Michael Jackson: Working Class Hero?

As soon as youre born they make you feel small/ By giving you no time instead of it all/ Till the pain is so big you feel nothing at all/ A working class hero is something to be/ A working class hero is something to be/ They hurt you at home and they hit you at school\ They hate you if youre clever and they despise a fool/ Till youre so fucking crazy you cant follow their rules/ A working class hero is something to be/ A working class hero is something to be.

–John Lennon, Working Class Hero

Being the biggest pop star in the world is pretty much like making a deal with a devil. Or winning the lottery.  It normally turns into a dumpster fire.  It didn’t work for Elvis. Or Michael Jackson.  Or that other 1980s global icon, Mike Tyson.

And Brtitany Spears and Lindsey Lohan aren’t doing too hot these days.

So, please don’t let your babies grow up to be teenage stars.

Anyway, Indianapolis Star music writer David Linquist had a great story about Michael Jackson’s Indiana roots today.   He starts:

Michael Jackson’s singing career began in Gary, where he spent his earliest years in a white house roughly the size of a two-car garage — 2300 Jackson St.Nine children of Joseph and Katherine Jackson lived in the house, and sons Michael, Tito, Marlon, Jackie and Jermaine became the dynamic Jackson 5 singing group.

Michael Jackson came out of Gary. Born in a a tiny house with too many mouths to feed.  Micheal’s musically gifted and ambitious dad worked in the steel mills as a crane operator.

The Jackson’s made it big.  They lived the American Dream. Rags to ritches.  And then it got crazy. Read Crazy.  As John Lennon wrote “…/Till youre so fucking crazy you cant follow their rules

*****

I was born in 1977 and Michael Jackson is definitely the first artist who I ever remember listening to on  our family’s record player.  I was 5 years old when Thiller came out and definitely remember watching it with the babysitter.

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