A Place with No Name
|"A Place with No Name"|
|Song by Michael Jackson|
|Released||December 02, 2013 (leaked)|
|Length||5:17 (leaked Song)|
"A Place with No Name" is a song by American recording artist Michael Jackson. A 24-second snippet of the full song was released posthumously by website TMZ.com in July 2009, three weeks after the singer's death. The track resembles "A Horse with No Name", a hit song by rock band America. At the time of the leak, America stated that they were "honored" that Michael Jackson chose to sample their work. Dr. Freeze has recently confirmed that "A Place with No Name" will soon be released on an upcoming album of unreleased Jackson music, but did not give a confirmed release date. It has been claimed that there are "dozens and dozens" of unreleased Jackson songs that could be issued for several years to come.
Background and leak
Michael Jackson's A Place with No Name is said to both musically and lyrically resemble the 1972 hit song A Horse with No Name by the rock band America. One publication described the two tracks as being "just about identical".
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In June 2009, musician Michael Jackson died following a cardiac arrest. Three weeks after the singer's death, celebrity news website TMZ.com—who were the first media outlet to report the passing—obtained a 24-second snippet of a song entitled "A Place with No Name", and released it onto the Internet. The track is an unreleased Jackson song that has a melody and lyrics which resembles America's "A Horse with No Name", a single that became a number one hit upon its release in 1972 and helped the group's debut album America achieve multi-platinum status. The St. Louis Post-Dispatch stated that the two songs were "just about identical". Despite the similarities between "A Horse with No Name" and "A Place with No Name", it was revealed that Jackson had been given permission to record the latter composition. To date, it is not known what time period the recording of the track occurred in, although it has been reported that the singer and America shared a manager—believed to be Jim Morey—in the late 1980s and late 1990s.
Jackson's version of "A Place with No Name" is not the first song by a member of the musical Jackson family to sample the work of America. Janet Jackson's hit "Someone to Call My Lover" — from the 2001 album All for You — samples "Ventura Highway", a song from America's 1972 Homecoming album.
Response from America
Dewey Bunnell and Gerry Beckley—two members of the three part band—conveyed their gratitude toward Jackson for choosing their song as a musical template for "A Place with No Name". In their statement to MTV, the musicians also expressed regret that the pop singer's fans did not get to hear the finished version of the track while Jackson was still alive:
We're honored that Michael Jackson chose to record it and we're impressed with the quality of the track. We're also hoping it will be released soon so that music listeners around the world can hear the whole song and once again experience the incomparable brilliance of Michael Jackson [...] Michael Jackson really did it justice and we truly hope his fans—and our fans—get to hear it in its entirety. It’s really poignant.
Bunnell further commented that he was "very proud of the fact that [Jackson] recorded it. It's a good version and an interesting derivative of the original that I wrote." The songwriter stated that he and Beckley were "definitely in the dark" regarding the future of Jackson's unreleased material.
In late August 2009, Rolling Stone noted that no plans had been made for the release of a full or official version of "A Place with No Name"; currently, only the 24-second snippet is known to exist. In addition to the leaked Jackson song, there is a "vast vault" of the singer's other unreleased material, and some material will be released in the future.
At the time of "A Place with No Name" being leaked, the curator of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Jim Henke, noted that any future Jackson releases would garner significant attention. "What we have seen happen in the last three weeks is that the albums that are out here right now are selling in amazing numbers. I think we are going to see amazing interest in any released Michael Jackson material that will come out in the future or a year from now on."
Dr. Freeze has claimed in a January 30, 2011 interview with MJFrance that "A Place with No Name" and "Blue Gangsta", another leaked song, were both slated to appear on Michael's next album of unreleased music.
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