Today in MJJ HIStory
1977 – While being on the beach at Michael’s brother Jermaine’s house, about half a block away along the Waterfront, Michael was messing around in the surf, and all of a sudden he couldn’t breathe. No air. Nothing. He asked himself what’s wrong? Tried not to panic.
He ran back to the house to find Jermaine, who took him to the hospital.
It was wild. A blood vessel had burst in his lung. It has never reoccurred, although he used to feel little pinches and jerks in there that were probably the result of his imagination, he had stated.
Later was learned that this condition was related to pleurisy. It was suggested by Michael’s doctor that he should try to take things a little slower, but due to his schedule would not permit it. Hard work continued to be the name of the game.
This all happened by the Wiz period, which new script, differed from the Broadway production in scope rather than spirit. It asked more questions than the original movie and answered them too. The atmosphere of the old movie was that of a magic kingdom sort of fairy tale. Michael’s movie, on the other hand, had sets based on realities that kids could identify with, like schoolyards, subway stations, and the real neighbourhood that Dorothy came from.
Michael’s character had plenty to say and to learn. He was propped up on his pole with a bunch of crows laughing at him, while he sang “You Can’t Win.”
The song was about humiliation and helplessness – something that so many people have felt at one time or another – and the feeling that there are people out there who don’t actively hold you back as much as they work quietly on your insecurities so that you hold yourself back.
The script was clever and showed him pulling bits of information and quotations out of his straw while not really knowing how to use them. His straw contained all the answers, but didn’t know the questions.
1977 – Black Musicians and performers to participate in Smithsonian’s Fourth of July; 200 to perform in NMAH celebration; three-day fourth of July celebration at NMAH.
By the Historic Images of the Smithsonian’s Catalog you can find Donald Lopez, Deputy Director of the National Air and Space Museum, presenting Michael Jackson with a book about the National Air and Space Museum during Jackson’s after-hours tour of the Museum, 1984. Featured in TORCH, July 1984
1984 – The NAACP (National Asociation for the Advancement of Colored People) announces that Michael Jackson and his brothers have been named honorary co-chairmen of the civil rights organization’s National Voter Registration Drive. Registration booths will be set up outside Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City, venue of the Victory tours opening concert.
In January 1994, In his first major U.S. public appearance of the year, Michael Jackson told a black-tie crowd at the 26th Annual NAACP Image Awards in Pasadena, CA, that he is not guilty of any allegations leveled against him and that he is strengthened by a belief in God and the support of fans.
Jackson was on hand to present a special Image Award to Debbie Allen for her choreography work on last year’s Academy Award telecast.
He told the crowd: “For decades, the NAACP has stood at the forefront of the struggle for equal justice under the law for all people in our land. They have fought in the lunch rooms of the South, in the hallowed halls of the Supreme Court and the board rooms of America for justice, equality and the very dignity of all mankind. Members of the NAACP have been jailed and even killed in noble pursuit of those ideals upon which our country was founded.
None of these goals is more meaningful to me at this time in my life than the notion that everyone is presumed to be innocent and totally innocent until they are charged with a crime and then convicted by a jury of their peers. I never, I never really took the time to understand the importance of that ideal until now, until I became the victim of false allegations and the willingness of others to believe and exploit the worst before they have a chance to hear the truth.”
To the enthusiastic applause of the sellout crowd, Jackson added: “Not only am I presumed innocent, I am innocent, And I know the truth will be my salvation.”
He thanked the organization for its support and commitment to fairness and justice. “You have been there to support me when others weren’t around and I thank you for that. I have been strengthened in my fight to prove my innocence by my faith in God and by my knowledge that I am not fighting this battle alone. Together, we will see this thing through and I’m very proud to be here.”
Jackson’s surprise appearance overshadowed the controversy of the evening which was the nomination of rapper Tupac Shakur as best actor for his work in Poetic Justice.
While not necessarily defending Jackson or Shakur, Jasmine Guy told reporters that the two “are innocent until proven guilty.”
At the last show of the Victory tour, performed at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles, Michael announced his split from The Jacksons during “Shake Your Body [Down To The Ground]”.
The “Victory” tour reportedly grossed US$ 75 million and set a new record for the then-largest grossing tour.
Michael donated all his performance money from this tour to charity: “For me, that was what the “Victory” tour was all about – giving back!”
1997 – Michael Jackson performs his History World Tour in Olimpya Stadium, Germany, attending 70,000.
Jackson planned upon filming this concert for a DVD release by Christmas time, so more camera angles (including individual crowd shots) were used, and the audio was later remastered heavily to emphasize the percussion and audience sounds.This concert was also an early experiment by Jackson with High Definition cameras. The release was ultimately cancelled due to Jackson’s dissatisfaction of the behind-the-scenes filming. However, the performance was televised extensively in many different countries, making it one of the most readily available concerts. The most common version is the one aired by Sat.1. Following Jackson’s death, the Sat.1 version of this concert was re-televised by RTL 5, who had previously televised it on their Veronica channel.
Michael’s gold costume was designed by Gianni Versace who already designed some clothes for Michael for his “Dangerous” tour.
Plus concerts in the following countries were recorded and later shown over network television: Bucharest [Rumania] – Sept. 14, 1996, Kuala Lumpur [Malaysia] – Oct. 1996, Auckland [New Zealand] – Nov. 1996, Manila [Philippines] – Dec. 1996, Copenhagen [Denmark] – Aug. 1997, Gothenburg [Sweden] – Aug. 16, 1997 and Helsinki [Finland] – Aug. 1997.
At every “HIStory” tour stop, during “You Are Not Alone”, one lucky girl was allowed to dance with Michael on stage.