The Essential Michael Jackson

The Essential Michael Jackson is a greatest hits compilation album by American singer Michael Jackson. It was released on July 19, 2005, by Sony Music's catalog division Legacy Recordings as part of The Essential series. The two-disc compilation features thirty-eight hit songs by Michael Jackson, from his days at Motown Records with The Jackson 5 in the late 1960s and early 1970s to his 2001 hit "You Rock My World".

The Essential Michael Jackson
MJ-Essential.jpg
Greatest hits album by
ReleasedJuly 19, 2005
GenreElectronic, Rock, Funk / Soul, Pop
Length77:42 (International disc 1)
77:24 (International disc 2)
78:56 (American/Canadian disc 1)
78:50 (American/Canadian disc 2)
33:07 (3.0 disc)
Label
ProducerMichael Jackson
Various
Michael Jackson chronology
The Ultimate Collection
(2004)
The Essential Michael Jackson
(2005)
Visionary: The Video Singles
(2006)
Professional ratings
Review scores
SourceRating
AllMusic4.5/5 stars[1]
Pitchfork(8.7/10)[2]

On August 26, 2008, The Essential Michael Jackson 3.0 was released in the US as a limited edition containing an additional disc of seven songs performed by Jackson.[3] A re-titled release in the U.K. was planned on July 6, 2009, as The Hits, but was cancelled upon Jackson's death. As of 2021, the album was certified 5× platinum in the U.S. for over 2.5 million copies sold.

Track listingEdit

European & international versionEdit

Disc One
No.TitleWriter(s)AlbumLength
1."I Want You Back" (Performed by The Jackson 5)The Corporation (Freddie Perren, Alphonso Mizell, Berry Gordy, Deke Richards)Diana Ross Presents The Jackson 5 (1969)2:58
2."ABC" (Performed by The Jackson 5)The CorporationABC (1970)2:58
3."The Love You Save" (Performed by The Jackson 5)The CorporationABC3:05
4."Got to Be There"Elliot WillenskyGot to Be There (1972)3:25
5."Rockin' Robin"Leon Rene (under the pseudonym Jimmie Thomas)Got to Be There2:32
6."Ben"Walter Scharf, Don BlackBen (1972)2:46
7."Blame It on the Boogie" (Performed by The Jacksons)Michael G. Jackson-Clark, David Jackson-Rich, Hans Kampschroer, Elmar Krohn, Thomas MeyerDestiny (1978)3:30
8."Shake Your Body (Down to the Ground)" (7" version; Performed by The Jackson 5)Randy Jackson, Michael JacksonDestiny3:46
9."Don't Stop 'Til You Get Enough" (European 7” version)Michael JacksonOff the Wall (1979)3:56
10."Off the Wall" (Attempted recreation of U.S. 7” remix)Rod TempertonOff the Wall3:46
11."Rock with You" (7" remix)TempertonOff the Wall3:23
12."She's Out of My Life"Tom BahlerOff the Wall3:37
13."Can You Feel It?" (7" edit; as The Jacksons)Michael Jackson, Jackie JacksonTriumph (1980)3:50
14."The Girl Is Mine" (Duet with Paul McCartney)Michael JacksonThriller (1982)3:41
15."Billie Jean"Michael JacksonThriller4:55
16."Beat It"Michael JacksonThriller4:18
17."Wanna Be Startin' Somethin'" (7” version)Michael JacksonThriller4:17
18."Human Nature" (Attempted recreation of 7” remix)Steve Porcaro, John BettisThriller3:45
19."P.Y.T. (Pretty Young Thing)"James Ingram, Quincy JonesThriller3:58
20."I Just Can't Stop Loving You"Michael JacksonBad (1987)4:11
21."Thriller" (remixed short version with rap)TempertonThriller5:14
Disc Two
No.TitleWriter(s)AlbumLength
1."Bad"Michael JacksonBad4:06
2."The Way You Make Me Feel" (Attempted recreation of 7” remix)Michael JacksonBad4:26
3."Man in the Mirror"Siedah Garrett, Glen BallardBad5:18
4."Dirty Diana"Michael JacksonBad4:40
5."Another Part of Me" (7" version)Michael JacksonBad3:46
6."Smooth Criminal"Michael JacksonBad4:17
7."Leave Me Alone"Michael JacksonBad4:39
8."Black or White" (Single version)Michael Jackson; rap lyrics by Bill BottrellDangerous (1991)3:21
9."Remember the Time"Teddy Riley, Michael Jackson, Bernard BelleDangerous3:59
10."In the Closet" (7" edit)Michael Jackson, RileyDangerous4:48
11."Who Is It" (7" edit)Michael JacksonDangerous3:59
12."Heal the World"Michael JacksonDangerous6:24
13."Will You Be There" (Radio edit)Michael JacksonDangerous3:40
14."You Are Not Alone" (LP edit)R. KellyHIStory (1995)4:55
15."Earth Song" (Radio edit)Michael JacksonHIStory5:02
16."They Don't Care About Us"Michael JacksonHIStory4:44
17."You Rock My World" (Album edit)Michael Jackson, Rodney Jerkins, Fred Jerkins III, LaShawn Daniels, Nora PayneInvincible (2001)5:08

