Motown 25′: Michael’s 1st Moonwalk

Sources: AZ Central – By Ed Masely| All Things Michael

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It barely lasts three seconds. Blink and you’ll miss half of it. But even after all these years, the sight of Michael Jackson in his prime unveiling his signature dance move — a series of backward glides we’ve learned to call the moonwalk — while performing “Billie Jean” on “Motown 25: Yesterday, Today, Forever” is fascinating television.

You can hear the audience go wild as though they’d just experienced the most amazing thing ever. In the midst of a song then enjoying a seven-week run at No. 1 onBillboard’s Hot 100, you can hear the excitement level surge.

See for yourself when the Emmy Award-winning special returns to television for the first time since it aired that night in 1983 at 8 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 28, on KAET.

Mary Wilson was there the night show was taped, performing as part of a Supremes reunion with Diana Ross and Cindy Birdsong. She remembers being blown away by the moment that marked Michael Jackson’s arrival as the King of Pop.

“Michael and the Jackson 5 became the focal point,” she says, “because it was as new for all of us as it was for the audience. And I would say that perhaps the highlight of the whole show was just seeing him emerge as this new talent. None of us had seen that. This was new. It was a growth. And it was fascinating, as it is today. He became an international star far beyond what any of us had done at Motown at that point.”

Versions of the moonwalk, in which Jackson appears to be trying to move forward while being pulled backward by an unseen force, had been floating around for decades.

“Those of us old enough that we had grown up watching Jackie Wilson doing all of those great moves,” Wilson says, “Michael Jackson took that with James Brown and created a whole new movement, a new dance. So that was very exciting.”

As exciting as it may have been, though, Wilson points to Marvin Gaye’s as her favorite performance of the night.

“I remember when we used to do the Motown Revue tours,” she says, “he was the one everybody wanted to watch. And it was the same that night. I mean, I can’t mention Marvin Gaye enough. Marvin was like an angel. He’s one of those people, I know they say Elvis is the king, but Marvin should be the king as well.”

Other key performances include Smokey Robinson’s reunion with the Miracles, a Stevie Wonder medley and a battle of the bands between the Four Tops and Temptations.

As for Wilson’s performance with the Supremes on the chart-topping “Someday We’ll Be Together”?

“Well, our performance was probably not as fascinating as I would have wanted it to be,” she says. “Everybody else’s performance, to me, was more exciting than ours. And I was not very happy about that. But you know, you have to take life as it comes and it was one of those things where we had to understand that we were just in different places.”

The tension between the Supremes was never personal, she says.

“It was always more about business. That’s one of the sad things that happens sometimes if you’re not family. Sometimes the business gets in the way and you just can’t get ahead of it. So I just tried to have as much fun as I could and still enjoy it. For me, once you’re on that stage, you’re there. So I had to enjoy that moment.”

Despite her disappointment in her performance, Wilson’s memories of the night are mostly positive.

“It’s really more of a family reunion situation because all of the artists, the writers, the producers, we all kind of grew up together,” Wilson says. “We were all very young. So the television special was really like a family reunion, us coming together. We had so much more fun backstage than probably the people out front watching it. Or, should I say, as much fun. Marvin Gaye came in and all the girls were just like, ‘Oh my God, Marvin. He’s still so cute.’ It was a wonderful, wonderful gathering.”

Wilson is thrilled to know the show is coming back to television after more than 30 years.

“The Motown artists inspired most of the people who are out there today,” Wilson says. “I can’t wait to hear what the young people who see it today, what they think. Because when they see this special, it is definitely professionalism at its best. When we used to work on shows with other artists, you could always tell the Motown artists by their professionalism. So I think the world is going to relive a beautiful moment in what show business should be like.”

Motown 25: Yesterday, Today, Forever

When: 8 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 28, on Channel 8 (KAET).

 

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Michael Jackson Listed As One Of The Top 10 Global Recording Artists Of 2014

Sources: IFPI | Edited By – All Things Michael

Michael Jackson Performs Live In Rotterdam

Taylor Swift has has been given the IFPI Global Recording Artist of 2014 Award after being named as the world’s biggest-selling artist last year. The annual award honors the most popular recording artist across music downloads, streaming and physical format sales worldwide.

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IFPI Top 10 global recording artists of 2014 are:

Taylor Swift
One Direction
Ed Sheeran
Coldplay
AC/DC
Michael Jackson
Pink Floyd
Sam Smith
Katy Perry

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“Thriller Mom” Finally Gives Birth!

Sources: Baby Center – By Michelle Stein| All Things Michael

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Last week, I wrote about Bonnie Northsea, the very pregnant mom who tried inducing labor by dancing to Michael Jackson’s “Thriller.”

Now, Northsea is back to share her beautiful birth story — as well as her advice to overdue moms-to-be.

The Gainesville, FL, mom welcomed little Willem Wolf Northsea at 11:04 p.m. on Feb. 19. Weighing in at 9 pounds and measuring 20.75 inches long, Willem made his grand entrance with a home water birth. And the photos are absolutely stunning!

