My second Michael Jackson post in a little over a week, this one comes from Jackson’s classic 1979 album Off the Wall, arguably his overall best release.
Written by Tom Bahler, ‘She’s Out of My Life’ became the fourth top ten single from Off the Wall. Producer Quincy Jones originally intended to give the song to Frank Sinatra but he wanted to see what Jackson could do with a mature ballad. Jackson famously couldn’t help but tear up during the song’s final lines, and you can hear his voice cracking on the final version.
Michael Jackson’s Dangerous is the top-selling 1991 album worldwide, though it has sold “only” 8 million copies in the United States. Jackson’s follow-up to Bad and Thriller doesn’t have as many hits as those albums but it certainly found an audience.
I remember listening to this album a fair amount when it came out, though skimming it now I don’t recognize most of the songs. The exceptions are ‘Black and White,’ ‘Heal the World,’ ‘Dangerous,’ and today’s SOTD, ‘Remember the Time.’ I don’t much like any of those other than this one, but I like this one a lot.
Getting back to the 30 Day Music Challenge, today’s task is to name ‘A Song That Makes You Want To Dance.’ Lots of great candidates here.
I quickly chose to go with a Michael Jackson tune, and then had to decide which one. While Thriller is a pop/R&B juggernaut, I consider Off the Wall a much better funk/dance album. And opening track ‘Don’t Stop ‘Til You Get Enough’ is the funkiest, danciest track of them all.
I’ll need the weekend to wrap up Round Four of Montauk Madness and prep Round Five, the Final Four, which kicks off next Monday.
In the meantime, enjoy this impressive one-woman take on the recently-dispatched Michael Jackson’s ‘The Way You Make Me Feel.’ Kawehi is a Kansas-based musician who achieved internet fame when a cover of Nirvana’s ‘Heart-Shaped Box’ went viral a few years back. Continue reading
Kicking off the final week of Round Threee of Montauk Madness is a showdown between two very different musical legends, Michael Jackson and Elvis Costello.
Jackson made his way here by defeating Belle & Sebastian with 86% of the vote and then easily winning the Motown Showdown with Stevie Wonder, 77-23. Costello bested Carly Rae Jepsen with 67% in Round One and John Mayer with 83% in Round Two. This will be his toughest competition yet. Continue reading
Fate has arranged the Montauk Madness bracket in a way that led to today’s spetacular Motown Showdown, pitting Stevie Wonder against Michael Jackson.
Wonder defeated Talking Heads in Round One, pulling in a sizable 71% of the vote. Michael Jackson fared even better, defeating Belle & Sebastian with 86%. Poor Belle & Sebastian… a top five band for me, but destined to ride the pine in the broader contest. Continue reading
Here’s a Montauk Madness first round matchup that has me hoping my blog audience skews more toward my sensibility than popular consensus. I assume R&B and pop legend Michael Jackson would take down Scottish indie act Belle & Sebastian in a poll of any significant size, by way of name recognition if nothing else.
But as much as I love the King of Pop, especially in his Off the Wall and Thriller days, I can’t give him the nod over one of my very favorite bands.