“Jackson has just about everything you would want in a dancer. He is very fast, and, now that the adult musculature has come in, his whole body is ‘worked’, this means that every muscle is stretched, and operating in the service of the dance. Nothing is blurred. As a result, he has a sharp attack, and wonderful clarity. Watch him for example, in ‘The Way You Make Me Feel’ dancing, silhouetted, alongside other men doing the same steps. You can’t see the faces, but you know which one he is. He dives into a step more intently, and shows it to us more precisely, than anyone else.” Joan Acocella - The New Yorker
On Michael Jackson, the dancer.
Fun fact of the day. These aren’t going to be a regular occurrence. I’m lazy.
Michael Jackson’s first encounter with the moonwalk was via David Bowie’s 1974 “Diamond Dogs Tour” (choreographed by Toni Basil). Although Bowie performed the move while remaining stationary, it left an impact on Michael who attended his Los Angeles show (lucky bastard).
Not true. Michael learnt the dance from the streets and fellow dancer Jeffery Daniels. He might’ve attended this concert, but the dance had been around for literally decades before David Bowie attempted it.
^ Yup, and Bowie doesn’t perform the moonwalk, he does the “walking in the wind” move, inspired by the mime, Marcel Marceau, who was also a huge inspiration of MJ’s. Jeffery Daniels was also inspired by Marcel, as you can see with the outfit he wore when he did the moonwalk on TOTP 1982.
Though, it was at an after party in 1974 that MJ and Al Green taught Bowie how to do the robot.
On the history of the moonwalk.
Michael Jackson writing on an Elvis figurine at Neverland:
“If I can only find a white man, with a black man’s sound, I could make a million dollars.” - Sam Phillips, Sun Record
(Sam Phillips is responsible for launching Elvis’s career, and would famously tell people at his record label that quote before discovering Elvis)