140 Facts About Michael Jackson


Michael Joseph Jackson was an American singer, songwriter, dancer, and philanthropist.

FactSnippet No. 655,175

Michael Jackson influenced artists across many music genres; through stage and video performances, he popularized complicated dance moves such as the moonwalk, to which he gave the name, as well as the robot.

FactSnippet No. 655,176

Michael Jackson is the most awarded individual music artist in history.

FactSnippet No. 655,177

Michael Jackson began his solo career in 1971 while at Motown Records.

FactSnippet No. 655,178

Michael Jackson became a solo star with his 1979 album Off the Wall.

FactSnippet No. 655,179

Michael Jackson helped propel the success of MTV and continued to innovate with videos for the albums Bad, Dangerous, and HIStory: Past, Present and Future, Book I .

FactSnippet No. 655,180

In 2009, while preparing for a series of comeback concerts, This Is It, Michael Jackson died from an overdose of propofol administered by his personal physician, Conrad Murray, who was convicted in 2011 of involuntary manslaughter.

FactSnippet No. 655,181

Michael Jackson is one of the best-selling music artists of all time, with estimated sales of over 400million records worldwide.

FactSnippet No. 655,182

Michael Jackson had 13 Billboard Hot 100 number-one singles and was the first artist to have a top-ten single in the Billboard Hot 100 in five different decades.

FactSnippet No. 655,183

Michael Jackson is regarded by the RIAA as the highest-selling individual music artist of all time worldwide.

FactSnippet No. 655,184

Michael Jackson's honors include 15 Grammy Awards, 6 Brit Awards, a Golden Globe Award, and 39 Guinness World Records, including the "Most Successful Entertainer of All Time".

FactSnippet No. 655,185

Michael Jackson's inductions include the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, the Vocal Group Hall of Fame, the Songwriters Hall of Fame, the Dance Hall of Fame, and the Rhythm and Blues Music Hall of Fame.

FactSnippet No. 655,186

Michael Jackson was the eighth of ten children in the Jackson family, a working-class African-American family living in a two-bedroom house on Jackson Street.

FactSnippet No. 655,187

Michael Jackson's father, Joseph Walter "Joe" Jackson, a former boxer, was a crane operator at U S Steel and played guitar with a local rhythm and blues band, the Falcons, to supplement the family's income.

FactSnippet No. 655,188

Michael Jackson said his father told him he had a "fat nose", and physically and emotionally abused him during rehearsals.

FactSnippet No. 655,189

Michael Jackson recalled that Joe often sat in a chair with a belt in his hand as he and his siblings rehearsed, ready to punish any mistakes.

FactSnippet No. 655,190

Later in 1964, Michael began sharing lead vocals with Jermaine, and the group's name was changed to the Jackson 5.

FactSnippet No. 655,191

In 1965, the group won a talent show; Michael Jackson performed the dance to Robert Parker's 1965 song "Barefootin'" and sang the Temptations' "My Girl".

FactSnippet No. 655,192

The Michael Jackson 5 performed at clubs and cocktail lounges, where striptease shows were featured, and at local auditoriums and high school dances.

FactSnippet No. 655,193

Michael Jackson 5 recorded several songs for a Gary record label, Steeltown Records; their first single, "Big Boy", was released in 1968.

FactSnippet No. 655,194

The Michael Jackson 5 made their first television appearance in 1969 in the Miss Black America pageant, performing a cover of "It's Your Thing".

FactSnippet No. 655,195

In May 1971, the Michael Jackson family moved into a large house at Hayvenhurst, a two-acre estate in Encino, California.

FactSnippet No. 655,196

The Michael Jackson 5 were later described as "a cutting-edge example of black crossover artists".

FactSnippet No. 655,197

In 1977, Michael Jackson moved to New York City to star as the Scarecrow in The Wiz, a musical film directed by Sidney Lumet, alongside Diana Ross, Nipsey Russell, and Ted Ross.

FactSnippet No. 655,198

Michael Jackson was referred to Steven Hoefflin, who performed Jackson's operations.

FactSnippet No. 655,199

Michael Jackson felt Off the Wall should have made a bigger impact, and was determined to exceed expectations with his next release.

FactSnippet No. 655,200

The recordings were intended for an album of duets but, according to Queen's manager Jim Beach, the relationship soured when Michael Jackson brought a llama into the recording studio, and Michael Jackson was upset by Mercury's drug use.

