Michael Jackson rises to No.1 with “Bad” in 1987

The song earned Jackson another worldwide smash hit

Michael Jackson rises to No.1 with “Bad” in 1987

“Bad”, one of Michael Jackson’s most popular and best selling songs was released as a single in September 1987. The song is one of the many hits Jackson scored from his album “Bad”, 5 years after “Thriller”, Jackson was able to put out an album with the same amount of hit singles although with a different songwriting formula and edgier than the 1982 groundbreaking album. On October 24th, 1987 the song “Bad” reached No.1 on the  Billboard Hot 100, and remained at the top position of the chart for two weeks, becoming the album’s second number one single, and Jackson’s eighth number one entry on the chart. Internationally, the song was also commercially successful, charting within the top five and number one of several countries.  In a 1988 interview with Ebony and Jet magazines, Jackson said that he had gotten the idea for the song from a true story that he had read about in Time or Newsweek magazine. Jackson stated that the story said that a student that went to school in upstate New York, who was “from the ghetto”, had tried to make something of his life and planned to leave all of his friends behind when he returned from Thanksgiving break. He added that the student’s friends’ jealousy resulted in them killing the student; Jackson stated that the student’s death was not included in the music video. However, the only case that fits these details is that of Edmund Perry but Perry was not killed by kids in his neighborhood; he was killed by a plainclothes police officer when Perry and his brother allegedly attacked and badly beat the officer in a mugging attempt.  The full version of the iconic music video for “Bad”, released in August 1987, and broadcast as a CBS prime time special, was directed entirely by Martin Scorsese and co-starred Wesley Snipes in one of his first appearances prior to being discovered as an actor. The video portrays Michael Jackson and various backup dancers shown performing complex choreography in a subway station. “Bad” remains one of Michael Jackson’s and 1980’s most memorable songs.

Watch the full 1987 music video for Michael Jackson’s “Bad”, directed by Martin Scorsese

Watch the edited 1987 music video for “Bad” by Michael Jackson

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