Currently, Michael Jackson’s top 40 hits are coming up in the news because of the continued success of the 2005 compilation released by Epic Records called Essential Michael Jackson. Nevertheless, this is not the only instance of Michael Jackson having a weird reference to top 40 hits in the years since he died in 2009.
Interestingly, the Essential Michael Jackson almost has 40 top hits on a single compilation. Released in 2005, it has been in a digital, online form since the beginning, but Essential Michael Jackson has also been released on DVD in special edition packaging.
Another unique aspect is that Epic Records focused the 38 tracks of Essential Michael Jackson on a model that is unlike previous compilations.
For instance, the 38 songs on the track are arranged in a timeline, and unlike a “best of” or “greatest hits” album from the past, the Essential Michael Jackson is more like a snapshot of important frames throughout his history.
For example, as previously reported by the Inquisitr, many Michael Jackson fans forget that “Ben” was his first solo single outside of the Jackson 5, and it won Michael Jackson a 1973 Golden Globe when he was only 14-years-old, according to AV Club.
As far as top 40 hits, “Ben” by Michael Jackson ranked No. 20 for the song in 1972. Michael Jackson also almost had an Academy Award victory for Best Song, but sadly lost to The Poseidon Adventure‘s “The Morning After.”
Songs like “Ben” represented a turning point in Michael Jackson’s career as did his 1979 second solo hit “Don’t Stop ‘Til You Get Enough.” Regardless, most of the songs included in Essential Michael Jackson were award winners and fan favorites such as Michael Jackson’s “Man in the Mirror” and “Thriller” as well as “Got to be There” and “Rockin’ Robin” with the Jackson 5.
One other interesting aspect of the Essential Michael Jackson is that it is currently charting as a top 40 hit on iTunes. This is especially surprising since it was released on iTunes in 2005 and has remained a top 100 in the music charts in years since.
As of January 27, Essential Michael Jackson was at No. 27 in America on iTunes, according to iTunes Charts.
By contrast, Official Charts does not have Essential Michael Jackson listed as a top 40 hit and instead places MJ’s compilation at No. 84 on January 27.
Interestingly, while Michael Jackson’s daughter, Paris Jackson, is currently talking about how MJ thought he might get murdered one day despite being wildly popular, according to Rolling Stone, his posthumous beef with Kanye West about top 40 status is not mentioned.
According to USA Today, it is commonly assumed that Michael Jackson has had 40 top 40 hits in his lifetime, but it is Kanye West that holds this record as of August 2016. For Michael Jackson trivia buffs, his top 40 hits total is 39.
Oddly, Michael Jackson songs are not as popular as some devoted fans might think. For instance, Chris Brown has 42 top 40 hits, followed by Jay Z at 45, Drake at 53, Lil Wayne at 69, and Elvis at 80.
Adding to this, Billboard clarified by showing that MJ fans were not wrong about the number of hits he had, but they were in the top 50 and not the top 40. For example, out of his top 50 songs in the Billboard 100 charts since he started his career, 13 Michael Jackson songs went to No. 1 as a solo artist.
Naturally, making money from the new Essential Michael Jackson and the continuous 12-year top 40 radio appeal of the album could be helpful because MJ’s estate is getting sued by the IRS for $1 billion. The trial surrounds the actual value of Michael Jackson’s “image,” and the $1 billion IRS trial against MJ starts in February, as previously reported by the Inquisitr.
According to RIAA, as of May 16, 2013, Essential Michael Jackson has sold over 3 million copies, making it officially a 3X multi-platinum album in the United States.
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