'King Of Pop' Turns 55

'King Of Pop' Turns 55

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Michael Joseph Jackson was born in Gary, Indiana today in 1958. He would have been 55 years old.

Michael Jackson rose to fame with the Jackson 5 when he was ten years old. Little Michael is remembered for hits like "ABC" and "I'll be there." After going solo, Jackson's debut solo album "Off The Wall" has sold almost 20 million copies. He won his first Grammy in 1979 for "Best R&B Male Vocal Performance."

In 1982, Jackson released "Thriller," which has been ranked by Rolling Stone Magazine at 20th on its list of 500 Greatest Albums of All Time. The album has sold almost 100 million worldwide and won eight Grammy Awards. The title song has been copied, parodied, and turned into the subject of countless viral YouTube videos.

Jackson invented his Moonwalk in 1983 on stage while performing his hit song "Billie Jean." Ever since his first performance of the iconic dance move, people around the world have been copying his backward glide.

In 1985, Jackson cowrote the song "We Are The World" to raise money to help hunger relief in Africa. A superband of singers including stars like Ray Charles, Diana Ross, Bruce Springsteen and Bob Dylan contributed their vocals. The song raises more than $60 million in aid. It has since sold more than 20 million copies.

In 1987, Jackson released his album "Bad," which sold 30 million copes worldwide and won two Grammy Awards. Popular songs like "Man In The Mirror," "The Way You Make Me Feel" and "Smooth Criminal" were all part of that album.

Despite his successes, Jackson's later life was also marred in controversy. He was accused of child sexual abuse and had a very public trial in 2005, which he was acquitted of all charges. He also had to close his Neverland Ranch after financial troubles.

Jackson died in 2009 from cardiac arrest. The world paid tribute to the talented artist. A public memorial service was held, which 31 million people tuned in to watch on TV.

Michael Jackson was a double inductee into the Rock N' Roll Hall of Fame, in 1997 as a member of the Jackson 5, and then in 2001 as a solo artist.

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