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Thread started 06/05/22 9:31am

RODSERLING

MJ's Heaven Can Wait just became a worldwide hit

20 years after its original charting on the US rnb charts, Heaven Can Wait seems to get, finally, some recognition.
Don't ask me why and how, but the song became viral on TikTok about 3 weeks ago, in apparently this sped-up version :

https://youtu.be/xhcSgQXejQY

On YouTube comments, some people apparently ignored it was an MJ song, until they searched for the song.

Consequently, It gained millions of views on Spotify, and is currently the MJ 7th most played song on Spotify ( currently a total of 14 M)
.
On YouTube, the official track on Vevo gained 1.4 millions views in May, and 5 millions on Spotify!
To give you am idea, Black or White did 2.3 M, Man In The Mirror 4.6 M...


The previous month, it earned only 80.00 views on YouTube.

It seems like we are in the Twilight Zone
[Edited 6/5/22 9:33am]
[Edited 6/5/22 9:34am]
[Edited 6/5/22 10:00am]
[Edited 6/5/22 10:01am]
[Edited 6/5/22 10:04am]
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Reply #1 posted 06/06/22 4:50pm

Phase3

It's a pretty good song
I was just about to make a appreciation thread for "Chicago" but think it might get locked because it is MJ related
Thanks for sharing
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Reply #2 posted 06/10/22 4:30am

RODSERLING

Heaven Can Wait by Michael Jackson is now 3d most streamed song on Invincible album, surpassing Unbreakable.

Top 5 Spotify:

You Rock My World - 74,995,952

Butterflies - 33,383,209

Heaven Can Wait - 14,968,375

Unbreakable - 14,857,268

Break Of Dawn - 12,488,952

Strange that BOD is not higher in streaming, since it's on NUMBER ONES, which is supposed to have a huge exposition as a MJ greatest hits.

Butterflies performance is great since that 20 years old hit song is only known by the US audience. It's proof that it qas as huge as YRMW there.

Unbreakable numbers are explained by the fact it's the opening track, so people curious to listen to it stream that track first.
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Reply #3 posted 06/14/22 7:04pm

thesexofit

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Glad it's getting some love. One of my favs from that album. MJ back to creamy rnb on that one.

Much prefer it to "Butterflies", which fair enough, got alot more praise at the time.

Of course, one would assume "Heaven can wait" woulda been a single. We shall never know sad

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Reply #4 posted 06/15/22 3:54pm

Phase3

thesexofit said:

Glad it's getting some love. One of my favs from that album. MJ back to creamy rnb on that one.


Much prefer it to "Butterflies", which fair enough, got alot more praise at the time.



Of course, one would assume "Heaven can wait" woulda been a single. We shall never know sad


Butterflies is a great song.I loved the remix with Eve
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Reply #5 posted 06/16/22 11:08am

RODSERLING

Was very surprised when Sony announced they promoted Butterflies and Heaven Can Wait in the US, instead of the European singles.

I thought it was a commercial suicide and would never work.
I was wrong. If MJ did promote these singles correctly ( tv performances, music videos), it would have done better chart-wise.

Sony US changed his route completely ame decided to market MJ as a nu- soul, old rnb vibes. Rnb radio stations said in Billboard Magazine in 2002, they would pick Break Of Dawn after HCW.

In Europe these tracks would have never worked. But Cry amd Unbreakable didn't work neither. Lack of MJ's involvement didn't help.

I still think from day one that Sony/MJ should have gone with Whatever Happens amd Speechless instead- worldwide.
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Reply #6 posted 06/16/22 3:47pm

MickyDolenz

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RODSERLING said:

Was very surprised when Sony announced they promoted Butterflies and Heaven Can Wait in the US, instead of the European singles. I thought it was a commercial suicide and would never work. I was wrong.

I'm not sure what is popular in European countries has to do with the USA. If Mike did a duet with Garth Brooks, then it would likely be a big hit in the US, because Garth is a big name here. It does not matter if country music is popular in the UK or wherever. In the same way, This Time Around would be a successful single in the US, because Notorious B.I.G. is on it and hip hop is one of the most popular genres. Much of Mariah Carey's career is releasing collabo singles with rappers. I've heard that A-ha is very popular in Europe, but they're a "one hit wonder" in the US.

