I realize you can’t call yourself a soul singer and NOT be influenced by Michael Jackson, The Jackson 5 and Smokey Robinson as he did his memorial at his funeral today at the Staples Center 2 miles away from my house still honking his own horn about being the original songwriter of I’ll be There, at his funeral. I’ve never been an Usher fan until today boy, he really did a great job on his song “Gone Too Soon.” The other young boy from the UK was quite touching, it was definitely a tear jerker today as I watched it on my slow buffering LIVE downloaded stream from my laptop. (Because I don’t want to watch TV and live with a guy who watches it constantly anyway so I haven’t converted to DTV and I don’t want a cable bill. It’s better to wait until after and look for the uploads on youtube. Start playing the video while you read the rest of this for the full effect…
There is a lot that the family is doing to make sure that he has a glorified ending. It was quite touching and successful. I don’t go to many funerals. In fact, I haven’t been to one since my best friend died almost 8 years ago. But I think today I took about 3 hours or more to just think about Michael, death and his influence. He like Michael Jackson was a very talented artist, who died unexpectedly of heart failure in his sleep in his grandmother’s house at the age of 26. We were just laughing and doing a photoshoot in the Hollywood Hills, where I was coincidentally, dressed like the late Marilyn Monroe, his all time favorite icon.
funerals and deaths of mega stars actually have a public mourning process,and I forgot that. I wasn’t a fan of Tupac or Biggie during their deaths even..I never appreciated Pac until I realized his activism, which was clearly made a legacy by his mother who was a Black Panther..It was the movie that she produced that practically changed my life, and my art. But Michael Jackson was bigger and richer than anyone. He was part of a time of the indulgent and global fan crazed 80s. I watched Madonna’s tribute to him while she was still rockin out in concert. she must be sad. they were on top of the world together at the same time once..
I didn’t really think I was a fan of Michael Jackson as an adult but as an adult singer, I realize that the soulful intonations that I am trying to practice are from that original 70’s Motown Smokey Robinson tradition..These are the influences of the ones that influence me: Mariah, Alicia, En Vogue, D’Angelo (whose voice flows over my body like a tongue..!)
I was feeling really hopeless and shitty before I tuned into the Michael Jackson tribute boy. I am having trouble getting my drivers license renewed and my insurance CANCELLED ME! but I will get it all figured out. Blanket DOES resemble Michael. He’s totally cute. Seems he was at least heterosexual enough to reproduce! Obama should have said something. It really is a big year for the visibility of half Black Americans. (I’m talking about his kids! His kids!)
At the funeral of my best friend, I had a chance for closure and forgiveness with his brother who had sexually assaulted me one summer that I slept over their house in burbank. I was terrified of seeing him again, but I was welcomed to the grievance process of the family as an important person in my friends life and my side of the story was heard and through that death I was able to reach a pivotal moment in my healing. Hugged his brother. Had a short conversation with him, but one that included forgiveness and also felt the ever presence of my friend as he had truly been there for me to make that moment happen in his death. He just couldn’t do it in his life.
I do hope that if there was any sexual abuse by Michael Jackson that occured at all, that through this final moment of MJ’s life that they are able to forgive him and see him for the greater part of what he was trying to do with his life. As a survivor who has healed from too many incidents and has a life of post traumatic stress I am a bit biased when famous people are accused of abuse or assault because of the power that they have they are able to just continue their lives without interruption. I’m not a fan of the prison industrial complex, so I think MJ’s fate to be isolated with himself and his family, close Neverland to children and self medicate with drugs for the last ten years should be what everyone who has been accused of rape, murder or abuse should have the choice of. I think that’s one of my issues around it as well. I think that MJ’s fall from grace and immortality was his punishment and he just aggravated that to his own death with an indulgent elite drug habit.
As a sex worker who has seen first hand over and over again the DELUSION that money and power have over many of my drug using clients, I never put it past those with lots of money and power to hurt or abuse while under the influence of excess. I thnk that the line is very easy to cross for us all unless we examining and re-examining these issues with everyone around us. More people have STDs than they would like to admit, more people have been raped than they want to admit as well as more people have perhaps done something in their life that has violated another perosn and they have absolutely NO IDEA that they did it because of their own baggage UNTIL something like a court case or a jail sentence or death that causes them to understand. And sometimes even after, they still don’t understand. I am a bit suspicious of the McCaully Culklin’s friendship with him was during that time and he pretty much disappeared from Hollywood too. For all I know he is one of my next crack head clients talking about how he was ritually abused at Neverland and that was the end of his career and the beginning of his crack habit…i’m just saying..what happened to him?
