Michael Jackson was weird as hell, often made the wrong decisions when it came to showing his love for kids and had a host of other negatives traits if you care to dig deep enough. Yet with that said, Michael Jackson continues to be the world’s greatest entertainer, had the biggest heart for children and is quite possibly the most misunderstood musician in of all time. This 1972 interview with NBC’s Robert Abernathy along with his oldest brother, Jackie, was a moment frozen in time not because of it impact, but rather because it never serves as one of those career highlights often seen when tributes to the man and his life are compiled.
Tons of nostalgic nuggets are found in this near seven minute clip including every single and album from the Jacksons selling over a million copies (that’s just flat out ridiculous) as well as Joe Johnson keeping him on a short leash financially with a $7/week allowance. Knowing now what the world likely suspected then, with no shade towards Jackie, Mike would mature into the world’s most recognizable public figure, alter his appearance to an almost unrecognizable degree* and fight for his freedom on more than one occasion. Perhaps that’s how the drug of fame really is though. Michael became too famous for his own good and the only vices with the ability to keep him under control were the ones which eventually took his life.
None of that matters at this moment however. This was Mike Jack: innocent and light hearted with the weight of the world on his shoulders.
* — When my younger brother was around eight or nine (he’s 19 now), he saw an older picture of M.J. For the longest time, he refused to believe Mike was actually black.