You can take a black guy to Nashville from right out of the cotton fields with bib overalls, and they will call him R&B. You can take a white guy in a pin-stripe suit who’s never seen a cotton field, and they will call him country. ~ O. B. McClinton
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Reply #7 posted 06/17/22 1:58am

RODSERLING

MickyDolenz said:



RODSERLING said:


Was very surprised when Sony announced they promoted Butterflies and Heaven Can Wait in the US, instead of the European singles. I thought it was a commercial suicide and would never work. I was wrong.

I'm not sure what is popular in European countries has to do with the USA. If Mike did a duet with Garth Brooks, then it would likely be a big hit in the US, because Garth is a big name here. It does not matter if country music is popular in the UK or wherever. In the same way, This Time Around would be a successful single in the US, because Notorious B.I.G. is on it and hip hop is one of the most popular genres. Much of Mariah Carey's career is releasing collabo singles with rappers. I've heard that A-ha is very popular in Europe, but they're a "one hit wonder" in the US.



Yes, but Butterflies and Heaven Can Wait are not featuring with big names, and they were clearly not the kind of things that were broadcast in European radios.

I was 15 at the time, without Internet and didn't know that nu-soul could have a big audience in another continent.

Still, it would have been more profitable to release the same singles worldwide, if you picked them right, and if you wanted to do big promotion about it ( music videos for instance).

By the way, This Time Around was a flop on the radio, and Unbreakable never took off.
Blood On The Damce Floor ( the single)was released a few days after Biggie's death : too bad, they could have sold more singles with a This Time Around remix with Biggie in b-sides.

The remix includes in BOTDF ( the album) doesn't even include Biggie's part.

I always thought Cry was fitted for a duet. The song is great, but the verses are way too long, too slow and delivered in a monochordial tone.

Released on single with a big international star ( Mariah Carey, Whitney Houston, Britney Spears, etc.) The song would have had a shot in the charts, even in the US, that's for sure.
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Reply #8 posted 06/17/22 7:20am

MickyDolenz

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RODSERLING said:

Yes, but Butterflies and Heaven Can Wait are not featuring with big names, and they were clearly not the kind of things that were broadcast in European radios.

But was New Jack Swing popular in Europe? How about Bobby Brown? They were in the USA, so Mike worked with Teddy Riley on Dangerous. Michael Jackson is an American singer, so I would think he would primarily focus on what is popular in his home country, It's not like he did music that was mainly popular in the UK like "drums & bass". As far as I know, the blues and R&B was not that popular in Europe until British acts like The Beatles, Rolling Stones, & early Fleetwood Mac started doing it. The Beatles also had some country style songs and traditional Indian music sounds, which were probably not well known in European countries either.

RODSERLING said:

By the way, This Time Around was a flop on the radio

It was never released as a single in the US. There was a promo single for DJs, but no commercial single to buy. At that time, Billboard only counted physical singles in their singles charts. If an album track got heavy radio play, it still would not chart, because nobody could buy it. If somebody wanted it, they had to buy the album. Isn't She Lovely was never a single in the US, because Stevie Wonder did not want it edited down to fit on a 45. If you put too much time on a 45, it would lose sound quality. Also a lot of Top 40 stations would not usually play longer songs, but R&B radio would. I used to hear the entire 15 minutes of Rapper's Delight. But Isn't She Lovely got a lot of radio airplay and it is one of his best known songs.

You can take a black guy to Nashville from right out of the cotton fields with bib overalls, and they will call him R&B. You can take a white guy in a pin-stripe suit who’s never seen a cotton field, and they will call him country. ~ O. B. McClinton
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Reply #9 posted 06/17/22 7:31am

RODSERLING

MickyDolenz said:



RODSERLING said:


Yes, but Butterflies and Heaven Can Wait are not featuring with big names, and they were clearly not the kind of things that were broadcast in European radios.



But was New Jack Swing popular in Europe? How about Bobby Brown? They were in the USA, so Mike worked with Teddy Riley on Dangerous. Michael Jackson is an American singer, so I would think he would primarily focus on what is popular in his home country, It's not like he did music that was mainly popular in the UK like "drums & bass". As far as I know, the blues and R&B was not that popular in Europe until British acts like The Beatles, Rolling Stones, & early Fleetwood Mac started doing it. The Beatles also had some country style songs and traditional Indian music sounds, which were probably not well known in European countries either.



