CMT All-Time Top 40: Country Stars Count Down Their Favorite Artists – Michael Jackson #12

Sources: CMT |  | All Things Michael

MJ cowboy hat

Michael Jackson moonwalks in at No. 12 on the list of CMT All-Time Top 40: Artists Choice.

A list of the most influential artists in history chosen by country stars themselves, another honoree is revealed each week on CMT Hot 20 Countdown.

Chris Young, Charlie Worsham, LeAnn Rimes, Kenny Rogers and The Band Perry were just some of the country stars who cited the “king of pop” as a major influence.

“You know, there’s not a lot of people who have sold that many records or had an impact on music in general as much as Michael Jackson,” said Young. “I have a lot of Michael songs downloaded on my phone. It probably rivals any one country artist that I have, except for a couple of guys. I mean, I doubt anybody wouldn’t want to have the size and scope of his musical career, I don’t care what genre you’re in.”

“How can you not respect and love Michael Jackson as an artist,” Worsham agreed. “That’s a persona that didn’t exist until there was Michael.

“He was a part of so many different eras of music, and he’s one of those guys who it didn’t matter whether he was the most popular thing at the time or not, you had to take note of what he was doing. His influence on groove and beat and rhythm and the way he infused dancing and entertainment — not just being a fantastic musician and singer — is something I think we can all learn from, especially in today’s world. You can’t just get up and sing. You have to entertain people, and he was the quintessential entertainer.”

“I think I always seem to relate [to Jackson] in a lot of ways because I was such a kid, too, when I started out,” Rimes said. “To me, he is one of the best singers that’s ever lived and entertainers. He had the most insane voice of any 5-year-old that I’ve ever heard, and the way he connected with the crowd, the way he was so multi-talented and really good at every bit of it. His music … lived on and will live on forever.”

“I met and got to know Michael Jackson pretty well,” Rogers said. “There’s a guy that was so troubled, but he was so talented. I watched that This Is It documentary. The guy … had 19-year-old kids out of breath from dancing with him. … Music wasn’t just something he did. That’s what he was. He was his music. He not only sang great, but he danced great. He understood what his package was and how to do it.”

“Michael Jackson’s one of my very favorite performers of all time,” said Kimberly Perry of The Band Perry. “And actually, when we get ready to put together an ACM or a CMA Awards performance, we start by looking for Michael Jackson videos. We are always intensely inspired by his dancing but also just his presence onstage.

“You know our performance for ‘Done’ at the ACMs [in 2013]? There was this Michael video where he was starting his show, and he popped on to the stage somehow and just stood there. Now, we stood there for like five seconds for dramatic effect [during the ACM performance], but he stood there for about a minute. And the crowd was just roaring.”

“I think it got louder actually,” Neil Perry added.

“I think he’s so cool because he crossed all genre boundaries, national/international boundaries, race boundaries. Everybody was in love with this guy,” Kimberly concluded. “Just a phenomenal entertainer.”

Check out the rest of the CMT All-Time Top 40: Artists Choice list, and find out who will be announced each Saturday at 11 a.m. ET/PT on CMT Hot 20 Countdown.

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Michael Jackson Still Rules Bollywood

Sources: India Today | All Things Michael

Bollywood Award michael jackson 1999 (16)

With Hrithik Roshan paying a tribute to the late Michael Jackson in the title track of his upcoming action thriller Bang Bang!, it has again been highlighted how the King of Pop rules the heart of Bollywood even five years after his death.


Michael Jackson has been an inspiration for several Bollywood icons.

Hrithik gave his own interpretation of MJ’s style in the new song Bang Bang, which he admitted was his tribute to the pop legend. In the past too, he has managed to show some break dance moves just like MJ in a song from the film Krazzy 4.

SRK, too, took some inspiration from Jackson’s hit album Bad for a dance number in Krazzy 4.

Shah Rukh Khan in Krazzy 4 Read more at:

Shah Rukh Khan in Krazzy 4

Mithun Chakravorty was among the first in Bollywood to have been influenced by Jackson. His Disco Dancer image, built over several popular films in the ’80s, was an outcome of his being inspired by MJ’s quirky dance moves.

