The last recording sessions (2005-2009)

All In Your Name : Recorded in December 2002 & released posthumously in 2011.

Hot Fun In The Summertime (demo) : Michael Prince : Neff-U had originally worked with Michael, Brad Buxer and I long before 2008,” continued Prince. “He originally came to Brad’s house years earlier and worked on some stuff that never came out, like ‘Hot Fun In The Summertime’ – the 1969 Sly Stone song. I think MJ only sang a tiny bit on that one, but they were trying a bunch of stuff. Neff-U is very talented.”. A remixed version feauturing Jesse Johnson, D’Angelo & Mary J Blige was recorded in 2014. Both the demo and the remix remain unreleased.

I Am A Looser : Demo recorded in January 2003. Leaked in September 2013 but remains unreleased.

Michael’s Affirmation : Damien Shields : “Michael’s Affirmation isn’t a song. It’s a spoken word piece recorded by MJ to encourage Roy Horn (of Siegfried & Roy) to stay positive when recovering from the onstage tiger attack in October 2003. The music behind MJ’s spoken words is an instrumental called “Photographs”. Remains unreleased.

Children’s Hour : Damien Shields : “is a children’s song”. Remains unreleased.

Silent spring : Damien Shields : “is an instrumental”. Remains unreleased.

Green Hornet Groove : Damien Shields : “is something Brad Buxer worked on. Instrumental. My notes say it was composed to be pitched for use in the Seth Rogan film The Green Hornet, but it ultimately wasn’t used”. Remains unreleased.

Don’t Make Me Stay : Damien Shields : “Based on what I heard: Don’t Make Me Stay had a scratch vocal, but it sounded very distant – like MJ wasn’t near the mic when it was recorded or something. The only coherent lyrics I could make out were the words “don’t make me stay”. Remains unreleased.

Days In Gloucestershire  : Demo recorded in 2004 (at Neverland) with Brad Buxer and reworked in 2008. It leaked in March 2014 but remains unreleased.

Adore You : Demo recorded in 2004 (at Neverland) with Brad Buxer. . Damien Shields : “I heard a version of Adore You which had some background vocals which build into a full-blown choir type of thing at the end. It’s haunting. Sounds very cool. But not a single lyric or lead vocal on the version I heard”. Remains unreleased.

From The Bottom Of My Heart : Recorded in 2005/2006. Damien Shields : “Bottom Of My Heart is a totally separate song. The version I heard was an instrumental, and I was told by someone who worked on the music that MJ never got around to recording it. But it was on MJ’s list of songs he wanted to keep working on”. Remains unreleased.

I Have This Dream (2nd demo) : Written by Michael Jackson, David Foster and Carol Bayer Sager in 1999 during the Invincible sessions. MJ worked on the song with John Barnes at Neverland in 2004. and The song became a charity single after Hurricane Katrina in August 2005 and was co-written with Abdullah bin Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa, the second son of Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa, the king of Bahrain. Singers James Ingram, Ciara, Snoop Dogg, the O’Jays, R Kelly and Shirley Caesar recorded vocals in Los Angeles. In October 2005, Michael recorded parts with a orchestra in Metropolis Studios in Chiswick, London, but never completed his vocals and did not attend further sessions. John Barnes came to Bahrain in 2005/2006 to work on the song. Abdulla said he had spent $2.2m on “I Have This Dream” and cited it, among other songs, in his lawsuit against Jackson in 2008; the parties settled out of court. Played during a court deposition in London in 2008. Remains unreleased.

Bomb Detonation : Written by Michael Jackson, Sheik Abdullah of Bahrain. Written during his stay in Bahrain in 2005 and 2006 for the shelved album promised to be released in late 2007 by 2seas. Rough vocal demo known to exist. Remains unreleased.

He Who Makes The Sky Grey : Written by Jermaine Jackson, Sheik Abdullah of Bahrain. MJ recorded vocals during his stay in Bahrain in 2005-2005 but the song was never completed. Remains unreleased.

Light the Way : Written by Michael Jackson, Sheik Abdullah of Bahrain. MJ recorded vocals during his stay in Bahrain in 2005-2005 but the song was never completed. Damien Shields : “I haven’t heard a song with the title “Pray For Peace,” but I heard Light The Way, and the words sung by the choir in the hook of Light The Way include: “let’s pray, pray for peace”… But I don’t know if they’re the same song, connected, or completely different/unrelated songs”. Remains unreleased.

Can You… : Written by Michael Jackson, Worked on in 2007. Remains unreleased.

I’ma Miss You : Written by Michael Jackson, Worked on in 2007. Damien Shields : “about James Brown”.Remains unreleased.

