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Wednesday, December 23, 2009

MUSIC VIDEOS AND CHOREOGRAPHY

Referred to as the King of Music Videos,[204] Steve Huey of Allmusic observed how Jackson transformed the music video into an art form and a promotional tool through complex story lines, dance routines, special effects and famous cameo appearances; simultaneously breaking down racial barriers.[180] According to director Vincent Paterson, who collaborated with the singer on several music videos, Jackson conceptualized many of the darker, bleak themes in his filmography.[205]

US patent 5255452, filed by Jackson, described the anti-gravity lean used in the music video for "Smooth Criminal".
Before Thriller, Jackson struggled to receive coverage on MTV, allegedly because he was African American.
[206] Pressure from CBS Records persuaded MTV to start showing "Billie Jean" and later "Beat It", leading to a lengthy partnership with Jackson, also helping other black music artists gain recognition.[207] MTV employees deny any racism in their coverage, or pressure to change their stance. MTV maintains that they played rock music, regardless of race.[208] The popularity of his videos on MTV helped to put the relatively young channel "on the map"; MTV's focus shifted in favor of pop and R&B.[207][209] His performance on Motown 25: Yesterday, Today, Forever changed the scope of live stage show; "That Jackson lip-synced 'Billie Jean' is, in itself, not extraordinary, but the fact that it did not change the impact of the performance is extraordinary; whether the performance was live or lip-synced made no difference to the audience" thus creating an era in which artists re-create the spectacle of music video imagery on stage.[36] Short films like Thriller largely remained unique to Jackson, while the group dance sequence in "Beat It" has frequently been imitated.[210] The choreography in Thriller has become a part of global pop culture, replicated everywhere from Indian films to prisons in the Philippines.[211] The Thriller short film marked an increase in scale for music videos, and has been named the most successful music video ever by the Guinness World Records.[69]
In the 19-minute music video for "Bad"—directed by Martin Scorsese—Jackson began using sexual imagery and choreography not previously seen in his work. He occasionally grabbed or touched his chest, torso and crotch. While he has described this as "choreography," it garnered a mixed reception from both fans and critics; Time magazine described it as "infamous". The video also featured Wesley Snipes; in the future Jackson's videos would often feature famous cameo roles.[53][212] For "Smooth Criminal", Jackson experimented with an innovative "anti-gravity lean" in his performances, for which he was granted U.S. Patent No. 5,255,452.[213] Although the music video for "Leave Me Alone" was not officially released in the US, in 1989, it was nominated for four Billboard Music Video Awards, winning three; the same year it won a Golden Lion Award for the quality of the special effects used in its production. In 1990, "Leave Me Alone" won a Grammy for Best Music Video, Short Form.[67]
The MTV Video Vanguard Artist of the Decade Award was given to Jackson to celebrate his accomplishments in the art form in the 1980s; the following year the award was renamed in his honor.[82] "Black or White" was accompanied by a controversial music video, which, on November 14, 1991, simultaneously premiered in 27 countries with an estimated audience of 500 million people, the largest viewing ever for a music video.[81] It featured scenes construed as having a sexual nature as well as depictions of violence. The offending scenes in the final half of the 14-minute version were edited out to prevent the video from being banned, and Jackson apologized.[214] Along with Jackson, it featured Macaulay Culkin, Peggy Lipton and George Wendt. It helped usher in morphing as an important technology in music videos.[215]