FactSnippet No. 655,201

Michael Jackson had originally turned down the invitation to the show, believing he had been doing too much television.

FactSnippet No. 655,202

Michael Jackson's performance drew comparisons to Elvis Presley's and the Beatles' appearances on The Ed Sullivan Show.

FactSnippet No. 655,203

At the 11th Annual American Music Awards, Michael Jackson won another eight awards and became the youngest artist to win the Award of Merit.

FactSnippet No. 655,204

Michael Jackson had the highest royalty rate in the music industry at that point, with about $2 for every album sold, and was making record-breaking profits.

FactSnippet No. 655,205

Michael Jackson allowed the campaign to use "Beat It" for its public service announcements.

FactSnippet No. 655,206

Michael Jackson helped to create the advertisement, and suggested using his song "Billie Jean", with revised lyrics, as its jingle.

FactSnippet No. 655,207

Michael Jackson underwent treatment to hide the scars and had his third rhinoplasty shortly thereafter.

FactSnippet No. 655,208

Michael Jackson signed a second agreement with Pepsi in the late 1980s for $10million.

FactSnippet No. 655,209

Michael Jackson had endorsements and advertising deals with other companies, such as LA Gear, Suzuki, and Sony, but none were as significant as his deals with Pepsi.

FactSnippet No. 655,210

Michael Jackson collaborated with Paul McCartney in the early 1980s, and learned that McCartney was making $40million a year from owning the rights to other artists' songs.

FactSnippet No. 655,211

Michael Jackson's agents were unable to come to a deal, and in May 1985 left talks after having spent more than $1million and four months of due diligence work on the negotiations.

FactSnippet No. 655,212

Michael Jackson agreed to visit Holmes a Court in Australia, where he would appear on the Channel Seven Perth Telethon.

FactSnippet No. 655,213

Michael Jackson's skin had been medium-brown during his youth, but from the mid-1980s gradually grew paler.

FactSnippet No. 655,214

Michael Jackson diagnosed Jackson with lupus that year, and with vitiligo in 1986.

FactSnippet No. 655,215

Michael Jackson used fair-colored makeup, and possibly skin-bleaching prescription creams, to cover up the uneven blotches of color caused by the illness.

FactSnippet No. 655,216

Michael Jackson said he lost weight in the early 1980s because of a change in diet to achieve a dancer's body.

FactSnippet No. 655,217

Michael Jackson's said he had received more than the two cosmetic surgeries he claimed and speculated that he had become addicted to them.

FactSnippet No. 655,218

In 1986, tabloids reported that Michael Jackson slept in a hyperbaric oxygen chamber to slow aging, and pictured him lying in a glass box.

FactSnippet No. 655,219

When Michael Jackson took his pet chimpanzee Bubbles to tour in Japan, the media portrayed Michael Jackson as an aspiring Disney cartoon character who befriended animals.

FactSnippet No. 655,220

In June 1987, the Chicago Tribune reported Michael Jackson's publicist bidding $1million for the skeleton to the London Hospital Medical College on his behalf.

FactSnippet No. 655,221

Michael Jackson worked with George Lucas and Francis Ford Coppola on the 17-minute $30million 3D film Captain EO, which ran from 1986 at Disneyland and Epcot, and later at Tokyo Disneyland and Euro Disneyland.

FactSnippet No. 655,222

Katherine Michael Jackson said this might have been because some Witnesses strongly opposed the Thriller video.

FactSnippet No. 655,223

Michael Jackson won an Award of Achievement at the American Music Awards in 1989 after Bad generated five number-one singles, became the first album to top the charts in 25 countries and the best-selling album worldwide in 1987 and 1988.

FactSnippet No. 655,224

In 1988, Michael Jackson released his autobiography, Moonwalk, with input from Stephen Davis and Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis.

FactSnippet No. 655,225

Michael Jackson discussed his childhood, the Michael Jackson 5, and the abuse from his father.

FactSnippet No. 655,226

Michael Jackson attributed his changing facial appearance to three plastic surgeries, puberty, weight loss, a strict vegetarian diet, a change in hairstyle, and stage lighting.

FactSnippet No. 655,227

Michael Jackson installed a Ferris wheel, a carousel, a movie theater and a zoo.

FactSnippet No. 655,228

Michael Jackson became known as the "King of Pop", a nickname that Michael Jackson's publicists embraced.

