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Brian W.
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Posted: 05 December 2004 at 6:45am | IP Logged Quote Brian W.

Here is part one of a list of Michael Jackson's Epic hits
and where to find them on CD in their 45 versions. All
have now been issued on CD, most of them on commercial
CDs. (I've updated the formatting on this post to
highlight in red the 45 versions that have never been
issued on a full-length CD.)

Don't Stop 'Til You Get Enough � The 45 appears to
have been the LP version faded about 10 seconds early.
Label says 5:45, actual running time is 5:53 (not 5:56 �
I loaded the vinyl 45 and the CD on my PC and got them in
sync, and it's just barely 5:53).

This early-fade version of "Don't Stop" was released on
an Austrian CD3 in the late 1980s, as part of CBS's
"Mixed Master" series of extended dance mix CD singles.
(Because, believe it or not, the fade version was issued
in 1979 as the "extended" 12-inch mix in the U.S.! Go
figure.) The version on this CD3 is also EQ'd like the
45 � the spoken intro is a bit louder, and the dynamic
range is slightly compressed. Running time is 5:52,
blacking out just one second earlier than the 45.
Catalog number is EPC 651657 3, containing "Don't Stop"
and the original extended dance remix of "Wanna Be
Startin' Somethin'." It's not all THAT rare � I wouldn't
pay more than $20-$25 for it.

In 2005 the US version of the CD "Essential Michael
Jackson" contained a very convincing early fade of the
album version, faded to match the single length.

Rock With You � The 45 cut in half the
instrumental break in the middle of the song. It was
issued on "The Essential Michael Jackson" in 2005. Prior
to that, it was only available issued on a two-track
Japanese CD3, part of a series of four MJ "hits" singles
that came out in Japan at the time of the "Bad" tour.
The CD3 is called "Rock With You/Don't Stop 'Til You Get
Enough," and it's Epic/Sony 10-8P-3044, UPC code
4988010603557. Actual running time is 3:22. "Don't
Stop" is the LP version here.

Off the Wall � Boy, was I
surprised to find there have been three different mixes
of this song -- the original LP, the 45 remix/edit, and a
full-length remix. The 45 version can be found only on a
Japanese CD3 from the series I just mentioned, called
"Off the Wall/She's Out of My Life," Epic/Sony 10-8P-
3045, UPC code 4988010603656. Actual running time is
3:48.

She's Out of My Life � As far as I can tell, the 45 was the LP version.

The Girl is Mine and P.Y.T. (Pretty Young Thing) both used the LP versions for the 45 releases.

Billie Jean The 45 was a slightly different mix than the original album version. The most obvious difference is the background "oh, no" after the line "eyes were like mine." On the single, that "oh, no" is very prominent. On the original album version, it's extremely faint, almost inaudible.

First pressings of the vinyl album and CD (CDs pressed in Japan) feature the original album mix, but it was quickly swapped out for the single version when other countries began pressing CDs. To my knowledge, the original mix has only been issued on one other CD: the Japanese Michael Jackson "Tour Souvenir CD Single" box (1992, Sony ESCA5703-7).

Beat It, as EdTop40 recently pointed out, was the LP version faded about five seconds early. It was issued in its exactly 45 version on the British Michael Jackson "Tour Souvenir Pack" (Epic 01 658281 14).

Wanna Be Startin' Somethin' �
The 45 was a short version of the extended dance remix of
the song, condensing the intro, cutting the second verse
("You love to pretend that you're good"), and shortening
the "mama say mama sa" ending. It was issued on all of
the various "King of Pop" compilations worldwide (a title
that was not released in the U.S.).

Thriller and Human Nature

The 45 versions of both have only been issued on CD once... on the same CD, again as part of the that Japanese CD3 series. Several edit versions of Thriller" have found their way to CD -� the US radio edit, the UK single edit -- but the US 45 version was unique. It cut the Vincent Price rap completely, and had a brief instrumental section in its place that is not found on any other version, including the 12" Instrumental (which has also been issued on CD).

The 45 inaccurately lists the running time as 3:56.
Running time of the song on this CD is 4:07, and I did
A/B it with the 45.

I've recently discovered the actual names of some of the
edit versions. The 4:37 edit, which contains only the
first half of the Vincent Price rap followed by an
instrumental section unique to this version, has the
official title of "Special Edit." This was the
commercial 45 version in the UK, Australia, and several
other countries.

