The Stripped Mixes

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The Stripped Mixes
Remix album by Michael Jackson
Released July 7, 2009 (digital download)
July 28, 2009 (CD)
Recorded 1969–1972
Genre R&B, soul, pop, jazz
Length 38:29
Label Motown
Producer Jeff Moskow, Freddie Perren, Deke Richards, Tom Rowland, Bobby Taylor, Lawrence D. Brown, The Corporation, Hal Davis, Berry Gordy, Jr., George Gordy, Alphonso Mizell, Fonce Mizell
Michael Jackson chronology
The Collection
(2009)
The Stripped Mixes
(2009)
The Definitive Collection
(2009)
Singles from The Stripped Mixes
  1. "I'll Be There (Minus Mix)"
    Released: June 9, 2009

The Stripped Mixes (released on CD for a limited time as The Motown 50 Mixes), is a collection of American recording artist and former Jackson 5 member Michael Jackson's classic songs. The songs featured on the album are mainly from Jackson's career as a member of the Jackson 5 from the 1960s to the 1980s; songs credited to Jackson as a solo artist are from his albums during his Motown-era. Other songs included on the album are "stripped" mixes of Jackson material, meaning the songs are of a quieter tone and most of the drums have been removed.

Following a surge in Jackson's popularity after his death in June 2009, it was confirmed on July 7, that The Stripped Mixes would be released. The album was made available as a digital download on July 7, 2009, and as a CD on July 28. A remixed song, entitled "I'll Be There (Minus Mix)", was released on iTunes to promote the album on June 9, 2009, prior to Jackson's death. The Stripped Mixes was the second Jackson compilation album to be posthumously released, the first being The Collection; which was released over two weeks prior. The Stripped Mixes received mixed reviews from music critics. The album was a moderate commercial success worldwide and had a better chart performance internationally than in the United States.

Concept[edit]

Due to the high popularity of a State Farm Insurance commercial featuring an acoustic version of the hit "I'll Be There", Motown released "I'll Be There (Minus Mix)" via iTunes on June 9, 2009, as a prelude to The Stripped Mixes.[1][2] "I'll Be There (Minus Mix)" did not chart on any music charts. Shortly after Jackson's death in June 2009, his music experienced a surge in popularity,[3] leading to re-issues of his music. Less than an hour after the memorial service for Jackson at the Staples Center on July 7, 2009, Universal Music Group announced The Stripped Mixes, a collection of Jackson's classic songs, would be released.[4] The album features "stripped" mixes of Jackson's classic Motown-era songs as well as songs recorded while he was a member of The Jackson 5 from the 1960s to the 1980s.[5] The songs that are "stripped" on the album have backing instruments and some studio engineering removed to make the songs have a more acoustic sound.[6] The Stripped Mixes was made available as a digital download on July 7, and as a compact disc on July 28, 2009.

Reception[edit]

Commercial performance[edit]

The Stripped Mixes charted at a peak position of #95 on the Billboard 200 in its debut week with sales of less than five thousand units.[7][8] It charted at #43 on the R&B Albums Chart in 2009, and moved up to #21 in 2010.[8] Internationally, The Stripped Mixes was more successful commercially. The album charted within the top fifty in Belgium Flanders and Belgium Wallonia, peaking at #43 and #47 for five and seven weeks, respectively.[9] The Stripped Mixes also charted at #75 in Mexico for one week before dropping out of the top 100.[9]

Critical analysis[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 2/5 stars link
PR Newswire positive link
TheDwarf.com.au positive link
Tone Publications positive link

The Stripped Mixes generally received mixed reviews from contemporary music critics. Writer Stephen Thomas Erlewine for Allmusic gave The Stripped Mixes two out of a five-star rating,[10] stating that he felt that "the logic of what is left behind doesn't quite make sense", pointing out that "I Want You Back" and "ABC" have no drums and "feel a little tipsy and top-heavy"; "Ben" and "With a Child's Heart" have echoes of strings in the background, making it hard to identify the songs as being "stripped".[10] He added that since the genius lies in the arrangements, "having so much of the arrangement absent" means that the music "just sounds awkward and incomplete, as if it was waiting for the final round of mixing and overdubs."[10] Erlewine's overall opinion on the album was "if the purpose of this disc is to draw attention to Michael's vocals, The Stripped Mixes does its job, but just because his voice is pushed front and center does not mean that this is the best place to appreciate his genius."[10]

