On november 30, 1982 (31 years ago), Michael Jackson’s “Thriller" was released. Including hit singles such as "Billie Jean", "Beat it" and "Thriller" - having its video considered the most influential of all time -, it remains the best selling album of all time.
P.Y.T. (pretty young thing) ♡
Michael has said that, initially, after leaving the stage, he was disappointed with his performance. His plan, when he went up on his toes, was to simply stay there, suspended infinitely. Just as well that he didn’t; the house could not have handled it. As it was, they went nuts when he showed up at the after party, held at an indoor shopping mall across the street that Motown shut down and converted into a massive disco.
As his security team wedged him through the crush of excited well-wishers, Tops, Tempts, Supremes and others pushed their way toward Jackson as if they themselves weren’t legends, as if they hadn’t made music that influenced and inspired this man. Chaos ensued. It was all Jackson’s bodyguards could do to turn him around and push him back out to his limo out front.
Those of us lucky enough to attend the taping had to wait weeks for the show to air. Would Jackson’s performance be all that we’d raved to anyone who’d listen? Yes, even to the Jacksons. Rebbie Jackson told me when the show aired, they, like other viewers across America, taped it off the TV. The next day, friends, entertainers and assorted dignitaries, acknowledging that the universe had indeed tilted, phoned, sent flowers and wired kudos. “People came by Hayvenhurst (the Jackson home in Encino) all day long,” she said. “It was as if someone got married or brought a baby home from the hospital. We played that tape over and over all day until it broke.”
And the day after Motown 25 aired, all retail hell broke loose. At the height of its phenomenal sales history, the album was nationally selling half a million copies a week. With more than one million copies sold in Los Angeles alone, Thriller demanded its own zip code.
Steven Ivory “What It Was Like Seeing Motown 25 Live”