Mithun Chakravorty Read more at:

Mithun Chakravorty

Actor and AAP leader Javed Jaffery displayed a major influence of MJ in the number Bol Baby Bol from the film, Meri Jung. The dancer, who had shared stage with Jackson at an award ceremony in New York, had created a special episode on his dance show Boogey Woogey dedicated to the late pop legend, when he died in 2009.

Choreographer turned-filmmaker Prabhudheva referred to Michael Jackson as his unofficial dance guru and inspiration.

Prabhu Dheva Read more at:

Prabhu Dheva

He took a leaf out of MJ’s style in the famous ghost dance number Muqabala from Hum Se Hai Muqabla, and recently in the dance film Any Body Can Dance.

Actor Shahid Kapoor, too, paid tribute to MJ at an award show in 2010.


Besides these actors, MJ has also influenced newcomers such as Tiger Shroff and Varun Dhawan. Tiger paid a tribute to “his inspiration” in his debut film Heropanti while Varun, who features in the sequel of Any Body Can Dance, has honoured MJ by getting his tattoo on his forearm.

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Another MJ Tribute? Varun Dhawan Gets Michael Jackson Tattoo

Sources: India Today | All Things Michael


Not just Bollywood actors but a million of people are ‘die hard fan of MJ’ around the world. But suddenly this new trend of paying tribute to Michael Jackson has gripped our industry. After Hrithik Roshan and Tiger Shroff, Varun Dhawan is the latest to join the league.

The ABCD 2 actor was recently spotted with a Michael Jackson tattoo on his right arm.

Few months back Tiger Shroff had released a sensational tribute video for the late king of pop and proved his dancing capabilities.

And recently the title track of Bang Bang features Hrithik pulling off some signature style MJ moves with his own twist.

Varun was spotted getting out of his car, when suddenly the cameras caught the tattoo on his right arm.

Though we are not sure whether the tattoo is temporary gimmick for the film publicity or permanent.

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Tiger Shroff’s Tribute To Michael Jackson (Video)

Sources: Bollywood – Samarth Goyal| All Things Michael


Tiger Shroff recently released a video to pay tribute to Michael Jackson. The video was a mash-up of the song Whistle Baja (from Tiger’s debut film) and Jackson’s hit number, Billie Jean.

The actor has now said he would love to play Michael Jackson if a biopic is ever made on the ­legendary singer. “It’s a toss-up between Bruce Lee and Jackson. These two are my heroes, and I would love to play either of them in a biopic. While I grew up watching Lee’s martial arts sequences in films, I have worshipped Jackson ever since I can remember. I would love to portray his life on screen — from the ’80s when he started getting ­famous till the time, I hate to say, he passed away in 2009,” Tiger says.

About his tribute video for the king of pop, the 23-year-old further said, “Jackson has been my idol. He has been my favourite ever since I started learning dancing. So, for the tribute, I chose Whistle baja, a song that gave me so much ­recognition and love, along with Billie Jean.”

More so because, “Billie Jean was the song in which Jackson ­performed his iconic ­moonwalk for the very first time in 1983,” Tiger added.

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Hrithik Roshan’s Ode To Michael Jackson!

Source: GlamSham | Edits By – All Things Michael


The best dancer in Bollywood, Hrithik Roshan, has danced Michael Jackson’s iconic dance moves in the title track of BANG BANG that is releasing tonight! Check out glimpses of Hrithik doing an MJ in the video that will also feature Katrina Kaif at her smouldering best! This song has been titled BANG BANG and is a complete party number.


Talking about the song and him doing Michael’s moves, Hrithik Roshan says, ”I have idolised Michael Jackson since the time I first moved to a dance beat, I remember learning the moves through play pause mode for hours. I love his style and energy so when Bosco and Sid (Siddharth Anand) said Micheal Jackson, at first I thought there’s no way I could match up, but then I reframed that and did it for my love for him in my own style, my own way and where there is love, there is no fear. That made it fun. The BANG BANG title track itself is outstanding which empowered me further. It’s my ode to the inspiration he has been. This is an out-an-out dance/party track. It’s high on glamour, scale and Katrina and I have danced our hearts out.”


