Friday, August 29, 2014
Happy Birthday Michael Joseph Jackson! August 29, 1958-June 25, 2009
Today would have been the 56th birthday of the great entertainer, innovator, song writer, dancer, Michael Jackson. I miss that man so much. Say what you will, but he broke the mold when it came to Black entertainers. He paved the way for all the youngsters who came after him (yes, Mr. Timberlake, I'm talkin' to you). He stood up for Black artists when they could not get their videos played on MTV. Remember MTV? When it showed videos? MTV was woefully colorless. Rock videos only. And only rock by White bands. Hell, country music couldn't get played. If you weren't an established rocker or some new big-haired, White band, your videos weren't seeing airplay. Back then one needed to be SEEN on MTV to sink into the psyche of a potential record buyer. Oh my. Why does that scenario sound familiar? MTV had to cater to their hardcore, "mainstream" audience. Payment for music clips ran the business and clips that were not rock, loss them money. Supposedly. Again money versus talent. Business and bigots have been hiding behind that balance sheet for years. However he pulled it off, MJ's "Billie Jean" crashed the color line. MJ was suddenly considered "pop" AND therefore bankable AND a huge money maker for the entire industry (the man was a cash cow for them in the 80s). He DEMANDED other Black artists get airplay regardless of their music classification.after that success. He used his clout. Bless him. A Michael Jackson for equal opportunity in truly diverse romance book publishing is needed. Pronto! Happy Birthday, King of Pop!