[an error occurred while processing this directive]
One-Minute World News
Your news when you want it
News Front Page
Science & Environment
Also in the news
Video and Audio
Have Your Say
RELATED BBC SITES
ON THIS DAY
Thursday, 15 January, 2004, 17:27 GMT
E-mail this to a friend
The life of Michael Jackson
Michael Joseph Jackson born Gary Indiana.
Age 4 Michael Jackson joins brothers Marlon Tito Jackie and Jermaine in their family group The Jackson 5
Michael Jackson's father Joe a steel mill crane operator dreamed of becoming a blues musician. When it became clear his plans were going nowhere he transferred his attentions to his children. In 1962 younger boys Michael and Marlon joined Jackie Tito and Jermaine in the Jackson 5. The group quickly gained a reputation winning talent competitions across the United States.
10yearold Michael and his brothers sign contract with Motown records after auditioning for label boss Berry Gordy
Jackson Five achieve first US number one single with I Want You Back
The Jackson 5 are an overnight success. Debut single I Want You Back sells two million copies in the US alone and storms to number one there quickly followed by ABC The Love You Save and I'll Be There. Success in the US is matched in the UK with the Jacksons' first four singles all entering the Top 10.
ABC tops the US charts I Want You Back reaches number two in the UK
Releases first solo single Got To Be There
With his childish appeal and soaring voice Michael Jackson quickly became the star of the Jackson 5. When MGM records realised the solo potential of 12yearold Donny Osmond from Jackson 5 rivals the Osmonds Motown followed suit. An instant US hit the ballad Got To Be There reached number seven in the UK in February 1972.
First solo US number one single with Ben a song from a sentimental film about a pet rat
Makes bigscreen debut as a scarecrow in fantasy movie The Wiz
Jackson is cast as the scarecrow in an allblack remake of the Wizard of Oz. The film bombs among critics and at the box office. During the shoot rumours circulate about Jackson's bizarre behaviour with the singer apparently leaving the set each night without removing his makeup.
Releases first solo album Off The Wall
Off The Wall established Michael Jackson as a credible adult performer. Produced by Quincy Jones whom Jackson had worked with on the soundtrack to The Wiz the album captured a modern soul sound with tracks such as Don't Stop 'Til You Get Enough and Rock With You. The album topped the charts on both sides of the Atlantic.
Wins Grammy award for best vocal performance with Dont Stop Til You Get Enough
One Day In Your Life becomes Michael Jacksons first UK number one single
Releases second album Thrilller duets with Paul McCartney on The Girl Is Mine
Released in December 1982 Thriller saw Michael Jackson hit his stride with a stylish mix of disco and pop. As a prelude Jackson released The Girl Is Mine a ballad duet with Paul McCartney.
Massive hits with Billie Jean and Beat It. Performs the moonwalk for the first time on TV.
In February 1983 the Thriller album goes to the top of the US album charts where it stays for 37 weeks. Hit single Billie Jean tops the US and UK charts while followups Beat It Wanna Be Startin' Something and the title track all hit the top 10. Each is promoted by an imaginative video including an 11minute clip for the Thriller single featuring horror legend Vincent Price and Jackson turning into a werewolf.
Stories about bizarre lifestyle begin to circulate. Reunites with brothers for the Victory tour
Jackson wins eight Grammy awards while Thriller reaches 20 times platinum status. However his personal life attracts growing press attention. A number of apocryphal stories emerge Michael lives with a pet chimp called Bubbles apparently true he sleeps in a hypobaric oxygen chamber later denied. The singer's changing appearance seemingly due to plastic surgery is also widely noted. In the midst of solo success Jackson rejoins his brothers for the Victory tour.
Cowrites US charity single We Are The World
With famine devastating Ethiopia and in the year of Live Aid Jackson cowrites USA For Africa charity record We Are The World with Lionel Richie. However relations with former collaborator Paul McCartney turn sour when Jackson buys the publishing rights to a large chunk of the Beatles' back catalogue.
Releases third album Bad
Although containing a further run of hit singles including I Just Can't Stop Loving You The Way You Make Me Feel and Man In The Mirror Jackson's third album is dismissed by some critics for having less substance than his earlier work. Despite mixed reviews the album quickly becomes another multimillion seller and Jackson sets off on a massive world tour.
Releases autobiography Moonwalker.
