Dec 31 2011

Happy New Year – “there will never be a time when we will cease to be”

"The birds, the bees, the infinite galaxies, rivers, mountains, clouds and valleys are all a pulsating pattern, living, breathing, alive with cosmic energy...There never was a time when I was not, or you were not, there never will be a time when we will cease to be."   Michael Jackson

"The birds, the bees, the infinite galaxies, rivers, mountains, clouds and valleys are all a pulsating pattern, living, breathing, alive with cosmic energy...There never was a time when I was not, or you were not, there never will be a time when we will cease to be." -Michael Jackson

In view of the new year, I’d like to share with you some end-of-year highlights:

You may have heard that half of the two-man team who designed Michael’s performance wardrobe for well over two decades passed away December 2nd. Dennis Tompkins wished for his passing to remain private and so it was. We were all shocked to learn almost two weeks later that he had passed. Our sympathies and compassion go out to his family and friends, not least of all his partner in business Michael Lee Bush. In memory of Dennis, MLB had some exciting news to share and left this message recently on his facebook page:

thank you all for the kind words with the passing of Dennis Tompkins I’m pround to announce “POP REGALIA-The Style of Michael Jackson” an art book dedicated to the memory of Dennis….. it will be a behind the scenes look at the art form of designing and tailoring of Michael’s costumes from our time working with The King of Pop. It will be kinda like your personal museum of his clothing. A visual feast for the eyes!!!! Fasten your seatbelts!!!!!!!! look for the upcoming page here on facebook…..

If you haven’t seen Eliza Lo’s MJ artwork you’re in for a treat. This amazing artist is a regular contributor to the Sunflowers for Michael group, donating her drawings each week to the week’s flower deliveries. Eliza also has an art book for sale containing many of her articulately detailed drawings of Michael. You can find details about “A Loving Tribute to the King of Pophere:

One of Eliza Lo's drawings of Michael

One of Eliza Lo's drawings of Michael

This hard cover book contains 137 drawings Eliza has done to honor Michael Jackson. In keeping with Michael’s legacy, all proceeds from this book will go to help underprivileged children. For information on ordering, please email: [email protected]. You can also email Marie Lim: [email protected] and Pat Peterson: [email protected]

A while back, Seth Riggs shared a bit about Michael the humanitarian – a subject oft-ignored by the establishment media, but often mentioned by those who knew him:

At one of many hospitals Michael visited.

At one of many hospitals Michael visited.

Every night the kids would come in on stretchers, so sick they could hardly hold their little heads up. Michael would kneel down at the stretchers and put his face right down beside theirs so that he could have his picture taken with them, and then give them a copy to remember the moment.

I’m a sixty-year-old man, and I couldn’t take it. I’d be in the bathroom crying. But Michael could take it, right before going on stage no less. The kids would perk right up in his presence. If it gave them a couple days’ more energy, to Michael that was worth it. As far as I’m concerned he’s a prince of the world.

He’s the most natural, loving person I’ve ever known, a very good person, as corny as that sounds,” continued Riggs, “He’ll see a picture of a baby, and if it’s a cute kid, he will go absolutely gaga over the picture.

During the tour, on his nights off, he would go into a toy store and buy ten of this and ten of that and then stay up all night long putting batteries into toys, making certain each and every one worked so that he could have them ready to give to kids backstage the next day. As if he didn’t have enough to worry about.

-Seth Riggs, Michael’s vocal coach for over 30 years

Speaking of Seth Riggs, Riggs plans to open a school in Russia. Says Riggs: “I will find a new Michael Jackson in Moscow”. I don’t believe there will ever be another Michael Jackson, but I’m sure he will find some very good talent in Russia to keep him busy and to add to the constellation of stars currently in vogue in the entertainment world.

Seth Riggs had worked with Michael Jackson for 30 years. Among those who attended his vocal studio in Hollywood were Steve Wonder, Madonna, Jenifer Lopez, Julio Iglesias, Christina Aguilera. Many Hollywood actors were also among his students. In total his students account for 135 Grammy awards and, according to Seth Riggs, “eight or nine Oscars”. Now the legendary vocal coach plans to open his school in Moscow.

Seth Riggs is very enthusiastic about Russia. It is not only some Russian songs but first of all great number of talented people he admires here. That is why I want to open my school in Moscow, he says.

Seth Riggs began to work as a vocal coach simply because he was to keep his family. When coaching many actors and pop-singers he developed his own unique technique known as Speech Level singing.

By the way when Seth was young and performed as a singer he was accompanies by a young pianist who later became known as Van Cliburn, the winner do the first Tchaikovsky piano contest in Moscow and one of the favorites of the Russian music lovers.