Check out this touching photo slideshow of his birth story, courtesy of Stacey Steinberg Photography.

The entire labor and delivery lasted just over two hours, Northsea told BabyCenter. Willem came so fast, in fact, that the midwives and birth photographer, Stacey Steinberg, barely made it in time for the delivery.

Thankfully, Northsea’s husband, Michael — who was recently diagnosed with testicular cancer — was able to fully participate in his son’s birth. If you remember, Northsea’s original ‘Thriller’ induction dance was created in the hopes that Michael could be present for the delivery in between chemotherapy sessions.

“The medical recommendation was to avoid skin to skin contact with our newborn son for 48 hours after his chemo treatment due to the poison secretion from his pores,” Northsea explained. “My husband completed his last chemo session at 5 p.m. on Tuesday and Willem was born at 11:04 p.m. on Thursday. He was able to cut the cord after it had finalized pulsating and was able to support me during difficult contractions in the water.”

Northsea described her home water birth as a “dream labor and delivery.”

“All of the adrenaline, natural hormones and the calm at home environment contributed to this powerful rush that I was able to feel at the time of birth,” she wrote. “In this moment, I felt that I could conquer anything. The natural pains immediately dissolved once he was delivered and I smiled/cried tears of joy as we grabbed him out of the water.”

Wondering if any of Northsea’s home induction techniques actually worked? While her dance moves were impressive, they didn’t end up naturally kick-starting the delivery process. (And neither did eating spicy food, exercising or having intimate relations with her spouse.) Once her membranes were swept after a stress test performed at 41 weeks pregnant, however, labor shortly followed.

To other overdue mamas who are anxious to meet their little ones, Northsea had this to say:

“Please know that there is a reason why you are late past your due date. Your baby is just not yet done cooking and although the ‘wait game’ can be the most difficult, it is something that many women go through; you are not alone … Hang in there and remember to treasure every day of being pregnant as it will surely come to an end very soon.”

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Tayo’s OUR ROOTS Black History Month Cartoon Series Features Michael Jackson

Sources: Tayo | Edited By – All Things Michael

TAYO Fatunla is a cartoonist, designer, illustrator, caricaturist, storyteller and cartoon tutor. In additional to being a visual communicator and motivational speaker, he is also a member of CartoonArts International/New York Times Syndicate, Cartoon Movement, Cartooning For Peace and Cagle.com.

For Black History Month, he has created a collection of cartoon illustrations of famous black Americans entitled OUR ROOTS.

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Caption: Michael Jackson

At the age of 21, King of Pop, Michael Joseph Jackson (1958-2009) was already a legend in popular music having enjoyed success with his brothers as lead singer of the Jackson Five and later lead singer with the Jacksons. His many changing faces is now part of global history.

Jackson was born in Gary, Indiana of native american Indian descendants. Jackson’s “Thriller” (1982) is the biggest selling record in history which helped to breakdown racial barriers. He was a singer, writer, actor, dancer and shrewd businessman.

Michael Jackson the entertainer with the most universal appeal in human history had notable hit songs such as “Billie Jean,” “Black or White,” “Ben,” and “Smooth Criminal.”

DAKS “Michael Jackson” Style Jackets

Source: All Things Michael |DAKS

DAK’s luxury clothing designers showcased their autumn/winter collection on February 20, 2015 inLondon. The models sported jackets and hats which resembled a chic bikers’ theme, with a 60’s twist.

We couldn’t help but notice that a few jackets resemble Michael Jackson’s famous tailored jackets with the buckles, zippers, ribbed textures and flaps.  Take a look.

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See more styles below:

Students Study Michael Jackson For Black History Month

Source: Loudoun County Schools | All Things Michael

American pop-star Michael Jackson performs during his "HIStory World Tour" concert in Vienna in this file photo

Loudoun County, VA – Loundoun County Public Schools will celebrate National African American History Month for February in honor of the achievements and culture of black Americans.

Catoctin Elementary will feature an activity called, “Discovering the Composer, the Singer, the Songwriter, the Dancer, the Experience of Michael Jackson” for the entire month of February. Students will experience the music of African-American musician Michael Jackson. They will use the interactive Nintendo Wii Michael Jackson game to dance and listen to his music.

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Legacy Elementary will study African-American music. Students will perform African-American singing games and songs, experience African-American styles of music, such as ragtime, blues and jazz. Students also will study the music of famous African-American musicians including: Sammy Davis Jr., Lena Horne, Chevalier de Saint-Georges, Duke Ellington, Scott Joplin, Ella Fitzgerald, Dizzy Gillespie, Louis Armstrong, Nat “King” Cole, Marian Anderson, Ray Charles and Michael Jackson. This activity will also take place throughout the month of February.

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The Grammy Foundation Legacy Recognizes Charitable Organizations

Sources: FDRMX | All Things Michael

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The Grammy Foundation Legacy Concert featured performances by Aloe BlaccMelissa Etheridge, John Mellencamp, Walk the Moon, Robin ThickeDeborah Cox, Willie Nelson, and more. The concert recognized organizations for their philanthropic work, and the event celebrates a different theme each year – this year’s theme was “Lean On Me.” The foundation paid tribute to the best-known benefit shows and music charities of the last five decades.