Thriller is certified 21 times platinum making it the worlds biggestselling album of all time
Fourth solo album Dangerous is released
After a long gap Jackson returns with new producer Teddy Riley at the helm and a new danceorientated pop sound. The album is preceded by single Black Or White featuring guitarist Slash from rockers Guns N' Roses. The accompanying 11minute video features people of different races including Jackson 'morphing' into one another. Jackson's increasingly pallid complexion leads to speculation that the singer has undergone some form of skinlightening treatment.
Interview with chat show host Oprah Winfrey
In an effort to dispel some of the bizarre rumours surrounding his personal life Jackson invites Oprah Winfrey to his Neverland ranch. In an hourlong interview he speaks of the abuse he suffered as a child at the hands of his father and the health condition which he says has caused his skin to lighten. In June Jackson launches his Dangerous world tour.
Accused of abusing 11yearold Jordy Chandler
Jackson's squeaky clean image is dealt a severe blow when the family of 11yearold Jordy Chandler accuse Jackson of abusing the boy at his Neverland ranch. Police raid Neverland while the singer is on tour in the Far East. The tour ends prematurely with Jackson cancelling a number of dates blaming dehydration.
Settles child abuse case out of court Marries LisaMarie Presley
Jackson settles his child abuse case out of court with an estimated 20m payment to the Chandler family. In the same year Jackson stuns the world by marrying Elvis' daughter LisaMarie Presley. The marriage is seen by some as an attempt to repair the singer's damaged reputation. The couple divorce after 19 months.
Releases HIStory Past Present and Future Book 1 album.
After a difficult couple of years Jackson attempts to get his recording career back on track with an album made up of former hits and new material. The new work is largely wellreceived and Jackson scores big hits in both the US and UK with Scream a duet with his sister Janet You Are Not Alone a collaboration with rising RampB star R Kelly and ecological anthem Earth Song.
Britpop star Jarvis Cocker storms the stage while Jackson performs at the Brit Awards
While performing Earth Song at the UK Brit awards surrounded by choirs of children Jarvis Cocker lead singer of Britpop stars Pulp mounts a oneman stage invasion in protest at Jackson's apparent portrayal of himself as Christ. Jackson says he is "sickened saddened shocked upset cheated and angry" by Cocker's actions.
First son Prince Michael Jackson is born. Inducted into the Rock n roll Hall Of Fame
In an unexpected move Jackson marries nurse Debbie Rowe who is pregnant with the couple's baby. The child is named Prince Michael Jackson. In the same year Jackson releases Blood On The Dance Floor HIStory In The Mix an album containing eight remixes from HIStory Past Present and Future Book 1 and five new songs.
First daughter Paris Michael Katherine born
Divorces Debbie Rowe
Rolling Stone magazine names four songs Billie Jean Rock With You I Want You Back and Beat It in its Greatest 100 Songs Since 1963 chart
Releases Invincible album
Six years since his last album Jackson makes his comeback recruiting hotshot RampB producer Rodney Jerkins in the hope of adopting a contemporary urban sound. However the album is poorly received with critics bemoaning the number of weak ballads and sales are sluggish.
Third child Prince Michael II born to a mystery mother
Jackson causes a stir by precariously holding his youngest son Prince Michael II over the edge of a thirdfloor balcony at a Berlin hotel in an effort to show off the infant to fans. Showbiz friends including Liza Minnelli rally to Jackson defence after claims that the singer is not fit to be a parent circulate in the media.
Arrested on child abuse charges Releases Number Ones compilation
As a result of poor album sales and lavish spending reports emerge that Jackson may be close to bankruptcy. On the eve of the release of new single One More Chance a warrant is issued for Jackson's arrest on charges of sexually abusing a 14year old boy. Jackson surrenders himself to police in Santa Barbara California where he is arrested and handcuffed. Despite his arrest his Number Ones compilation album flies to the top of the charts in the UK.
E-mail this to a friend
How the star's style has changed during lengthy trial
Jackson jury considering verdict
Court hears final speeches
Jury could reduce Jackson charge
Jury awaits judge's instruction
Sides rest cases in Jackson trial
AT A GLANCE
Interactive guide to the trial
VIDEO AND AUDIO
Reaction to verdict
TOP AMERICAS STORIES
US lifts lid on WikiLeaks probe
Iran scientist heads home
Argentina legalises gay marriage
PRODUCTS AND SERVICES
News Front Page
Have Your Say
Week at a Glance
BBC Copyright Notice
Most Popular Now
17,029 pages were read in the last minute.
Back to top ^^
Privacy and cookies policy
About the BBC