American & Canadian versionEdit

All tracks are written by Michael Jackson except as noted.

Disc One
No.TitleWriter(s)AlbumLength
1."I Want You Back" (as Jackson 5)The Corporation (Perren, Mizell, Gordy, Deke Richards)Diana Ross Presents The Jackson 52:58
2."ABC" (as Jackson 5)The CorporationABC2:58
3."The Love You Save" (as Jackson 5)The CorporationABC3:05
4."Got to Be There"WillenskyGot to Be There3:25
5."Rockin' Robin"Rene (under the pseudonym J. Thomas)Got to Be There2:32
6."Ben"Walter Scharf, Don BlackBen2:46
7."Enjoy Yourself" (as The Jacksons)Kenneth Gamble, Leon HuffThe Jacksons (1976)3:24
8."Blame It on the Boogie"Jackson-Clark, Jackson-Rich, Kampschroer, Krohn, MeyerDestiny (1978)3:30
9."Shake Your Body (Down to the Ground)" (7" version)R. Jackson, Michael JacksonDestiny3:46
10."Don't Stop 'Til You Get Enough" (original 12" edit)Michael JacksonOff the Wall5:50
11."Rock with You" (single version)TempertonOff the Wall3:23
12."Off the Wall" (attempted recreation of single version)TempertonOff the Wall3:46
13."She's Out of My Life"BahlerOff the Wall3:37
14."Can You Feel It" (7" edit as The Jacksons)Michael Jackson, Jackie JacksonTriumph3:50
15."The Girl Is Mine" (with Paul McCartney)Michael JacksonThriller3:42
16."Billie Jean"Michael JacksonThriller4:54
17."Beat It"Michael JacksonThriller4:18
18."Wanna Be Startin' Somethin'" (single version)Michael JacksonThriller4:17
19."Human Nature" (attempted recreation of single version)Porcaro, BettisThriller3:45
20."P.Y.T. (Pretty Young Thing)"Ingram, JonesThriller3:59
21."Thriller" (remixed short version with rap)Temperton 5:12
Disc Two
No.TitleWriter(s)AlbumLength
1."Bad"Michael JacksonBad4:06
2."I Just Can't Stop Loving You"Michael JacksonBad4:11
3."Leave Me Alone"Michael JacksonBad4:39
4."The Way You Make Me Feel" (Attempted recreation of 7” remix)Michael JacksonBad4:26
5."Man in the Mirror"Garrett, BallardBad5:18
6."Dirty Diana"Michael JacksonBad4:40
7."Another Part of Me" (7" version)Michael JacksonBad3:46
8."Smooth Criminal"Michael JacksonBad4:17
9."Black or White" (single version)Michael Jackson; rap lyrics by BottrellDangerous3:21
10."Heal the World"Michael JacksonDangerous6:24
11."Remember the Time"Teddy Riley, Michael Jackson, BelleDangerous3:59
12."In the Closet" (7" edit)Michael Jackson, RileyDangerous4:48
13."Who Is It" (7" edit)Michael JacksonDangerous3:59
14."Will You Be There" (Radio edit)Michael JacksonDangerous3:40
15."Dangerous"Michael Jackson, Bottrell, RileyDangerous6:59
16."You Are Not Alone" (LP edit)R. KellyHIStory4:55
17."You Rock My World" (album edit)Jackson, Jerkins, Jerkins III, Daniels, PayneInvincible5:08