Produced by Fox Star Films, BANG BANG releases on October 2. The film has been directed by Siddharth Anand.

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Michael and Hrithik

Michael and Hrithik

Michael Jackson Talks About The Godliness of His Voice And His Need for Perfection – 1980 Interview

Sources: Laughing Squid | All Things Michael

MJ 1980 album cover

In the second season premiere of the PBS animated series Blank on Blank, the late Michael Jackson talks about the godliness of his voice and his need for perfection in a 1980 interview conducted by music journalist John Pidgeon and seemingly “translated” to Mr. Jackson through his then 13-year old sister,Janet.

My singing it’s just..I’ll just say it simple as possible: it’s just godly. Really it’s just… When I was small I didn’t really know what I was doing. I just sang and it came out sounding pretty good. I just do it and it happens. It’s… I can’t explain it or…It’s no real personal experience or anything that makes it come across. Just a feeling and God, I’ll say. Mainly God.


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Desi Masti Dance School To Close, Final Show Will Be A Michael Jackson Tribute

Sources: – By Yasmin Duffin| All Things Michael


After nearly a dozen years a dance academy in Leicester will be giving their last performance.

Students from Desi Masti, a Bollywood Dance school, in Belgrave, will be closing its doors after 11-and-a-half years.

As their final show, the group will be performing a Michael Jackson tribute piece called Michael Jackson – The Legend Continues at the end of this week.

Owner of Desi Masti, Anand Bhatt, said: “Our students are very sad that this is their last show, but we are very confident that they will all continue to dance locally.”

A statement released by the academy on their Facebook page, said: “Our model has become unsustainable in the wake of new fashions in Bollywood dance.”

Classes will continue up until September 30 but after that, the studio will be taken over by fellow Bollywood Dance company, the Shiamak Davar International.

In their final performance, the students will be dancing alongside international Michael Jackson impersonator Miguel Concha.

Speaking of this week’s show, Anand said: “Michael Jackson is one of the biggest icons of music and dance. His work truly had global appeal.

“And with that view, I am pleased that I can bring Miguel to Leicester and present him with exceptional local talent to work with and create magic.”

Born in Chile, with a Croation nationality, this will be Miguel’s debut performance in the UK.

He is considered a leading tribute look and dance-a-like of Michael Jackson and has been trained by the late star’s own choreographers.

“As a huge Michael Jackson fan I cannot wait to have him perform in Leicester and I’m sure any fan of Michael Jackson will love his performance, I would definitely encourage anyone who is a fan of Michael Jackson to go and see Miguel perform,” Anand added.

Miguel and the dance academy have been exchanging videos over the internet, in preparation for the show.

Miguel said: “I dance all over the world, but these dancers from Leicester picked up and polished the rehearsals in two days – they are very professional.”

The shows will take place at 7pm, from this Thursday until Sunday, September 21, at the Peepul Centre, in Belgrave.

To book tickets or for more information, please call 0116 262 6000.

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Michael In The Mirror: Gary MJ Tribute Artist CJ Williams Dances, Sings And Gives Back

Sources: – By Vanessa Renderman| All Things Michael


Impersonating one of the most famous entertainers of all time is more than wearing a lookalike signature sequined glove and pairing white socks with black pants and shoes.

It’s no surprise that a city so tied to The Jackson 5 would churn out people who want to imitate the family’s brightest star, Michael Jackson.

For fellow Gary native CJ Williams, being a Michael Jackson tribute artist is not about mimicking the spins and splits. It’s about paying homage to the King of Pop.

“I don’t copy Michael 100 percent,” Williams said. “It’s me, changing. A metamorphosis. When people get on stage, they want to play Michael. That makes me mad. You’re imitating an icon.”