RODSERLING said:


By the way, This Time Around was a flop on the radio



It was never released as a single in the US. There was a promo single for DJs, but no commercial single to buy. At that time, Billboard only counted physical singles in their singles charts. If an album track got heavy radio play, it still would not chart, because nobody could buy it. If somebody wanted it, they had to buy the album. Isn't She Lovely was never a single in the US, because Stevie Wonder did not want it edited down to fit on a 45. If you put too much time on a 45, it would lose sound quality. Also a lot of Top 40 stations would not usually play longer songs, but R&B radio would. I used to hear the entire 15 minutes of Rapper's Delight. But Isn't She Lovely got a lot of radio airplay and it is one of his best known songs.



There were many airplay charts, and This Time Around never really took off.

Billboard's Dance Music/Club Play Singles[7] 18
Billboard Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Airplay[8] 23
Billboard Rhythmic Top 40[7] 36

It was even worst than for They Don't Care About Us, that was banned from the radios.
That's part of the reason why it wasn't released on physical singles.
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Reply #10 posted 06/17/22 8:45am

MickyDolenz

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RODSERLING said:

There were many airplay charts, and This Time Around never really took off. Billboard's Dance Music/Club Play Singles[7] 18 Billboard Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Airplay[8] 23 Billboard Rhythmic Top 40[7] 36 It was even worst than for They Don't Care About Us, that was banned from the radios. That's part of the reason why it wasn't released on physical singles.

But airplay charts don't really mean anything and not every radio station is tracked. That would be impossible to do. There's way too many different radio formats in the US. The USA is a large place, and some songs and/or artists might only be played in certain areas of the country. Genres like zydeco & Tejano are more popular in the south. There's gospel radio. In general, gospel and Christian rock songs were not always released as physical singles. College radio is more likely to play lesser known acts & genres that don't get played on commercial radio and even local bands/singers. Even with a particular genre, there's different radio formats like AOR, alternative rock, college rock, indie rock, classic rock, Americana, heavy metal, and so on.

You can take a black guy to Nashville from right out of the cotton fields with bib overalls, and they will call him R&B. You can take a white guy in a pin-stripe suit who’s never seen a cotton field, and they will call him country. ~ O. B. McClinton
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Reply #11 posted 06/17/22 12:19pm

RODSERLING

MickyDolenz said:



RODSERLING said:


There were many airplay charts, and This Time Around never really took off. Billboard's Dance Music/Club Play Singles[7] 18 Billboard Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Airplay[8] 23 Billboard Rhythmic Top 40[7] 36 It was even worst than for They Don't Care About Us, that was banned from the radios. That's part of the reason why it wasn't released on physical singles.

But airplay charts don't really mean anything and not every radio station is tracked. That would be impossible to do. There's way too many different radio formats in the US. The USA is a large place, and some songs and/or artists might only be played in certain areas of the country. Genres like zydeco & Tejano are more popular in the south. There's gospel radio. In general, gospel and Christian rock songs were not always released as physical singles. College radio is more likely to play lesser known acts & genres that don't get played on commercial radio and even local bands/singers. Even with a particular genre, there's different radio formats like AOR, alternative rock, college rock, indie rock, classic rock, Americana, heavy metal, and so on.



Then what are implying? There were some states where the track was a hit?
If you can't even trust a chart, then you can't trust anyone

This Time Around flopped on every radio.
They produced several remixes for every format, but the song didn't catch nowhere.
Had it been played a lot, it would have made the album sell for the Christmas season. Which, of course, never happened.

Sony cancelled almost everything after the HBo cancellation.
[Edited 6/17/22 12:21pm]
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Reply #12 posted 06/17/22 3:55pm

MickyDolenz

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RODSERLING said:

Then what are implying? There were some states where the track was a hit?