It was a pretty epic funeral. Fit for the King of Pop. A Gold casket and star studded eulogy (including MLK Jr’s daughter and Al Sharpton) and the whole entire center of Los Angeles clearning a path for a motorcade. Like when Obama took the office of President and I partied in the streets of San Francisco in universal American joy, never have I witnessed the death and mourn the loss of a mega star like Elvis, Marilyn Monroe or Michael Jackson…
It looked like it was going to be a great show. Unifying the world theme. We are the world.. We are the children. And a special appearance by the Britain’s Got Talent child star ending with a duet. And Al Shartpton preaching that “It was Michael” that brought Black and white together, and “it was Michael” that got Obama into office was a little bit hilarious but I got into it as it progressed.
Today, by email, by dad informs me that my Uncle Bob, died of cancer at around the age of 80. He was closer to me and my family when we were kids, but as teenagers and adults he was a distant figure at the Family dinner reunion. LOTS OF PEOPLE DYING LATELY? Or is it just me…I don’t know if you have EVER pictured your funeral and what you want it to be like, but most of us know that it isn’t going to be like the one we saw today. One can only imagine a funeral of epic proportions..
In the last 2 years I have had thoughts of hopelessness and suicide in brief incriments, nothing serious but still salient and notable enough to blog about, It’s usually of me shooting myself in the face….(Hmmm. A cry for help? you Decide.) pretty much because of feeling underappreciated and unloved by family members, the sex worker community, my deadend relationship…sometimes it does take a death to make us realize greatness which is the cause of a lot of drug overdoses and suicides in the world, I imagine. I have imagined my funeral…I got a mailer the other day that used the words “recession” and “green economy” in the same mailer…(some marketing guy was paid top dollar to find the trending keywords on twitter for this cremation service boy!) I do want to be cremated though, I wonder how they knew..
I smoke weed to manage depression and hopelessness and try to lay off the idea that opiates or alcohol could ever take problems away. One night, I did a half a pill of a prescription opiate once and was sick and dizzy for 12 hours after that, just a tiny half bit more could KILL you, unless you have naloxone…MJ was one of the wealthiest drug users around. who could tell him no? or, hey Michael I think you really are doing too much…His rent was 100,000 a month! He was a king! And when did Lou Ferrigno (The original Hulk?) become so flaming gay (and weird?) with his lisp?
Too many pills.. Anna Nicole and Marilyn died the same way. And the guy from Batman too. But boy you score when you get a source of 80mL of oxycotin..they sell for $50-80 per little pill on the street! Apparently because of the Jackson scandal, doctors are tightening up on their prescriptions. (for a little while to this blows over..) Naloxone will reverse an opiate overdose but won’t work on other overdoses that aren’t opiate. I believe that MJ was using Diprovan, which is like a strong Methadone..I had a methadone client. He was a DJ who believed that he could DJ in a rotating hamster wheel like contraption upside down. Above a crowd. I was drinking mimosas with him and laughing at him while taking his money… He gave me a methadone pill and I took HALF of it. The mix of alcohol and methadone made me feel sick to my stomach ALL DAMN DAY. Even driving in a car made me nauseous. In fact, I even threw up in the bathroom of my next client, running the sink to camofaluge an embarassing moment. The moral of the story is that prescription pills are touchy. You can’t just have the “down the hatch” balls out attitude with them that you do when you drink alcohol for instance. MJ used to sit in his bed watching Donald Duck cartoons wishing that he could get some sleep. Half of his body was hot and half of his body was cold, he told his nurse, but he did not want to go the hospital. He was already dying before he died.
His life and death kind of reminds me of the movie Gia…which I just saw recently in a lot of ways..bisexual AIDS crisis classic! OMG. A beautiful tragedy…Michael Jackson wrote a song for Ryan White! It’s because of the Ryan Act that an HIV/AIDS movement even exists! I was probably Ryan White’s same age actually..it was interesting to see he was part of that Gia era of history. The 80’s! drugs, sex and STDS! And Black and White Unified? Really Al? In the Reagan era? I mean, I was only 8 but still..Just like Reagan when he died, his memorial was carefully crafted and he was rememberd for none of the horrific genocide or drug and arms sales, but his acting! and his philathropy!