A writer for PR Newswire praised the album, describing it as "showcasing" Jackson's vocal talent and viewed The Stripped Mixes as shining a "bright, fresh light" on Jackson's early career as both a solo artist and with his brothers in The Jackson 5.[2] Natalie Salvo of TheDwarf.com.au commented that the album's song "Ain't No Sunshine" made the album "personally" worth buying.[4] She added that "the music does what it's supposed to do", which was "evoking the right mood but not being overly showy."[4] Despite the praise, she did state that the album could be clinically looked at as a "element of bad taste" from a "greedy record company" and noted that it was "difficult" to "stop yourself being overcome with cynicism towards this album".[4] Jeff Dorgay of Tone Publications described all of the album's tracks as being "quite strong" and added that "regardless of your interest in Michael Jackson" the The Stripped Mixes is a disc "you should have in your collection" because it offers a "rare look" at "classic" material by Jackson when he was just beginning his career.[11]

Track listing[edit]

No. Title Writer(s) Length
1. "I'll Be There (Minus Mix)" (from Third Album) Berry Gordy, Bob West, Hal Davis, Willie Hutch 3:55
2. "Ben (Stripped Mix)" (from Ben) Don Black, Walter Scharf 2:42
3. "Who's Lovin' You (Stripped Mix)" (from Diana Ross Presents The Jackson 5) Smokey Robinson 4:24
4. "Ain't No Sunshine (Stripped Mix)" (from Got to Be There) Bill Withers 4:08
5. "I Want You Back (Stripped Mix)" (from Diana Ross Presents The Jackson 5) The Corporation 3:48
6. "ABC (Stripped Mix)" (from ABC) The Corporation 3:11
7. "We've Got a Good Thing Going (Stripped Mix)" (from Ben) The Corporation 3:15
8. "With a Child's Heart (Stripped Mix)" (from Music & Me) Basemore, Henry Cosby, Sylvia Moy 4:07
9. "Darling Dear (Stripped Mix)" (from Third Album) Gordy/Gordy/Story 2:33
10. "Got to Be There (Stripped Mix)" (from Got to Be There) Elliot Willensky 3:15
11. "Never Can Say Goodbye (Stripped Mix)" (from Maybe Tomorrow) Clifton Davis 3:11

Charts[edit]

Chart (2009/2010) Peak
position
Belgium Albums Chart (Flanders)[9] 43
Belgium Albums Chart (Wallonia)[9] 47
Mexican Albums Chart[9] 75
United States Billboard 200[8] 95
United States Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums[8] 21

Personnel[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Gordy, Berry (June 25, 2009). "NEW!! Michael Jackson Stripped Mixes" (ASPX). Motown Records. Retrieved July 9, 2009. 
  2. ^ a b PR Newswire (2009-07-09). "Article: Album of New Mixes of Early Michael Jackson and Jackson 5 Classics, Michael Jackson: The Stripped Mixes, Released Today.". HighBeam.com. The Gale Group, Inc. Retrieved 2010-20-23.  Check date values in: |accessdate= (help)
  3. ^ Ed Christman, Antony Bruno, (2009-07-02). "Michael Jackson Music Sales Surge Could Last For Months". Billboard.com. Nielsen Business Media, Inc. Retrieved 2010-02-23. 
  4. ^ a b c d Salvo, Natalie (2009-08-23). "Michael Jackson - The Stripped Mixes (Album)". TheDwarf.com.au. Retrieved 2010-04-10. 
  5. ^ "The Stripped Mixes" (WOA). 1 Infinite Loop, Cupertino, California, USA: iTunes/Apple, Inc. July 7, 2009. Retrieved July 9, 2009. 
  6. ^ "Michael Jackson - The Stripped Mixes - Classic Motown". Motown Records. Retrieved April 10, 2010. 
  7. ^ Ben Sisario (2009-07-15). "Sales of Michael Jackson’s Music, Downloads and CDs, Stay Strong". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. Retrieved 2010-02-23. 
  8. ^ a b c d "allmusic ((( Michael Jackson > Charts & Awards > Billboard Albums )))". Allmusic. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved 2010-02-23. 
  9. ^ a b c d e "Michael Jackson- The Stripped Mixes (chanson)". LesCharts.com. Hung Medien. Retrieved 2010-02-23. 
  10. ^ a b c d Stephen Thomas Erlewine. "allmusic ((( The Stripped Mixes > Review )))". Allmusic. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved 2010-02-23. 
  11. ^ Dorgay, Jeff (2009-07-09). "Music Reviews". Retrieved 2010-04-10. 
  12. ^ "allmusic ((( The Stripped Mixes > Credits )))". Allmusic. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved 2010-02-23. 

External links[edit]