Tuesday Morning Starting Five: The Michael Jackson Memorial Edition

Don’t watch much TV outside of sports and politics, but this Michael Jackson memorial event has me intrigued. Definitely want to see the performances and I can’t help but to think why didn’t BET do it up like this? I know there was short notice but I just wasn’t impressed with the performances. Going forward, the turnout in Los Angeles might rival other huge events like President Obama’s inauguration or the Million Man March. Mike was that big. There are less than 20,000 seats available for the fans inside of the Staple Center, but trust the crowd outside will greatly outnumber that. One other thing: No one had the mass appeal of Michael Jackson. Not Elvis, not the Beattles, not Sinatra. Squash that. Mike was loved by all walks of life, not just one race.

How Mike Vick fits with all 32 teams. San Fran needs him the most IMO. (USA Today)

Black Hollywood. (Pop Matters)

Minority-serving Institutions Battle for Budget Consideration. (Diverse)

Head on over to Temple3 and speak your mind on what Independence Day means to you personally. (Temple3)

To the folks who are blaming Steve McNair for his own death, read this. (TMCY)

85% of Aussies think there their country has a problem with racism. That’s a big number. (Taiwan News)

I know it’s all about Mike today (we’ll see his videos and hear his music all day), but my peoples Asya Shein (shes building something nice over there) has me hooked on these cats. Like I said to her, the are Kraftwerk now with a G funk era vibe IMO.

Here’s Kraftwerk…

32 Responses to “Tuesday Morning Starting Five: The Michael Jackson Memorial Edition”

  1. michelle says:

    You got it Miz. He was the GREATEST!

  2. GrandNubian says:

    I’m streaming the memorial service at work. I’ve never seen anything like it. This is bigger than Princess Di’s funeral.

  3. The world’s greatest race has lost it’s brightest star.

  4. kos says:

    BET needs to take notes. That was a show to honor the man!

  5. Temple3 says:


    That’s a bit over the top — on both counts. No?

  6. It might be, got caught up in the emotion of the day, forgive me if I offended anyone.

  7. Temple3 says:

    I’ve been thinking about a story that ran in the times today about a guy who traveled from Buffalo, New York to attend the ceremony. He received two tickets and gave one to a complete stranger who traveled from Switzerland.

    That’s amazing stuff.

    You are certainly not alone in getting swept up. I suspect that watching Jennifer Hudson sing probably knocked quite a few folks right out.

  8. Was watching a couple from NC who “sold everything in their house”, to travel to CA. She didn’t even have a ticket to get in.

    That’s a bit much.

  9. Jennifer Hudson and Usher gave moving performances.

  10. Miranda says:

    The haters can go straight to hell!!! That was a FAMILY at a homegoing celebration! I knew when they bought Michael’s body in to “Soon and Very Soon” that this was about to be ON, and I was right. That was touching and beautiful and just the way you send your loved one HOME.

    And those media numbnuts talking about the Jackson family can kiss my black ass too. Janet grabbed that little girl like only an auntie can and hugged her to her bosom like ONLY a tee tee can to comfort her brother’s child. Those children are with their FAMILY. The youngest was all up under LaToya on that stage, I dont care what happened in the past, I dont care what was said or done between them….when it gets right down to it, that’s family. Hell, every black family has their dysfunctional dynamics but when its time to come home, you COME HOME. That little girl didn’t refer to him as Michael…she refered to him as DADDY…she said that the same way I call my Daddy “daddy”! Paris Jackson at all of 11 years old, bitch slapped the media…well done little one, well DONE.

  11. Temple3 says:


    You may have actually been right on the money. His legacy is truly incomparable.

  12. Miranda says:

    Ohhhh…..I didnt know those were the ACTUAL Andrae Crouch singers performing the song! Lawd a mercy, they took me back to feet washing Sundays as soon as it started! Then between Lionel Richie singing Jesus is Love, and Rev Al preachin I thought I was at feet washing Sunday. LOL

  13. Patrick says:

    Marlon had a very heartfelt goodbye for his brother…

    “We will never understand what he endured,” said brother Marlon, as the Jackson family, including Michael’s 11-year-old daughter Paris, took the stage at the memorial’s end, “not being able to walk across a street without a crowd gathering around him, being judged, ridiculed.”

    “All the pain, all the ridicule,” Marlon said.

    “How much can one man take? Maybe now, Michael, they will leave you alone.”

  14. Tariq says:

    I really do love Michael Jackson, and I hope that his soul is in a better place.

    My brother is the biggest MJ fan in the world, to the point where I have to explain to him that other people have musical gifts that may even surpass MJ’s in certain aspects. For example, he will not accept that Bob Dylan is a better songwriter. I maintain that while MJ is a very good songwriter, his true realm is music, not lyrics.

    But whenever we get into these discussions, he simply says something like “Numbers don’t lie,” alluding to Thriller’s record-breaking sales, and grins with a check-mate-like smugness.

