60th birthdays of Michael Jackson, Prince and Madonna celebrated on Radio 2
The 60th birthdays of pop legends Michael Jackson, Prince and Madonna will be celebrated with a series of radio programmes over the August bank holiday weekend.
BBC Radio 2 will honour the music stars by kicking off the weekend with a Pick Of The Pops special around Madonna and late singer Prince, looking at their contributions to pop history.
Paul Gambaccini will count down their 20 best-selling tracks on Saturday August 25, and will declare which one definitively represents both Prince and Madonna’s most commercially successful songs, with figures compiled by the Official Charts Company.
On Bank Holiday Monday, August 27, the late King of Pop will be commemorated in the week that he would have turned 60, with presenters across the daytime schedules counting down his best-selling hits, from 60 to 1.
Mark Goodier, Ken Bruce and Ana Matronic will each play five of Jackson’s tracks per hour during their programmes, from 6.30am until 3pm.
Trevor Nelson, whose show airs from 3pm until 5pm, will reveal the final 20 biggest hits from the Thriller star.
Jackson, who died in 2009, would have turned 60 on August 29.
Prince, who died in 2016, would have turned 60 on June 7, and Madonna celebrates her 60th birthday on August 16.
Gambaccini said: “Our Pick Of The Pops special is dedicated to two of the leading artists of the past 40 years.
“It has been a privilege to present, first on Radio 1 and later on Radio 2, the chart careers of Prince and Madonna as they occurred. Prince set the standard for musicianship in the 1980s and Madonna for stage presentation in the 1990s.
“Throughout both decades, they each provided a nonstop sequence of memorable hits. This bank holiday weekend we discover which of them have been their top 20 successes in the UK.”
Nelson said: “Michael Jackson is an icon and one of my favourite music artists of all time. It seems only right that we honour what would have been a milestone birthday with a complete run-down of his most well-loved songs.
“Everyone has a favourite Michael Jackson song, whether it be a dancefloor hit like Billie Jean or Thriller, or one of his superstar collaborations with the likes of Stevie Wonder or Diana Ross – and listeners will be sure to hear them all across Bank Holiday Monday.”