Yes, certain cites and/or states can have hits primarily to itself. They're called "regional hits". Radio stations that play salsa, Tejano, & merenge are more likely going to be popular where there is a Latino population (Mexican, Puerto Rican, Cuban, etc) and less popular if a town is primarily rural white people. A radio station that plays Bollywood movie songs is going to be in an area where there is a larger Indian population. "Southern soul" is more likely to be played in southern states than northern ones. House music is more likely to be popular in New York City than in Waco TX. Not everything played on the radio is tracked, If I listen to a college radio station, there's songs that they may play often, but is played on no other station. The stations that are tracked are more likely to be owned by Clear Channel or iHeart. That's why I said airplay charts don't mean anything. I remember there used to be 2 local Top 40 stations, one played more rock music than the other. And the other played more dance music and adult contemporary. But they were both the same radio format. The US isn't like a place that only has one radio station like the BBC.

You can take a black guy to Nashville from right out of the cotton fields with bib overalls, and they will call him R&B. You can take a white guy in a pin-stripe suit who’s never seen a cotton field, and they will call him country. ~ O. B. McClinton
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Reply #13 posted 06/17/22 4:24pm

RODSERLING

MickyDolenz said:



RODSERLING said:


Then what are implying? There were some states where the track was a hit?

Yes, certain cites and/or states can have hits primarily to itself. They're called "regional hits". Radio stations that play salsa, Tejano, & merenge are more likely going to be popular where there is a Latino population (Mexican, Puerto Rican, Cuban, etc) and less popular if a town is primarily rural white people. A radio station that plays Bollywood movie songs is going to be in an area where there is a larger Indian population. "Southern soul" is more likely to be played in southern states than northern ones. House music is more likely to be popular in New York City than in Waco TX. Not everything played on the radio is tracked, If I listen to a college radio station, there's songs that they may play often, but is played on no other station. The stations that are tracked are more likely to be owned by Clear Channel or iHeart. That's why I said airplay charts don't mean anything. I remember there used to be 2 local Top 40 stations, one played more rock music than the other. And the other played more dance music and adult contemporary. But they were both the same radio format. The US isn't like a place that only has one radio station like the BBC.




So then, let's say that when You Are Not Alone was #1 in airplay, it was no more high in total spins than This Time Around a few months after?

When an album is falling in the charts, and its current radio single doesn't take off, and nobody knows that song, maybe it's just because the song is a flop on the radio.

Moreover, airplay charts are measured with number of spins tempered by the total audience.

So if a song is played 10 times on an obscure radio station at 3:am, it won't have the same weight/audience/charts points as another song played one time on the biggest stations at 10:am.
That's logical.
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Reply #14 posted 06/18/22 4:56pm

RODSERLING

Heaven Can wait now reached the 16 millions streams on Spotify.

Reached the 5 millions mark on YouTube (5, 2 M exactly), beating I Just Can't Stop Loving You numbers on this platform, despite this one being released on YT two years before!
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Reply #15 posted 07/02/22 1:43am

RODSERLING

Heaven Can wait now reached the 17 millions streams on Spotify.
Unbreakable reached the 15 millions streams.
Invincible has now 211 millions streams, far to be his most popular album on Spotify, but still ahead of MICHAEL and BOTDF
biggrin

Heaven Can Wait reached 5.5 Millions on YouTube, ahead of The Girl Is Mine, which was a worldwide hit 40 years ago !
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Reply #16 posted 07/02/22 4:50am

ThatWhiteDude

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So the streams went up a bit for that song and that means it's a worldwide hit? Don't ge me wrong, it's quite remarkable that it gets some attention after 21 years, especially considering that invincible is by far his worst album, but I've not heard anything about it until I saw this thread here. I even googled the title and no media outlet really talked about it. The streams went up a bit and maybe, those numbers are remarkable for this specific album, but they're not much compared to others. To me it seems like the streams went up because some kids on tik tok made an awful remix for a mediocre song.

"Like books and BLACK LIVES, Albums still MATTER."

Poppys, Shanon319, Number23, Kares. #lifttheban
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Reply #17 posted 07/02/22 4:36pm

MickyDolenz

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RODSERLING said:

When an album is falling in the charts, and its current radio single doesn't take off, and nobody knows that song, maybe it's just because the song is a flop on the radio.

