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The Ultimate Collection Box set

4.6 out of 5 stars 373 customer reviews

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Audio CD, Box set, November 16, 2004
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Editorial Reviews

Michael Jackson: The Ultimate Collection is a limited edition box set consisting of four CDs and one DVD, Live in Bucharest: The Dangerous Tour.

Much of the music is drawn from the height of Jackson's career particularly from the albums Off the Wall, Thriller, Bad, Dangerous, HIStory, and Invincible. The set also features three tracks from The Jackson Five and six tracks from The Jacksons. Notable tracks on the compilation include the first release of the demos of "P.Y.T. (Pretty Young Thing)", "Shake a Body", "Cheater" and "We Are the World." The set also contains 8 unreleased songs, including "Beautiful Girl", "The Way You Love Me" and "We've Had Enough" and previously out of print songs such as the full version of "You Can't Win," "Someone in the Dark," the early versions of "Dangerous" and "Monkey Business," "Someone Put Your Hand Out" and "On the Line."

Track Listings

Disc: 1

  1. I Want You Back - The Jackson 5
  2. ABC - The Jackson 5
  3. I'll Be There - The Jackson 5
  4. Got to Be There
  5. I Wanna Be Where You Are
  6. Ben
  7. Dancing Machine - The Jackson 5
  8. Enjoy Yourself - The Jacksons
  9. Ease on Down the Road - Michael Jackson & Diana Ross
  10. You Can't Win
  11. Shake a Body - The Jacksons
  12. Shake Your Body (Down to the Ground) - The Jacksons
  13. Don't Stop 'Til You Get Enough
  14. Rock with You
  15. Off the Wall
  16. She's out of My Life
  17. Sunset Driver
  18. Lovely One - The Jacksons
  19. This Place Hotel (a.k.a. Heartbreak Hotel) - The Jacksons

Disc: 2

  1. Wanna Be Startin' Somethin'
  2. The Girl Is Mine - Michael Jackson with Paul McCartney
  3. Thriller
  4. Beat It
  5. Billie Jean
  6. P.Y.T. (Pretty Young Thing)
  7. Someone in the Dark
  8. State of Shock - The Jacksons
  9. Scared of the Moon
  10. We Are the World
  11. We Are Here to Change the World

Disc: 3

  1. Bad
  2. The Way You Make Me Feel
  3. Man in the Mirror
  4. I Just Can't Stop Loving You - Michael Jackson feat. Siedah Garrett
  5. Dirty Diana
  6. Smooth Criminal
  7. Cheater
  8. Dangerous
  9. Monkey Business
  10. Jam
  11. Remember the Time
  12. Black or White
  13. Who Is It
  14. Someone Put Your Hand Out

Disc: 4

  1. You Are Not Alone
  2. Stranger in Moscow
  3. Childhood (Theme from "Free Willy 2")
  4. On the Line
  5. Blood on the Dance Floor
  6. Fall Again
  7. In the Back
  8. Unbreakable
  9. You Rock My World
  10. Butterflies
  11. Beautiful Girl
  12. The Way You Love Me
  13. We've Had Enough

Disc: 5

  1. Main Title
  2. Jam
  3. Wanna Be Startin' Somethin'
  4. Human Nature
  5. Smooth Criminal
  6. I Just Can't Stop Loving You
  7. She's out of My Life
  8. I Want You Back
  9. I'll Be There
  10. Thriller
  11. Billie Jean
  12. Working Day and Night
  13. Beat It
  14. Will You Be There
  15. Black or White
  16. Heal The World
  17. Man in the Mirror
  18. Closing Credits

Product Details

  • Audio CD (November 16, 2004)
  • Original Release Date: November 16, 2004
  • Number of Discs: 5
  • Format: Box set
  • Note on Boxed Sets: During shipping, discs in boxed sets occasionally become dislodged without damage. Please examine and play these discs. If you are not completely satisfied, we'll refund or replace your purchase.
  • Label: Epic
  • Run Time: 382 minutes
  • ASIN: B0002XH9Z4
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (373 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #8,906 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
Yes Michael Jackson has had a few too many 'Greatest Hits' packages, but this one truly is the Ultimate collection of his musical work. Four CDs jam packed with hits and rarities spanning his entire 34 year recording career (J5, The Jacksons and solo), a DVD of his Dangerous concert that aired on HBO (available here for the first time) and an original 60 page book detailing his entire career. There's precious little more you could ask for from a box set.

