Michael Jackson started out with his brothers as part of the Jackson 5 and when the group released their first single I Want You Back in 1969 it went straight to number one - Michael was just 11 years old.
Michael went solo with Off the Wall in 1978 but four years later it was Thriller that redefined pop, selling 65 million copies. Michael was transformed into a zombie for the iconic 14 minute video.
By the early 1980's tabloid speculation about the secretive star was running high as the King of Pop moved into his Neverland ranch with accompanying zoo. Pet chimp Bubbles became his famous companion.
Michael released bad in 1987 and embarked on his first solo world tour, with seven sell-out dates at Wembley setting a new attendance record. The star flew above the audience in a special crane.
Michael married Lisa Marie Presley back in 1994 after first meeting her in 1975. She appeared in the music video for You Are Not Alone. They divorced less than two years later.
In 1997 Michael married nurse Debbie Rowe and has his first child - Prince Michael. A year later daughter Paris Michael Katherine was born. The couple divorced in 1999.
Michael took to the stage with pop princess Britney Spears in 2001 to celebrate his 30th anniversary as a solo artist. They sang The Way You Make Me Feel together in New York.
A warrant was issued for Michael's arrest in 2003 on charges of molesting a 14-year-old boy. Following a five-month trial which ended in 2005, the singer was found not guilty on all charges.
In 2006 Michael returned to the stage for a performance of We Are The World during the World Music Awards. Some fans demanded a refund as they thought he was going to sing Thriller.
In recent years Michael has moved out of his Neverland home and is now living in Dubai. His 50th birthday bash was held at Planet Hollywood in Las Vegas.