Saturday, June 27, 2009
The Blond geisha mourns
So I woke up on Thurs, June 25th to the sad news of the passing of Farrah Fawcett. Damn...it finally happened. FF put up an amazing battle against cancer for about 3 years..but I guess it was just getting to be too much. She had officially decided to no longer continue with any more treatments. Her family and loved ones all said it was only a matter of time. I watched the documentary on Farrah a few weeks back and was extremely moved by her courage and positive attitude, even though she was undergoing such aggressive and excrutiating treatments for her cancer. It was a really well done documentary...and it was no holds barred. She let the cameras into her life and let them see what she was going through and what this ugly disease was doing to her. I was really moved.
We were all expecting the news of her death. But yet when it actually came out that she had died, it was a sad, sad moment.
So when I got a press release from a good girlfriend of mine who is in media around 1:30 saying that Michael Jackson had just had a cardiac arrest and things weren't looking good, I just knew that something wasn't right. I searched tmz and they also reported Joe Jackson as saying "things are not looking good". They also reported that the whole Jackson family was hurrying to be by the side of their beloved Michael. And a little before 2:30, they called it. Michael Jackson, the King of Pop, was dead. I couldn't believe it. How could this be true? From what I read in all the news/gossip sites, Michael Jackson had just been practicing for his upcoming tour LAST NIGHT! He was only 50 years old. NOT MICHAEL. MJ has been through a lot in his life....he will make it through this. They can'T be right. He CAN'T BE DEAD. He still has so much music to share with us!
I looked at all the websites...CNN, BBC, NBC, CBS, ABC, FOX...they alll said the same thing.
Michael Jackson is in critical condition and is in a coma. BUT NOT THAT HE WAS DEAD.
So maybe there IS hope?
Then my phone rang. It was J-wave....the radio station that I do some work for in Tokyo, Japan.
"Lisle, we hear that Michael Jackson is dead. what is the situation over there? do you know?"
I explained to the director that it is total chaos. No one knew what or who to believe. All the "respectable" news stations weren't calling him as dead. But now a few of the other sources...such as tmz, OK magazine were the first to call it. The world of the internet was a flurry of people trying to find out THE TRUTH. For about an hour I felt this sense of despair...not knowing what was right and what wasn't right.
When Elvis died in 1977, they didn't have this kind of problem. The news came from either the television or the radio...and then of course from newspapers. OUr generation had the internet... one of the most powerful tools to have ever been invented. A weath of knowledge which gave us everything we needed to know....except the truth about what was going on at the moment.
I was getting text messages from people all over the place...are you SURE he is dead? WHAT is GOING ON? Can someone please TELL ME?
I looked on twitter and it was ablaze with rumors about what was going on...
Then my phone rang. It was a little after 3p.m. My friend who works at UCLA called to tell me the news. They called the death. Now they are going to be making an official announcement in about 15 or 20 min.
Sure enough...after about 15 min, there was an announcment from UCLA Medical Center...all of a sudden, it was like a ripple effect... all the news stations changed their website front page to read "Michael Jackson- dead at 50" or some other title...
WOW...it was such a surreal moment.
For those 40 min or so, before I got the call, I felt this helplessness. IT was like being caught in a new media tidal wave...all the information was engulfing me and I didn't know what to do with it.
I will never forget that feeling I had that day. And the impact that the series of events had on me.
The first time I heard the announcement that he had had a cardiac arrest and things weren't looking good, I knew the news was not going to be good.
I am sad that we have lost one of the biggest minds in music. One of the most brilliant entertainers to ever have walked this earth.
yes, there was a lot of "stuff" that was said about him....who knows what is true and what isn't.
I can't even imagine being in his shoes.
But I DO remember the day I first heard his solo debut album "Off the Wall". I was floored by the incredible passion and energy in the songs. And the purity of his voice. That album will always be my favorite album of his. And will always have an impact on me musically.
Michael Jackson, you will be sorely missed. RIP