Now Michael has only released 6 full albums of new material in the past 25 years so chances are that most already have the hits in one form or another so why buy this set? Consider the following list of all the rare and previously unreleased songs in this collection.

Enjoy Yourself - The Jacksons first hit from their first album with Epic

Ease On Down The Road / You Can't Win - both from The Wiz Soundtrack

Shake A Body - previously unreleased demo of what became "Shake Your Body Down To The Ground"

Sunset Driver - previously unreleased demo

P.Y.T. - previously unreleased demo

Someone In The Dark - track from the rarely heard E.T. Storybook

State Of Shock - duet with Mick Jagger (!
Read more ›
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Format: Audio CD
I bought this the day it came out as I counldn't wait to hear the unreleased tracks. I was dying to hear Sunset Driver and the P.Y.T. demo. I was NOT dissapointed at all. Sunset Driver is an excellent song. I think it was meant to be put on Off The Wall but the booklet says it was recorded for Thriller. Anyways, I dont know why the song was never put on an album, maybe Michael was just being too picky. Other notable songs on disc one are "You Can't Win". I was glad to hear they had the long version with "Can't Get Outta The Rain" on it. The "Shake Your Body" demo is very similar to the final cut version. Disc two has the demo of "P.Y.T". I was looking forward to hear. It is mid-tempo, I guess Quincy Jones wanted something faster for the album. I really like this demo a lot. It is very catchy for a demo. As far as the rest of the boxed set, all the hits are there. My only complaints are that "Human Nature" wasn't put on. And as for unreleased tracks, where is "Hot Street"? Put Hot Street and Sunset Driver on the cd and you got two excellent unreleased dance tracks. "Carousel" is also another track from thriller that is very good but was unreleased. Wish that was on there as well. The dvd concert is good but I would rather see a concert from the "Victory Tour" in 1984 or even the "Bad Tour". The unreleased material on disc's 3 and 4 are O-kay. I just feel that MJ's best music was from Off The Wall and the Thriller era so I just wanted to hear as much from that era than anything else. This boxed set is definitely worth the money.
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Format: Audio CD
An exceptional box set with excellent packaging and reasonable song choices, but the target audience for this monster of a set is not casual fans. They will buy the greatest hits compilations "HIStory" or "Number 1's" and be content. This box set should have been designed for the loyal fans who have stuck by Michael -- the ones who already own all the hits and regular albums -- and been loaded with rarities, b-sides, hard-to-find songs and live material alongside a full line-up of his greatest hits (solo and with the Jackson 5/Jacksons). Instead, it is a little short on rarities and is missing some key Jackson 5 hit singles ("The Love You Save" and "Never Can Say Goodbye" to name two), and a few Jacksons hits are also not included.

Taken at face value, this collection is exceptional and offers quite an overview of Michael Jackson's recording career. Overall, most of the hit songs are here, but as far as rarities, the most obvious omission is the Thriller era b-side "Can't Get Outta The Rain." Also, the set would have been worth the price alone had they included his one-time performance of "You Were There" from the Sammy Davis Jr. Anniversary TV Special or Michael's anthem from the Siegfried And Roy Las Vegas Show, called "Mind Is The Magic."

The good news is that fans who buy this collection will get a few cool songs and demos from the MJ vaults. One song in particular, "On The Line" (written by Babyface) and found only as a bonus track on a European CD single, is so good it is surprising it was never issued as a single in the U.S. back in the 90's.

The bottom line is that "The Ultimate Collection" will be a great addition to any diehard MJ fan's CD collection, but it will leave them skipping past the songs they already own several times over and ultimately leave them wanting even more.
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