Just because a song is not a radio hit does not mean nobody knows it. There's thousands of albums released every year all over the world in many languages. Just because you don't know the music does not mean it's a flop. If people knowing about songs and/or artists can only be known because it got a lot of radio airplay, then how do jazz records sell? A lot of it is instrumental and instrumental music rarely got Top 40 radio airplay, especially past the 1970s. Same for gospel music, blues, folk, techno, or death metal. In the 1960s acts like Herb Alpert & The Tijuana Brass and Kenny G in the 1980s sold a lot of albums doing instrumentals. I've never heard any opera on Top 40, and there's an audience for that. I've never heard Baby Shark on the radio either, yet it has over 10 billion views on Youtube. lol Which is a lot more views than all of those old radio hits. The Beatles & Michael Jackson don't have any videos that are 10 billion. Neither does currently popular acts like Adele & BTS.

You can take a black guy to Nashville from right out of the cotton fields with bib overalls, and they will call him R&B. You can take a white guy in a pin-stripe suit who’s never seen a cotton field, and they will call him country. ~ O. B. McClinton
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Reply #18 posted 07/03/22 9:45am

RODSERLING

To measure that Heaven Can Wait's craze on YouTube...that seems to fade away a little 😄

Yearly estimates:

Year Views
2020 ~1,120,000
2021 ~1,190,000
2022 ~2,850,000


Monthly estimates:

Month Views
2020/06 ~98,000

2022/02 ~99,000
2022/03 ~93,000
2022/04 ~197,000
2022/05 ~1,400,000
2022/06 ~950,000

Most views in a day: 61,065 (2022/05/08)
[Edited 7/3/22 9:46am]
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Reply #19 posted 07/03/22 9:47am

RODSERLING

ThatWhiteDude said:

So the streams went up a bit for that song and that means it's a worldwide hit? Don't ge me wrong, it's quite remarkable that it gets some attention after 21 years, especially considering that invincible is by far his worst album, but I've not heard anything about it until I saw this thread here. I even googled the title and no media outlet really talked about it. The streams went up a bit and maybe, those numbers are remarkable for this specific album, but they're not much compared to others. To me it seems like the streams went up because some kids on tik tok made an awful remix for a mediocre song.



I guess you're lacking a big sense of humor
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Reply #20 posted 07/03/22 9:59am

RODSERLING

MickyDolenz said:



RODSERLING said:


When an album is falling in the charts, and its current radio single doesn't take off, and nobody knows that song, maybe it's just because the song is a flop on the radio.

Just because a song is not a radio hit does not mean nobody knows it. There's thousands of albums released every year all over the world in many languages. Just because you don't know the music does not mean it's a flop. If people knowing about songs and/or artists can only be known because it got a lot of radio airplay, then how do jazz records sell? A lot of it is instrumental and instrumental music rarely got Top 40 radio airplay, especially past the 1970s. Same for gospel music, blues, folk, techno, or death metal. In the 1960s acts like Herb Alpert & The Tijuana Brass and Kenny G in the 1980s sold a lot of albums doing instrumentals. I've never heard any opera on Top 40, and there's an audience for that. I've never heard Baby Shark on the radio either, yet it has over 10 billion views on Youtube. lol Which is a lot more views than all of those old radio hits. The Beatles & Michael Jackson don't have any videos that are 10 billion. Neither does currently popular acts like Adele & BTS.




I happened to hear Baby Shark 30 times a day.
Just depends on the age of your kids😄

Sure, the 20 millions people who bought History surely must know about This Time Around.
But what I meant was the song didn't take off on the radio, and it didn't sell the album too.
So maybe because Sony didn't really push for that somg, maybe because MJ didn't do a video, or maybe it wasn't the right time to release it.

But if you take another song from this album, They Don't Care About Us, it got no airplay in the US, but became a kind of a hit when it got viral in the of the 2000's.
So This Time Around don't even have the popularity of a song like Heaven Can Wait
smile
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Reply #21 posted 07/03/22 11:28am

MickyDolenz

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RODSERLING said:

I happened to hear Baby Shark 30 times a day. Just depends on the age of your kids😄 Sure, the 20 millions people who bought History surely must know about This Time Around. But what I meant was the song didn't take off on the radio, and it didn't sell the album too. So maybe because Sony didn't really push for that somg, maybe because MJ didn't do a video, or maybe it wasn't the right time to release it. But if you take another song from this album, They Don't Care About Us, it got no airplay in the US, but became a kind of a hit when it got viral in the of the 2000's. So This Time Around don't even have the popularity of a song like Heaven Can Wait smile