    So my brother’s smugness has caused me to ponder MJ’s unprecedented worldwide appeal. Mizzo is right: NOBODY is loved like Michael Jackson. Not Sinatra, not the Beatles, not nobody. But instead of comparing MJ with these dudes, I’d like to compare him with his erstwhile rival, Prince. In all honesty, I love them both in equal measures. I see them both as astoundingly talented performers. But while Thriller can sell something like 40 million copies, “Sign O the Times”, which is undoubtedly a masterpiece, sold only…what? 3 million? Why is that?

    I have a theory that it has to with timing. Michael Jackson is a legend. He was a star as a kid. He had a smash with Off the Wall. But in the early eighties he became something else. I don’t know why. But I think if Thriller were released in 1963, it wouldn’t have made Michael Jackson such a global figure. I know what I’m saying is a little undercooked, but I think the way Mike utilized video (MTV was just being launched) coupled with that legendary Motown 25 performance, along with the brilliance of Thriller as an album, made 1983 such an opportune moment to mold Mike into a global icon.

    I’m sure there are some holes in what I’m saying, but I just can’t grasp why everyone from 12-year-old girls in the Phillipines to 68-year-old men in Sweden are all captivated by Michael Jackson, while so many other musical geniuses can’t even command %10 of MJ’s global appeal. I mean, just look at the London tour he had planned before he passed away. Here he was, at 50, well past his prime, and he was expected to rake in 400 MILLION DOLLARS. That is just phenomenal.

    Love ya, Mike.

  15. Tariq says:

    I mean, here in Saudi Arabia, Michael Jackson is the favorite artist of my three brothers, who are aged 24, 20 and 16. Among their friends, Michael Jackson is probably the most popular singer. Among MY friends, he is extremely popular. And yet, it is extremely rare that I’ve encountered a Saudi who can name a song by The Beatles or Sinatra or Dylan or, for that matter, Prince. I just can’t figure it out.

  16. Temple3 says:


    To get at the root of the Michael Jackson phenomenon, you have to go beyond the performance. People didn’t pass out because of his talent; they passed out because they connected to him — and were overwhelmed by his God Force. He was an expression of something — an embodiment of something.

    When a billion watch your Home Going Ceremony (almost a quarter of the entire globe), you’re the closest thing to a prophet that the world has seen since, well, ever. Even the prophets of the book were parochial during their lifetimes.

    As much as he was reviled and ridiculed in certain circles, the fundamental tale of this King is one of abuse and childhood and redemption through love and music. He yearned to recapture his childhood — and an age of innocence and of pure love — in a way that no other artist has been able to communicate.

    In essence, for many people he was a savior — a redemptive figure whose obvious suffering served as inspiration for them to endure their own; and one whose musical gifts inspired them to create and spread love.

    In all honesty, perhaps the only close second is Mozart. (And that’s a stretch.)

    Mozart was eclipsed by Hayden in several respects. Hayden, after all, is the father of the symphony and the string quartet. Still, it is Mozart’s name that is on the tongues of everyone from 1 to 92.

    If you had to play a word association game with MJ and Prince (choosing one word only), the word for Michael Jackson is probably love. For Prince, the word has to be sex. And that’s just one difference. Everyone can relate to love — not everyone can relate to sex, especially in their music.

    “In France a man died of a big disease with a little name…”

    This doesn’t boil down to stage performance. I don’t believe MJ was a better stage performer than Prince. He certainly was not a better songwriter or musician. They’re both larger than life — but the essence of how we connect to them is different. One hinges on the principle of love; the other on that of sex.

    They go together like a hand and glove (sequined or not).

  17. kos says:

    Also, look beyond the music. The music is of course, an important aspect of MJ’s appeal, but there was a lot more to it than that. Michael contributed to charities like no other entertainer in history. I think I read he contributed to 39 charities at one time or another?!

    And with him, he walked the walk, and talked the talk. Going to other countries to see what was going on. Walking among the common people. There aren’t many people that reach MJ’s stature that would even dream to do that.

    He wrote/performed songs about trying to improve the world. Like Temple said, “love”. It just seemed like the messages in his songs spoke to people everywhere.

  18. Temple3 says:


    It’s all good in the hood back in Gary, Indiana. Nothing but l-o-v-e.

  19. Shawnta` says:

    This memorial was awesome. I thought it was done perfectly. It was not crazy, dramatic and over the top. It’s simplicity enhanced the beauty. I loved it from start to finish. There were definitely some tear jerking moments. I loved Stevie’s performance, Brooke Shields’ anecdotes, and when his daughter, Paris, spoke.

  20. Shawnta` says:

    @Miranda: I agree; Lionel’s “Jesus is Love”, the Andrae Crouch choir and Al Sharpton were all VERY good.

    @Patrick: That was very sweet when Marlon spoke of his brother…truer words probably couldn’t be spoken about MJ.

