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Tamara Conniff Headshot

The Immortal Michael Jackson Sings Again with "Breaking News"

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The topic of Michael Jackson is an emotional one. I waiver between disgust at Michael Jackson mania and exploitation and awe at how well his legacy is being preserved.

The first single "Breaking News" off of his first posthumous release "Michael" is an odd ironic take on the legend's life. The song premiered Nov. 8 on michaeljackson.com and will stream on the site for one week.

"Breaking News" is Michael singing about himself in the third person, as someone stalked by the news and the paparazzi, who are hungry to cast judgment on the star, calling him crazy. It is bittersweet and in many ways reminds me of Lady Diana's death. Wasn't it was the news that pushed the star over the edge? Now, hauntingly, he comes back from the grave to sing about it.

"Breaking News" was originally recorded in New Jersey in 2007 and was brought to completion just before the singer's death.

"Michael" will be released on Dec. 14 via Epic Records. There are few details about the album though I do know that producer and hit-maker Rodney Jerkins and producer/arranger Mervyn Warren both worked on the album.

I've heard stories about these sessions - about Michael's kindness and desire to make great music. These stories I hear closely resemble the Michael the world got to see in "This Is It." I was opposed to the film - my own silly knee-jerk reaction or anger that he was dead. I'm not sure. I only met him once. "This Is It" is a beautiful film that captures the joy and pain of preparing for a tour like nothing I've ever seen. It also shows Michael for the raw genius that he was. I hope the Cirque du Soleil show "Michael Jackson: The Immortal World Tour," which kicks off next year, captures some of that.

I remain on the fence about the two video games - a dance title, "Michael Jackson: The Experience" and a virtual world called "Planet Michael." Virtual world? Really?

I think what every artist aspires for - whether a musician, actor, painter, dancer, producer or writer - is immortality.

Michael you have yours.

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