Tuesday, August 24, 2010

The Bay Area Gears Up to Celebrate Michael Jackson’s 52nd Birthday

Michael Jackson, cropped from Image:Michael Ja...Image via Wikipedia
The Bay Area Gears Up to Celebrate Michael Jackson’s 52nd Birthday
By Shelah Moody

            It’s all for l.o.v.e.
This phrase has become official mantra for Michael Jackson fans all over the world. It’s hard to believe that more than a year since Jackson’s tragic and untimely death on June 25, 2009 in his Los Angeles home.
            Across the country, fans, friends and family are geared up to celebrate the life of the King of Pop, who would have turned 52 on Aug. 29.
            In Los Angeles, Michael Bearden, Michael Jackson’s musical director and co-producer of  Jackson documentary “This is It” announced on Facebook that he has written a tribute song called “One Last Goodbye” that will soon be released. On Facebook, Bearden told fans to “get the tissue ready.”  According to Bearden, Jackson, his longtime friend, would always spell out the words “l.o.v.e. with his fingers.
            “Embrace l.o.v.e., I repeat this often but it's how I feel,” said Bearden.
            Also in Los Angeles, Cherilyn Lee, Ph.D, 

who became Jackson’s nurse practitioner and friend during his final year, is currently organizing the Healthy Body Expo 2010, designed to motivate and inspire families by empowering them with information on ways of taking care of their body temple, with a focus on education and awareness of breast healthcare and early screening for breast cancer using new technologies such as non invasive Thermography Screenings.  The event will take place on Dec. 18 at the LAX Marriot in Los Angeles. For information, visit www.healthybodyexpo.com.
 In Las Vegas, Raquel Choyce,

 president of Michael Jackson’s United Nation International Fan Club, will host a three day birthday event for Jackson Aug. 27-29-- the Official Michael Jackson’s United Nation 5th Annual  Fan Convention: “The Legend Continues…”  at the Sahara Hotel & Casino.
Choyce, who also works as a Janet Jackson impersonator in Las Vegas, created the fan club in 2004 during the time Jackson was on trial for child molestation.
            The Fan Convention will feature top professional tribute artists, impersonators, an MJ Pop Idol Show, dance party, live production shows, MJ birthday celebration, group trip, special guests, an award ceremony and more. For more information, go to www.mjsunifc.com/mjconvention5.
In New York, renown filmmaker Spike Lee, (who directed Jackson’s “They Don’t Really Care About Us” video), 40 Acres and A Mule Filmworks and Spike DDB will host The 2nd Annual Brooklyn Loves Michael Jackson Birthday Celebration in Prospect Park on Aug. 29. DJ Spinna (turntables) will keep the crowd dancing with Michael Jackson hits such as  “The Way You Make Me Feel,”  “Billie Jean,” "Beat It,” “Man In The Mirror” and more.  For information, go to  
            The Bay Area, also, has crazy l.o.v.e. for MJ. The  A List Musiq Circle will host the Official II Bay Area Michael Jackson Birthday Dance & Celebration on Saturday Aug. 28 at Yoshi’s Jazz Club in San Francisco. Festivities will run from 9:30 p.m. to 2 a.m. For information, visit http://www.yoshis.com/sanfrancisco.
            On Sunday Aug. 29, Dance A Vision Entertainment will host a Michael Jackson birthday bash at Club Anton in Jack London Square, Oakland. The event will feature live dance performances by Brandy Norris, Carla Service, Christine Crawford, Katherine Brown, Matthew Wickett, Tamika Harris and Tiana Hawkins plus DJ Dirty Diana vs. Darling Nikki.  Festivities will run from 9 p.m. until 2 p.m. For info, call Carla Service @ (510) 753-5180.
            On Aug. 29, the Bay Area Flash Mob will perform a series of dance tribute to Michael Jackson around San Francisco. Bay Area Flash Mob is a group of people who dance, choreograph, and perform Flash Mobs and in nightclubs throughout the S.F. Bay Area.  The core members of the Flash Mob met and organized at the Michael Jackson “Thrill the World” event last year.  Carol Johnstone,

co-founder and lead choreographer and Flash Mob crew are working on Michael Jackson dances (“Beat It,” “Bad,” “Smooth Criminal” and more). For information, visit www.bayareaflashmob.com.
            This summer, on the anniversary of Jackson’s death, the Bay Area Flash Mob, dressed in MJ regalia, pulled off a successful tribute on June 25.  The event was followed by a gala tribute to MJ, “Foreverland” at the Regency Ballroom in SF. See youtube clip: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cPP5IauEzc4.
            Johnstone believes that Jackson’s untimely death had a lot to do with the changing perception of the Thriller’s life.
            “I also think that people want to love him and they want to remember him for the things that they should remember him for--his amazing talent, his generosity and humanitarianism.  He really did donate more money to charity than any other celebrity.”
            Johnstone, believes her dance tributes to Jackson as her spiritual calling.
“Right before (Jackson’s) memorial service on July 7, 2009it hit me like a ton of bricks,” said Johnstone. “That’s when I started obsessively watching his youtube videos, found “Thrill the World, and that’s how I got involved in the dancing and started the Michael Jackson Flash Mob. It’s been love ever since.” 
Related Links:
Remembering Michael Jackson with Memorabilia
One of the Most Shameful Episodes in Journalistic History
Remembering My Friend Michael Jackson
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