The US single edit without rap, the commercial 45
version, is called "Remixed Short Version." The 5:10
edit, which is the LP version minus the long "sound
effects" intro, was a promo edit, and is referred to
simply as "Thriller (with rap)" on the label.

In early 2006, Sony UK began issuing the Michael Jackson
Video Singles Collection, a series of 20 Dual Disc CD
singles, to be purchased separately, featuring the DVD
video on one side and two tracks of audio on the other.
The initial offering, available only inside the otherwise
empty box to hold the entire set (at $19.99 or less), was
a CD single of Thriller, with the audio side containing
both the LP and the US 45 version of the song...
it's first issue on CD since the old Japanese CD3.

According to the mastering engineer, who posts on the
Steve Hoffman board from time to time, the entire set was
mastered from the original single masters. So "Way You
Make Me Feel" will presumably be the true 45 version as
well. Sadly, there were no videos for "Wanna Be Startin'
Somethin'" or "Human Nature," so those unique 45 mixes
are not a part of the set... and neither are the non-LP
B-sides, damn it.

Human Nature seems identical to
the LP version until the brief instrumental break, where
it's a completely different "instrument" playing there
(though both are probably synthesizers). Then several
bars are cut after the final verse, jumping from the
first line of the last chorus straight to "cha da cha
cha." (So it's, "I'm dreaming of the street, If they say
why, why, cha da cha cha cha cha cha cha.") The vinyl 45
incorrectly lists the running time as 4:05, the LP
length. I did A/B the 45 with the CD3, which runs 3:46.

The "Thriller/Human Nature" CD3 is Epic/Sony 10-8P-3047,
UPC code 4988010603854. This is the rarest in the
series... I paid $100 for mine on Ebay. (Which is more
than what it usually goes for!) The fourth and final
disc in the series was Billie Jean/Beat It, which to my
knowledge contained the LP versions of both.

I Just Can't Stop Loving You originally contained
a spoken intro by Michael on both the album and the
single, but radio stations were supplied with a mix
without the spoken intro. At some point in 1988, the
"intro" version was replaced with the radio version on
the "Bad" album in America. However, it appears that
many foreign countries, including the UK, never switched
the track, though I'm not 100% sure on that. The US
commercial CD3, which was issued several months after the
45, contained the radio edit.

Bad � The single was a different mix from the LP version, the most obvious difference being the single's lack of the LP's horn blasts on the first two choruses ("You know I'm bad -- bad, bad [horn]), really, really bad"). Those horns don't come in until the final chorus on the single version.

Both the Japanese CD maxi single (which is still in print) and the US promo CD single list it as "Single Mix," and it does say it was remixed by Bruce Swedien. "Bad" was not issued as a commercial CD3 single in the U.S. -- the only single from "Bad" that was not. The US promo CD matched the Japanese maxi-CD single. A maxi-CD was also released in the UK, but it contained only the dance mixes, not the single version.

The Way You Make Me Feel � No
doubt about this one: the 45 is edited by about 30
seconds, sped up slightly, and the vocal is mixed further
forward with the backing vocals more subdued. It
appeared commercially on a US CD3 in 1988, b/w the 45
Instrumental (which, to my knowledge, is the only place
the Instrumental has ever appeared). It was Epic 34K-
07645. It was also issued on a Japanese CD3, coupled
with the Extended Dance Mix, and the US promo CD single,
which contained all mixes of the song except the
Instrumental. (The promo is one of the few MJ CDs I'm
missing from my collection.)

In 2005, "The Essential Michael Jackson" made an attempt
at recreating the single version, but it was edited down
from the "HiStory" mix of the song, and did not quite
match the 45.

Man in the Mirror � The 45 was an edit...but was
it remixed? It appears so. It says "remixed" on the
sleeve, and while most people would never be able to tell
the difference, to me it sounds a hair more... how would
I put it? Punchy? Maybe it's just EQ'd differently, I
don't know. Regardless, it's definitely shorter than the
LP version. The 45 version has appeared on his "Number
Ones" compilation, but was also issued as a commercial
CD3 in the US in 1988, b/w the 45 Instrumental, as well
as the same configuration in the UK, Germany, Japan, and
many other countries.

Dirty Diana � Definite remix: much punchier drums,
stronger guitar, and fades out a good 10 seconds earlier
than the original LP version. It has since replaced the
original version on the remastered "Special Edition" of
the "Bad" album, and has appeared on "Number Ones." For
the 45 Instrumental, you'll have to track down any of the
OOP CD singles � they were issued in America (CD3), the
UK, Japan, and Germany, and probably other countries as
well.

