Michael Joseph Jackson was an American singer, songwriter, and dancer. Dubbed the "King of Pop", he is regarded as one of the most significant cultural figures of the 20th century. Over a four-decade career, his contributions to music, dance, fashion, and philanthropy, along with his publicized personal life, made him a global figure in popular culture. He influenced artists across many genres, and through stage and video performances, popularized complicated dance moves such as the moonwalk, to which he gave the name, and the robot. He is the most awarded music artist in history.
The eighth child of the Jackson family, Jackson made his professional debut in 1964 with his elder brothers Jackie, Tito, Jermaine, and Marlon as a member of the Jackson 5. Jackson began his solo career in 1971 while at Motown Records, and became a solo star with his 1979 album Off the Wall. His music videos, including those for "Beat It", "Billie Jean", and "Thriller" from his 1982 album Thriller, are credited with breaking racial barriers and transforming the medium into an art form and promotional tool.