In this bestselling autobiography, the legendary King of Pop Michael Jackson breaks his barrier of silence and candidly talks about his public and private life. Moonwalk
covers his childhood, the early Jackson 5 days, his time spent at Motown and Epic records, and his phenomenal, recording-breaking solo career. Michael Jackon, who was an intensely private megastar, even responds to bizarre rumors and controversy (like the ones about his plastic surgery- Chapter 5). He shares his inspiration behind his music, his first loves, and his friendship with other famous stars. The book also includes many never-seen-before photos from the Jackson family archives and Michael’s personal collection.
Like many people all over the world, I was saddened by Michael’s untimely death (Thursday, June 25 at 2:26 pm). As I listened to his songs being played continuously on the radio and watched all of the TV and internet coverage, I wanted to find out more about the man I grew up listening to. Some of his words, recorded about 20 years ago, are absolutely chilling to read now that he has passed away. Chapter One: Just Kids With a Dream "I remember singing at the top of my voice and dancing with real joy and working too hard for a child.
" – Michael Jackson
There was little time for playing in the little 3-room house in Gary, Indiana. Michael Jackson, the 7th of 9 children, learned discipline and hard work from his parents, Joe and Katherine. The boys rehearsed after school and on weekends, non-stop. Michael reveals his regret that he didn’t have a better relationship with his father, who managed the singing group. Michael says watching the dance moves of James Brown, Jackie Wilson, and the O’Jays in his early days was an “important part of his education”. Chapter Two: The Promised Land “I’m gonna make you the biggest thing in the world.”
– Berry Gordy
Berry Gordy predicted that the Jackson 5 would have 3 number one records in a row – a feat that was almost unheard of. But it happened!
“I Want You Back” (Nov. 1969) – sold 2 million copies in 6 weeks
“ABC” (March 1970) – sold 2 million copies in 3 weeks
“The Love You Save” (June 1970) – went to number 1
Gordy and the Motown family insisted on perfection. They controlled everything about the Jackson 5, how they dressed, the songs they sang, what they said during interviews. Michael writes about the long days and nights touring on the road. To let off a little steam, the boys would stage pillow fights, shaving cream wars, and throw paper bags full of water off the hotel balconies. But it was not all fun and games. He remembers the terrifying mobs of crazed fans who demolished department stores just to get a piece of the Jackson 5. Chapter Three: Dancing Machine “I myself have never even tried drugs – no marijuana, no cocaine, nothing.”
– Michael Jackson
In this chapter, Jackson tries to dispel some of the rumors. He tells about the problems they begin having with Motown and their subsequent switch to Epic Records. They changed their name to the Jacksons and went on a World Tour. Michael starred in the motion picture The Wiz with Diana Ross. He hoped to “someday devote a lot of time to making films”…but he never did. Chapter Four: Me and Q
“I believe I’m one of the loneliest people in the world.”
– Michael Jackson
As a megastar, Michael found it difficult to find somebody who would be his friend just because she liked him, not because of who he was. He talks of the women in his life, including Tatum O’Neal (his first real date), Brooke Shields, and Elizabeth Taylor (see link to her autobiography below). He admits he was “hurt and jealous” when he heard that Diana Ross had gotten married. But had other things to keep him busy, his solo album “Off the Wall”, which was produced by the legendary Quincy Jones. Chapter Five: The Moonwalk “If this album doesn’t do as well as Off the Wall, will you be disappointed?”
– Quincy Jones
The album in question, Thriller, not only did as well as Off the Wall, it became the biggest selling album of time (The Guiness Book of World Records). Michael collaborated with Paul McCartney to produce “Say Say Say” and “The Girl is Mine.” But it was the MTV videos for “Billie Jean”, “Beat It”, and “Thriller” that caused the album to explode in popularity. Each one was a like a mini-motion picture. “Beat It” featured actual gang members from LA. Chapter Six: All You Need Is Love “Leave me alone!”
– Michael Jackson
The infamous Pepsi commercial. Michael suffered third-degree burns on the back of his head. Doctors said he was lucky to be alive. Once more Michael Jackson is in the negative spotlight. In this last chapter, Michael talks about the price of fame, the difference in his relationships with his sisters Janet and LaToya, and the joy he gets from being around children.
I admit I have been fascinated by the Jackson family, so I also read a biography about Michael's sister Janet. Click on the link below to read my thoughts about the Janet Jackson biography.
is a fascinating book to read about a musical genius who touched the hearts of millions of people all over the world.