Another Part of Me � The 45 version, which, like
several of the singles from "Bad," was remixed very
similarly to the Extended Dance Remix, initially appeared
commercially only on the Japanese CD3. All other
commercial CD singles, including the US CD3, had only the
extended versions.

The 45 version was finally issued on a full-length CD on
"Essential Michael Jackson" in 2005. It also appeared on
the US promo CD single, which contained all versions
except the 45 Instrumental (which was on the four-track
CD3 from Holland, EPC 652844 3, UPC code 5099765284430).
Actual running time of the 45 version is 3:45, though the
label says 3:47.

Smooth Criminal � Once again,
an LP-length remix, similar to the Dance Remix. Once
again, most commercial CD singles, including the US,
contained only the extended mixes. The 45 version was
available on the US promo CD single, along with all other
versions except the 45 Instrumental, and also on the
Japanese CD3, which contained the 45 version and 45
Instrumental. The Japanese CD3 was Epic/Sony 10-8P-3050,
UPC code 4988010604158. (Beware... there is a still-in-
print Japanese maxi-CD for "Smooth Criminal" that DOES
NOT contain the 45 version.) The 45 version has since
appeared on both the British and Japanese "Tour Souvenir
Pack," a set of four picture-CD singles issued during the
"Dangerous" tour, each containing three songs (four on
the Japanese version). Actual running time is 4:10.

Leave Me Alone � Only one version, as far as I
know... on the "Bad" CD album. Released as a commercial
single only outside the US, though of course the video
received heavy airplay here.

Liberian Girl � Released as a
single only outside the US. OOP, but easy to obtain.
The single version was an edit, but the liner notes do
say it was remixed by Bruce Swedien.

To be continued...


Edited by Brian W. on 17 August 2012 at 3:21pm
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Posted: 05 December 2004 at 6:54am | IP Logged Quote Brian W.

I forgot about "Say Say Say"! Of course we all know that's on McCartney's "Pipes of Peace" and "All the Best" CDs. (Strangely, not on "Wingspan.")

As far as I know, the 45 and LP are the same. But a remix and instrumental were released on a 12-inch single at the time, and have sadly never been reissued.
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Posted: 06 February 2005 at 11:33pm | IP Logged Quote aaronk

Brian W.--Good work! A very informational and helpful post. Although I'm probably not going to pay some of the outrageous prices for the Japanese singles, it's nice to know where to find them if I did decide to splurge.

I do have two minor corrections to make. The 45 versions of "Another Part Of Me" and "Smooth Criminal" are not edits of the extended dance mixes. They are very, very close, but they are not exact. I have the extended dance mixes of both songs, and I tried to edit them according to the 45 versions, but there's a couple spots where the mixes don't match.

In "Another Part Of Me," the vocals at the end of the 45 version are mixed with a different part of the music track (right before and during the fade out). You'll notice that the horns and Michael's singing are in different spots between the extended and 45 versions. Also, in "Smooth Criminal," the intro to the extended remix has an echo on Michael's "cha," where the 45 version does not. So, there are some slight differences in the mix.

But overall, a very informative and helpful post.
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Posted: 07 February 2005 at 12:11am | IP Logged Quote Brian W.

You're right, Aaron. I should have said they are remixed similarly to the extended dance mixes. Just like "Wanna Be Startin' Somethin'" -- you can't quite edit the 45 version down from the 12" mix. And "Way You Make Me Feel," "Another Part of Me," and "Smooth Criminal" all had separate "Radio Edits" which I think WERE actually edits of the dance mixes, all of them with cold endings, I believe.
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Posted: 28 May 2005 at 4:52am | IP Logged Quote Brian W.

Michael Jackson – The 45 Versions on CD, Part Two

Songs never issued on a full-length US CD in their 45 rpm versions are in red.

Black or White– Issued as a two-track CD single in the US (UPC 0 9870-74100-2)matching the 45 and cassette singles. The single version ran 3:21, and it was basically the LP version minus the lengthy spoken intro, but with slightly different sound effects at the start. (It is not possible to edit the LP version to match the single.) All two-track configurations were backed with the single-length Instrumental. The single version is also available on Sony's “Pop Music: The Modern Era” and “Number Ones.”

