Updated: Sep 1
Michael Jackson would have been 62-years-old today, and his family and fans around the world are celebrating the incredible life and legacy of the King Of Pop!
Born Michael Joseph Jackson in Gary, Indiana, in 1958 to a family of musicians with his father Joe Jackson at the helm, young Michael emerged as the tiny frontman of the Jackson 5, a band comprised of his brothers and managed by their father Joe.
After first making his mark with the Jackson 5, Michael later embarked on an unsurpassed and virtually unparalelled solo career that earned him the title of the King of Pop. Up to an after his passing in 2009, Jackson is widely recognized as one of the most successful entertainers of all time.
Cut from the same cloth as James Brown, a man he idolized, Michael learned to use his voice and impeccable dancing skills to paint glorious depictions of life.
His videos were commonly over the top: "Thriller," can still make your skin crawl, "Remember the Time," is one of Michael's greatest dance break downs ever, and "Scream," with his sister Janet Jackson was for some time, one of the most expensive videos ever produced.
Almost every song was a hit. "The Way You Make Me Feel," "Bad", "Black or White", "Human Nature," "Wanna Be Starting Something," the list goes on and on.
Michael influenced every artist we love (Usher, Beyonce, OutKast, Justin Bieber -- don't act like it's not true) and even the ones we love to hate (Chris Brown).
Check out 10 things you didn't know about Michael Jackson
1. He's the most-awarded artist of all time.
He won more awards than any other musician dead or alive, including 23 Guinness World Records, 40 Billboard Awards, 13 Grammys and 26 American Music Awards.
2. He's made more money than any artist after their death.
In the first year after his death he made $1 Billion dollar.
3. Michael Jackson's famous "Moonwalk" is modeled after the mime artist, Marcel Marceau's routine.
4. He invented patented boots that allows the wearer to "defy gravity."
He wore them to pull off his famous "lean" in the "Smooth Criminal" music video.
5. "Billie Jean" was the first music video by a black artist to air on MTV.
6. He bought publishing rights to most of The Beatles' catalog for $47 million.
7. The costumes in the "Thriller" video all came from the Salvation Army.
9. He won 8 Grammy's in 1984, the most ever won by one person in a single year.
10. His 2,700-acre Neverland Ranch has a theme park, zoo and movie theater and was valued at $100 million.
The 2,700-acre property in Los Olivos, California, where Jackson lived for more than 15 years, includes a French-Normandy style main residence, two guest houses, a lake, a 50-seat movie theater, a 14-foot lagoon-style pool, a dance studio, barns, staff facilities, and a Disney-themed train station.