Nearly two years after his death, the public is still mesmerized with anything Michael Jackson. Global mass communications continue to report on any aspect of Jackson, whether it is true or false. It is notably evident that the public's frenzy for sensationalist stories is insatiable regarding Jackson. The media understands this; and this is the reason they continue to print and televise yellow journalism regarding Jackson. The general public is, in Jackson's own words, comprised of many who are tabloid junkies.
We can blame the media for why some of the general public still believes that Jackson was a pedophile. The same goes for the public's perception that Jackson was a drug addict, or that he wanted to be white, or....the list goes on and on. We can fault the media for what we know to be the most heinous character assasination in recent history; that of Michael Jackson.
Besides television and print, we can blame the publishing houses, who refuse to publish a book about Jackson without exploitative factors heavily laced with hyperbole as their basis. Just a quick look at the pre- and posthumous book releases on the topic of Jackson are enough. Schmuley Boteach's release of Jackson's voice taped and transformed into a book (Vanguard Press), Ian Halperin's release of flagrant fabrications and assumptions (Simon Spotlight), and even Leonard Rowe (Fast Pencil) and Pearl Jr. (Elbow Grease Productions) have published tabloid trash. (The original title of Halperin's book was set to be Peter Pan or Pervert.) Yet, it is public consumption that fuels the media and more specifically, book publishers. Jackson consistently stressed NOT to buy the tabloids, and not to believe everything you read.
Take a look at Aphrodite Jones as she is promoting her book Conspiracy after the 2005 Jackson child molestation case. At 3:58, Jones states that as she approached publishers for her upcoming book, (in which we know that she believed Jackson was guilty, but then realized there was a conspiracy against him), that the "reaction from publishers was flat...when I came to New York to talk to publishers and I told them it was going to talk about Michael Jackson not guilty, they said we don't want anything that's pro-Jackson." Jones goes on to state that she called the head of her publishing company, who she had known for years, and that person apologized to Jones but reaffirmed they were not interested in a pro-Jackson book. Jones states that "the publishing world has decided they don't want anything pro-Jackson even though he was exonnerated." Ultimately, Jones, a New York Times best-selling author, had to self-publish. At 9:00, Jones states, "...think about this, Michael Jackson is the number one entertainer known to the world, why are we still crucifying this man? He was found not guilty." (Ironically, Larry Nimmer is the videographer.) Although I truly commend and admire Aphrodite Jones, her book Conspiracy is based on the sensationalism surrounding the trial.
Fast-forwarding to 2011, 2 years after Michael's death, why has there not been a book published whose sole focus is why he was famous in the first place? Where is a book about the raw talent, his groundbreaking cinematic genius using video as a new artform, his challenge through music of stereotypes, gender bias and racism?
Enter author Joe Vogel. I have blogged about him previously. If you would like to read, click here. I will not recap my last blog, except to say that Vogel's book has the sole concentration on Michael's music, as well as his social and cultural influences in history. Vogel analyzes each Jackson's albums, track by track, in an eloquent fashion suited for the King of Pop. I think more appropriate of Vogel's book than my own review, is that of Matt Forger, a technical engineer for the Thriller, Bad, Dangerous and HISTORY tours.
Forger states that Vogel "illuminates the creative life of the greatest performer of our time...Joe shows us a time in history, the happenings of the world, and the creative energyof Michael Jackson and the team around him who helped create the iconic songs that propelled him into superstardom. Joe's thorough examination includes interviews and experts from those familiar with his work, ofering a glimpse behind the scenes of how the magic was created...Michael's perseverance and motivation were matched only by his desire for perfection. Joe shows that as the consummate professional, Michael's pursuit of songwriting dancing, producing, directing were all means for him to spread his ideas and visions of what the world could be...[Man in the Music] offers the most complete (and, I might add, the most accurate) look into Michael's creative nature."
Vogel's book hits the shelves in October, 2001, but we are able to pre-order it now on Amazon at a 38% discount.
In order to change the public's perception of Michael Jackson's legacy, we must take a stand. Joe Vogel is attempting to do just that with a book that explains Michael's vision was for the world, and how he managed to spread that through his music. By buying this book, we are showing the publishing world that there is a huge audience who is interested in positive media regarding Michael Jackson. In turn, this opens the gates for other authors and Vogel to continue to spread the message that positive reporting regarding Jackson in mass communications equals ratings and revenue.
As the twitterthon #MJfansAGAINSTmann has proven, Jackson's prophetic words ring true once again, that's there's nothing that can't be done if we raise our voice as one. Make that change for the world...buy this book and show publishers the power of Michael Jackson fans.
Michael Jackson (3) Sunrise Colony (2) Sycamore Valley Ranch (2) William Bone (2) Al Malnik (1) Arnold Klein (1) Bruce Ayers (1) Charles Koppelman (1) Colony Capital (1) Conrad Murray (1) Dieter Wiesner (1) Eliza Jackson (1) Evan Chandler (1) John Branca (1) Jordan Chandler (1) Kingdom Entertainment (1) Los Olivos (1) MJJ Kingdom (1) Mark Schaffel (1) Modern Records (1) Neverland (1) Peter Lopez (1) Pine Grove Hospital (1) Randy Jackson (1) Randy and the Gypsys (1) Raymone Bain (1) Red Rock Country Club (1) Steveanna Jackson (1) Taunya Zilkie (1) Thomas Barrack (1) Tom Barrack (1)