Seth Riggs’s school in Moscow will be headed by Victoria Belova, an actress and a vocal coach of the Gnessin State Musical academy, who undertook internship in Seth Riggs’ studio in LA. Seth also plans to come to Moscow as often as possible and besides that it is possible to give lessons via Skype. Seth recalls that he trained Michael Jackson 2 hours a day 6 days a week and on tour 3 times a day. This is the training I want for those talented people who come to our school, he says.

By the way Seth Riggs has a chance to find not only a new Michael Jackson in Russia but future Madonnas too. In particular during his visit in Moscow Riggs was impressed by a unique talent of singer Angelica Agurbash.

SOURCE: http://english.ruvr.ru/2011/12/26/62927367.html

Michael looking a bit perturbed about being asked to sign a stack of napkins.

Michael looking a bit perturbed about being asked to sign a stack of napkins.

Who knew that Michael didn’t like signing his autograph on disposable napkins? I guess it makes sense that he’d rather sign something that will last such as a pillowcase or cloth napkin, all of which he used to sign and write sweet notes to fans on.

Here’s the story told by Rusty Lee Golden (William Lee Golden’s son) of the Oak Ridge Boys:

When Michael and his brothers came out of their dressing room and saw Dad, they all broke into the chorus of “ELVIRA” as it was the #1 song in the nation at that time (pop and country). BUT…after the singing was over, Michael turned to me and said “I remember when the Oak Ridge Boys were the #1 Gospel Group. Do they still sing Gospel??” I told him that yes they did and then he went onto tell me that he LOVED Gospel music…mentioning Andrae Crouch, Rev. James Cleveland and a few others. Yes, I know that those were NOT SG artists, but remember, MJ was after all black and that’ s the type gospel music they knew. He mentioned how much his mother Katherine was also a huge fan of “Gospel Music”.

Seconds before the camera flash went off, a Jackson’s aide rushed up to MJ and handed him a Sharpie pen and about 25 or so cocktail sized napkins into his “GLOVE” and then said “Hey Mikey….the promoter wants you to sign these”. I well remember the aide getting out of the way of the shot but MJ is looking straight at him and no….not too happy. More mad than sad. After the flashes of about 10 cameras went off, Michael just sorta’ said to anyone who could hear…”Don’t we have any regular pictures to sign? I mean c’mon man…NAPKINS????”

This picture was taken on 7/31/81.

SOURCE: http://averyfineline.com/2009/07/07/rip-mj/ (see Rusty’s remarks in the comments below the photo)

Drawing by Christine Wallden, another very talented Sunflowers for Michael contributor.

Drawing by Christine Wallden, another very talented Sunflowers for Michael contributor.

If you have a few bucks that you want to donate to a wonderful project in Michael’s name, Gardner St. Elementary is collecting funds to build a Michael Jackson Music Room. Sandy Lee Scott of the very successful Sunflowers for Michael project has agreed to help raise funds for the school and has set up a facebook page to help with the effort. It’s important to note that any money donated goes straight to the school – no “middlemen”.

Sandy said:

The main item that they need is a projector which costs $3000.00. We met with Principal Kenneth Urbina at the School last week and promised him that the NYC fans will do the best we can to get this projector for the school. Once they have all the items they need, they will also have a small area in the back of the classroom set up as a Museum to honor Michael. We would appreciate any amount that you can donate to this project.

Please send your check or money order to (NO PAYPAL):

MICHAEL JACKSON MUSIC ROOM AT GARDNER STREET ELEMENTARY SCHOOL PROJECT
Gardner St. Elementary School
7450 Hawthorn Avenue
Hollywood, CA 90046

Attention: Marielena Armaginal

Phone: (323) 876-4710

PLEASE MAKE YOUR CHECKS or MONEY ORDERS OUT TO THE GARDNER SCHOOL MUSIC PROGRAM

THANK YOU VERY MUCH!!

If you have any questions, you may call Marielena at the above number or email Sandy at [email protected].

If you remember the incredible video called “Man Behind the Mythcreated by Walking Moon Studios, you might be interested to know that WMS is working on another incredible video project aiming to highlight Michael’s genius and creativity. A new video is being produced for Joe Vogel’s book “Man in the Music-The Creative Life and Work of Michel Jackson”. The producers of the video are asking for participation from the MJ community. For more information about the project and how to participate, please go to http://walkingmoonstudios.blogspot.com/ for information. Also, please pass on this information to anyone else who you think would be interested.

