With the passing of music legend and world icon Michael Jackson we pause to reflect on what an absolutely amazing life he lived and what an incredible talent he was. In his prime Michael was undeniably the world’s biggest star and anyone in show business would do anything to work with him. Here at SaveFans! we have put together an All-Star top 10 list of MJ’s greatest collaborations with music’s biggest artists:
#10 Janet Jackson – Scream
Michael just had to do a duet with his sister and pop star Janet Jackson right? Scream is actually the most expensive music video ever made costing a cool $7 mil to produce.
#9 Michael Jordan – Jam
MJ vs MJ. NBA vs Epic Records. The two biggest stars on Earth battle it out on the dance floor and basketball court – winner gets the initials. Magic Johnson couldn’t attend for some reason but there are amazing cameos from Kris Kross and Heavy D.
#8 Mick Jagger – State of Shock
The Jacksons collaborated with Rolling Stones frontman Mick Jagger on this 1984 release on their Victory album. A little known fact is this song was originally recorded with Queen’s Freddie Mercury…
#7 Rockwell – Somebody’s Watching Me
Nepotism much? Barry Gordy’s son Rockwell somehow gets The King Of Pop to sign BACK UP vocals on his only hit single! Every song Michael touched in 1984 turned to gold, this one no different cracking the top 10 in both the United States and UK.
#6 Slash – Black or White
Didn’t know Guns N Roses legend Slash played guitar on this face morphing smash hit? Check out this amazing live performance from the duo at Michael’s 30th anniversary special at Madison Square Garden.
#5 Lisa Marie Presley – Marriage
Okay we just had to throw this in there. Daughter of the other biggest music star of all time… Elvis Presley… And technically marriage is a “duet”. Remember this awkward moment at the 1994 MTV Video Music Awards?
#4 Diana Ross – Ease On Down the Road
Michael and Diana hit the stage many times together but are obviously best known for their work in the Motown musical film The Wiz. This Wonderful Wizard of Oz remake may have bombed at the box office but at least gave us a hit from a young and upcoming MJ - Ease On Down The Road. And while many credit Diana for discovering the Jackson 5 it was actually Bobby Taylor and Gladys Knight that did so… Check out an even younger and more adorable Michael with Diana in this Frank Sinatra remake from 1971.
#3 Eddie Van Halen – Beat It
The story goes like this. Eddie Van Halen receives a phone call from Quincy Jones. Thinking its a crank call he hangs up. He later finds out he was asked to play guitar on a Michael Jackson track. Feeling like an idiot he performs a guitar solo free of charge. The song ends up on the biggest album of all time, Thriller, itself one of the biggest hits of all time, Beat It. (sorry about the poor video quality)
#2 Paul McCartney – Say Say Say & The Girl Is Mine
These two classic Michael songs involve legendary bassist Paul McCartney. MJ and Macca later had a falling out as Michael outbid Sir Paul on his own song catalogue. Michael paid a reported $47 million in 1985 for over 200 Beatles songs composed by McCartney and John Lennon. We will remember the genius of the two as a duet…
#1 Lionel Richie et al – We Are The World
Reacting to a terrible drought that decimated food supplies in Ethiopia in 1984-1985 Michael Jackson and Lionel Richie wrote We Are the World. Produced and conducted by Quincy Jones this song was a whos who of A-List artists. Potentially the most talent laden song of all time this mega hit featured vocals from MJ, Lionel Richie, Paul Simon, Kenny Rogers, James Ingram, Tina Turner, Billy Joel, Diana Ross, Dionne Warwick, Willie Nelson, Al Jarreau, Bruce Springsteen, Kenny Loggins, Steve Perry, Daryl Hall, Huey Lewis, Cyndi Lauper. Kim Carnes, Bob Dylan, and Ray Charles with background vocals from Dan Aykroyd, Harry Belafonte, Lindsey Buckingham, The News, Sheila E., Bob Geldorf, Jackie Jackson, LaToya Jackson, Marlon Jackson, Randy Jackson, Tito Jackson, Waylon Jennings, Bette Midler, John Oates, Jeffrey Osborne, The Pointer Sisters, and Smokey Robinson.
Michael we’re all going to miss you. This top 10 list is dedicated to you and your career. Rest in peace.