How many #1 songs from the 1910s or 1920s can you identify? razz I'd guess that more people today would know Bad To The Bone, which wasn't a big hit, over a big hit single from 1926. There's probably thousands of old forgotten hits. Oldies & classic rock radio only play certain songs and/or artists over and over (Don't Stop Believin', Freebird, Every Breath You Take, Funky Cold Medina, etc). They don't play everything that was popular in the past. Many people know TV show theme songs, which weren't usually singles. If they watched the show every week (or almost everyday with programs like soap operas, reruns, or game shows), then they know the songs. I think a lot of people know the main theme from the Christopher Reeve Superman movies, which had no Top 40 airplay. There was a disco version of Star Wars by Meco that got radio airplay though. I know the tune from the Ms. Pac Man arcade game if I hear it. It wasn't on the radio. lol

You can take a black guy to Nashville from right out of the cotton fields with bib overalls, and they will call him R&B. You can take a white guy in a pin-stripe suit who’s never seen a cotton field, and they will call him country. ~ O. B. McClinton
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Reply #22 posted 07/03/22 3:36pm

RODSERLING

MickyDolenz said:



RODSERLING said:


I happened to hear Baby Shark 30 times a day. Just depends on the age of your kids😄 Sure, the 20 millions people who bought History surely must know about This Time Around. But what I meant was the song didn't take off on the radio, and it didn't sell the album too. So maybe because Sony didn't really push for that somg, maybe because MJ didn't do a video, or maybe it wasn't the right time to release it. But if you take another song from this album, They Don't Care About Us, it got no airplay in the US, but became a kind of a hit when it got viral in the of the 2000's. So This Time Around don't even have the popularity of a song like Heaven Can Wait smile

How many #1 songs from the 1910s or 1920s can you identify? razz I'd guess that more people today would know Bad To The Bone, which wasn't a big hit, over a big hit single from 1926. There's probably thousands of old forgotten hits. Oldies & classic rock radio only play certain songs and/or artists over and over (Don't Stop Believin', Freebird, Every Breath You Take, Funky Cold Medina, etc). They don't play everything that was popular in the past. Many people know TV show theme songs, which weren't usually singles. If they watched the show every week (or almost everyday with programs like soap operas, reruns, or game shows), then they know the songs. I think a lot of people know the main theme from the Christopher Reeve Superman movies, which had no Top 40 airplay. There was a disco version of Star Wars by Meco that got radio airplay though. I know the tune from the Ms. Pac Man arcade game if I hear it. It wasn't on the radio. lol



Still, 27 years later, This Time Around didn't catch anywhere, unlike Heaven Can Wait, that was a little bit promoted like TTA.

IMHO, it was just a bad choice of single anyway.
On the first pressings of HIStory in Europe, Money was to be the 3rd single. What a bad choice would it have been.
MJ wanted so bad 2Bad and Smile as singles, it would have never worked too.

Don't need to be a music genius in the industry to know that.

Really, I can't understand what was happening in Sony's head to promote This Time Around
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Reply #23 posted 07/03/22 4:24pm

MickyDolenz

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RODSERLING said:

Really, I can't understand what was happening in Sony's head to promote This Time Around

It wasn't promoted and it wasn't released as a single in the USA. Only a promo single for DJs was pressed. A lot of promo singles and/or albums for different artists were made and the albums/singles were never released. Anyway you must not know the popularity of Notorious B.I.G. (or hip hop in general) if you think This Time Around is a bad choice for a single. Biggie Smalls pretty much put out only one album while alive but there was a biopic made about him. Puff Daddy's tribute song to Biggie (I'll Be Missing You) was a huge hit in the USA. There was also a promo single for We Be Ballin', which is a song by Ice Cube & Shaq with Michael Jackson singing the hook. Technically, it was a remix for Ice Cube's We Be Clubbin', but Mike is not on that version. We Be Ballin' was never released or played on the radio, but the original song did get airplay

You can take a black guy to Nashville from right out of the cotton fields with bib overalls, and they will call him R&B. You can take a white guy in a pin-stripe suit who’s never seen a cotton field, and they will call him country. ~ O. B. McClinton
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Reply #24 posted 07/03/22 5:04pm

RODSERLING

MickyDolenz said:



RODSERLING said:


