In a 40-year musical career, Jackson endeared himself to millions of adoring fans all over the world with his electrifying stage presence that has made him one of the most popular artists of all time.
Jackson, born on August 29, 1958, started his singing career as a child in the family group, The Jackson 5, that broke a colour barrier and won them international fame as one of the best teenybopper acts.
Later, as a solo act, Jackson went on to achieve world fame with smash hits such as 'Billie Jean' and 'Bad'. His album 'Thriller' which was released in 1982, established the singing phenomenon as one of the most influential solo artists in the modern era. 'Thriller' was the biggest-selling album of all time, according to the Guinness Book of World Records.
'Wacko Jacko' dead at 50? That must have come as a great shock to many of his millions of fans. Many will remember their childhood crush, the Michael Jackson 'moonwalk' and the image of a beloved child star whose adult life was mixed with adulation and a professional eccentricity that turned him into a fascinating but strange troubled freak show.
For Jackson, his queasy Neverland bubble, his self-professed devotion to children, his self-indulgent shopping habits, the cosmetic surgery experience and the whole mask thing is an ironic testament of a child star turned adult whose fame in later years was all for the wrong reasons. He was like a Peter Pan who could not accept the reality of age catching up on him.
Quincy Jones, who produced Jackson's top-selling albums, 'Thriller', 'Bad' and 'Off The Wall', said: "For Michael to be taken away from us so suddenly at such a young age, I just don't have the words."
Reactions from Michael Jackson fans