Commenting on his passing, Sir Howard Stringer, Chairman, CEO and President, Sony Corporation, said: "Michael Jackson was a brilliant troubadour for his generation, a genius whose music reflected the passion and creativity of an era. His artistry and magnetism changed the music landscape forever. We have been profoundly affected by his originality, creativity and amazing body of work. The entire Sony family extends our deepest condolences to his family and to the millions of fans around the world who loved him." Rolf
Schmidt-Holtz, CEO, Sony Music Entertainment, said: "Michael Jackson's unsurpassed artistry and beloved music brought joy to every corner of the world. We join today with his millions of fans in expressing our profound sadness and we offer our deepest condolences to his family and loved ones. It was a true privilege for all of us in the Sony Music family to work with one of the most talented superstars in the history of music. We will miss him greatly."
Today, THE WORLD IS SHOCKED BY HIS DEATH!Michael Jackson's doctor has gone on the run after his family revealed he was given an injection of painkiller shortly before he collapsed and died.
The singer's relatives told website TMZ.com, who first broke the news of his death last night, that his private doctor Dr Tohme Tohme gave him the pain-killing drug Demerol at his home in Los Angeles.
The revelation came after the Jackson's family lawyer blamed his sudden death on his inner circle pushing him too hard in the run-up to a series of comeback gigs in Britain.
He said the Jacksons were concerned about the 'stress' he was under and believed his problems with drugs meant he would not be capable to doing the gruelling set of 50 concerts in London.
Brian Oxman, who was with the Jacksons in Los Angeles overnight, said the singer had been taking drugs for months in his battle to be fit for the string of concerts due to start next month.
So sudden: Hours later Michael Jackson's body is taken away to the Coroner's officeJackson collapsed after returning home from concert rehearsals in his home town. Dr Tohme was with him at the time but was unable to resuscitate him.
Jackson suffered a massive heart attack and stopped breathing last night after returning home from rehearsals in his home town. Dr Tohme Tohme, was with him but could not resuscitate him.
Paramedics were told he was 'not breathing at all' and rushed him to UCLA hospital where a team tried to revive him for more than an hour but he never came round.
One website quoted a hospital source as saying: 'Shortly after taking the Demerol, he started to experience slow, shallow breathing.
'His breathing gradually got slower and slower until it stopped. His staff started mouth-to-mouth and an ambulance was called. He never regained consciousness.'
There had been growing speculation the cardiac arrest had been triggered by an injection of drugs and today details of the singer's drug dependency began to emerge.
An autopsy will be held in Los Angeles today but those close to the star are in little doubt it was his addiction to painkillers as he prepared for the gigs in London that killed him.
Mr Oxman, who was with sister La Toya and brothers Jermaine and Randy, blamed the singer's 'enablers' for pushing him too hard ahead of the gigs which had been due to start on July 13.
'This was something which I feared and something which I warned about. This is a case of abuse of medication, unless there is another cause that I don’t know about. Where there is smoke there is fire.'
He told CNN: ‘This family has been trying for months and months and months to take care of Michael Jackson. The people surrounding him have been enabling him.
'If you think the case of Anna Nicole Smith was abuse then that is nothing in comparison to what we have been seeing in Michael Jackson’s life.
‘Michael had appeared at the rehearsals a couple of times. He was very seriously trying to be able to do these rehearsals. But his use of medications had become in the way and injuries he had sustained performing had got in the way.'
He added: 'He had broken a vertebrae performing and he had broken his leg in a fall from the stage. I don’t know the extent of the medications he was using but the reports that we have been receiving in the family were that it was extensive.
Devastated: Jackson's sister La Toya arriving in tears, followed by his mother, KatherinePolice said that an emergency call was made from Jackson's house in LA at 12.21pm local time - 8.21pm in Britain - last night and paramedics raced to the scene.
The star, who has three young children, was not breathing when the emergency staff arrived, forcing them to try resuscitation procedures immediately.
Ten bodyguards then followed the ambulance to the UCLA hospital, where sources said Jackson had arrived in a coma.
'You've got to save him,' aides screamed as the unconscious singer was wheeled into an emergency room on a stretcher.
Sister La Toya was seen running inside in tears and later his parents Joe and Katherine arrived. A 'grief stricken' Janet Jackson was flying in from a film shoot.
Too late: Medical staff rush Michael Jackson into UCLA Medical Centre after he had a massive heart attackJackson's brother Jermaine revealed later how doctors fought for more than an hour to bring him back to life but he was eventually pronounced dead.
In a highly-emotional statement in the early hours, he said: 'My brother, legendary king of pop Michael Jackson passed away on Thursday June 25 at 2.26pm.
'It is believed he suffered a cardiac arrest at his home. However, the cause of his death is unknown until the results of the autopsy are known.
'His personal physician who was with him at the time attempted to resuscitate my brother, as did the paramedics who transported him to Ronald Reagan UCLA medical centre.
