Singer Michael Jackson has died at the age of 50, according to various news sources. TMZ broke the story after covering initial reports that the legendary pop star had been hospitalized. A 911 call was made at Jackson’s Holmby Hills home in Los Angeles at 12:21 p.m. Thursday, and he was rushed to UCLA Medical Center.
Jackson allegedly suffered from a cardiac arrest just before his death. It was originally reported that he was unconscious when treated by paramedics, who administered CPR. But sources are now reporting Jackson was dead when the paramedics arrived.
Earlier in the afternoon, Jackson’s father Joe told TMZ that his son was “not doing well,” and another family member described Jackson as being “in really bad shape.” L.A. Fire Dept. Capt. Steve Ruda told the L.A. Times that emergency crews responded to a call at Jackson's home, but when they arrived he wasn't breathing and couldn't be revived.
Jackson was scheduled to perform 50 concerts in London beginning July 13, every one of which sold out within hours of tickets going on sale. Jackson had spent the past few weeks in Los Angeles rehearsing for the shows.
Long referred to as The King of Pop, Jackson sold more than 750 million albums worldwide and earned an estimated $500 million. He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and the Songwriters Hall of Fame, and he received numerous awards and accolades throughout his storied 40-year music career.
From the Jackson 5 to Thriller, Michael Jackson will be remembered as one of the greatest performers of his generation -- and arguably all-time. Although reclusive and sometimes known for odd behavior, he's generally considered on par with such music greats as Elvis Presley and The Beatles. Music historians can now argue over whether he was truly the greatest.