US limited-edition 3.0 bonus discEdit

No.TitleWriter(s)AlbumLength
1."Can't Get Outta the Rain" (single version)Michael Jackson, Quincy Jones"The Girl Is Mine" single (1982)4:06
2."Say Say Say" (with Paul McCartney)Michael Jackson, McCartneyPipes of Peace (1983)3:55
3."Jam"Michael Jackson, Moore, Swedien, RileyDangerous5:38
4."They Don't Care About Us" (LP edit)Michael JacksonHIStory4:11
5."Blood on the Dance Floor"Michael Jackson, RileyBlood on the Dance Floor: HIStory in the Mix (1997)4:15
6."Stranger in Moscow"Michael JacksonHistory: Past, Present and Future, Book I5:45
7."Butterflies"Andre Harris, Marsha AmbrosiusInvincible4:40

Japanese versionEdit

Disc One
No.TitleWriter(s)AlbumLength
1."I Want You Back" (as The Jackson 5)The Corporation (Perren, Mizell, Gordy, Richards)Diana Ross Presents The Jackson 52:58
2."ABC" (as The Jackson 5)The CorporationABC2:58
3."The Love You Save" (as The Jackson 5)The CorporationABC3:05
4."Got to Be There"WillenskyGot to Be There3:25
5."Rockin' Robin"Rene (under the pseudonym J. Thomas)Got to Be There2:32
6."Ben"Scharf, BlackBen2:46
7."Blame It on the Boogie" (as The Jacksons)Jackson-Clark, Jackson-Rich, Kampschroer, Krohn, MeyerDestiny3:30
8."Shake Your Body (Down to the Ground)" (7" version; as The Jacksons)R. Jackson, Michael JacksonDestiny3:46
9."Don't Stop 'Til You Get Enough" (Edit)Michael JacksonOff the Wall3:56
10."Off the Wall" (edited version)TempertonOff the Wall3:46
11."Rock with You" (7" remix)TempertonOff the Wall3:23
12."She's Out of My Life"BahlerOff the Wall3:37
13."Can You Feel It" (7" edit; as The Jacksons)Michael Jackson, J. JacksonTriumph3:50
14."The Girl Is Mine" (with Paul McCartney)Michael JacksonThriller3:41
15."Billie Jean"Michael JacksonThriller4:55
16."Beat It"Michael JacksonThriller4:18
17."Wanna Be Startin' Somethin'" (edited version)Michael JacksonThriller4:17
18."Human Nature" (attempted recreation of 7” version)Porcaro, BettisThriller3:45
19."P.Y.T. (Pretty Young Thing)"Ingram, JonesThriller3:58
20."I Just Can't Stop Loving You" (7" version)Michael JacksonBad4:11
21."Thriller" (remixed short version with rap)TempertonThriller5:14
Disc Two
No.TitleWriter(s)AlbumLength
1."Bad"Michael JacksonBad4:06
2."The Way You Make Me Feel" (attempted recreation of 7" Version)Michael JacksonBad4:26
3."Man in the Mirror"Garrett, BallardBad5:18
4."Dirty Diana"Michael JacksonBad4:40
5."Another Part of Me" (7" version)Michael JacksonBad3:46
6."Smooth Criminal"Michael JacksonBad4:17
7."Leave Me Alone"Michael JacksonBad4:39
8."Black or White" (Single version)Michael Jackson; rap lyrics by BottrellDangerous3:21
9."Remember the Time"Riley, Michael Jackson, BelleDangerous3:59
10."In the Closet" (7" edit)Michael Jackson, RileyDangerous4:48
11."Who Is It" (7" edit)Michael JacksonDangerous3:59
12."Heal the World"Michael JacksonDangerous6:24
13."Will You Be There" (Radio edit)Michael JacksonDangerous3:40
14."You Are Not Alone" (LP edit)R. KellyHIStory4:55
15."Blood on the Dance Floor"Michael Jackson, RileyBlood on the Dance Floor: HIStory in the Mix4:15
16."One More Chance"R. KellyNumber Ones (2003)3:49
17."You Rock My World" (album edit)Michael Jackson, Jerkins, Jerkins III, Daniels, PayneInvincible5:08