FactSnippet No. 655,229

In March 1991, Michael Jackson renewed his contract with Sony for $65million, a record-breaking deal, beating Neil Diamond's renewal contract with Columbia Records.

FactSnippet No. 655,230

Michael Jackson sold the broadcast rights of the tour to HBO for $20million, a record-breaking deal that still stands.

FactSnippet No. 655,231

Michael Jackson thanked the dignitaries in French and English, signed documents formalizing his kingship, and sat on a golden throne while presiding over ceremonial dances.

FactSnippet No. 655,232

In January 1993, Michael Jackson performed at the Super Bowl XXVII halftime show in Pasadena, California.

FactSnippet No. 655,233

Michael Jackson spoke of his childhood abuse at the hands of his father; he believed he had missed out on much of his childhood, and said that he often cried from loneliness.

FactSnippet No. 655,234

Michael Jackson denied tabloid rumors that he had bought the bones of the Elephant Man, slept in a hyperbaric oxygen chamber, or bleached his skin, and stated for the first time that he had vitiligo.

FactSnippet No. 655,235

Evan was recorded discussing his intention to pursue charges, which Michael Jackson used to argue that he was the victim of a jealous father trying to extort money.

FactSnippet No. 655,236

Michael Jackson denied knowing of the books' content and claimed if they were there someone had to send them to him and he did not open them.

FactSnippet No. 655,237

In January 1994, Michael Jackson settled with the Chandlers out of court for a reported total sum of $23 million.

FactSnippet No. 655,238

Michael Jackson thanked close friend Elizabeth Taylor for support, encouragement and counsel.

FactSnippet No. 655,239

In late 1993, Michael Jackson proposed to Lisa Marie Presley, daughter of Elvis Presley, over the phone.

FactSnippet No. 655,240

Michael Jackson was a Sonic the Hedgehog fan, and had collaborated with Sega for the 1990 arcade game Moonwalker.

FactSnippet No. 655,241

Sega Technical Institute director Roger Hector and Sonic the Hedgehog co-creator Naoto Ohshima said that Michael Jackson's involvement was terminated and his music reworked following the allegations.

FactSnippet No. 655,242

Sonic 3 producer Yuji Naka would later confirm in 2022 that Michael Jackson had indeed composed some of the songs in the game and that the development team had visited his home, while expressing disappointment that his songs were replaced in the compilation game Sonic Origins allegedly due to a royalty dispute with Michael Jackson's estate.

FactSnippet No. 655,243

In June 1995, Jackson released the double album HIStory: Past, Present and Future, Book I The first disc, HIStory Begins, is a greatest hits album .

FactSnippet No. 655,244

In late 1995, Michael Jackson was admitted to a hospital after collapsing during rehearsals for a televised performance, caused by a stress-related panic attack.

FactSnippet No. 655,245

Michael Jackson retained ownership of half the company, earning $95million up front as well as the rights to more songs.

FactSnippet No. 655,246

Michael Jackson performed 82 concerts in five continents, 35 countries and 58 cities to over 4.

FactSnippet No. 655,247

In 1997, Michael Jackson released Blood on the Dance Floor: HIStory in the Mix, which contained remixes of singles from HIStory and five new songs.

FactSnippet No. 655,248

From October 1997 to September 2001, Michael Jackson worked on his tenth solo album, Invincible, which cost to record.

FactSnippet No. 655,249

In June 1999, Michael Jackson joined Luciano Pavarotti for a War Child benefit concert in Modena, Italy.

FactSnippet No. 655,250

At the turn of the century, Michael Jackson won an American Music Award as Artist of the 1980s.

FactSnippet No. 655,251

Michael Jackson performed with his brothers for the first time since 1984.

FactSnippet No. 655,252

Michael Jackson had expected the licenses to the masters of his albums to revert to him in the early 2000s, after which he would be able to promote the material however he pleased and keep the profits, but clauses in the contract set the revert date years into the future.

FactSnippet No. 655,253

Michael Jackson apologized for the incident, calling it "a terrible mistake".

FactSnippet No. 655,254

In July 2002, Michael Jackson called Sony Music chairman Tommy Mottola "a racist, and very, very, very devilish, " and someone who exploits black artists for his own gain, at Al Sharpton's National Action Network in Harlem.

FactSnippet No. 655,255

Michael Jackson charged that Mottola had called his colleague Irv Gotti a "fat nigger".

