Ben is a wonderful album by the great Michael Jackson. I have always liked Michael's work when he was young; and this CD certainly has much for his fans and even newcomers to enjoy here. We also hear great backup on Michael's songs performed by other members of Michael's family. The quality of the sound is excellent and the artwork is very well done.
"Ben," the title track, starts off the album with Michael Jackson singing so passionately; he truly displays a talent far beyond his years. His phrasing and his excellent diction enhance his performance all the more; and the rest of the Jacksons also do a sublime job--great! The melody is poignant even all by itself and "Ben" is a total masterpiece by Michael and the others. "The Greatest Show on Earth" has an incredible melody and Michael Jackson's squarely front and center, which is quite all right by me! Michael sings this with panache and I love every minute of it. "The Greatest Show on Earth" also benefits from that awesome musical arrangement; the percussion is well used as are the other instruments.
"People Make the World Go Around" is another emotional song that gets the royal treatment from Michael and the rest; this is another highlight of this album and that's grand. Michael handles complex tempo and key changes like the pro he was and always will be--just one listen proves it! In addition, there's another gem in "We've Got a Good Thing Going;" Michael sings this with all his heart ands soul. He never lets go of a superfluous note and I'm very impressed with the way they all do this number. "Everybody's Somebody's Fool" shines brighter than silver and gold when Michael delivers it even if the lyrics aren't all that happy; and the rest of Michael's family harmonize to perfection--and beyond! Perfect!
There's an excellent cover of "My Girl;" they perform this faultlessly and it's a huge highlight for these fine artists--Michael included, of course. "My Girl" has a strong musical arrangement that displays a lot of creativity and I really like their rendition of "My Girl." "What Goes Around Comes Around" is both cute and moving; Michael performs this flawlessly and you can tell he really delves deep into the lyrics of the ballad in order to make it as emotional and moving as possible--what an artist Michael was!
"In Our Small Way" is equally special; this is another sweet song that features Michael in the spotlight and I could never tire of hearing Michael and the others deliver "In Our Small Way." For a faster tempo, all you have to do is advance one track and listen to "Shoo-Be-Doo-Be-Doo-Da-Day" by Stevie Wonder. "Shoo-Be-Doo-Be-Doo-Da-Day" is really well done and it has that Jackson flavor to it that always makes me smile. The CD then ends very nicely with Michael Jackson performing "You Can Cry on My Shoulder." Awesome!
Michael Jackson will never be forgotten; he clearly lives on forever through his music. I highly recommend this for his fans and newcomers just getting into Jackson's music will appreciate this album, too.