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Unchained melodies

Ask anyone what their defining Michael Jackson moment was and chances are they’ll say it was when they first watched the Thriller video.

Ask anyone what their defining Michael Jackson moment was and chances are they’ll say it was when they first watched the Thriller video. A significant minority might also state that Heal the World is their favourite MJ song. But true fans know that there’s more to the musician than just those two songs. And even if you go beyond the usual roster of Bad,Beat It,Billie Jean and Scream,Jackson’s discography is studded with some wonderful,albeit lesser known works. A few MJ fanatics tell us what their favourite numbers are.

Liberian Girl Bad (1987)
Smooth Criminal,from the album Bad,may have topped the charts,but Liberian Girl is what has most music aficionados praising the musical genius. “It’s a beautifully written song,but it is the album with his celebrity friends Quincy Jones,John Travolta,Jackie Collins,Steven Spielberg and Whoopi Goldberg that makes the song memorable,” feels musician-DJ Mukul Deora. Deora,who has been a hardcore MJ fan since his childhood recalls the day he watched the video for the first time. “It was difficult for me to decide if he was a better writer,composer,singer or dancer,” he states.

Morphine Blood on the Dance Floor (1997)
There were certain songs where one could almost catch unpolished and unprocessed emotions in Jackson’s voice. They lacked his usual sophistication and one could hear the man behind the carefully constructed image. Morphine is one of them. Aspiring musician Ashwin Das says,“It had a nice slow,rock beat and heavy distorted guitar riffs. Jackson’s vocals were raw and aggressive; I love this track for its rawness.”

Remember the Time
Dangerous (1991)

With Eddie Murphy,Naomi Campbell and MJ in the same video,there is bound to be some magic. “And magical it was,” says DJ Akhtar about MJ’s Remember the time a song that redefined the art of songwriting. MJ’s songs have the power to immediately pick you up. If you need a little boost or just want to rock out then just hear one of his songs. “With Remember the Time,he took moonwalking to a new level adding a few more complicated steps,” says Akhtar.

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Stranger in Moscow
HIStory (1996)

For most people,it was Jackson’s larger-than-life persona and unabashed showmanship that made his music and videos so memorable. However,according to ad-man and MJ aficionado Kunal Marjadi,the low-key Stranger in Moscow was one of Jackson’s better songs which didn’t get enough popularity. “What makes that particular song so outstanding is the video. It’s very un-MJ. Usually with him,you expect grand theatrics and crazy dancing. But in this one,it’s just him walking in the rain. The subdued air is very fascinating.”

Earth Song
HIStory (1996)

According to journalist Kavita Nair,one of MJ’s best tracks which got short shrift was Earth Song. She says,“It’s got such amazing lyrics and such a beautiful,haunting melody. I love the last part,especially when Jackson screams out his lines. The video too,was brilliantly shot and quite moving. It was a much more effective song than Heal the World,although that garnered more popularity”

First published on: 02-07-2009 at 05:04:59 am
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