  21. Tariq says:


    I agree with what you’re saying about MJ/Prince and love/sex. That’s certainly true. And that may explain PART of the Michael Jackson phenomena. But I keep thinking of the Malcolm Gladwell book “Outliers,” which explains how certain phenomena spread. Michael Jackson is an outlier, I think.

    Here’s what I want to know: In his pre-Thriller days, was he a global phenomenon? I mean, he had been a star for decades, just like Stevie Wonder and many others, so what made him a GLOBAL icon at that precise moment? What elevated him all of a sudden to the status of The Gloved One?

    You say that you don’t necessarily think that MJ is a better stage performer than Prince, and I agree. I’d say it’s a toss-up. But I don’t think Prince utilized video the way Mike did. Remember when MJ released the video for Thriller? That’s all ANYONE could talk about. I was a kid and I was scared shitless of that joint, and my parents made fun of me for being scared of it (Hey, I was, what, 4 or 5?!). And anytime Mike released ANY video, it was an event. He helped make MTV, which is ironic, since they initially resisted giving a black artist air time. But he was mesmerizing in those videos. And I think, with the concept of the music video in its infancy, that’s what really pushed Mike over the top.

  22. Tariq says:

    Also, I think comparing him to the prophets of the Book is a bit much, but that’s just me.

  23. HarveyDent says:

    I loved Michael Jackson and sadly but predictably I didn’t know how much I did until he left this life. Like many people, I clucked my tongue and shook my head disapprovingly over the way he changed his appearance, his legal troubles, and his publicity stunts. I let that detract from the joy I received every time I’d hear his beautiful voice or the way time would stop for me if I caught one of his videos while channel surfing. I was guilty of letting all the other stuff cloud my view of probably the most transcendent figure in my lifetime and I’m a person who has met Ray Charles, James Brown, and Prince. Who has stood within jabbing distance of Muhammad Ali. Who respects and in some cases appreciates the work of artists like John Lennon, Bob Dylan, Elvis Presley, and Marvin Gaye but Michael Jackson was loved because that’s what he gave to this world through his talents and his generous nature.

    He was far from perfect I’m sure like all of us but those who don’t realize what the world lost on June 25, 2009 will never understand and they only do themselves a disservice by denigrating those of us who do mourn. I didn’t realize what I’d lost as a fan until I loaded my IPOD with his music and watched his classic videos and then I cried. No, I wept, truly wept for the kid from Gary, for Billie Jean’s lover, for the Smooth Criminal, for the humanitarian, the artist, the father, the son, the brother. I wept for our Michael because he truly gave all of himself to the world. I didn’t weep because he died, I wept because I know I won’t see his like in this world, in my lifetime again.

    Quoth Morpheus from ‘The Matrix’, “He [was] The One.”

    RIP Michael…

  24. Temple3 says:

    Michael Jackson’s Thriller is to music video as The Montgomery Bus Boycott is to television.

    The MBB was not the beginning of the CRM anymore than Thriller was the first video, but both were watershed moments for the medium.

    I feel where you’re going with that one.

    By the way, the prophets of the book were never deemed to be “perfect” by universal interpretation. People who do not share a particular faith uniformly highlight the imperfections or “humanity” of other peoples prophets. Muslims don’t believe Jesus was perfect. Nor do Hebrews. The Jews don’t even masquerade as if their prophets were perfect. Christians certainly do not believe that Muhammad was perfect. Nor do any of these groups believe such of Buddha or other beliefs outside of their own. So, as far as most of the world is concerned, when we speak of prophets of the book, we’re still talking about men who put on their pants one leg at a time.

    Prophets may have been deemed perfect by later adherents, but during their lifetimes, they suffered deprivations, ostracism, rejection and attacks from their very own “people.” The thing that makes a prophet isn’t how they live — it’s their vision and the fulfillment of their prophecy.

    I’m not suggesting that MJ was a conventional prophet of antiquity. Quite the contrary. Nonetheless, he was a larger than life figure who espoused a global vision of love that connected with hundreds of millions of people. His vision (We Are the World; Heal the World) shows up all over the place — and is being carried forth in his absence. I don’t think that vision is any less noble than that promulgated by others.

    He’s a codified book, a radical advocate like Paul and two millenia short of being the real deal. 🙂

  25. origin says:

    Great points Temple.

    And Harvey I totally feel where you are coming from with Michael. I did the same things when it came to his life and sadly when his life ended.

  26. origin says:

    I also loved the ceremony, they did a great job. Maybe BET can take note.

    Also here is a list of MJs humantarian work.


    Temple and Tariq….I still would call MJ a better onstage performer then Prince. I have seen them both is concert. Prince is great……but MJ was on a whole different level on stage. MJ performance on stage was like a cross between a musical show and a magic show……just amazing.

  27. Temple3 says:


    That was beautiful, man…just beautiful.

  28. HarveyDent says:

    Thanks for the kind words T3 and O and it was truly from my heart.

  29. donteZierway says:

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