FactSnippet No. 655,256

The documentary, broadcast in February 2003 as Living with Michael Jackson, showed Jackson holding hands and discussing sleeping arrangements with a 12-year-old boy.

FactSnippet No. 655,257

Michael Jackson said that he saw nothing wrong with having sleepovers with minors and sharing his bed and bedroom with various people, which aroused controversy.

FactSnippet No. 655,258

In October 2003, Michael Jackson received the Key to the City of Las Vegas from Mayor Oscar Goodman.

FactSnippet No. 655,259

The main house at Neverland Ranch was closed as a cost-cutting measure, while Michael Jackson lived in Bahrain at the hospitality of Sheik Abdullah, the ruler's son.

FactSnippet No. 655,260

In early 2006, it was announced that Michael Jackson had signed a contract with a Bahrain-based startup, Two Seas Records; nothing came of the deal, and Two Seas CEO Guy Holmes later said it was never finalized.

FactSnippet No. 655,261

In November 2006, Michael Jackson invited an Access Hollywood camera crew into the studio in Westmeath, and MSNBC reported that he was working on a new album, produced by will.

FactSnippet No. 655,262

Michael Jackson returned to the U S in December 2006, settling in Las Vegas, and attended James Brown's funeral in Augusta, Georgia later that month, where he gave a eulogy calling Brown his greatest inspiration.

FactSnippet No. 655,263

In September 2007, Michael Jackson was still working on his next album, which he never completed.

FactSnippet No. 655,264

In March 2009, amid speculation about his finances and health, Michael Jackson announced a series of comeback concerts, This Is It, at a press conference at The O2 Arena.

FactSnippet No. 655,265

Michael Jackson moved to Los Angeles, where he rehearsed in the weeks leading up to the tour under the direction of choreographer Kenny Ortega, whom he had worked with during his previous tours.

FactSnippet No. 655,266

Michael Jackson was administered propofol, lorazepam, and midazolam; his death was caused by a propofol overdose.

FactSnippet No. 655,267

At the 2009 American Music Awards, Michael Jackson won four posthumous awards, including two for his compilation album Number Ones, bringing his total American Music Awards to 26.

FactSnippet No. 655,268

Michael Jackson became the first artist to sell one million music downloads in a week, with 2.

FactSnippet No. 655,269

Thriller, Number Ones, and The Essential Michael Jackson became the first catalog albums to outsell any new album.

FactSnippet No. 655,270

Michael Jackson became the first artist to have four of the top 20 best-selling albums in a single year in the US.

FactSnippet No. 655,271

In 2014, Michael Jackson became the first artist to have a top ten single in the Billboard Hot 100 in five different decades.

FactSnippet No. 655,272

In November 2019, it was reported that a Michael Jackson biopic, produced by Bohemian Rhapsody producer Graham King, was in the works, with the screenplay written by John Logan.

FactSnippet No. 655,273

Michael Jackson's estate granted King the rights to his music and will work with King.

FactSnippet No. 655,274

In 2015, Robson's case against Michael Jackson's estate was dismissed on the grounds of being filed too late.

FactSnippet No. 655,275

Michael Jackson has been referred to as the "King of Pop" for having transformed the art of music videos and paving the way for modern pop music.

FactSnippet No. 655,276

Michael Jackson's influence extended beyond the music industry; he impacted dance, led fashion trends, and raised awareness for global affairs.

FactSnippet No. 655,277

Michael Jackson is recognized as the Most Successful Entertainer of All Time by Guinness World Records.

FactSnippet No. 655,278

Michael Jackson is considered one of the most significant cultural icons of the 20th century, and his contributions to music, dance, and fashion, along with his publicized personal life, made him a global figure in popular culture for over four decades.

FactSnippet No. 655,279

BET said Michael Jackson was "quite simply the greatest entertainer of all time" whose "sound, style, movement and legacy continues to inspire artists of all genres".

FactSnippet No. 655,280

Michael Jackson is the hottest single phenomenon since Elvis Presley.

FactSnippet No. 655,281

Michael Jackson performed at benefit concerts, some of which he arranged.

FactSnippet No. 655,282

Michael Jackson visited sick children in hospitals around the world.

FactSnippet No. 655,283

Michael Jackson opened his own home for visits by underprivileged or sick children and provided special facilities and nurses if the children needed that level of care.

FactSnippet No. 655,284

Michael Jackson donated valuable, personal and professional paraphernalia for numerous charity auctions.