Jackson and sister Janet angrily retaliate against the media for misrepresenting them to the public. The acclaimed video for "Scream" was shot primarily in black and white, and at a cost of $7 million.[216]
"Remember the Time" was an elaborate production, and became one of his longest videos at over nine minutes. Set in ancient Egypt, it featured groundbreaking visual effects and appearances by Eddie Murphy, Iman and Magic Johnson, along with a distinct complex dance routine.[217] The video for "In the Closet" was Jackson's most sexually provocative piece. It featured supermodel Naomi Campbell in a courtship dance with Jackson. The video was banned in South Africa because of its imagery.[82]
The music video for "Scream", directed by Mark Romanek and production designer Tom Foden, is one of Jackson's most critically acclaimed. In 1995, it gained 11 MTV Video Music Award Nominations—more than any other music video—and won "Best Dance Video", "Best Choreography", and "Best Art Direction".[218] The song and its accompanying video are a response to the backlash Jackson received from the media after being accused of child molestation in 1993.[219] A year later, it won a Grammy for Best Music Video, Short Form; shortly afterwards Guinness World Records listed it as the most expensive music video ever made at a cost of $7 million.[106][220]
"Earth Song" was accompanied by an expensive and well-received music video that gained a Grammy nomination for Best Music Video, Short Form in 1997. The video had an environmental theme, showing images of animal cruelty, deforestation, pollution and war. Using special effects, time is reversed so that life returns, wars ends, and the forests re-grow.[106][221] Released in 1997 and premiering at the 1996 Cannes Film Festival, Ghosts was a short film written by Jackson and Stephen King and directed by Stan Winston. The video for Ghosts is over 38 minutes long and holds the Guinness World Record as the world's longest music video.[106][113][222][223]
Fashion
Phillip Bloch said "Michael Jackson was not influenced by fashion, fashion was influenced by him."[224] From early on Jackson was described as a person with an utterly unique sense of style wearing fringed shirts, platform heels, and wide bell-bottom pants with a “Huggy Bear” inspired hat to top off his look. During Off The Wall, he would update his style wearing tuxedo jackets, pegged pants, thick white socks with black shiny loafers, instantly giving a classic look, new flair, and originality bringing in the start of his iconoclastic style.[225] During the Thriller era Jackson would become a fashion icon and bring about the popularity of items that he wore in his music videos, at award ceremonies, and on stage performances such as his Beat It red jacket, aviator sunglasses, military jackets, jheri curl, high pants with white glittering socks, the Billie Jean black jacket, his black fedora hat, and most famously his glittering white glove that he first wore on the Motown 25 special.[226][227]
Throughout the late 80's and early 90's, Jackson began to wear his iconic military-influenced outfits in silver, with his trademark armbands, during the Bad Tour. He would continue to perform in these outfits this time in gold during the Dangerous Tour, and during the HIStory Tour, where he wore a more futuristic military space outfit.[228] Towards the mid and late 90's Jackson embraced a softer look wearing mostly lightweight flowy shirts and even appearing bare chested; though he occasionally reverted to his military inspired outfits.[229][230] During his trials throughout the later years, Jackson wore a surgical masks and carried an umbrella to protect him from the sun. He was subsequently criticized by the media and legal analysts in the 2005 child abuse trial for not dressing in a manner appropriate for a court appearance. Mary Fulginiti Jenow, a former federal prosecutor who is now a criminal defense lawyer described Jackson as looking ready to "break out into the moonwalk."[231] During his final public appearance at Ed Hardy's designer Christian Audigier birthday party,[232] Jackson and Audigier began talks and later started to work together on a clothing line that would be composed of items such as red jacket with Jackson’s portrait on it, a black leather belt with large buckle reading ‘BAD,’ silver socks, silver gloves, and an umbrella. Audigier is said to be busy putting together the final pieces of the brand.[233]
Jackson's creative sense of style has also made a huge impact on the younger generation.[234] He has been described as having an innovative sense of style that impacted the trendsetters of today who mimmick his fashion like Usher, Chris Brown, Beyonce, Rihanna, Kanye West, and many others. His style has inspired the fashion-forward for two decades and continues to do so. [235]
On November 24, 2009, his trademark white glove was auctioned off for $350,000, plus tax, to Hoffman Ma of Hong Kong, a Chinese businessman

LEGACY AND INFLUENCE


Legacy and influence
See also:
Records and achievements of Michael Jackson and List of awards received by Michael Jackson

