I spent the 4th of July weekend safely stashed away in the mountains, happily cut off from radio, the Internets, and even newspapers, and I was (stupidly) very surprised to come back to the flatlands and find that the MJ frenzy continued unabated.
I don’t know what I expected: biggest pop star in the history of the world dies under mysterious and untimely circumstances – probably just a two or three day story at most, right? Since our media is so focused on the arcana of health care reform negotiations, and all.
Anyway, my fellow alpine hedonists and I actually spent a lot of time discussing Michael, and I realized that he was a much more important part of my life than I’d thought. I haven’t really paid attention to his life since about 1985, but he hit supernova status at exactly the right time to take up permanent residence in my little teenybopper mind. I remember rollerskating to “Rock With You”, pretty much every time I ever went rollerskating, and I don’t think I’ve D.J.’d a party in the last 20 years where I didn’t play at least one prime-era MJ song. I guess I miss that Michael Jackson.
I actually wasn’t much of a fan of “Thriller” when it came out, though, and I didn’t warm to it until they released, like, the seventh single, which was “Human Nature”. To me, that song sounded like music from another planet, one where it was always nighttime, and the stars were always out.
So Sunday night, when I was trying to figure out what, if anything, I wanted to say about Michael, “Human Nature” kept coming to mind. If you haven’t heard it in a while, go back and check it out.
And before you, do, check out this version, whipped up yesterday in the Radio Nowhere Labs. I am definitely not anywhere near MJ’s league as a vocalist (or even in his octave), but there are parts of this track that make me think of stars. I haven’t tried rollerskating to it, but you probably could.