Most people will remember where they were when it was announced Michael Jackson had died at the age of 50. Another legend gone too soon, the latter part of his career blighted by controversy and at times, misadventure. On the cusp of redeeming himself with his critics and fans alike, he affirmed that “This Is it” in 2009 with a record breaking 50 concert residency at the 02 Arena in London.
Michael’s untimely death made “This Is It” the greatest concert that never happened.
Eight years on and Jackson’s music continues to play a massive part in popular music culture. In 2016, Business Insider ranked the most successful acts in music history according to their total certified album units sold in the US, as provided by the RIAA – The Recording Industry Association of America.
- The Beatles — 178 million units
- Garth Brooks — 136 million units
- Elvis Presley — 136 million units
- Led Zeppelin — 111.5 million units
- The Eagles — 101 million units
- Billy Joel — 82.5 million units
- Michael Jackson — 79 million units
- Elton John — 77 million units
- Pink Floyd — 75 million units
- AC/DC — 72 million units
The Official Michael Jackson Twitter page has 2.1 million followers which is trounced in spectacular style with 75 million followers by Michael Jackson’s Official Facebook page. This is not surprising. Michael Jackson was the subject of a global popularity that Western pop culture hadn’t even touched in some cases in the 1980’s and 1990’s. Jackson set the base DNA for the generations of pop music, dance, performances and ultimately fame that few can ever hope to attain.
“I’m Gonna Make A Change, It’s Gonna Feel Real Good” – Michael Jackson wanted to make a difference; it’s fair to say he did, and still is.