Outshining Thriller seemed as impossible as holding the wind with a net. In 1987, Michael Jackson, riding high off the massive success of his monumental opus, was tasked with not only superseding what he pulled off in 1982 but also crystalizing his legend on the feverishly anticipated follow-up Bad.
Almost 30 years since its epic arrival, MJ's iconic album has now been certified diamond by the RIAA for moving over 10 million copies in the U.S. alone. Released on August 31, 1987, the album (released via Epic Records) spawned a record-making five No. 1 singles, including "Bad," "Man in the Mirror," "The Way You Make Me Feel," "Dirty Diana," and "I Just Can't Stop Loving You," and earned the entertainer two entires in the Guinness World Records for largest tour in 1987-1988 and Most Successful Concert Series.
‘Bad’ is now the second Michael Jackson album to reach RIAA-certified diamond status. pic.twitter.com/H3Kypto3A3— Michael Jackson (@michaeljackson) February 16, 2017
Apart from the accolades, it was the music contained with that made this 10-track album stand the test of time. From the contributors to the man behind the mic and the fans, Bad was a win for all. So it came as no surprise that Teddy Riley, producer extraordinaire, revealed some regret for not being a part of MJ's opus. To hear him tell it, Riley was originally courted by Jackson himself to work on the album. However, due to some miscommunication on his former manager's part, things fell apart.
"When Michael called he basically said [that] he wanted me on the Bad album and said to me, 'Who is this guy with the bald head that was your manager. You still work with him? I said, 'Who you talking about?' He said, 'I'm talking about this guy named Gene [Griffin].' I said, 'What about him?' He said, 'Well, we were supposed to have you on the Bad album and he gave us so many conditions that we had to pass. He gave us this condition of that nobody could be in the room at the same time as Teddy or me, I gotta be present at all times or we can't do the project. Everything has to go through me,'" Riley recalled to REVOLT. His conversation with MJ took place as Riley was getting ready to work on the King of Pop's follow-up to Bad, 1991's Dangerous.
"That was the reason why I didn't make it on the Bad album," he continued. "So Quincy had introduced my music and who I am to Michael and Michael basically was like, 'Man if we would've had you on that Bad album, it would've been amazing."
Despite not making the album, Riley did go on to take on a major role as Executive Producer for Dangerous, crafting out a new sound for MJ and creating adding more hits to Jackson's collection: "Do You Remember the Time," "In the Closet," "Jam," and "Dangerous."
Clearly, when one door closes another will open up.
In related MJ news, the Moonwalker's seminal 1982 album Thriller has officially become the highest-certified album in U.S. history having now gone 33x-platinum. A plaque commemorating the milestone was presented to Epic Records chairman L.A. Reid over Grammy weekend.
Additionally, Teddy Riley is also working on releasing his long-anticipated book "Remember the Time," which Riley says will be accompanied by a soundtrack and tour.