Qobuz.com Studio Masters (digital version; 24bit/96kHz)Edit

Disc One
No.TitleWriter(s)Length
1."I Want You Back" (as The Jackson 5)The Corporation (Perren, Mizell, Gordy, Richards)2:58
2."ABC" (as The Jackson 5)The Corporation2:58
3."The Love You Save" (as The Jackson 5)The Corporation3:04
4."Got to Be There"Willensky3:23
5."Rockin' Robin"Rene2:32
6."Ben"Scharf, Black2:46
7."Enjoy Yourself" (as The Jacksons)Gamble, Huff3:25
8."Blame It on the Boogie" (as The Jacksons)Jackson-Clark, Jackson-Rich, Kampschroer, Krohn, Meyer3:30
9."Shake Your Body (Down to the Ground)" (7" version; as The Jacksons)R. Jackson, Michael Jackson3:46
10."Don't Stop 'Til You Get Enough"Michael Jackson6:04
11."Rock with You" (7" remix)Temperton3:23
12."Off the Wall" (UK remix – edited version)Temperton3:46
13."She's Out of My Life"Bahler3:37
14."Can You Feel It" (7" edit; as The Jacksons)Michael Jackson, J. Jackson3:50
15."The Girl Is Mine" (with Paul McCartney)Michael Jackson3:42
16."Billie Jean"Michael Jackson4:56
17."Beat It"Michael Jackson4:19
18."Wanna Be Startin' Somethin'" (Single version)Michael Jackson4:20
19."Human Nature" (7" remix)Porcaro, Bettis3:47
20."P.Y.T. (Pretty Young Thing)"Ingram, Jones3:59
21."Thriller" (Radio edit)Temperton5:12
Disc Two
No.TitleWriter(s)Length
1."Bad"Michael Jackson4:06
2."I Just Can't Stop Loving You"Michael Jackson4:11
3."Leave Me Alone"Michael Jackson4:39
4."The Way You Make Me Feel" (7" remix)Michael Jackson4:26
5."Man in the Mirror"Garrett, Ballard5:18
6."Dirty Diana"Michael Jackson4:40
7."Another Part of Me" (7" version)Michael Jackson3:46
8."Smooth Criminal"Michael Jackson4:17
9."Black or White" (Single version)Michael Jackson; rap lyrics by Bottrell3:21
10."Heal the World"Michael Jackson6:24
11."Remember the Time"Riley, Michael Jackson, Belle3:59
12."In the Closet" (7" edit)Michael Jackson, Riley4:48
13."Who Is It" (7" edit)Michael Jackson3:59
14."Will You Be There" (radio edit)Michael Jackson3:40
15."Dangerous"Michael Jackson, Bottrell, Riley6:59
16."You Are Not Alone" (LP edit)R. Kelly4:55
17."You Rock My World"Michael Jackson, Jerkins, Jerkins III, Daniels, Payne5:08

ChartsEdit

Certifications and salesEdit

Region Certification Certified units/sales
Australia (ARIA)[50] 9× Platinum 630,000 
Belgium (BEA)[51] Gold 25,000*
Denmark (IFPI Danmark)[52] Gold 20,000^
Finland (Musiikkituottajat)[53] Gold 20,290[53]
France (SNEP)[55] 2× Gold 598,100[54]
Hungary (MAHASZ)[56] Gold 5,000^
Ireland (IRMA)[57] Platinum 15,000^
Japan (RIAJ)[58] Gold 100,000^
Mexico (AMPROFON)[59] Platinum 100,000^
New Zealand (RMNZ)[60] 2× Platinum 30,000^
Sweden (GLF)[61] Gold 30,000^
United Kingdom (BPI)[62] 4× Platinum 1,200,000 
United States (RIAA)[63] 5× Platinum 2,500,000 
Summaries
Europe (IFPI)[64] 2× Platinum 2,000,000*

* Sales figures based on certification alone.
^ Shipments figures based on certification alone.
  Sales+streaming figures based on certification alone.

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

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External linksEdit