Kevin Bacon Wrote A Ballad For Michael Jackson As A Kid

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Kevin Bacon wrote his first song at the age of 11 in the hopes of having Michael Jackson record it.

The movie star has garnered praise for his acting work over the years, starring in hits such as 1984 musical-drama Footloose and 2003 mystery Mystic River, but Kevin has never forgotten his musical roots and regularly performs alongside his brother Michael in their band The Bacon Brothers.

While the duo has a folk-country sound, Kevin reveals the first song he wrote as a young boy was actually a sad tune titled, All the World Looks Lonely Through Lonely Eyes.

“I’m a giant Jackson 5 fan. The first song I ever wrote, in my mind, I wrote it for Michael Jackson,” he shared during an appearance on America’s The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon on Monday (29Aug16). “I was 11, so it didn’t make its way to Michael.”

Kevin, 58, was close in age to the late King of Pop, who died in 2009, at the age of 50, and he was a big fan of Michael’s more sentimental songs growing up, including his first solo number one, 1972’s Ben, from the film of the same name.

“I was a very, very romantic child. I mean, I remember always being heartbroken from the time I was little…,” he laughed. “Being in love with the girl in school, the teacher, the girl next door, (I Dream of Jeannie’s) Barbara Eaton in a bottle… I was always in love, so the songs I wrote were always heartbreak songs.”

Following his interview, Kevin showed that his acting and singing skills extend to a very solid Tom Petty impersonation, taking to the stage with host Jimmy, who was dressed as Mike Campbell, Tom’s long-time collaborator and guitarist. The pair performed an “original” version of Tom’s 1989 hit song Free Fallin’, called Free Horses, as part of a sketch segment called First Drafts of Rock.

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Ex-Boy Band Stars: Who’s Been The Most Successful?

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Zayn Malik hit Number One the first week his debut solo single, “Pillowtalk,” was released, and his debut album, Mind of Mine, is gearing up for the same kind of chart domination. His success is not only huge for R&B, but the fact that Malik excelled where his former boy band, One Direction, showed another kind of leap.

For boy band performers who go their own way, it’s difficult to not only sustain a career but capture people’s attentions in the first place. Justin Timberlake and Michael Jackson set a high bar for what could be attained by solo success in that they not only scored numerous Number One hits but they also crafted the mold for what it meant to be a male pop star.

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From Timberlake to Nick Carter, take a look at how post-boy band careers have stacked up on the U.S. charts for those who have dared to go rogue and find their own paths outside of their pop groups. The infographic above illustrates a selection of positions for each star’s highest charting single.

Sources: Rolling Stone | Independence News | All Things Michael

Motown Sound Comes To London Stage In West End musical

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From “My Girl” to “What’s Going On”, Motown hits come alive on the London stage in a West End musical looking at the life of the record label’s founder Berry Gordy.

“Motown The Musical”, which made its debut on Broadway in 2013 and premiered in the British capital on Tuesday night, features more than 40 singles from the famed Motown catalog.

It traces Gordy’s rise from a young boxing fan and auto worker in Detroit to a celebrated song maker who turned Smokey Robinson, Stevie Wonder, Marvin Gaye, Diana Ross, and The Jackson 5 into music stars, starting out with an $800 loan from his family.

“We have a love affair with the UK. I mean we’ve had it since 1964 … they [British fans] understand our music, they understand us,” Gordy told Reuters, when asked about Motown’s appeal across the Atlantic.

“UK is fabulous, we have so many great memories here.”

Gordy, 86, was accompanied by Robinson to the London premiere, and both received a standing ovation from the audience at curtain call.

Asked what was the secret behind Motown’s success, Gordy said: “Probably love … and great poetry and music by this guy right here,” pointing to Robinson.

From rhythm and blues, soul music as well as pop later on, the Motown Sound features a string of popular hits made famous by the label’s African-American stars, who also influenced U.S. culture during the civil rights era with their songs.

On Broadway, the musical opened to strong box office sales and got four Tony Award nominations. The London show is taking bookings to February 2017.

