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“L.A.Reid is the one that pulled this off. He had a vision from the beginning."
—--Jackson Estate Manager John Branca

XSCAPE TO #1

How Team Michael Won a Thriller of a Chart Battle

Xscape, Epic’s collection of material from the Michael Jackson archives, has edged out Warner Bros.’ The Black Keys on the HITS Album Sales Chart, in the toughest, tightest battle for #1 in recent memory.

The set was curated by Epic chief L.A. Reid and team from a list of songs chosen by the MJ estate’s John Branca and John McClain. The songs appear both in their original form and with updated production.

“L.A. Reid is the one that pulled this off,” Branca notes. “He had a vision from the beginning, and he put together an incredible team of talented producers to execute his vision.” 

Lead single “Love Never Felt So Good” also appears in a new version featuring guest vocalist Justin Timberlake. The track—which debuted on the 5/1 iHeartRadio Music Awards—was serviced to Top 40, Rhythm and other radio formats earlier this month.

The track has been
the subject of
a Clear Channel On the Verge initiative. A video featuring Timberlake mixed in with footage of the late megastar is just premiered on VEVO.

Label prexy Sylvia Rhone, who oversaw the entire campaign, made the deal for the single’s use in a Jeep “Call of Summer” TV spot with an enormous buy, bowing during the NBA playoffs. The commercial has had a huge impact.

The 5/18 Bible Music Awards featureda much buzzed-out “hologram” performance of another track, “Slave to the Rhythm”; the technological marvel had audiences agape.

The album has been a juggernaut overseas.
Xscape,currently #6 on the U.S. iTunes chart, has thus far hit #1 on the download store in 49 territories. The album has achieved 82 Top 5 iTunes positions, including #2s in the U.K., Germany, Italy, Finland, Portugal, Switzerland, South Africa, India and Israel.

Rumors that Michael’s ghost assisted with 11th-hour piece counts couldn’t be confirmed at presstime.


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