Really, I can't understand what was happening in Sony's head to promote This Time Around

It wasn't promoted and it wasn't released as a single in the USA. Only a promo single for DJs was pressed. A lot of promo singles and/or albums for different artists were made and the albums/singles were never released. Anyway you must not know the popularity of Notorious B.I.G. (or hip hop in general) if you think This Time Around is a bad choice for a single. Biggie Smalls pretty much put out only one album while alive but there was a biopic made about him. Puff Daddy's tribute song to Biggie (I'll Be Missing You) was a huge hit in the USA. There was also a promo single for We Be Ballin', which is a song by Ice Cube & Shaq with Michael Jackson singing the hook. Technically, it was a remix for Ice Cube's We Be Clubbin', but Mike is not on that version. We Be Ballin' was never released or played on the radio, but the original song did get airplay



This Time Around was promoted, there were a lot of remixes made by Sony *.
There was also a sticker on the promo singles to link it to the HBO concert, further canceled, and that's the whole story for me.

A single that is not promoted cannot have so much remixes and make sone charting s anyway.
So there was of course a strong willing from Sony( I don't think it came from MJ) to promote that single instead of Earth Song.

Of course Biggie was huge at the time, so it could rationalize that strange choice of a single, still, it didn't work in the USA, and I can tell you it would have no chance at all in Europe, neither would have had Money, 2Bad or Smile.

So Biggie + MJ weren't so huge to propell that song as a hit radio, and justify a physical single.



*Some remixes :

David Morales Mixes
"This Time Around (D.M. Mad Club Mix)" – 10:23
"This Time Around (D.M. Mad Alternate Mix)" – 10:36 [Also known as "D.M. Mad Club Mix #2"]
"This Time Around (D.M. Mad Dub)" – 8:00
"This Time Around (D.M. Radio Mix)" – 4:05
"This Time Around (D.M. A.M. Mix)" – 7:47
"This Time Around (D.M. Bang Da Drums Mix)" – 6:34
"This Time Around (The Timeland Dub)" – 7:22
"This Time Around (The Neverland Dub)" – 7:46
Maurice Joshua Mixes
"This Time Around (Maurice's Club Around Mix)" – 9:00
"This Time Around (Maurice's Club Around Radio Mix)" – 4:00
"This Time Around (Maurice's Hip Hop Around Mix)" – 4:25
"This Time Around (Maurice's Hip Hop Around Mix w/ Drop)" - 4:18
"This Time Around (Maurice's Hip Hop Around Mix w/o Rap)" – 4:25
Dallas Austin Mixes
"This Time Around (Dallas Main Extended Mix)" - 7:15
"This Time Around (Dallas Main Mix)" - 6:40
"This Time Around (Dallas Main Mix w/o Rap)" - 6:40
"This Time Around (Dallas Radio Remix)" – 4:31
"This Time Around (Dallas Radio Remix w/o Rap)" – 4:31
"This Time Around (Dallas Clean Album Remix)" – 4:21
"This Time Around (Album Instrumental)" – 4:12
Uno Clio Mixes
"This Time Around (Uno Clio 12" Master Mix)" – 9:25
"This Time Around (Uno Clio Dub Mix)" – 8:06
Georgie Porgie Mixes
"This Time Around (Georgie's House N Around Mix)" – 6:04
Joey "The Don" Donatello Mixes
"This Time Around (The Don's Control This Dub)" – 4:30
UBQ Mix
"This Time Around (UBQ's Opera Vibe Dub)" – 7:00
David Mitson Mix
"This Time Around (David Mitson Clean Edit)" – 4:21
[Edited 7/3/22 17:09pm]

It is to be noted no other MJ singles after that would have so much remixes, especially the Invincible singles, despite a lot of radio promotion for YRMW and Cry in Europe and Butterflies in the US.
Heaven Can Wait was also announced as the next single, so a lit of rnb radio played it, in the wave of Butterflies.
In an article from Billboard dated February 2002, some rnb radios said they were ready for Heaven Can wait, and then Break of Dawn after.
Clearly Sony US after thought was that MJ was easier to market as a nu-soul artist 😅
Whereas in Europe this marketing strategy would have had no chance. MJ here was pop/rock crossover and that's all.
It's just Sony Europe's fault to have thought that Cry was pop/rock ( despite being #6 in Europe in airplay)
[Edited 7/3/22 17:11pm]
[Edited 7/3/22 17:24pm]
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Reply #25 posted 07/03/22 5:35pm

MickyDolenz

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RODSERLING said:

This Time Around was promoted, there were a lot of remixes made by Sony *. There was also a sticker on the promo singles to link it to the HBO concert, further canceled, and that's the whole story for me. A single that is not promoted cannot have so much remixes and make sone charting s anyway.