A promo CD of remixes was released several weeks later (after the single peaked, actually), and heavy airplay was given (on KUBE in Seattle, anyway) to the awesome House With Guitar Radio Mix (3:50), which was included on the US CD maxi-single for “Remember the Time” (UPC 0 9870-74201-2) and the import maxi-single called “Black or White - The Clivilles and Cole Remixes.”

Remember the Time – The two-track configuration (45 and cassette) contained the LP Version b/w the aforementioned House With Guitar Radio Mix of “Black or White.”

A maxi-CD single was issued in the US, including numerous remixes of “Remember the Time” and “Black or White,” but no two-track CD single was released stateside. In much of the world, the two-track single was backed with the non-LP track “Come Together,” featured in the “Moonwalker” video.

In the Closet – The only single from “Dangerous” to use a remix for the A-side of the single. (As opposed to the “Bad” album, where most of the singles were remixes.) The 45 version is called the 7” Edit and runs 4:46. It was finally issues on a full-length CD on "Essential Michael Jackson" in 2005. It is very similar to the LP mix, but is slightly sped up, omits the spoken intro completely, adds some additional sound effects to the instrumental intro, and adds a slight amount of reverb to the vocals that is not present on the LP version, especially on the line, “'Cause if it's aching, you have to rub it.”

Accounts vary on whether it is Madonna's spoken vocal in the song. Whitburn claims it's Princess Stephanie of Monaco, but I don't know where he's getting that info. It's a fact that Madonna DID record SOME song with him, and was assigned to co-write “In the Closet,” but he “didn't like” her ideas, as she said. And there is the rumor of how she refused to appear in the video of the song, so for the video both her voice and presence were replaced with the model Naomi Campbell.

The B-side of the two-track single was another remix of the song, called The Mission Radio Edit, running 4:28, which ditched the jolting backing track of the original in favor of a smooth, pumping dance beat. It also retained the spoken intro, but cut one verse of the song. In some ways, I prefer this mix. It certainly seemed to be favored on KUBE in Seattle.

Jam – The first real misstep in a long string of successes, this ill-advised song should never have been included on the “Dangerous” album at all, or at the very least given a drastically different mix. His first Epic solo single to miss the top ten since before the "Off the Wall" album. (“Another Part of Me” was safely Top Ten in both airplay and sales, but peaked on those respective charts weeks apart, so managed only a #11 placement on the Hot 100. I still consider it to be one of his top tens.)

Despite a stellar video starring Michael Jordan, dazzling cinematography, and sizzling dancing from Michael, the somewhat clunky song song peaked at a miserable #26 on the Hot 100, though it actually did make it to #19 in sales. (BTW, the video used a very slightly different mix called “Video Mix,” which was released on one of the two Japanese CD5 singles.)

The US cassette single used the 7” LP Edit (4:10) b/w the Masters at Work Remix of “Rock With You,” running 5:29. Again, no two-track CD single configuration in the US, and the 7” Edit was not included on the maxi-CD single, though the “Rock with You” remix was. To obtain the 45 version of “Jam” on CD, you had to go with an import single or one of the two promos.

The two radio promos had a different cover than the commercial issue, both featuring a color photo of the two Michaels -- Jackson and Jordan -- playing basketball. In addition to remix edits, the promos contained a 3:52 7" Edit Without Rap, a longer 5:00 Radio Edit, and a 4:26 Radio Edit Without Rap, all edits of the LP mix. (The latter two had the cold ending of the album version, while the 7" edits faded.)

There were so many mixes of “Jam” released that I literally can't fit them all onto one 80 minute CD. Between all the different CD singles from various countries, I'd say close to 20 different versions were released. (You know, the best is the a cappella “mix” on one of the promos -- just Michael's vocal, no beat, nothing. It's actually quite compelling)

Heal the World – Another poor choice for a single, a surprising (yet perhaps not so surprising) release to plug Michael's Heal the World charity foundation. Although two separate radio edits were made of this 6:24 song, for some reason the full-length LP Version was used for the US 45, which was backed with the LP track “She Drives Me Wild.”

Who is It– Worried by the poor chart showing of his last two singles (“Heal the World” charted even lower than “Jam”), Michael shifted into heavy P.R. mode. He arranged a 90-minute interview conducted by Oprah Winfrey, broadcast live from Neverland. During the show, he debuted the video for what was announced as his next single from “Dangerous,” the heavy-metal-style ballad “Give in to Me.”