'Upon arriving at the hospital at approximately 1.14pm, a team of doctors including emergency physicians and cardiologists attempted to resuscitate him for a period of more than one hour and they were unsuccessful. 'Our family please request the media respect their privacy at this tough time. And Allah be with you Michael always. I love you.'
Jackson had been very frail in recent weeks as he battled to prepare for the gruelling string of 50 concerts in London.
Last month it was alleged he was struggling to make even a handful of the rehearsals for the comeback tour. It later emerged he had been to just two out of more than 45 rehearsals.
One Jackson family source said at the time he was 'just not able to pick himself up out of the painkiller stupor' that he was in.
Another family source said he had become increasingly withdrawn over recent weeks, leaning on his mother Katherine for support as his health deteriorated.
'He had been so frail, both physically and emotionally,' the acquaintance said. 'Many warned he was pushing too hard and overdoing things, but he wanted to get back to work so badly, he kept pushing himself harder and harder. He didn't want to let down his fans, and he desperately needed the cash.'
Jackson's body was seen being taken from the hospital last night. It was taken to the Los Angeles' Coroner's office where the autopsy started this afternoon.
Investigators will focus on the claims the star had a long-term addiction to painkillers as they seek to establish a cause of death.
A result could take days, or even weeks, due to the complex toxicology tests that will need to be done to identify any drugs in Jackson's system but some kind of update is due later tonight.
Murder squad detectives have been put in charge of the case and are searching the singer's Beverly Hills home where he collapsed, although a police spokesman said the death was not suspicious.
‘Nothing should be read into this,’ he said. Detectives plan to interview relatives, friends and Jackson’s doctors to try and figure out what happened.
Although many friends and fans were stunned by the news of his death, those close to the singer admitted they were not surprised because he had had become so weak.
Longtime publicist Michael Levine said 'Michael has been on an impossibly difficult and often self-destructive journey for years. His talent was unquestionable but so too was his discomfort with the norms of the world.'
Music producer Quincy Jones, who worked with Jackson on his albums Thriller, Bad and Off the Wall, led tributes from the entertainment world.
He said: 'For Michael to be taken away from us so suddenly at such a young age, I just don't have the words.
'He was the consummate entertainer and his contributions and legacy will be felt upon the world forever. I've lost my little brother today, and part of my soul has gone with him.'
Stunned: A fan in New York's Times Square as Jackson's silhouette appears on a billboard
Jackson's reputation as a singer and dancer had been overshadowed in recent years by his growing eccentricity and allegations of sexual abuse of children.
His named his former home in the California foothills Neverland in tribute to J.M Barrie's Peter Pan stories and filled it with amusement park rides and a petting zoo.
By now dubbed 'Wacko Jacko', he was twice accused of molesting young boys and then charged in 2003 with child sexual abuse.
Jackson was eventually acquitted in 2005 after one of the most publicised court cases in recent history. Afterwards, he vowed he would never again live at Neverland. It has since been taken over by developers.
Ironically, the last photo taken of the singer shows him apparently in good health as he rehearsed for the shows.
Smiling and wearing black trousers, a white shirt and leather jacket, he danced on top of a banquet table adorned with Martini glasses and lights.
There had been persistent rumours about his failing health, most recently that he was suffering from skin cancer.
He was often pictured in a wheelchair or using a walking stick. In May, he spent three days with doctors at the Bedford Medical building in Los Angeles.
His biographer claimed the troubled star was suffering from emphysema and chronic gastrointestinal bleeding, which his doctors had trouble stopping.
Jackson, who had numerous cosmetic surgery procedures to alter his appearance over the years, denied these allegations but failed to shake off fears about his well-being.
He had been diagnosed with the dermatological disorder vitiligo, which causes depigmentation in patches of skin and which he claimed to be the reason for his whitening appearance.
Jackson had three children, the elder two - Prince Michael I, 12, and Paris Michael, 11 - with ex- wife Miss Rowe.
It has never been revealed who is the mother of his youngest child, seven-year-old Prince Michael II - known as 'Blanket'.
It is thought they will initially be taken care of by Miss Rowe while long-term custody arrangements are made.
The funeral could be one of the biggest in entertainment history, dwarfing those of Elvis Presley and James Brown. Tens of thousands of fans are expected to line the streets during any procession, making Princess Diana's death the closest comparison. Although no details have been announced, Jermaine Jackson's closing words on announcing his brother's death 'And Allah be with you Michael always', may indicate a Muslim burial. Jermaine converted to Islam in 1989 and is fervent in his beliefs. Michael is reported to have converted last November but the singer, raised a Jehovah's Witness, did not speak publicly of his new faith and there have been doubts over the conversion. Muslims are buried as soon as possible, sometimes within 24 to 48 hours. He would be washed by male relatives and wrapped in a white shroud. Prayers would be led by an imam over an open coffin before burial. His family may opt for such a ceremony, but they will surely not be able to resist the public's need for a grander and larger memorial.
news taken from : http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article.html