I grew up listening to Michael Jackson, like many, and have continued my love for his music through adulthood. I am unexpectedly a little distraught over his untimely passing--feelings which have taken me by surprise. I took some time today to reflect on the man, his music, and his accomplishments. And in going through his music for much of the day it dawned on me that, perhaps more so than any other artist I listen to, his music got me through the good times and bad of adolescence and beyond. And for that, I'm forever indebted.
Much of the discussion revolving around MJ will no doubt settle on the ugly parts of his life and the Media/tabloid fascination with the King of Pop. So I'd like to use this space to remind others that beyond his catchy dance tunes, Jackson put out some very thoughtful, politically charged music. Three songs immediately come to mind, and I share them below: They Don't Care About Us, Heal the World, and Earth Song. These songs (and there are others) remind us that besides being popular worldwide, Michael Jackson was truly global citizen.
Before performing Heal the World for a Super Bowl audience, Jackson spoke from his heart. We would do well to heed his words:
"Today we stand together all around the world, joined in a common purpose to re-make the planet into a haven of joy and understanding and goodness. No one should have to suffer, especially our children."
This genius will be missed.