Thursday, June 25, 2009

Two Michael Jackson Memories

I. When Thriller came out, I was in grade school. A friend in my neighborhood had the record. I didn't. Somehow, we came up with the bright idea of making a copy by putting a cassette recorder up next to the speaker of his cheap portable record player. I think it was in the kitchen of his family's house and we had to shush his sister and make sure she didn't bang the screen door on her way out of the house. Didn't want to "ruin" the recording. As I recall, the tape was pretty much unlistenable.

II. Around the same time, rolling skating was a big thing in my hometown, and I guess in a lot of other places too. There was a big screen in one corner of our local rink where they would sometimes show music videos. Toni Basil's "Hey Mickey" was one I remember seeing there. Anyway, when they showed the "Thriller" video, something happened that never happened with any of the other videos. Everybody stopped skating and stood in front of the screen to watch.

He became a joke to a lot of people toward the end (not without reason), but he was a big deal back then.

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