Michael Jackson still ‘Bad’ 25 years after album

PHOTO Reuters

May 23, 2012, Wednesday/ 17:13:00

Michael Jackson’s “Bad” returns this September with new music and never-before-seen concert video in the first re-release of a full album from the King of Pop’s catalog since he died in 2009, Jackson’s record company and estate said on Monday.

The “Bad 25” deluxe package, released on Sept. 18, commemorates the 25th anniversary of the original, Grammy-winning album with hits like “The Way You Make Me Feel,” and it will include demos and songs that didn’t make the final cut of the original version.

The new songs were recorded in Jackson’s studio while he was making the album, and the package also offers a DVD of Jackson’s performance for Britain’s Prince Charles, Lady Diana and 72,000 fans at London’s Wembley Stadium in 1988. The video was discovered in the singer’s personal collection, and thought to be the only copy of the performance.

Jackson died in 2009 of an overdose of the anesthetic propofol and sedatives.

Craig Marks, editor of Popdust.com and co-author of “I Want My MTV,” said the “Bad 25” anniversary package should highlight Jackson’s legendary talents as a live performer and, perhaps, lure new fans. “It continues to focus fans’ attention on his music ... hopefully it brings to the fore what an incredible live performer he was and his songbook, given that ‘Bad’ was at the time considered to be very successful but was in the shadows of ‘Thriller’,” Marks told Reuters.

“Bad” won two Grammy awards and sold more than 45 million copies around the world, fueled by the popularity of singles such as “Dirty Diana,” “Smooth Criminal” and the title track, “Bad.” It was the singer’s last collaboration with legendary producer Quincy Jones, who helmed the production on “Thriller.”

Marks believes “Bad” marked the end of an era for Jackson and Jones, and that Jackson used the record to explore deeper struggles following the phenomenal success of “Thriller.” “The paranoid romantic hell he’s in, his mini snapshots of how he felt being in the public eye so nakedly, and in some ways so alone, he wasn’t able to trust many people and he felt very isolated. You can hear that in the record,” said Marks.

The late singer’s record company will re-release the first single from the album, “I Just Can’t Stop Loving You,” on June 5 in the US.

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