Michael Jackson (1934)
- Category : Entertainment-Radio-D.J.-Announcer
- Type : GE
- Profile : 5/2 - Heretical / Hermit
- Definition : Split - Small (19,39,41)
- Incarnation Cross : LAX Limitation 1
British-American radio and TV show host and journalist with reports from 1963. His show rates first in its time slot in the New York area. Jackson has been able to attract top politicians, celebrities and other news-makers on his talk radio show. He received the Golden Mike Award in 1984. In 1988, Queen Elizabeth II honored the broadcaster with a Member of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire joining two other journalists in the honor, Edward R. Murrow and Alistair Cooke. He is a British "brash colonial" who has learned to make a life for himself in America, not England.
Jackson was an emaciated kid during the London Blitz in WW II. While his father was stationed in the Royal Air Force in South Africa, Jackson boarded in a school south of London. As a boy, he held many fantasies of life in America and of living in Hollywood. The romance and glamour of big cars, Coca-Cola and beautiful women were an escape for a child subjected to the uncertainties of war in England. In 1945, Jackson's father returned to London and the family left on the first ship to South Africa to escape the post-war austerity of the UK. His father would later own a furniture factory.
As a teen, Jackson listened to Bing Crosby on his short-wave radio. Knowing that he was not attractive enough for the silver screen, Jackson planned a career as a radio announcer. At 16, he won a contest that got him into radio. His parents wanted him to get a degree and become a lawyer. Instead, Jackson learned the radio trade by applying himself to all facets of the business from setting up microphones for an orchestra, writing radio soap operas, to directing radio dramas at the age of 18. In 1956, he started all over again at the prestigious BBC in London. He emceed his own game show, announced television shows, and read the news broadcasts. Jackson knew his career limits in Britain and Europe. His colleagues considered the broadcaster a "brash colonial" who did not go to the "right" schools. At 24, Jackson made his decision almost out-of-the-blue to get on the next ship to the U.S. He arrived in the U.S. in 1958 and worked in radio studios in Springfield, MA and an overnight show in San Francisco.
In 1962, he made his move to Los Angeles and joined KHJ but was let go in six months because of the change in the station's radio format. Hired for KNX talk radio in 1962 Jackson was instructed to stay clear of controversy by avoiding politics, religion, sex, and race. In 1965, the conservative management fired Jackson for discussing the August Watts Riots. In 1966, he was picked up by KABC radio and remains with the station celebrating over 30 years on the air. In 1996, management came close to firing Jackson because they wanted to replace him with a conservative and confrontational talk radio host that could polarize the listening audience. Luckily for him, Disney bought the KABC management in 1996 and brought in contemporary thinking, broadcasters who respected Jackson's more liberal and non-combative talk radio style. His British accent has allowed him to sound kind and soothing when asking difficult questions to Hillary Clinton, Ronald Reagan, and other well-known personalities. He uses his voice as a "fist in a velvet glove." His local television shows in Los Angeles have earned him seven Emmy awards. As guest host, he has replaced Larry King on his CNN television show over 23 times. Jackson envisions a future in which he will have his own TV talk show to go head to head against Larry King.
Jackson has been able to live out his boyhood fantasy of living in Hollywood. He married Alana Ladd, the daughter of the late Hollywood actor, Alan Ladd in 1965. Their home in Bel-Air is full of Alan Ladd memorabilia from his Hidden Valley ranch. He and his wife had three children, Alan born in 1968, Alisa born in 1969 and Devon in 1976. Jackson became a grandfather in 1994. Because of his lack of an educational degree, Jackson works extra hard in learning about and preparing for his questions for his guests. He reads many newspapers to stay informed about world events. In preparing for his show, Jackson arrives a little over two hours before his broadcast. Extremely inquisitive and talkative, Jackson hangs on to his liberal views at a time when most radio talk show hosts are conservative such as Rush Limbaugh, Oliver North, and G. Gordon Liddy. Jackson learned his liberal views from his father who treated everyone in South Africa as equals. Charming, polite and considerate of his guests, he is the epitome of the true gentleman.