scr

Whenever Elvis Presley’s name is mentioned, I send my mind back to the image of him during the famous dance sequence in the 1957 film “Jailhouse Rock.” That was a time when he was at his best and looked it.

Back then Elvis was sexy and slim. He wielded power in his pelvis and the curl of his upper lip. The alleged King of Rock 'n' Roll sealed his appeal with shiny black hair styled in a modified pompadour with a spit curl in front.

The image of Elvis that I refuse to let my mind dwell on is how he looked just before he died. I don’t want to remember him struggling through his performances bloated, overweight and dressed in jumpsuits that were hideously ornate. I particularly don’t want to remember the sight of him with those awful mutton chop sideburns and sporting a towering pompadour that seemed to reach as high as the headwraps once worn by Erykah Badu.

Now that Michael Jackson has died, my mind will have to make similar detours to images more pleasant and befitting of another legendary performer who would be King.

Michael Jackson

Linda hopes to remember Michael Jackson the way he used to be.

To get to the more pleasant images of the Michael Jackson that I knew and adored, my mind will have to reach way back. It will have to reach back to the time when the so-called King of Pop was beautiful and brown, relatively happy and indisputably nappy.

The image of Michael that I choose to remember performed without props or pyrotechnics.

Back in 1969, as lead singer of The Jackson Five, it was Michael's pure voice and the harmonious backup of his brothers that charmed millions of viewers during their first appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show. His soul-stirring rendition of "Who’s Loving You" was magnificent.

I choose to remember the Michael whose young voice had an old soul, but was sweet and innocent enough to garner a Golden Globe Award for crooning a love song to a rat.

The image of Michael that I want to remember does not have skin that looked bleached by Nadinola, a nose that was neutralized, and a face that looked like it was repeatedly bounced “Off the Wall.”

The Michael that I choose to remember did not have activated hair. He did not have hair so laden with flammable products that it once caught fire during filming of a Pepsi TV commercial.

Elvis’ spit curl was natural, Michael’s “S curl” wasn’t.

My memories of Michael Jackson will be selective. Whenever I think of him I will direct my mind to see the image of a man-child who was bright-eyed and extremely talented. I will see a Michael who had a face that was untainted, unviolated and protectively framed by a natural halo called an Afro.

Michael, I want you back.

I want you before you became confused and consumed by demons. The Michael I want back is the Michael who was black.

That is the Michael that I see resting in peace.

Contact Linda or read her bio.

0 Comments
When MJ passed away, I could not help but pull out my old Jackson 5 albums, stare at the covers, and think about how he used to look as well. He was adorable as a child and young man, and I believe unaltered he would have been quite a handsome man as are his brothers. I readily admit I have no idea what he has gone through healthwise (the truth of that may never be known by the general public and I have never met him so I don't know), but I do know vertiligo does not cause one's nose to become thin or one's hair to become straight. Those things are the result of certain choices made. I do wish MJ could have been content with many things in his life, but alas, that was not to be. Personally, I preferred his music from "Off the Wall" on back to the inception of the Jackson 5. My friends and I still tease a certain mutual friend because she cried all the way through a Jackson 5 concert when we were in the 6th grade (I'm 52 now!). I am grateful for the fond memories and the wonderful music.
Why can't people accept the opinions of others as just that - their opinion? Ms. Jones expressed hers and it doesn't coincide with yours. Big deal. Why should she be damned to hell for saying what she feels? Would you want that treatment for expressing your opinion? I think not! Write an article and post your opinions. Eveyone is entitled to an opinion just as they are a certain body part. Lighten up!
I agree with the above posters. It's sad to see that so many people still believe the idiotic skin bleaching tale. Many people have seen folks with vitiligo & didn't know it. When I was a kid there was a local black man who had it. It started as white spots on his hands & face. In a few years the spots spread til his face was white with a few tiny brown spots & his arms were almost white. I'm a teacher & over the years have heard the bleached skin tale from my students,but whenever I describe the man I saw as a kid,& how he changed, there's ALMOST ALWAYS kids who've seen someone like that.Just today a kid told me his grandpop has it.White people get it too,but it's less noticeable. I saw a young white girl at an amusement park who had it on her hands. CHECK THESE GOOGLE IMAGES http://tinyurl.com/kv6dgo HERE'S A BLACK NEWS REPORTER DEALING WITH IT: http://tinyurl.com/2fd87x Look familiar?? Can you imagine being a performer & dealing with this? I've heard that the famous glove was a way to hide the spots on his hand.
Don't be so down on Linda. She's not saying anything about him that noone said about him before this happened. I can understand where she's coming from, though. When he was young, pre surgery, he was a very beautiful black child and man. Because his features have been so dramatically altered, he doesn't look the same. He was beautiful. He was a great performer.
Please excuse the typos. It's late where I am. :-S
I don't normally read Linda Jones ' article and now i remember why. Michael Jackson was black when he was born and black when he died. That is such an ignorant comment to make about him because of the literal color of his skin, changed due to illness not insanity. Do you also categorize other light skinned people as not being black. In this country "blacks" come in a multitude of shades. How dare you assume to deny this man his heritage because of his hue? The man is dead, remember him however you wish, but don't insult him when he cannot even defend himself. MJ, I loved your music period - may god rest your soul.
To Nelda: I think that most people don't take the time to actually *research* vitiligo. It's easier to believe that someone would be able to bleach their skin continuously for 20 + years without looking like a burn victim because they are highly eccentric, and that's what eccentric people do. Obviously anyone who thinks that way has never known or interacted with anyone who has vitiligo, or they'd realize that what they are saying is a bit unrealistic and ignorant.
This is an unfair article. No one knows the pressure that Michael had to endure day in and day out. Moost of us would be literally crushed under the amount of fame and acclaim he gain throughout the years. Lets remember his beyond EXTRAORDINARY contribution to music and to the world as a humanitarian. Come on, he created a WHOLE GENRE of music. I mean damn did he SHOOT someone. He was an extremely talented individual and NO ONE on the planet can stand in JUDGEMENT against him b/c we ALL have our struggles and secrets and everyone deals with their struggles differently. Furthermore Michael DID NOT bleach his skin as this article blatantly suggests he had a skin condition called vitiligo which results in the skins discoloration. Any Tom, Dick, or Harry would know that is physically impossible to bleach ones skin to that extent. Anyway I just want to say that I LOVE YOU MICHAEL and I am honored to have experienced your music and person!
Michael Jackson is the man! Point said point made. I am going to remember all phases of Michael Jackson. His imaged changed and evolved and I will not succumb to one of those images. I EMBRACE AND RESPECT ALL that Michael Jackson is. To have a selective memory of Mike is not having a memory of him at all. His style was not of the natural way of Naturally Curly, but his very own style, THE KING OF POP's Style. There should not be any judgements placed on the deceased. and in closing I LOVE YOU MIKE
I think Michael was always beautiful, no matter what. And I believe he should be remembered for ALL the amazing things he did in his too-short lifetime. May the King of Pop rest in peace. <3
i agree. i wonder what he would have looked like today had he let things be - so cute.

Social