If you like freak shows, then the current travails of the Republican Party are incredibly sweet. Marc Sanford’s “I’m gonna try and fall back in love with my wife” nonsense [need dental work? try repeating that one to your wife?], Palin’s rambling, basketball–and–dead fish–laden resignation speech, and now the pride of Long Island, U. S. Rep. Peter King, calling Michael Jackson names on the day before he is buried. “Lowlife,” “pedophile,” “child molester,” oh yeah, King hit `em all. The run of bad news on Jackson is about to begin again—his toxicology report is gonna cause a circus, not to mention the end of several medical careers—so I’m thinking King coulda waited a day or two before giving us another dose of some righteous Republican extolling the heroism of firefighters, cops and soldiers. The fact that all three of those professions are paying gigs—no one is being drafted lately—is clearly beside the point for King. And okay, we all know Jackson had some unhealthy sides to his life, but couldn’t King have waited a day or so before becoming a new hero to the haters in the Republican Party. The appetites for hating and hypocrisy in the GOP are apparently insatiable. I loved it when one of King's colleagues questioned whether this outburst would help or hurt King by saying that it might help if has a lot of racists in his district.

The Staples Center. No Liz Taylor. No Diana Ross. Audio problems? Audio problems from the same company that was going to produce his London shows? Not such a good sign I’m thinking. And speaking of trash from Long Island, no one does bad hair like Mariah Carey. My God, her flip, bangs on steroid thing at the Jackson memorial was so goofy. Mimi need a haircut. And no one has ever had less top end to her voice than Carey. Her signature feathery, whispery thing is not a style point; it’s a sign that she has a thin voice. Now Stevie Wonder, who gave the memorial service’s best performance, Jermaine Jackson being a close second, still has a massive voice left there, no doubt about it. Always great to see Stevie. The man is and has always been the real deal.

The Jackson Brothers common outfit--black suit, yellow tie, one sequined covered glove—was a little strange. I guess those old Jackson Five habits die hard. Liked the shades though.

“Michael made us love each other” and [spoken to Jackson’s children] “There wasn’t nothing strange about your daddy.” Two gems of understatement [and bad grammar] from Al Sharpton’s speech. The man never met a TV camera or an event he couldn’t turn his way. Forget about wind or solar or any other alternative energy source: if his pomposity and self-impressedness could be harnessed and made to run turbines, we could air condition this entire country.

And then there’s that dope John Mayer. Sorry dude but having a beat up Fender doesn’t automatically make you cool. Why does this man have a career? He’s the Kid Rock of the jam band set. Useless.

You had to feel bad for Brooke Shields. She choked up immediately and almost didn’t make it through her speech. Allowing Paris, Michael’s daughter, to speak was surprising. The poor kid obviously felt compelled to answer folks like Peter King. And what is with Joe Jackson, Michael’s father, wearing a hat the entire way through what is essentially a funeral service? The guy has real class. This is not the way to convince people you’re not the monster they think you are.

Too bad we never got to see more from the upcoming DVD of the rehearsals from the Staples Center. It’ll be really interesting to see what Michael had left in the tank at this late date.

Vik's picture

Completely tasteless. You just critiqued a man's memorial service. I'm embarrassed for you.

Tiger Al's picture

As long as Baird gets to rant about Republicans, Jackson did not die in vain. And the only thing worse than a Republican is Joe Jackson! What a goof.

Cory's picture

Wow. I really wish that you would leave politics out of this. Your mag is about music and the reproduction of it-not politics. If I was interested in your political views I would watch MSNBC or some other lap dog media outlet for the borderline socialist administration foisted upon us by people like you. Stick to music, it serves you much better.