Contributed by Jerseline:
A bit of positive Michael Jackson news to spread, for once. On Nov. 16th, he will release “Michael Jackson: The Ultimate Collection”. A 5-disc box set spanning from 1969 until today. A e-mail was sent out to fans who subscribed on his website to get info about announcements. The set will also include the HBO Bucharest concert from his Dangerous tour, as the 5th disc. The set will average $59.99, but Sony Music Store is accepting pre-orders at $48.98 (which includes a free poster).
The E-mail was as follows, and includes much info about the release:
MICHAEL JACKSON – RECORD OF A LIFETIME
THE ULTIMATE COLLECTION 5-DISC BOX SET SPANS 1969 TO 2004, ON 4 CDs PLUS UNRELEASED LIVE CONCERT DVD
57 AUDIO TRACKS INCLUDE 36 MAJOR CHART HITS AND ALBUM TRACKS, 13 PREVIOUSLY UNISSUED CUTS, PLUS U.S. AND U.K. ARCHIVAL RARITIES
PREMIERE DVD OF COMPLETE HISTORIC CONCERT IN BUCHAREST, FROM 1992 DANGEROUS TOUR
MICHAEL JACKSON IS A GLOBAL SUPERSTAR, HAVING SOLD OVER 135 MILLION SOLO ALBUMS WORLDWIDE, INCLUDING 47 MILLION ALONE FOR THRILLER, THE BIGGEST SELLING ALBUM OF ALL TIME
Deluxe display book box set contains 64-page booklet with rare photography, personal memorabilia, chronological timeline, complete discography, and newly-commissioned liner note essay by Nelson George
First major historical box set of Michael Jackson’s career arrives in stores November 16th on Epic Records
“The key to re-hearing the music of the biggest album in music history is Michael’s voice. All of the tools that he’d been developing since ‘I Want You Back’ are in full effect. The grace, the aggression, the growling, the natural boyishness, the falsetto, the smoothness – that combination of elements that mark him as a major vocalist are abundantly clear. Just as he learned from Stevie Wonder, Jackie Wilson and James Brown, Michael has educated R. Kelly, Usher, Justin Timberlake and countless others with Thriller as the textbook.” – from the liner notes written by Nelson George
Three and a half decades after an 11-year old phenomenon from Gary, Indiana and his teenage brothers forever changed the face of popular music, MICHAEL JACKSON – THE ULTIMATE COLLECTION marks the most extensive presentation of his artistry ever assembled in one package.
The deluxe 5-disc display book box set – containing 4 audio CDs (totaling 57 tracks) of hit singles, album tracks, 13 previously unissued recordings, and impossible-to-find rarities from the U.S. and U.K. archives spanning 1969 to 2004, plus a completely unreleased 1992 live concert DVD – will arrive in stores November 16th on Epic Records, a division of Sony Music. The box set was executive produced by Michael Jackson. Project Manager was Al Quaglieri.
For Michael Jackson, whose seven solo albums on Epic Records between 1979 and 2001 (Off The Wall, Thriller, Bad, Dangerous, HIStory: Past, Present and Future – Book 1, Blood On The Dance Floor: History In The Mix and Invincible) and four long-form videos (Video Greatest Hits/HIStory, Dangerous: The Short Films, HIStory On Film, and Number Ones) have sold more than 60-times RIAA platinum in the U.S. alone, THE ULTIMATE COLLECTION is the record of a lifetime. It is, in effect, the ultimate tribute to Michael Jackson’s “vibrant vocal personality,” as characterized in the newly commissioned 4,000 word liner note essay written by author and veteran R&B journalist Nelson George.
From the career-defining string of four #1 Pop/#1 R&B singles of 1969 and 1970 by the Jackson 5 on Motown Records that open this box set (“I Want You Back,” “ABC,” “I’ll Be There,” “Got To Be There” – the first group in history to have their first four internationally-distributed singles all hit #1), to the back-to-back hits that launched his solo career the following year (“Got To Be There,” “I Wanna Be Where You Are”), to the quintet of previously unissued works spanning the ’90s and ’00s that are found on Disc Four (“Fall Again,” “In The Back,” “Beautiful Girl,” “The Way You Love Me,” “We’ve Had Enough”), MICHAEL JACKSON – THE ULTIMATE COLLECTION is truly representative of one of the most legendary careers in American popular music.
