Michael Joseph Jackson (August 29, 1958 – June 25, 2009)
Michael was alot of things but he will primarily be known for his kookiness and his music. An American recording artist, entertainer, father and businessman and also known as the King of Pop, he has been recognised as the most successful entertainer or all time by the Guinness World Records.
Starting his music career in 1964 with his siblings as the Jackson 5 and going solo in 1971, his career spanned four decades.
His 1982 album Thriller is the best-selling album of all time and other awards of note are
- Multiple Guinness World Records
- 13 Grammy Awards
- The Grammy Legend Award
- The Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award
- 26 American Music Awards including the "Artist of the Century" and "Artist of the 1980s"
- 13 number-one singles in the United States (solo artist)
- Jackson won hundreds of awards, which made him the most-awarded recording artist in the history of popular music
- On his 52nd birthday on August 29, 2010, he became the most downloaded artist of all time
Jackson's memorial service was held on July 7, 2009. Members of the public could attend on a 'lottery style' basis - 1.6 million fans applied and 8,750 were drawn at random. Jackson's casket was present during the memorial but no information was released about the final disposition of the body.
The memorial service was one of the most watched events in online streaming history. The U.S. audience was estimated by Nielsen to be 31.1 million (35.1 million - burial of former president Ronald Reagan and 33.1 million Americans - 1997 funeral for Princess Diana).
Stevie Wonder, Lionel Richie, Mariah Carey, John Mayer, Jennifer Hudson and Usher, Jermaine Jackson, and Shaheen Jafargholi all performed at the event.
Eulogies were given by Berry Gordy and Smokey Robinson with Queen Latifah reading "We had him", a poem written for the occasion by Maya Angelou.