Rolling Stone Ranks The 50 Best Michael Jackson Songs
It’s hard to believe that it’s already been five years since the death of Michael Jackson.
I’ll never forget the day I heard the news. I was on my way to a live broadcast at Walmart on Ambassador Caffery, and I remember an overwhelming sadness that came over me when I heard the news. There was even a side of denial that wouldn’t let me believe it was true.
I wasn’t one of those MJ die hards that would pass out at a concert, or show up outside of the courtroom during his legal battles, but like many, Michael was the superstar that I grew up with. From his numerous hit records, to the tabloids—not to mention his legal drama—it seemed like there was always an MJ moment that coincided with the miniature eras of my life.
And then, just like that he was gone.
Thriller and I are the same age, so when I wax nostalgic on the King of Pop, I think of dark-skinned Michael with “the glove” when I used to Moonwalk across my mother’s freshly mopped kitchen floor. I think of aviator-shaded ‘We Are The World’ jheri curl Michael when I was just starting school and heavy into playing outside with my action figures.
I think of Weird Al parodying Michael, who’s complexion was starting to look a little lighter—but I was too into my video games and sports to give it much thought. I remember his videos premiering after my favorite sitcoms and how ‘Dangerous’ was the first album my dad listened to that I also dug myself.
Any kid from the 90s remembers vividly how epic ‘Space Jam’ was, and if there was any Michael cooler than Jordan, it would be the other MJ. I remember seeing him on television addressing the first accusations of child molestation, and while I was too young to understand the full depth of the situation, it made me sad that they were picking on Michael. I remember seeing the ‘Scream’ video for the first time and being blown away by it’s futuristic high definition effects.
As I was transitioning from middle school to high school, I can remember the day my Mom got my the ‘HIStory’ album, and me marveling at the double-disc case as well as the double entendre he used to title the release.
By the time I graduated from high school it seemed like the tabloids and the media had just eaten Michael alive. Instead of giving the world his gift through music, it seemed to be one zany story after another. Things were so outrageous that it was became hard to decipher what was true and what was just made up to sell magazines in your local checkout line.
It was sad, but the global figure that had entertained us and our families for decades had become a joke. Just when it seemed like we would be getting new material from Michael with the announcement of his ‘This Is It’ tour, he was taken away from us before we could even begin to get excited.
So five years later, we remember him through the music he gave the world. Rolling Stone put together a list of his 50 best songs, and while I definitely think a few classics are absent from the list, they did a great job of covering all four decades of this legendary artists work that made such a huge impact on the world.
You can click here to see the entire list, but here are a few of my personal favorites.
R.I.P. to Michael Jackson, the King of Pop. What was your favorite MJ tune? Is it possible to only pick one? Comment with yours below.
See the entire list here courtesy of Rolling Stone.