During the show, Oprah spontaneously asked him, “Sing me something a cappella. Sing 'Who Is It.'” Michael cooed a manipulative, “Well, I don't really want to, but I'll do it for you, Oprah,” then launched into a mesmerizing beat-box interpretation of the song's opening notes, where at times his mouth seemed to be making two or three different sounds at once. Then he sang the first verse and chorus of “Who Is It.” It was quite stunning.

After the publicity from his impromptu performance, “Give in to Me” was canceled, and “Who Is It” was rush-released as a single with a lackluster video compiled from live concert footage. It had been previously released as a single in some European countries, so it's unclear why there wasn't a good video ready.

A “real” video was released several weeks later, but too late -- the single had already peaked, and “Who is It,” fine a song as it is, managed only a #14 position on the Hot 100. If Michael had had a proper video ready to go, I think it could have made the top ten. “Give in to Me” was scrubbed completely as a US release, though it was released in much of the rest of the world.

At any rate, the two-track cassette and 45 of “Who is It” featured the 7” Edit of the album version (4:00). The cassette was b/w the “The Oprah Winfrey Special Intro” version (3:59) – same as the LP edit, but with his beat box performance from “Oprah” substituted for the opening beats of the song. It's done very well, but somehow sounds less impressive than it did on TV. The 45 was b/w the Brothers in Rhythm House Mix of “Wanna Be Startin' Somethin'” (7:34), which had previously been released on several of the import CD singles of “Jam.”

A CD maxi-single for “Who is It” was released in the US, but it did not contain the 7” Edit, only the Oprah Winfrey Special Intro version, along with other remixes. But the 7” Edit was widely available on import CD singles of the song, as well as on the US promo, and was recently issued on Sony's "Essential Michael Jackson."

Will You Be There – Though not written for the children's film “Free Willy,” Michael agreed to let the song be used in the movie, and released the song as a single when the film was issued.

There was no CD single released in the U.S., but the 45 and cassette singles used the short 3:39 edit of the song from the film's soundtrack CD, called “Will You Be There (Reprise).” (It was called “Radio Edit” on the 45 label, and was later included on Sony's "The Essential Michael Jackson.") This shortened version wisely cuts Michael's over-wrought spoken verse at the end of the song. This same version was issued on Sony's "Essential Michael Jackson." An Instrumental that ran the same length backed the single, but to my knowledge it has never appeared on CD. A promo CD single does exist, but it contains only the single version.

Most countries got a longer edit of the song for their single, called simply “Edit,” running 5:18, which retained Michael's spoken verse, but sadly none of them contained the Instrumental.

It was around this time that the Jordy Chandler case against Michael went public. (Chandler is in his mid-twenties now, so I don't know why the US media keeps protecting his name.) Michael released one last single from “Dangerous” after the news broke -- a somewhat mournful ballad called Gone Too Soon that was dedicated to AIDS victim Ryan White. Only a cassette single and 45 were issued stateside, both containing the LP Version b/w the Instrumental. The dour subject matter combined with the accusations swirling around him (and the fact that the single was dedicated to a little boy, even featuring his picture on the sleeve) caused this one to miss the Hot 100 completely. (If Michael had been smart, he'd have released “Why You Wanna Trip on Me” at this time.)

Scream – The inevitable duet between Michael and his sister Janet received a lukewarm reception at radio, but sales of over a million copies allowed a top five placing on the Hot 100. Both a two-track CD single and a maxi CD single were released. The two-track CD (UPC 0 9870-78000-2 3) and cassette singles featured the censored LP version of the song, running the same 4:38, but with one difference – the line “Stop f**kin' with me” at 2:51 on the LP version has been replaced with “Stop pressurin' me.”

All configurations of the single contained the LP Version of “Childhood,” which was serviced to radio, but failed to even chart in airplay. Whitburn refers to it as a “sales flip,” a song that for some reason was listed on the Hot 100 with its hit A-side, but was not a hit itself.

You Are Not Alone – Michael's last (and probably final) number one hit. The two track CD (UPC 0 9870-78002-2) and cassette singles used a 4:54 edit of the LP Version, b/w “Scream Louder (Flyte Time Remix),” a 5:27 remix of “Scream.” The 4:54 version was issued on "Essential Michael Jackson."