Included are 14 more signature hits by Michael Jackson that reached #1 on the U.S. Pop and/or R&B charts between 1971 and 1995, which would be the backbone of any collection on the artist: “Ben,” “Don’t Stop ‘Til You Get Enough,” “Rock With You,” “The Girl Is Mine” (with Paul McCartney), “Beat It,” “Billie Jean,” “Bad,” “The Way You Make Me Feel,” “Man In The Mirror,” “I Just Can’t Stop Loving You” (duet with Siedah Garrett), “Dirty Diana,” “Remember The Time,” “Black Or White,” and “You Are Not Alone.”
In addition, numerous other signature chart hits are included — “Off The Wall,” “She’s Out Of My Life,” “Wanna Be Startin’ Something,” “Thriller,” “Smooth Criminal,” “Jam,” “Blood On The Dance Floor,” and “You Rock My World.”
This ULTIMATE COLLECTION lives up to its title with the inclusion of 13 previously unissued tracks spanning more than a quarter-century of development. Among these are 9 never-before-heard demo recordings that Michael Jackson has decided to unveil on this box set: “Shake A Body” (with The Jacksons, a fascinating glimpse into the creative process that turned into 1978’s “Shake Your Body”), “Sunset Driver” (from the Off The Wall sessions), “P.Y.T. (Pretty Young Thing)” (from the Thriller sessions), “Scared of the Moon,” “We Are The World” (Michael’s own solo demo of this song he co-wrote with Lionel Richie), “Cheater” (from the Bad sessions), and the aforementioned “Fall Again,” “Beautiful Girl,” and “The Way You Love Me.”
Throughout each of the four CDs, there are rarities to be found that will satisfy the hardest-to-please archivists. On Disc One, Michael Jackson’s starring role alongside Diana Ross in The Wiz (the 1978 film version of the all-black Broadway musical based on The Wizard Of Oz) is celebrated on their thematic duet “Ease On Down the Road.” Jackson turned another song from the production, “You Can’t Win,” into a 7-minute dance opus issued in the U.K. as a 12-inch.
Disc Two features “Someone in the Dark,” a song created for The E.T. Storybook in 1982, which was subsequently withdrawn from the market (on MCA Records), but the song was included on the 2001 SACD release, Thriller – Special Edition. ULTIMATE COLLECTION also marks the first commercial appearance of “We Are Here To Change The World,” produced in 1986 for the IMAX 3-D short film Captain Eo, that was shown at Disney theme parks.
Disc three uncovers a CD single remix of “Who Is It” (from the Dangerous album) done by Brothers In Rhythm. There is also an edited version of “Someone Put Your Hand Out,” a collaboration with Teddy Riley that was distributed on cassette as a promotion by the Dangerous tour sponsor Pepsi-Cola. “Childhood,” the evocative theme from 1995’s Free Willie 2 movie soundtrack, surfaces on Disc Four, which also contains “On the Line,” a song recorded for the Spike Lee film “Get On The Bus.”
The fifth disc in MICHAEL JACKSON – THE ULTIMATE COLLECTION is the official commercial debut of a full-length concert DVD (16 selections) from the show that took place in the politically volatile Romanian capital city of Bucharest during the Dangerous tour. The concert was videotaped on September 19, 1992, and premiered October 10th on HBO.
In addition to the hours and hours of audio and video content on this box set, there is also an ample 64-page color booklet to kindle the imagination. Full discographical details of every track (timings, composers, publishers, recording dates, studio personnel and musician rosters, album references and so on) are offset by dozens of rare and never-before-seen photographs and personal memorabilia from Michael Jackson’s archives. A chronological timeline covers the entire story and a complete discography are also included, along with Nelson George’s essay.
“Michael Jackson made his first recordings during the Age of Aquarius,” he writes, “and continues on in the era of downloading. In that respect he has no peers. Not in longevity, overall artistic achievement or plain old record sales over five decades. From The Jackson Five to The Jacksons, from Gary, Indiana to Hollywood, California, from neophyte to master. Is Michael Jackson really the King of Pop? The answer is in your hands.”