A promo single is not a commercial single. A single is something people can buy in a store like a 45, a 12", a cassette single, or a CD single. I have a promo album by a girl group called LuvHer. They were discovered by Sisqó from Dru Hill. Only a single was released, but the album was cancelled and then the group broke up. They even performed the single on Soul Train. A promo is something that is made for radio and club DJs. It is given to them to play, they don't buy it. Promos always have something stamped on it saying "not for sale", although some used record stores would sometimes get copies. Albums or singles get cancelled all the time. Jermaine Jackson recorded an album with the MBFB guys in Philly during the mid 1970s, but Berry Gordy cancelled the album. Probably because The Jacksons were working with the same guys when they were doing the Gamble & Huff albums. Prince's Black Album was cancelled in the 1980s, but some copies had been printed. Madonna did a collabo with Tupac. The song was released on the Bedtime Story album, but Tupac's part was left off. But the collabo version has leaked.

You can take a black guy to Nashville from right out of the cotton fields with bib overalls, and they will call him R&B. You can take a white guy in a pin-stripe suit who’s never seen a cotton field, and they will call him country. ~ O. B. McClinton
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Reply #26 posted 07/03/22 10:02pm

RODSERLING

The point is, you don't release a commercial physical single of a promo single that don't get airplay.

I'd like to know the story behind that though, if a music video was ever planned, if the song was a success, and what was it to be.
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Reply #27 posted 07/04/22 7:19am

MickyDolenz

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RODSERLING said:

The point is, you don't release a commercial physical single of a promo single that don't get airplay.

It didn't get played because it wasn't promoted. "Promotion" is code for payola. That's pretty much how songs get on commercial radio, the labels "pay for play". That's why most hits come from artists on major labels, who can afford to pay a bunch of radio stations. They have power too, that how CBS threatened to remove their other artists like Journey & Bruce Springsteen if MTV would not show the Billie Jean video. MTV would show few if any Black performers in the beginning. Even David Bowie talked about it. Also Black artists usually had to "crossover" to pop radio and it wasn't done with most. A small label generally can't afford to pay or has much clout. At one time, some radio DJs or station programmers could choose what they wanted to play, like a Frankie Crocker or Alan Freed. Even then, it sometimes involved payola. Alan Freed would get songwriting credits on some songs, although he had nothing to do with writing. So he got royalties instead of a 1 time fee like most payola. As royalties, he was less likely to get in trouble than with a payout. It wasn't always money, they might have gotten cars or drugs or women or fur coats. I think James Brown would pay DJs himself during the 1960s. Major labels would also pay radio stations and record stores to say a record or song was more popular or less popular than it really was. The labels would make a record fail on purpose for a tax writeoff, to teach the artis a lesson, or if they knew the artist was getting ready to leave to go to another label. Like Motown didn't do much promotion on the later Jackson 5 albums because they were going to CBS Records. Motown also sued the group & their father Joe Jackson and said they owned the name "Jackson 5". That's why they were renamed "The Jacksons". Teena Marie wanted to leave Motown in the early 1980s, but they wouldn't let her out of her contract, nor release any records from her. She sued and won, and there was even a law named for Teena's case (Brockert Initiative). A similar thing happend to Tori Amos at Atlantic Records. When Michael Jackson started talking about "Tommy Matolla is the devil", Epic stopped promoting Invincib;e

You can take a black guy to Nashville from right out of the cotton fields with bib overalls, and they will call him R&B. You can take a white guy in a pin-stripe suit who’s never seen a cotton field, and they will call him country. ~ O. B. McClinton
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Reply #28 posted 07/04/22 12:35pm

FullLipsDotNos
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When I heard the song for the first time (I could've been 11?), it made me cry. I'm OK with it now though.

full lips, freckles, and upturned nose
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