Washington: Michael Jackson’s evolution as an artist and a person went beyond his talents as a musician, a new book on the singer’s life has claimed.
‘Man in the Music: The Creative Life and Work of Michael Jackson’ has been written by music writer and University of Rochester instructor Joe Vogel. In an exclusive interview with a website, Vogel talks about the late singer’s legacy as an entertainer, businessman and innovator and what lessons he offered all of us.
“One of Michael Jackson’s greatest qualities was his ability to envision something in his mind – something bold and different and innovative – and then have the willpower and work ethic to realize it,” Vogel was quoted as saying.
“He was constantly challenging himself and those around him to push beyond the ordinary. He often had friends and collaborators read ‘Jonathan Livingston Seagull’, a fable about refusing to conform and striving for excellence. You see, even with his ‘This Is It’ concerts at the age of 50, he wouldn’t accept mediocrity. He wanted the shows to be unlike anything people had experienced before,” he said.
Vogel also said that the King of Pop made “very good business decisions”.
“Michael made very good business decisions for the first 10-15 years of his adult career, and very bad ones in his final 10-15 years. His smartest decision was to not only retain the rights to his own master recordings (before him, there was a long history of exploitation in the music industry, particularly of African-American artists), but to also actively acquire other publishing rights, including the Beatles catalogue. His worst decisions came when he had a lot of money and not much consistency or oversight. His management, beginning in the early ‘90s, became a revolving door. He became vulnerable to extortion, exploitation and excessive spending because he no longer had a trustworthy, vigilant, dedicated team around him,” Vogel said.
He concluded by saying that any entrepreneur could learn that “doing something great requires both vision and work’ from the ‘Billy Jean’ hitmaker.
“I think the main thing an entrepreneur or business owner could learn from Michael Jackson is that doing something great requires both vision and work. Michael approached each new project with boundless passion, and that energy was infectious to collaborators. But what really impressed those who worked with him was that he could bring his ideas to fruition. He dreamed big and then worked tirelessly until his dreams came to life,” he added.