See video

Sources: Reuters | All Things Michael

Gabrielle Union, Dwayne Wade And Sons Dress As Jackson 5 For Christmas Photoshoot

Sources: Daily Mail – By Cassie Carpenter| All Things Michael

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Gabrielle Union and second husband Dwayne Wade, Jr. donned afro wigs with their sons and nephew for a Jackson 5-themed Christmas photo shoot.

The blended family looked just like the Grammy-nominated boy band, fronted by Michael Jackson,  from Indiana during their seventies heyday.

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Even the four family dogs got into ‘costume’ for the retro video, which the 43-year-old actress shared on Instagram Friday.

The Jackson 5’s classic carol Santa Claus is Comin’ to Town blared as the family posed on three-time NBA champ’s customized court.

At 33, the 6ft, 4in basketballer is nearly a decade Union’s junior, and their shoot happened on his customized court.

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Gabrielle is stepmother to Dwayne’s sons Zaire, 13, and Zion, 8 (with ex-wife #1 Siohvaughn Funches), and son Xavier, 2, (with Aja Metoyer); as well as his nephew Dahveon, 13.

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See Doylestown Teens’ Amazing Jackson 5 A Cappella Performance

Sources: Patch | All Things Michael

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The Tamanend Middle School Chorus recently shared this video on YouTube of them singing an A Cappella version of ”I Want You Back” by Jackson 5.

The video has been submitted to the Macy’s A Cappella Challenge 2015.

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Click here to learn more about the contest.

 

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Macy’s Sponsors A Cappella Challenge Of J5’s “I Want You Back” – Three Schools Will Win $25,000 Each

Sources: Business Wire | All Things Michael

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NEW YORK–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Starting in September, schools across the country can submit an a cappella version of The Jackson 5 hit “I Want You Back,” for a chance to win Macy’s All-School A Cappella Challenge. Students, faculty and staff of schools nationwide can enter a video performance of the song, unaccompanied by any music or instruments. Three $25,000 prizes will be awarded – one to a school in each of the following levels: elementary through middle school level, high school level and college level. Pentatonix, the platinum-selling and Grammy Award-winning a cappella group, will appear in a national commercial spot this summer to further build excitement for the musical challenge.

“The back-to-school season is one of our favorite times of the year at Macy’s, and we’re pleased to support and celebrate music in schools with Macy’s All-School A Cappella Challenge,” said Martine Reardon, Macy’s chief marketing officer. “We’re encouraging students to get creative and have fun, and look forward to seeing all the great submissions from the wonderful talent across the country.”

A cappella is singing without instrumental accompaniment and has grown to include vocal percussion or “beatboxing” to mimic instruments, sweeping the nation in film and television. For the A Cappella Challenge, Macy’s invites students, faculty and staff to create a video of an a cappella performance to “I Want You Back,” originally performed by The Jackson 5. The video must be one to three minutes in length, with at least three participants in the ensemble, and be performed on school property. The a cappella performance must be solely performed by vocal technique, but can be accompanied by sound from beatboxing or through other human parts, such as clapping hands or snapping fingers.

From Sept. 8 through Oct. 9, 2015, an adult school representative or faculty member can upload the video via Macy’s YouTube channel (youtube.com/macys) and enter the school into the challenge.

Entries will be evaluated based on musicality, performance and execution. The winners will be revealed via youtube.com/macys in early November. Three schools will win $25,000 each, one prize to each school level (elementary through middle, high school, and college).

Serving as ambassadors for the new program, Pentatonix (PTX) will star in a television spot for Macy’s, which will begin airing nationally in August. The commercial features all five members of the group (Scott, Mitch, Kirstin, Avi and Kevin), singing an upbeat a cappella rendition of “I Want You Back,” providing inspiration for the challenge. Pentatonix will also be part of the judging process, which will take place in October after the entry period.

For more information about Macy’s All-School A Cappella Challenge, including rules, regulations and how to enter, visit Macy’s.