I’m Dreaming : Written by Michael Jackson, Recorded in 2006 – 2007. Damien Shields : “is a flip/redo of “I Can’t Wake Up (I’m a Blunt)” with MJ singing a re-written version of the hook: “I’m dreaming about being in love…”. Remains unreleased.

I’m Still the King : Written by Michael Jackson, Recorded in 2006 – 2007. Also known as “The King” and “Still The King”. Intended to feature artists influenced by Jackson like Usher and Ne-Yo. The song is not finished. Remains unreleased.

The Future : Written by Michael Jackson, Worked in 2006/07. On the 13th of August 2007, told reporters at a Black Eyed Peas press conference in South Korea that another track he recorded with Jackson is titled “The Future”. Song about environmental issues. A dance track. Remains unreleased.

Hold My Hand (duet with Akon)  : Demo recorded in December 2007 (at Studio X at the Palms Hotel in Las Vegas) & leaked in June 2008. New remix released posthumously in 2010 (Michael). Original demo remains unreleased.

Wanna Be Startin Somethin (2008) : Remix by Akon featuring new vocals by MJ recorded in late 2007 and released in 2008 (Thriller 25 Special Edition).

Red Eye : Written by Michael Jackson. Mentioned by MJ during the 1993 Mexico Deposition. Reworked in 2008 with Neff U. Found in 2009 on one of his lists in his bedroom where he wrote songs that he wants to finish. Remains unreleased.

I Was A Looser : New version of “I Am A Looser” recorded late 2008 in Michael’s Bel Air Hotel suite. Short snippet leaked online but full demo remains unreleased. Listed as “The Loser” on a handwritten note in Michael’s bedroom, discovered shortly after his passing.

H2O aka Dark Lady : Damien Shields : “same song. Excellent demo from 2008. One of the rare tracks with a FULL scratch vocal. MJ sings the vocal melody in one continuous take. No stops or breaks. There are barely any sensical lyrics in the entire song, but the vocal melody is very fleshed out”. Remains unreleased.

D.I.E : Written by Michael Jackson, Michael Prince, Theron Feemster III (Neff-U). Found in 2009 on one of his lists in his bedroom where he wrote songs that he wants to finish. Worked between 2008 and 2009. Two versions of the song were registered with the United States Copyright Office (On the first Michael Prince is not credited). Some sources are stating that “D.I.E” states for “Dance Is Entertainment”, but this is not confirmed. Remains unreleased.

Lady of Summer : Damien Shields : “is one of the pieces MJ showed to classical composer David Michael Frank in 2009 shortly before he died”. Remains unreleased.

King Tutankhamen : Damien Shields :” I heard was an instrumental track from 2008. No vocals on what I heard”. Remains unreleased.

Best Of Joy (2008 demo) : New version of “The Toy” written by Michael Jackson and recorded in 1981 for a Richard Pryor movie. In April 1991, Michael recorded new vocals for the track, including a new opening lyric. The original lyric, “I am your toy, I am your boy,” was changed to: “I am your joy, your best of joy”. In November 2008, Michael recorded new vocals for the track in the bathroom of his suite at the Bel-Air Hotel in LA, including a never-heard alternate option for a third verse. New lyrics include: “I am the rock that stands on solid ground, I am that friend always around. After Michael died, “Best of Joy” was remixed Ron “Neff-U” Feemster for the ‘Michael’ album in 2010. The vocals that appear on Neff-U’s remix are those recorded at the Bel-Air Hotel in November 2008. Original demos from 1981, 1991 and 2008 remain unreleased.

Remember What I Told You : Damien Shields : “has vocals. Starts off acapella and builds into an epic finale with many layers of MJ’s voice. Recorded at MJ’s house in Vegas in 2008. Very rough demo with lovely vocals”. Remains unreleased.

Water : Written by Michael Jackson, Michael Prince, Theron Feemster III (Neff-U). Apparently recorded in early 2009 at the Carolwood house. The production is complex, with water droplets and a “Stranger in Moscow” aesthetic. Only the chorus was recorded (which MJ sang a snippet of in “This Is It”), but people have described it as “amazing” and “magical”. Damien Shields : “Recorded in MJ’s final years. Production includes water splash sounds. Only lyrics: “Inches of water, water, trying to take a piece of my mind/Inches of water, water, trying to take a piece of my time.” Very nice background vocals: “Inches of water, ooo-ooo-ooo-ooo.” Remains unreleased.

Change : Demo written by Steve Porcaro in 2009. Remains unreleased.

Unknown* : On May 22, 2009, fans heard Michael recording a new song from a building in the back of his Holmby Hills home. Michael tells them he is working on the lyrics and has not chosen the title yet. Remains unreleased.

* To this day, the last song known to have been recorded by Michael 42 years after Big Boy.

Previous era : Invincible

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