Next, a presumably planned single of Earth Song b/w This Time Around was scrubbed. Promo CDs with multiple remixes were sent to radio (individual ones for each song, and one with both “Earth Song” and “This Time Around” remixes, which is what I own), but the single was never released commercially. “Earth Song” was released in most of the rest of the world, including England, where it hit #1, but “This Time Around” did not see a commercial release anywhere.

They Don't Really Care About Us - The third commercial single from “HiStory” in the US. What had been only a minor controversy when the album was released was reignited, since the song, a diatribe against racism in America, contained the phrases “Jew me, sue me” and “kick me, kike me.” Michael of course denied any anti-semitic meaning in the lines, claiming once again to be “misunderstood,” but agreed to remove the offensive words... which involved dubbing a crash-type sound effect over one and “buzzing” type sound over the other. (You can still hear them if you know what he's saying, though.) It was allegedly censored on future pressings of "HiStory," but I bought one of the ones with a sticker claiming it was censored, and it wasn't. I don't know if it was ever actually done or not. However, the censored 45 version was later included on the UK edition of Sony's "The Essential Michael Jackson."

The standard commercial CD (UPC 098707826429) and cassette singles were four tracks – They Don't Care About Us (single version – 4:43), Rock With You (Frankie Knuckles Radio Mix), Earth Song (Hani's Radio Experience), and Wanna Be Starin' Somethin' (Brothers in Rhythm Mix). The vinyl 45 contained the single version b/w the Frankie Knuckles "Rock With You" mix. A maxi-single with multiple remixes was also released.

The single only manged #30 on the Hot 100 due to almost non-existant airplay, but made a reasonable #12 in sales.

Blood on the Dance Floor - “HiStory” was allegedly planned as a two-part project, with a second disc of remixes and some new songs released called “Blood on the Dance Floor: History in the Mix.”

The Album Version (4:12) of the title track was released as a two-track 45, three-track cassette single, and four-track CD single (UPC 0 9870-780072 6). The 45 was b/w Roger's Dangerous Edit of the song "Dangerous." A maxi single with extended remixes also released.

The single managed #32 on Billboard's Singles Sales chart the week it was released, but dropped from there as it never even got a toe hold at radio. An entire article was published in Billboard about why radio wouldn't play “Blood on the Dance Floor,” but I haven't read it. But lack of airplay caused it to miss the Hot 100's top forty entirely.

A second single was released, Stranger in Moscow... which was actually from “HiStory Book One.” Only a remix of that song was included on the “Blood on the Dance Floor” album, an edit of which backed the 45 (the A-side being a 4:03 edit of the LP version). But fine a song as it was, it failed to chart at all.

You Rock My World – The time between the release of “Blood on the Dance Floor” and “Invincible” was the longest wait for any Michael Jackson album. The leadoff, “You Rock My World,” was released commercially as a vinyl jukebox 45, both sides containing the full-length 5:37 album version with spoken intro featuring Chris Tucker. Despite Michael's butchering his appearance still further in the intervening years, the song did surprisingly well at radio, well enough to climb to the top ten on the Hot 100. It's a shame the song was not available commercially as a CD single – it would likely have hit #1, as the album did.

Next, Cry was serviced to radio shortly after 9/11 (according to Michael's camp, at the request of radio programmers... right), but did not chart. Surprisingly, it was released as a vinyl 45 also, I believe featuring the 5:00 album version on both sides. Commercial import CD singles of the song contained the non-LP track “Shout.”

Butterflies - The third single from “Invincible” was not commercially issued as a single in any format anywhere in the world. There were two separate radio promos in the US, one containing the 4:40 LP version, and one with a remix called Trackmasters Remix, which I have not heard. Your guess is as good as mine as to what the single version would be, but I lean towards the Album Version.



Edited by Brian W. on 29 July 2005 at 6:04pm
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Posted: 29 May 2005 at 9:44pm | IP Logged Quote Todd Ireland

Brian:

I'd like to commend you on an outstanding single version discography of Michael Jackson's Top 40 hits. With the plethora of remixes, edits, and singles formats out there, your posts will definitely help collectors sort through all the chaos! I can certainly appreciate the time and effort that went this project.

I was surprised to learn that the commercial single releases of "Another Part of Me" and "Smooth Criminal" are remixes. I also didn't realize these two songs have their own separate radio mixes/edits. How long do the DJ edits of "Another Part of Me" and "Smooth Criminal" run?
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Posted: 30 May 2005 at 1:31am | IP Logged Quote Brian W.

