As some of you might know, I am a Michael Jackson Scholar. Thus, I rarely share or seek any posthumous productions that come from his Estate or anyone else. However, I came across this track, which I had never heard before, and noted a heated debate from fans comparing this to a Justin Bieber version. I did some digging and was able to connect the dots. For those who are interested, here is some MJ trivia to add to your collection:
- “Slave To The Rhythm” was created in the early 1990s when Michael was working on the Dangerous album. It was completed in 1998 but never released.
- For the 2010 posthumous album Michael, Max Methods re-produced “Slave To The Rhythm” to give it a new electro-dance beat, but it did not make the cut for the album. It was leaked to the internet later that year and immediately disappeared.
- Justin Bieber re-recorded the song as a duet with him and Michael. It was leaked in August of 2013 and Michael’s Estate is still attempting to remove the song from as many websites as possible.
At first, I could not understand how Justin Bieber could get a hold of an unreleased Michael Jackson track without the Estate’s permission, but I guess there are loop holes celebrities can jump through too. I heard a few seconds of the stolen version and it is nothing to get excited about. Honestly, I do not think anyone should be allowed to record any so-called duets with Michael’s pre-recorded vocals. It is rude and demeans his legacy. A duet with Michael was always earned. It should stay that way.
Now for the original single, which you can listen to below…until it is taken down from youtube, showcases Michael’s amazing passion and energy. I like the rhythm and I could see Michael creating a killer dance routine to it, but it would be nice to hear the original demo version with the 1990s beat too. It would have also been nice to hear all these unreleased tracks when Michael was alive to re-emphasize the fact that his musical brilliance never faded, but that discussion deserves a separate blog post. Nonetheless, it is worth a listen. Enjoy.