Thursday, 7 June 2012

The Jackson's at Motown 25

This is The Jackson 5 at Motown 25. Whilst many people will remember the iconic performance Michael Jackson gave of Billie Jean much better, I'm going to be incredibly controversial and say I think this is a better performance, although in terms of career and popularity Billie Jean did far more and is easily the more iconic and talked about of the two. This is noteable for being the first performance with Jermaine Jackson since he left the group although Randy Jackson also joins the brothers on stage midway through for this conformance. The performance is a Jackson 5 hits medley, very similar to the hit melodies performed on The Jackson's tours and Michael's own solo tours which would still be a few years off. Having said that, the performance isn't just a straight copy of these tour medleys, as Never Can Say Goodbye was never used in such medlies but is before I'll Be There here. I've no doubt that I'll be There must have been a particularly poignant performance as Michael sings with Jermaine there. The performance of I'll Be There is beautiful, and probably my favourite overall performance of the song. Jermaine's microphone had technical problems, leading to Michael to act fast and share his microphone with Jermaine, and for me just makes the performance look all the more touching! The main reason I prefer it to Billie Jean is because Michael sings live here wheras he mimes Billie Jean. I think this is a good example that Michael could sing live, even though his high octane dancing on tour would often limit his voice and could sometimes make his voice sound a little worse for wear, and in other cases he simply would just had to have mimed a performance. Sadly, whilst Billie Jean has been released officially on DVD as part of Thriller 25, this performance does seem to have been largely forgotten about. The only place this has been made officially available is on the Motown 25: Yesterday, Today and Forever VHS which is a shame. I would really love a DVD compilation of individual performances of Michael Jackson's that contains both this and the much praised 1988 Grammy's performance, as this is him at the peak of his powers I feel!

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