Thanks, Todd. Yeah, that was LOT of work, more than I'd anticipated. I hadn't intended it to turn into an essay on each song, but it always seemed to.

Actually, all the uptempo singles from "Bad" had separate Radio Edit remixes in addition to the 45 remixes.

Another Part of Me (Radio Edit) runs an actual 4:24. It has a "breakdown" in the middle of the song, with just the rhythm track running under single lines from earlier in the song that are repeated -- "We're takin' over, hee hee," "This is our doomsday," etc. And it ends cold with an "Owww!"

Smooth Criminal (Extended Dance Remix Radio Edit) runs an actual 5:22. There's an echo on his "Cha!" at the beginning of the song that pans quickly right and left. There's an instrumental section in the middle with only his backing "I don't know, I don't know, dad gone it, Annie" playing over it. And again, it ends cold with an "Oww!"

The Dance Remix Radio Edit of "Bad" runs an actual 4:55, and does NOT end cold like the album version does. The remixes for the song "Bad" are unique in that they contain additional vocal not on the album version. There's a long instrumental section in the middle with MJ ad libs, including "David!" right before a guitar solo starts. Towards the end, he repeats several verses of the song with a different, improvised melody. The Extended mix has a "false fade"... the song fades out to almost zero, then the horns come in full strength, and all the rest is Michael improvising the melody, laughing, scatting, "Do, do, do, do, do, do." The remixes of "Bad" are great. Some of that is in the Radio Edit also.

The Japanese CD5 maxi singles of "Bad" and "Smooth Criminal" with all the remixes (except the 45 version and instrumental for Smooth Criminal) are both still in print and can be purchased at www.cdjapan.co.jp. The "Bad" maxi-single has no cover shown, but go into the item, then click at the bottom of the page where it says "See this item details at neowing.co.jp (our Japanese website)" and you'll see it only has five tracks, so it's got to be the maxi-single, not the album. (The $12.71 price would indicate that as well.) I've ordered from them several times and they're extremely reliable, but expect to pay around $10 for shipping from Japan.
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Brian W.
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Posted: 30 May 2005 at 1:55am | IP Logged Quote Brian W.

I've updated the discography with the ACTUAL running time of the 45 version of "Jam" and added a note regarding the four different LP edits contained on the promo CD singles for "Jam."
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Todd Ireland
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Posted: 09 July 2005 at 1:47pm | IP Logged Quote Todd Ireland

I have some encouraging news to report for Michael Jackson fans and singles collectors alike. Ed e-mailed me to let me know that on July 19 Sony will be releasing a double CD compilation called The Essential Michael Jackson (catalog #94287) with what appears to be many of the pop superstar's hit 45 versions! I checked out the track listing on www.allmusic.com and sure enough most of the run times on the track listing match up with those of the 45 versions!

You can view the track listing and run time at this web address:

http://www.allmusic.com/cg/amg.dll?p=amg&sql=10:3bvyxdsb5ola

Let's hope this is the real deal... After all, a compilation of Michael Jackson single versions is certainly long overdue!

Edited by Todd Ireland on 09 July 2005 at 1:48pm
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Posted: 09 July 2005 at 2:47pm | IP Logged Quote aaronk

That is AWESOME news, Todd, if these truly are the 45 versions. I'll be picking up my copy the day it comes out!
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Brian W.
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Posted: 09 July 2005 at 3:18pm | IP Logged Quote Brian W.

AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!

No, that wasn't enough...

AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHH!!!!

I knew this was coming out, and I knew the first disc had 21 tracks including "Thriller" and "Wanna Be Startin' Somethin'," so I figured they must have used the single edits. But I spent over an hour combing the Internet looking for a track listing with run times, and was unable to find one. I just checked All Music yesterday... they must have just posted it!

FINALLY... The 45 version of "Wanna Be Startin' Somethin'." I really thought I'd never see the day. Now all his solo singles will have been released on CD in their exact 45 versions.

If the run times are accurate, it looks like they used the 45 versions for everything except "Thriller." Looks like the used the longer radio edit for that one. Which I could understand... can you imagine how people would "howl" (no pun intended) if they bought this disc, and no Vincent Price rap?

I CANNOT wait for this. It actually was supposed to come out last Tuesday, but it's been delayed until the 19th.

Thanks, Todd and Ed! You made my week!!!

Edited by Brian W. on 22 July 2005 at 1:29am
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Posted: 09 July 2005 at 3:22pm | IP Logged Quote Brian W.