Farm Aid, True Colors (pro-LGBT charity), and Live Aid were some of the charities that were recognized. Although Cyndi Lauper‘s charity True Colors was recognized, she was unable to attend the event due to a last minute family emergency. The Plain White T‘s were asked to replace Lauper at the last minute, and they performed her hit song, “True Colors.” The Concert of Bangladesh was also honored, and Aloe Blacc and Melissa Etheridge paid tribute to the concert by performing “While My Guitar Gently Weeps.”

Farm Aid is a non-profit organization whose mission is to keep farmers on their land. The board members of Farm Aid include Willie Nelson, Neil Young, John Mellencamp, and Dave Matthews (who joined the charity in 2001). Nelson, Young, and Mellencamp have been organizing Farm Aid concerts since 1985, and it has featured over 400 recording artists. To date, Farm Aid has raised over $45 million dollars for farm families.

Live Aid raises money for extreme poverty in Africa. The founders of the charity, Midge Ure and Bob Geldof, started the Live Aid concerts in 1985. Live Aid concerts have been viewed by more than billions of people, and featured performances by U2, Elton John, Run DMC, Madonna, Queen, Patti LaBelle, and countless other musicians. “We Are the World” was a charitable song written by Michael Jackson and Quincy Jones, and it was performed at a Live Aid concert in 1985; the song raised over $63 million dollars for aid in Africa and the US, and he record sold over ten million copies in the US. All of the proceeds went towards poverty relief. Michael Jackson, Tina Turner, Paul Simon, Bruce Springsteen, Cyndi Lauper, and other recording artists were featured on “We Are the World.” Live 8 was a part of the Live Aid charity. It conducted eight benefit concerts all around the world. Live Aid and Live 8 concerts have raised over $150 million dollars for famine relief in Africa.

 

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Smooth Moves: Slim Down To A Cool Michael Jackson Inspired Workout

Sources: SiLive.com | All Things Michael

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STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. — If raising the arms was painful for a co-worker this week, he or she might have been at the Slim Down.

Fitness director Donny D-Fine Brandefine led a Michael Jackson Workout Party at the Bernikow Jewish Community Center for the free 10-week program’s second Fitness Surprise.

Dressed for the part in a sparkly fedora, Brandefine had the 250-plus crowd (full disclosure, we have to get better at counting) “dancing” through moves with their  their ams in the air, and with a variety of squats, planks, push-ups and sit-ups.

Fitness Director at the Bernikow JCC, Donny "D-Fine" Brandefine, second from right, led the Fitness Surprise in a Michael Jackson Workout Party. He is joined by John Lamberti, group exercise coordinator; Joe Goonan, head trainer, and Nikhil Meiner, trainer. (Staten Island Advance/Kathryn Carse)

Fitness Director at the Bernikow JCC, Donny “D-Fine” Brandefine, second from right, led the Fitness Surprise in a Michael Jackson Workout Party. He is joined by John Lamberti, group exercise coordinator; Joe Goonan, head trainer, and Nikhil Meiner, trainer. (Staten Island Advance/Kathryn Carse)

Yes, those co-workers may have been getting in and out of the chairs slowly too.

It wasn’t only the arms. Abs, glutes, legs and back, are on also on the list of muscles that got some action.

Brandefine contributed his own “gravity defying,” ab and glute exercise, inspired by Michael Jackson’s leaning on air in “Smooth Criminal.”  Let’s just say the crowd leaned back for an amazing stretch.

Donny "D-Fine" Brandefine led the packed gym in his own gravity defying, ab and glute exercise, inspired by Michael Jackson's "Smooth Criminal."

Donny “D-Fine” Brandefine led the packed gym in his own gravity defying, ab and glute exercise, inspired by Michael Jackson’s “Smooth Criminal.”

There was one well earned water break, but the evening wasn’t all about how much torture we could endure.

Fernie and Joan Godette got each other laughing like a pair of newlyweds. It was the Meiers Corners couple’s first Slim Down. She suggested it and he agreed.

“She didn’t think I would come, but I fooled her. I’m happy I came and got a good workout,” said Godette.

“I’m definitely gonna come back,” said Mrs. Godette.

Not everyone at the Slim Down is getting into shape. Great Kills resident Rob O’Connor is trim and muscular from working out with his girlfriend three to four times a week, but he has a good reason to come to the Fitness Surprise.

“I’m here to support my dad and help him lose weight,” said the 25-year-old. “It’s hard to go by yourself. So I’m doing the opposite of when you are a kid and your dad says, ‘I’ll hold your hand till you don’t need me.’ ”

“I taught him how to play golf; I think it’s a fair trade,” quipped his dad Charles.

Brandefine also demonstrated he is not stuck in the 80s when he produced a selfie stick and took this picture.

 

See workout clip here

 

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