Heal the World for Children is an amazing charity quietly doing the work of carrying on Michael’s legacy.  They recently shared some highlights of their work in 2011:

HTWFCEarthDay2011

For Earth Day, our teams all over the world cleaned up parks, planted trees with the kids and held educational sessions.

To mark Universal Children's Day or the December holiday season, our teams went to hospitals to visit the sick children with smiles and toys.

To mark Universal Children's Day or the December holiday season, our teams went to hospitals to visit the sick children with smiles and toys.

On Michael's birthday, all the cities joined in bringing joy to the children during our biggest event of the year, Children's Festival.

On Michael's birthday, all the cities joined in bringing joy to the children during our biggest event of the year, Children's Festival.

You can find Heal the World for Children on Facebook, twitter, and at their website.

Happy New Year Everyone.

For all of you, I wish you a safe, happy, healthy, prosperous New Year.

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8 Responses to “Happy New Year – “there will never be a time when we will cease to be””

  1. Marisa says:

    Happy New Year Seven! my best wishes to you! L.O.V.E everyone♥

  2. Micheline James says:

    Happy New Year, Seven! This was a beautiful tribute as always. The photo above of Michael wrapped and showered in gold is a stunning image for a stunning human being. I am usually not at a loss for words when it comes to writing about this magical creature, but all I can say tonight is: There will never be a time when we will cease to be untouched by Michael’s divine existence, nor will we ever be the same again without him.” Wishing happiness in 2012 to you, Seven, and every soul with a heart that hurts as deeply as it loves. We are forever connected by both.

  3. Christine says:

    Happy New Year from France !

  4. Susan Trout says:

    ‘Shiny and sparkly and splendidly bright”…..his light will shine eternally! We are so blessed to have lived while he was here.

    Happy New Year, Seven, and the Michael Jackson extended family of love!

  5. Lia says:

    Excellent article!!!
    My best wishes to you and lots of L.O.V.E.

  6. cjg says:

    When I read Michael’s words they surround me with warmth and comfort and fill me with peace and love. He was a powerfully insightful, intuitive, nuturing man. I always think of him as a big bundle of love spreading it to everyone everywhere he went. With that said I can’t help but smile and laugh a little at the expression on his face in the photo about the autographs. I can’t blame him for thinking – Really? paper napkins? come on! L.O.V.E.
    all that he is.

  7. Ara Krejci says:

    Seven,

    Words cannot express how grateful I am to you for creating this bit of heaven, where I can find respite and be with the real (and beautiful) Michael I know.

    My New Year’s resolution is to continue the “Michaeling” he has inspired in me: paying Michael’s spirit forward as best I can in all the things I do.

    “With what I do,” Michael said, “I would like to bring a light into the world.”

    He brings so much light into mine that sometimes I am simply overwhelmed by it.

  8. Joyce says:

    What a wonderful way to start out this new year. First, I absolutely love your Happy New Years photo with Michael in all his “Gold Gorgeousness”!! I had to catch my breath after looking at that.
    I have been away from my computer and have not been keeping up to date with all of your posts for the the past few weeks. I have just caught up and am now feeling energized for 2012 to continue being inspired by Michael’s message of LOVE!
    Thanks so much for all of the great information contained in this last post. I am a huge admirer of Eliza Lo’s artwork. I look forward each month to seeing her latest contribution in the “Sunflowers for Michael” photos. She has an amazing gift. What an incredible way to honor Michael by purchasing a book of her beautiful artwork that will also contribute to children in need. Another wonderful way to “Pay Michael Forward” along with the info about the Michael Jackson Music Room at Gardner St. Elementary School. I can just picture a room full of children creating beautiful music in the Michael Jackson Music Room and then sharing it with family and friends with a concert in the Michael Jackson Auditorium!! Thank you to Sandy, Principal Urbina and the Gardner St. School!
    The Heal The World for Children charity does incredible work that is certainly inspired by Michael. They are planning a trip to Africa this year to visit and bring much needed supplies and toys to a hospital for children in Sierra Leone. As a fundraiser, they are making a chain of hearts to send to Prince, Paris and Blanket on Valentines Day as a way to let them know about their plans for this trip. Every $10 donation will add another heart to the chain. Thanks for including the link to their website!

    Finally (sorry for length of this comment), thanks for sharing the story and photo from Rusty Lee Golden. That look on Michael’s face is priceless and very deserved by whoever gave him those paper napkins to sign! He still looks amazing even when perturbed. Those eyes are absolutely one of a kind and mesmerizing! I think they were described as “Angelic” by the wife of one of the Temptations in another wonderful post. I absolutely agree.
    Thanks again Seven! Best wishes to you and all of Michael’s “Army of Love” for a positive, Michael inspired 2012!

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