I saw a video a few months ago with Erykah Badu mentioning that “Michael Jackson is a part of our DNA”. I found her statement to be true, whether you look at the structure and culture of pop and R&B music, metaphorically speaking, or at our individual physical/genealogical makeup.
After reading the Going For Self article by Rico Washington in the newest Wax Poetics N° 37 MJ issue, Erykah’s words rang true once again after I found myself getting chills at the thoughts of how these artists came together and wrote these beautiful songs for Michael. Stories by producers Kenny Gamble and Leon Huff (Philedelphia International Records), songwriters James Ingram (P.Y.T. – Pretty Young Thing), Siedah Garrett (Man In The Mirror), Susaye Greene (I Can’t Help It), Leon Ware (I Wanna Be Where You Are), and Marsha Ambrosius (Butterflies), tell of the passion, love, professionalism, and humbleness that these writers and Michael possessed during the creation, development, and recording of these classic tunes.
This piece also sheds light on the importance of songwriters, how they can help shape the life and career of an artist, and then touch the world, as did Michael Jackson with his collaborators.
Needless to say, the entire issue is a gem for collectors (I heard they are moving fast), but is also a treasure for fans who have a part of Michael inside of them, as most of us do.