DUPLICATE POST

Edited by Brian W. on 09 July 2005 at 3:24pm
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Posted: 09 July 2005 at 3:27pm | IP Logged Quote aaronk

In looking at the run times, the only three songs from the 80s era that don't have times matching the 45 versions are "Thriller" (which appears to be the DJ Edit that is also on Number Ones), "Smooth Criminal" (which appears to be the LP version on Essential) and "Man In The Mirror" (but the 45 version as stated above can be found on Number Ones).
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Brian W.
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Posted: 09 July 2005 at 3:32pm | IP Logged Quote Brian W.

Well, it's interesting, there are slightly different track listings floating around... The one Sony Music and on all the UK retailer sites has 21 tracks. But most of the US retailers omit "Can You Feel It" in their track list. So I hope to God we don't burned on this. If it just has the single version of "Wanna Be," I'll be happy.
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Posted: 09 July 2005 at 3:37pm | IP Logged Quote aaronk

If it doesn't turn out to have the single version of "Wanna Be Startin' Somethin'" I have a version edited to match the 45, which uses 1 second of the 45 where the mix is different. It's very hard to tell that I transferred that one second from the 45. But let's hope we get the real deal on July 19.
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Brian W.
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Posted: 11 July 2005 at 3:33am | IP Logged Quote Brian W.

Well, I'm still holding my breath for this release, but I did add up the run times for disc one, and they certainly are PLAUSIBLE -- disc one would run 78:51, and I think disc two added up to around 76:30 or thereabouts.

I also noticed the 45 version of "I Just Can't Stop Loving You" with the spoken intro is not included... that's the running time for the common radio edit. I guess it's buried forever. (It oughta be, that spoken intro is just embarrassing.) Oh, well, it's not that hard to find on the original pressings of the "Bad" CD.

And I notice "Jam" is not included on this collection at all, so that's another one that remains unissued on a full-length CD, though it's all over the place on the old import CD singles. "Scream" is missing as well. Strange that they included the 7:00 "Dangerous" instead of two actual hits.

Also, I take it back about ALL his singles being on CD now... the single mix of his duet with Stevie Wonder, "Get It," I don't think has ever been issued on CD.

Edited by Brian W. on 11 July 2005 at 3:53am
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Posted: 11 July 2005 at 9:07am | IP Logged Quote Todd Ireland

Brian:

Regarding the 45 version of "I Just Can't Stop Loving You", the spoken introduction was removed shortly after the Bad album was released and it's apparent the brass at Sony and/or Michael Jackson himself don't want anyone to remember this intro ever existed. Would you happen to know the story behind why the spoken lyrics were removed?

Also, I notice Pat has listed all CD appearances of "Rock with You" as being remixed. You don't suppose the upcoming Essential CD would have the 45 version remixed as well, do you? The original mix was superior in my opinion and I would hope the 45 edit will be taken from the singles masters and not "recreated" by editing the remixed LP version.

Edited by Todd Ireland on 11 July 2005 at 1:47pm
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Posted: 11 July 2005 at 11:42am | IP Logged Quote aaronk

That's interesting, Todd. My book says "LP Version" next to "Rock With You." What was the difference between the original mix and the "remix"?
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Posted: 11 July 2005 at 12:25pm | IP Logged Quote Todd Ireland

Aaron:

I don't have the original mix, but I remember reading on another message board that the handclaps are louder and more centered in the remix. Can anyone back me up on this?
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Posted: 11 July 2005 at 1:01pm | IP Logged Quote Brian W.

I think I'm the one that let Pat know about that after the ninth edition. There are no handclaps at all on the ORIGINAL album version of "Rock With You." At some point after the song was remixed for the single, the full-length remix was swapped on the vinyl albums (just like the full-length remix of "The Way You Make Me Feel" seems to have become the standard version).

This switch happened looooong before the CD era began, so most people aren't even aware of it. It sounds smoother without the handclaps, has sort of a dreamy quality to it.

Also replaced on the vinyl album was the original mix of "Get on the Floor," using the mix that's on the B-side of the remixed single of "Off the Wall," and that is what has wound up on all CDs of "Off the Wall" as well. However, a few months ago I discovered I'd had the original mix of "Get on the Floor" all along on the UK maxi-single of "Liberian Girl." But the original mix of "Rock With You" has never been issued on CD, to my knowledge.

Edited by Brian W. on 22 July 2005 at 1:32am
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