FactSnippet No. 655,285

Michael Jackson received various awards and accolades for his philanthropic work, including two bestowed by Presidents of the United States.

FactSnippet No. 655,286

Michael Jackson was influenced by musicians including James Brown, Little Richard, Jackie Wilson, Diana Ross, Fred Astaire, Sammy Davis Jr.

FactSnippet No. 655,287

Michael Jackson's was a mother figure to him, and he often watched her rehearse.

FactSnippet No. 655,288

Michael Jackson said he had learned a lot from watching how she moved and sang, and that she had encouraged him to have confidence in himself.

FactSnippet No. 655,289

Michael Jackson sang from childhood, and over time his voice and vocal style changed.

FactSnippet No. 655,290

Neil McCormick wrote that Michael Jackson's unorthodox singing style "was original and utterly distinctive".

FactSnippet No. 655,291

Michael Jackson had no formal music training and could not read or write music notation.

FactSnippet No. 655,292

Michael Jackson is credited for playing guitar, keyboard, and drums, but was not proficient in them.

FactSnippet No. 655,293

Hoffman remembered Michael Jackson singing string arrangements part by part into a cassette recorder.

FactSnippet No. 655,294

Michael Jackson danced from a young age as part of the Michael Jackson 5, and incorporated dance extensively in his performances and music videos.

FactSnippet No. 655,295

Michael Jackson is credited for coining the name "moonwalk"; the move was previously known as the "backslide".

FactSnippet No. 655,296

Michael Jackson explored genres including pop, soul, rhythm and blues, funk, rock, disco, post-disco, dance-pop and new jack swing.

FactSnippet No. 655,297

In "Billie Jean", Michael Jackson depicts an obsessive fan who alleges he has fathered her child, and in "Wanna Be Startin' Somethin'" he argues against gossip and the media.

FactSnippet No. 655,298

Michael Jackson observed that "Thriller" began Jackson's interest with the theme of the supernatural, a topic he revisited in subsequent years.

FactSnippet No. 655,299

In 1985, Michael Jackson co-wrote the charity anthem "We Are the World"; humanitarian themes later became a recurring theme in his lyrics and public persona.

FactSnippet No. 655,300

Michael Jackson released "Thriller", a 14-minute music video directed by John Landis, in 1983.

FactSnippet No. 655,301

Pressure from CBS Records persuaded MTV to start showing "Billie Jean" and later "Beat It", which led to a lengthy partnership with Michael Jackson, and helped other black music artists gain recognition.

FactSnippet No. 655,302

Michael Jackson received the MTV Video Vanguard Award in 1988; in 2001 the award was renamed in his honor.

FactSnippet No. 655,303

Michael Jackson apologized and removed the final scene of the video.

FactSnippet No. 655,304

Huey wrote that Michael Jackson transformed the music video into an artform and a promotional tool through complex story lines, dance routines, special effects and famous cameos, while breaking down racial barriers.

FactSnippet No. 655,305

Michael Jackson is one of the best-selling music artists in history, with sales estimated by various sources up to 400 million – 1 billion.

FactSnippet No. 655,306

Michael Jackson had 13 number-one singles in the US in his solo career—more than any other male artist in the Hot 100 era.

FactSnippet No. 655,307

Michael Jackson was invited and honored by a President of the United States at the White House three times.

FactSnippet No. 655,308

Michael Jackson won hundreds of awards, more than any other popular music recording artist.

FactSnippet No. 655,309

Michael Jackson's awards include 39 Guinness World Records, including the Most Successful Entertainer of All Time, 13 Grammy Awards, as well as the Grammy Legend Award and the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award, and a record 26 American Music Awards, including the "Artist of the Century" and "Artist of the 1980s".

FactSnippet No. 655,310

Michael Jackson received the World Music Awards' Best-Selling Pop Male Artist of the Millennium and the Bambi Pop Artist of the Millennium Award.

FactSnippet No. 655,311

Michael Jackson was inducted to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Vocal Group Hall of Fame as a member of The Jackson 5 in 1997 and 1999, respectively, and again as a solo artist in 2001.

FactSnippet No. 655,312

In 2013, the executors of Michael Jackson's estate filed a petition in the United States Tax Court as a result of a dispute with the Internal Revenue Service over US federal estate taxes.

FactSnippet No. 655,313

In February 2014, the IRS reported that Michael Jackson's estate owed $702million; $505million in taxes, and $197million in penalties.

FactSnippet No. 655,314