Jackson's star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, set in 1984
Jackson transformed the art of the music video and paved the way for modern pop music in his own country. Jackson's work, distinctive musical sound and vocal style have influenced scores of
hip hop, rock, pop and R&B artists, including Beyonce,[237] Mariah Carey,[238] Usher,[239] Chris Brown,[240] Britney Spears,[238] Madonna,[241] Justin Timberlake,[116] Ludacris,[242] 50 Cent, The Game,[243] Fall Out Boy,[244] Green Day,[245] Miley Cyrus, John Mayer,[246] Lenny Kravitz,[247] and R. Kelly.[187] For much of his career, he had an "unparalleled" level of worldwide influence over the younger generation through his musical and humanitarian contributions.[248] Jackson's music and videos, such as Thriller, helped break down racial barriers when first shown on MTV, putting the relatively new channel on the map, changing its focus from rock to pop music and R&B, and therefore shaping it to what it is today. Jackson remained a staple on MTV through the '90s. Brazilian journalist Sergio Martins, in his article about the artist and his death in Veja magazine, wrote that after Jackson's work being a versatile dancer became a must for subsequent male stars of pop music. Michael Jackson, along with his musical style and videos have gone onto become pop culture phenomenons.
Michael Jackson was inducted onto the
Hollywood Walk of Fame in 1984. Throughout his career he received numerous honors and awards, including the World Music Awards' Best-Selling Pop Male Artist of the Millennium, the American Music Award's Artist of the Century Award and the Bambi Pop Artist of the Millennium Award.[118][249] He was a double-inductee of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, once as a member of The Jackson 5 in 1997 and later as a solo artist in 2001. Jackson was also an inductee of the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2002.[118] His awards include multiple Guinness World Records (eight in 2006 alone), 15 Grammy Awards (including the "Living Legend Award" and the "Lifetime Achievement Award"), 26 American Music Awards (24 only as a solo artist, including one for "artist of the century")—more than any artist—, 13 number one singles in the US in his solo career—more than any other male artist in the Hot 100 era—and estimated sales between 350 and 750 million records worldwide, making him the world's best selling male solo pop artist.[27][250][251][69][81][252][253][254][255][256]

Queues for a Michael Jackson concert in West Berlin in June 1988
He was characterized as "an unstoppable juggernaut, possessed of all the tools to dominate the charts seemingly at will: an instantly identifiable voice, eye-popping dance moves, stunning musical versatility and loads of sheer star power".
[180] In the mid-1980s, Time noted "Jackson is the biggest thing since The Beatles. He is the hottest single phenomenon since Elvis Presley. He just may be the most popular black singer ever".[31] By 1990, Vanity Fair had already cited Jackson as the most popular artist in the history of show business.[67] Daily Telegraph writer Tom Utley called him an "extremely important figure in the history of popular culture" and a "genius".[257] In late 2007, Jackson said the following of his work and future influence, "Music has been my outlet, my gift to all of the lovers in this world. Through it, my music, I know I will live forever."[258]
His total lifetime earnings from royalties on his solo recordings and music videos, revenue from concerts and endorsements have been estimated at $500 million; some analysts have speculated that his music catalog holdings could be worth billions of dollars.[68][259] This speculation however is contradicted by financial documents obtained by the Associated Press, which showed that as of March 31, 2007, Jackson's 50 percent stake in the Sony/ATV Music Publishing catalog (his most prized asset) was worth $390.6 million and Michael Jackson’s net worth was $236 million.[260] As one of the world's most famous men, Jackson's highly publicized personal life, coupled with his successful career, made him a part of popular culture for the last four decades.[81][261]
Shortly after his death on June 25, 2009, MTV briefly returned to its original music video format to celebrate and pay tribute to his work.[262] The channel aired many hours of Jackson's music videos, accompanied by live news specials featuring reactions from MTV personalities and other celebrities. The temporary shift in MTV's programming culminated the following week with the channel's live coverage of Jackson's memorial service.[263] At the memorial service on July 7, 2009, founder of Motown Records Berry Gordy proclaimed Jackson as "the greatest entertainer that ever lived."[264][265][266] In November 2009 some of Michael Jackson's memorabilia was auctioned in New York, including the Rhinstone Glove used during his first moonwalk performance, which sold for $350,000 at nine times its expected price. Among other items were a 1989 "Bad" tour jacket which sold for $225,000 and a fedora hat which sold for $22,000[267]

DISCOGRAPHY