It began as “Sunday Rock You,” but I’ve not been consistent. Well, first, I don’t want to publish anything unless I’m feeling something. That doesn’t always happen. it just comes to me.
But now, I am. And you’ll probably be surprised, counting my previous Rock Youz.
This has been going on since Saturday afternoon when my wife, Beatrice, dragged me — kicking and screaming — to see This is It, MJ — Michael Jackson — in the last weeks of his brightly burning life.
Well, I could write two books, one about the errors of his ways, the other about the folly of LA county prosecutors. They never proved it to me — not without physical evidence and credible testimony. They proved naïveté and a sheltered and weird, unusual life beyond belief. Not a crime, in my book. Moreover, if someone is going to put “The People” as plaintiff on a criminal complaint, I expect to have free reign to judge the evidence for myself. But, it’s not like we live in the Paleolithic, where one would surely risk death to expropriate another’s tacit approval without his prior say-so.
And yet, I’ve never, ever been a real fan. Maybe this is a good time to talk about my iTunes library of well over 3,000 songs, of which I am immensely proud. I can not tell you the number of times I’ve had people over who have been utterly mesmerized. It’s like nothing you would ever hear on the radio. Sure, I have my albums: Rush, Zep, Clapton, and a dozen or so others; Otherwise: discrimination. Here’s a clue: I have not a single Beatles track anywhere; and yet, I have some Gregorian chants, opera, plenty of classical — and let’s not forget Ella & Louis. …And I haven’t even brought up Willie or Johnny — or Sinéad, for that matter. I could even talk about a few choice punks and waves. And, oh, I could go on. Enough. People, uniformly, love my highly eclectic library, and I almost always put it on shuffle, just so they know how very eclectic it is.
I have one single Michael Jackson track. We’ll get to that, in a moment.
What did I think of the movie? Loved it, and here’s why. There’s no doubt in the world it shows a side of MJ nobody has ever seen, at least fans and lurkers. But that’s not important. It shows how very hard he works to produce, when he produces. While he’s in the top 1% of producers in terms of hard work, that doesn’t really matter either…because what’s important are the values he’s pursuing, and there was my love for the film.
What I saw was a consummate perfectionist, one that to this degree is very rare. It’s so easy in life to settle, and in fact, it’s a very good get-by strategy. What’s harder than Michael’s hard work is the unwillingness to compromise, and I saw that top to bottom in that film; wall to wall, and I just had to pause, and appreciate. There’s more: he was clearly in charge, and he got everyone to give heart & soul by being uncompromising and pro but always, always, speaking softly, even apologetically, at times. There’s a whole business management course in that film. Sure, he had advantages. And he exploited them. He did it right, at least here.
I guess I’ll have to miss him.
The single track in my collection? My favorite: Dirty Diana. Be sure to go HQ once it starts.
Correction from Dr. Eades: It was the Santa Barbara county DA that went after Jackson, not LA county.