Michael Jackson’s Former CondoFeb 11th, 2010 | By Lindsay | Category: Michael Jackson Locations
A few months back I read a fabulous book named Michael Jackson: The Magic, The Madness, The Whole Story written by author J. Randy Taraborelli about the life and times of the King of Pop. I’ve mentioned the biography once before in a post I wrote back in September about the Jackson Family’s first L.A. area home. I actually stumbled upon the tome while browsing at a Barnes & Noble bookstore with my fiancé this past summer and once I picked it up, I literally could NOT put it down. I was so absorbed in the book, in fact, that hours later the Grim Cheaper practically had to drag me out of the store – only after agreeing to let me purchase a copy of it for myself, of course. 😉 Because Taraborelli and Michael were longtime friends, first meeting in 1970 at the tender ages of 14 and 11 respectively, the 765-page! book is written from a true insider’s point of view. The best part about the biography, though – well, at least in my opinion – is the fact that it doles out several addresses of places that the pop star called home during his far too brief life. One of those places is the three story condominium that MJ purchased in February of 1981 and lived in for a brief time while his family’s Hayvenhurst mansion was being remodeled. So, since my fiancé and I were in the area doing some Valley stalking two weekends ago, I just had to drag him right out to stalk the place.
Michael purchased the 3 bedroom, 3 bathroom condo, which measures 1,890 square feet, upon the suggestion of his long time lawyer John Branca, who thought it was time the 22-year old singer moved out on his own. The condo cost him $210,000 – $175,000 of which he paid in cash. According to Taraborelli, Michael’s mother, Katherine, footed the remainder of the tab, not because MJ didn’t have the extra $35,000, but because he wanted his mother to own a piece of property – or a piece of a piece of property in this case – apart from her husband Joe Jackson in case the two were ever to separate. Shortly after purchasing the condominium, Michael had a change of heart, though, and didn’t end up moving in. Taraborelli’s book quotes him as saying, “I just don’t feel it’s time for me to move away from home yet. If I moved out now, I’d die of loneliness. Most people who move out go to discos every night. They party every night. They invite friends over, and I don’t do any of those things.” Such a heartbreaking sentiment from someone who, at the time, was, professionally speaking, on top of the world.
A couple of years later, Michael took over ownership of his family’s Hayvenhurst estate and decided to completely raze the dwelling in order to rebuild a new, much more extravagant abode. Construction of the new mansion, which was Tudor in style, took a full two years to complete during which time Michael and a few of his siblings lived in the Encino condo. While there, Michael invited a journalist named Gerri Hirshey into his temporary home to conduct an interview. In the interview, which was published in the February 17, 1983 issue of Rolling Stone Magazine, MJ says to Gerri of his dwelling, “Not what you expected, huh?” And even though Gerri says that he goes on to explain that it is a only a temporary living situation and he “concedes that this is an unlikely spot for a young price of pop”, he would end up owning the place for the rest of his life. And he was right – the complex, which is called the Lindbrook, does not look at all like the kind of place one would expect to find the King of Pop residing in during the height of the “Thriller” years. Which is probably exactly why he chose it. That and the fact that the building is gated. From what I can tell, the complex, which was built in 1973 and is quite large, houses 81 different units. Supposedly Ice Cube even lived there at one time. You can see interior photographs of other units in the building here, here, and here. And here is a photograph taken in 1981 of Michael outside of his condo. Supposedly this absolutely adorable video of Michael dancing with television star Emmanuel Lewis was taken in the living room of the Encino condo, but I have not actually been able to verify that. Either way, the clip is definitely worth a look. After Michael and his family moved back into the Hayvenhurst estate, the condo remained vacant with various Jackson family members occupying it intermittently throughout the years. At the time of his death, his sister LaToya’s name was also on the deed.
Until next time, Happy Stalking!
Stalk It: Michael Jackson’s former condo, the Lindbrook, is located at 5420 Lindley Avenue in Encino. MJ lived in Unit #9. Ice Cube supposedly lived in Unit #4 of the same building.