Open Letter and Petition to Ms. Lynda Parrish and Julien’s Auctions
Thinking of the upcoming second anniversary of Michael Jackson’s journey into the afterlife it deeply saddens us that we must address the actions of Ms. Lynda Parrish. In a time when we should only be honoring the legacy of Michael we find ourselves here defending his legacy! Ms. Lynda Parrish was the personal hairstylist of Michael Jackson. It is inconceivable that Ms. Parish would auction off or display in public very personal items she got possession of in relation to her working relationship with Michael Jackson, and we are highly appalled by her actions – to say the very least.
We have seen many trying to use their acquaintanceship or working relationship with Michael Jackson to their advantage – sometimes even if that consisted of just a single, brief and fleeting encounter. It seems that there is no limit to monetary greed or self corruption. Just how much of Michael Jackson can be bought or sold? At some point there must be a line drawn in the sand!
On and around June 6, 2011, the following and similar articles appeared on the web detailing an upcoming auction by Julien’s Auctions in Beverly Hills. Among the various items on the list is the wig Michael Jackson wore during the announcement of the This Is It concerts in London.
“Other Jackson items up for sale include the wig he wore when he announced his ill-fated “This Is It” concert series in London, a fedora and spangled glove he wore on stage, his shirt from the “Scream” video and the battered mailbox from the Carolwood Drive estate where Jackson died at age 50 in 2009.”
“A human hair, lace front custom wig created and styled for Michael Jackson. Jackson wore this wig during his famous London press conference where he announced his This Is It concert series on March 5, 2009, at The O2 arena in London. The wig is accompanied by the original bill of sale, dated November 20, 2008, from Extensions Plus, which sold the custom wig to Jackson’s hairstylist for $3,700. Categories: Michael Jackson”
Ms. Lynda Parrish, Michael Jackson’s most recent hairstylist (not counting the rehiring of Ms. Karen Faye for the This Is It rehearsals and concerts), apparently owns this item and gave it to Julien’s Auctions to be sold at an auction that will take place on June 25 and June 26. Previously, this wig had been exhibited in Atlanta in April 2010. The title of this event was “The Hands That Touched A King”, and it was organized by Ms. Parrish’s new business affiliates, Chuva Group, a company specializing in image and brand development. This exhibition appears to have been a promotional effort by Chuva Group, exploiting the value of the brand “Michael Jackson” to gain attention and increase awareness. It is the opinion of many that this item and the ensuing exhibition were Ms. Lynda Parrish’s morning gift in return for her acceptance as an affiliate by Chuva Group, taking her career to the next level at the expense of Michael Jackson – and taking advantage of her working relationship with Michael Jackson.
“Afterwards, Lynda mentioned that the unveiling was so tasteful and respectful that Michael Jackson himself would have approved.”
Michael Jackson had suffered extensive and painful burns during an accident while filming a commercial in 1984 which resulted in loss of hair. Michael Jackson entrusted Ms. Lynda Parrish to be his hairstylist and to respect his privacy in these matters. It is her responsibility as a professional to be sensitive toward situations which are of a private agenda. What we have seen with this exhibition is the opposite – this dehumanizing spectacle degraded Michael Jackson, and her public statement following the unveiling was equally distasteful – an equivocal belittlement of Michael Jackson’s legacy.
Ain’t the pictures enough, why do you go through so much
To get the story you need, so you can bury me
You’ve got the people confused, you tell the stories you choose
You try to get me to lose the man I really am
You keep on stalking me, invading my privacy
won’t you just let me be
‘cause you cameras can’t control, the minds of those who know
That you’ll even sell your soul just to get a story sold
There are more aspects to consider in this respect, however. Michael Jackson had not been performing on stage since 2001 and had expressed his wish to never have to tour again quite clearly. He had gone through a grueling time 2003-2005 when he was wrongly charged with a crime. Due to the charges and the ensuing trial, Michael Jackson was exposed to even more intense public scrutiny than he had experienced prior to these developments, mercilessly exposed by the media and tried in the court of public opinion, based on biased reports and omission of facts which showed his innocence. On June 13, 2005, Michael Jackson was found not guilty of all charges by a jury – but the damage was done… Michael Jackson left the US to only return late in December 2007 to Las Vegas.
During the last 2 years and specifically during the preliminary hearing for the trial of Dr. Conrad Murray – where Dr. Conrad Murray is charged with the involuntary manslaughter of Michael Jackson – it has become apparent that Michael Jackson was under extreme pressure with regard to the planned This Is It concerts in London. It was a make it or break it situation for him. As per the contract Michael Jackson signed with AEG Live – which had been negotiated by Dr. Tohme Tohme, his last business manager, per Dr. Tohme Tohme’s own admission – Michael Jackson’s share in the Sony/ATV publishing business was at stake. Should Michael Jackson fail to perform he would lose his Sony/ATV share to the concert promoter, AEG Live. The revenues generated by the Sony/ATV business were Michael Jackson’s major and most regular source of income at the time.
Michael Jackson’s supporters and fans fully embraced the This Is It concerts, creating a demand on which AEG Live based the increase of the number of concerts – from 10 to 31, which was the maximum amount listed in the contract, and then subsequently the total number became 50. Michael Jackson knew it was not just a contract he had to fulfill but the expectations of his supporters and fans as well. And there were still the same media, waiting for Michael Jackson to fail – to deliver performances that were not up to his usual standards or that were generally flawed.
The O2 press conference March 5, 2009 in London where Michael Jackson announced the This Is It concerts epitomizes developments which put Michael Jackson on a road that ended with his death on June 25, 2009. The item Ms. Parrish is looking to sell to the highest bidder at the upcoming auction is promoted referencing this press conference. We consider this thoughtless and downplaying the tragedy involved in this event.
For these reasons, this particular item should not be sold at a public auction, and it is our firm belief that it should not be on public display at all. At this point, it may not be feasible any more to ask Ms. Parrish to withdraw this item from the auction since bidding has started.
Yet, we, the undersigned, wish to express our utter dismay regarding the public auctioning of this particular item. We are firmly convinced that we are not alone with our feelings.
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