before. Yeah, it was pretty much classic Motown with alot of remakes, but you have to remember something - I was born a poor white child with very little exposure to anything or anyone who wasn't white. It wasn't a choice, that's just what upper east Tennessee was like in the late 60's and early 70's.
Fast forward about 13 years to 1983. (Yes, the album debuted in late '82, but got most of its early play in '83.) Michael has turned into the King of Pop. He's as hot as anyone could be in the music industry. He comes out with Thriller, the greatest selling album of all time with over 100 million sold. (To put this into perspective, the second best selling album of all time is AC/DC's Back in Black at 42 million.) Soon after the album's release, they came out with The Making of Thriller on VHS. I couldn't afford to buy it since I was a poor white college student, but Hill's Department Store played it non-stop in their electronics department. I used to go over there a couple of times a week and watch it. As someone who has never been able to dance, I was amazed by the dancing.
The video itself debuted on MTV (back when they still played music videos) in December of 1983. I read that Michael Jackson fans and impersonators were going to meet at Madame Tussauds wax museum in New York yesterday to try to break the Guinness Book record of most people doing a simultaneous Thriller dance.
I know things are always going to change, but I sure do wish my girls could have seen Michael Jackson when he was normal.....