Michael Jackson and country & western. So weird, right?
The Autry National Center doesn’t seem to think so.
Beginning August 17th, the Autry at Griffith Park in Los Angeles is opening an exhibit entitled “How the West Was Worn by . . . Michael Jackson“. On display will be a handful of items that showed MJ had at least a little bit of country in him.
Early last year, the museum had contacted MJ’s designers Dennis Tompkins and Michael Bush to see if the entertainer would be interested in having a Western-themed clothing exhibit in his honor, to which MJ excitedly replied, “They want me?” After his passing, the designers made sure that it happened.
Included in the installation are a couple of bib-front shirts and trousers, as well some non-too cowboy-ish accessories (including a trademark fedora and crystal glove). The highlight is a satin, fringe trim costume designed by Warden Neil and worn by Michael in a vignette from the 70′s Jackson-family variety show, where Michael two-steps while singing “I Shot the Sheriff” (this particular ensemble was found in a flea market circa 1990 for mere pennies!).
Also part of the exhibit are these sick silver android boots and guitar-buckled belt which was worn in the famous photo that graced the cover of the single for “Beat It”.
Below, a few more of Michael’s best wild west moments:
Michael wearing a custom-tailored shirt from Western Costume Co. (with Diana Ross and Barry Gibb in the recording studio in 1984).
Kickin’ it with Bubbles in a red soutache trim bib shirt by Tony Alamo of Nashville.
(silver boots and belt photos: the Autry Center. All exhibit pieces are from the private collection of costumers extroidinare Dennis Tompkins and Michael Bush).