Today (August 29) would have been Michael Jackson‘s 56th birthday. It boggles the mind to think what treasures the King of Pop could have created if he were still alive but his legacy is so incredibly vast that there’s always something new to discover. To celebrate the life of the gloved genius, I’ve put together a list of five singles that performed considerably better overseas than at home.
It’s hard to fathom how classic tracks like 1995′s environmental awareness-raising “Earth Song” could be the highest-selling MJ single of all time in the UK but not chart on the Billboard Hot 100. That has a lot to do with the way charts were compiled in the ’90s and the lack of a physical release but it still feels completely wrong. Discover over such cases after the jump.
1. “Heal The World”
The sixth single from Dangerous only reached number 27 on the Billboard Hot 100 in 1992 but the inspiring ballad performed considerably better in Europe. It peaked at number three in Germany and number two in France and the UK.
2. “Give In To Me”
The next single from Dangerous received even less love stateside, where it didn’t garner an official release. However, the rock anthem received a lot of attention around the world. It peaked at number one in New Zealand, number four in Australia and number two in the UK.
3. “Earth Song”
As I mentioned earlier, “Earth Song” wasn’t given an official released in the US in 1995. Meanwhile, it’s MJ’s highest-selling single in the UK where it spent six weeks at number one. It also topped the charts in Spain, Switzerland and Germany.
4. “Stranger In Moscow”
This is one of my all-time favorite Michael Jackson songs because I think it gives astonishing insight into the loneliness (and perhaps paranoia) he was feeling at the time. The HIStory: Past, Present and Future, Book I single reached number 91 on the Billboard Hot 100 but topped the charts in Italy and Spain. It also reached number four in the UK and 14 in Australia.
5. “Blood On The Dance Floor”
The lead single from the pop icon’s 1997 Blood on the Dance Floor: HIStory in the Mix remix album, “Blood On The Dance Floor” stalled at number 42 in the US but reached number one in New Zealand, Spain and the UK.
What’s the biggest surprise to you? Let us know in the comments below.
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