Home Celebrity Michael Jackson ‘New’ Single Written with Paul Anka is Actually 31 Years...

The Michael Jackson single being released today was co-written with Paul Anka. It comes from the session Michael and Anka did for the song “This is It” in 1983– 31 years ago. Johnny Mathis covered it.  Like that track, this one has been blown up and rearranged from the original demo. The songs were long forgotten until Jackson died. I wrote about all this in 2009 right after Michael died. Here’s the original demo:

Here’s another version:


And a clip of the new version:

My original stories about the Anka-Jackson records:


And here’s Johnny Mathis doing it way back in 1984:

Here are Michael and Paul Anka from their “This is It” session, from Anka’s “Duets” album:

The new album, “Xscape,” due May 13th, includes a cover of America’s 1972 hit “A Horse With No Name” with different lyrics. If it walks like a horse, and sounds like a horse, it’s a horse.

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Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.
2 replies to this post
  1. I wish people would stop picking Michael Jacksons pockets and let him rest in peace He made enough money for everyone in his lifetime.
    Ive also seen Paul Anka live , and he is fantastic, but his duets album is just excruciating.”This is It” duet is a trainwreck..Much better with just MJ singing it

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