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Jackson 5 Mural Part Of Michigan Neighborhood’s Revitalization Efforts

Sources: NWI.com – By  Joseph Pete | All Things Michael

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Gary’s Miller neighborhood never suffered the same degree of decline and blight as the rest of the city, quite possibly because of all that spectacular Lake Michigan beachfront.

But things looked dire just five years ago when the iconic Miller Bakery Cafe closed.

The restaurant was a regional draw, a place you dressed up for on a date night. Chicagoans even came to dine there. The fine dining restaurant, known for its steaks, seafood and cocktails, was the pride of the free-spirited beachfront neighborhood on Gary’s eastern end.

Concerned residents decided something had to be done. They scoured around for ideas for urban revitalization, and found the arts worked. So they formed the Miller Beach Arts and Creative District in 2011 to lure people in with gallery exhibits, murals and a popular farmers market every Sunday between May and September.

The closing of the Miller Bakery Cafe, which has since reopened under new management, galvanized efforts in Miller to spur more economic development, which have lured in 10 new businesses and brought vitality back to the main commercial drag on Lake Street.

“It was a big hole on Lake Street,” said Miller Beach Arts and Creative District President Karren Lee, who’s lived in the neighborhood since 1966. “It was becoming a ghost town.”

The Miller Beach Arts and Creative District was created to bring such stores back to the neighborhood, so residents don’t have to visit neighboring towns to do all their shopping, Creative District Executive Director Meg Roman Roman said.

“There’s been a significant increase in new people coming to the community and people who moved away rediscovering Miller,” Roman said.

Despite uncooperative weather, more than 1,000 people turned out to the recent Lake Effekt graffiti expo. The Jackson 5 mural artist Felix Maldonado painted next to the Miller Bakery Cafe on Lake Street during the event has since been a huge draw.

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“There’s all the restaurants and the public art from the graffiti artists,” she said. “They’re doing fashion shoots in front of the artwork, and taking pictures of the Michael Jackson mural every day. The beach is a big draw with one of the best views of Chicago. The park has bike paths. There are plenty of physical activities and cultural things in the neighborhood. There’s shopping. It’s becoming well-rounded.”

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Pete Wentz: The Music That Made Me

Sources: Rolling Stone | All Things Michael

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1. “Welcome to the Jungle,” Guns N’ Roses, 1987
I remember watching the video and thinking, “Wow, that’s a thing that I want to be.” I thought it was cool that Axl wore a kilt and an N.W.A hat. I realized, this guy is just himself on adrenaline, and he doesn’t care how he looks.

2. “Come Together,” Michael Jackson, 1995
I think I heard this before I heard the Beatles. I thought it was a Michael Jackson song. I remember seeing him on TV playing in front of hundreds of thousands of people, just standing still, like a statue, somewhere in Europe. That image stuck with me forever.

3. “You Belong to Me,” Bob Dylan, 1992
When I was in high school, a lot of Dylan’s songs didn’t resonate with me. But this one was kind of magical.

4. “Master of Puppets,” Metallica, 1986
This song is so theatrical, and the rapping at the end is just absolutely insane. I loved how fast they played. I remember having a yellow Walkman in the back of my parents’ station wagon, driving down Lakeshore Drive in Chicago and just listening to this tape to the point where I was ruining it.

5. “Start Today,” Gorilla Biscuits, 1989
From heavy metal I got into punk rock, and then I got into Green Day, and from there I got into Screeching Eagle and more hardcore stuff. Gorilla Biscuits was one of the standout bands. They were doing a little bit of melody — but just the slightest bit.

6. “Diamonds From Sierra Leone (Remix),” Kanye West feat. Jay Z, 2005
When I heard Jay Z’s verse on this, I got chills. I think about “I’m not a businessman, I’m a business, man,” in terms of how we thought of Fall Out Boy. I am the brand. It’s one of those songs where every line is a zinger.

7. “I’ll Be There,” Jackson 5, 1970
This one shaped me in a way that was beyond. I heard this for the first time in the back of my dad’s car. It’s a warm memory in my head.

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