Williams, who took third place at a recent talent contest in Gary coinciding with the anniversary of Jackson’s birthday, has spent 12 years as an impersonator.

He has performed in Los Angeles, Philadelphia and Ohio and has plans to take his show farther.

“I’m serious about what I do,” he said. “My outfits are authentic. I have light-up costumes. When I come out there, I come out there ready to perform. There’s no games about that.”

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Williams holds a bachelor’s degree in culinary arts and is an executive chef by trade, but his full-time dedication is to his Jackson impersonation and to his growing entertainment company, which includes a team of dancers, singers and security.

Michael Jackson tribute artist CJ Williams, third from left, along with security team member Donald Gerlad, far left, promoter Merrill Kikkert, second from left, and security team member Carl Brandon hang out at Williams' home. Williams spends most of his time with members of his security team and his promoter. He considers them family.

Michael Jackson tribute artist CJ Williams, third from left, along with security team member Donald Gerlad, far left, promoter Merrill Kikkert, second from left, and security team member Carl Brandon hang out at Williams’ home. Williams spends most of his time with members of his security team and his promoter. He considers them family.

Although he now lives mostly in the Crown Point area, the 32-year-old grew up on the east side of Gary, the youngest of eight children.

“It was a pretty simple life,” he said.

Raised a Jackson fan, Williams remembers dancing to the famous family’s music when he was 5.

“I told my mom, ‘I want to be just like Michael Jackson,'” he said.

Years later, his cousin was impersonating Jackson, which piqued Williams’ interest.

“He said, ‘You’re about his height, weight. And you look like 1985 Michael,'” Williams recalled.

Williams studied Jackson’s moves and vocals for five years and started impersonating.

“I sing,” he said. “I’ve done a track where everyone thinks it’s Michael Jackson, but it’s really me. Everything came natural to me.”

If his empire grows into a money maker, Williams wants to build a homeless shelter and give back to his church. He already has influenced the life of Merrill Kikkert.

Kikkert is Williams’ publicist. They met at a flea market in Gary.

“At first, I thought he was a Jehovah’s Witness,” Kikkert said. “Turns out, he was a Michael Jackson impersonator.”

He told Williams about his life and his struggles.

“He pretty much took me in as a big brother and a dad,” Kikkert said. “We just became very close.”

Raised primarily in Hobart, Kikkert manages the day-to-day schedule and the bills.

“I do a lot of the wardrobe organizing,” Kikkert said.

Williams’ wardrobe sets him apart from other Jackson impersonators.

“I don’t think any other Michael Jackson impersonator out there can touch his wardrobe,” Kikkert said. “He brings his own style. He puts his little touch to it. CJ is one of a kind. A lot of his outfits, his aunt makes him, and he puts his sparkling touch to it.”

The attire is extensive, from the costumes to the wigs and gloves.

“We don’t even have enough room for his wardrobe,” Kikkert said.

Williams’ favorite song to perform and favorite costume are for his rendition of, “Man in the Mirror,” a song about helping others and making a difference in the world.

“When I do, ‘Man in the Mirror,’ I have a mirrored jacket, hat and shoes,” he said.

The stage lights flip on and hit the head-to-toe mirrors for an intense effect.

Williams’ home is filled with hats, wigs, photos, album covers, memorabilia and costumes that catch the light with mirrors and sequin details.

Michael Jackson albums and photographs line a hallway in the home of tribute artist CJ Williams.

Michael Jackson albums and photographs line a hallway in the home of tribute artist CJ Williams.

The fans go nuts for it. They cry and ask for autographs, Williams said.

He thrives on the energy at showtime and of seeing the reaction from fans.

“I want people, when they leave my show, feeling love, feeling peace, no hatred in their heart,” he said. “This society is so judgmental.”

Williams will perform in Paris in six or seven months and possibly Japan and Asia. In five to 10 years, Kikkert expects to see Williams’ name in lights in Hollywood, he said.

“We are definitely not going to forget where we came from,” Kikkert said.


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