Epic Records and Michael Jackson’s estate announced Monday that a new album, “Xscape,” by the late singer, featuring eight new songs including its title track, is set to release on May 13.
According to Epic Records’ website, L.A. Reid, who is the executive producer of the album, was granted “unlimited access to the treasures spanning four decades of material on which Jackson had completed his vocals.” Reid then teamed up with top producers to “contemporize” the songs “while retaining Jackson’s essence and integrity.” The list of producers includes Timbaland, Rodney Jerkins, Stargate and John McClain.
"Michael left behind some musical performances that we take great pride in presenting through the vision of music producers that he either worked directly with or expressed strong desire to work with," Reid, chairman and CEO of Epic Records, reportedly said in a statement.
"Xscape" continues the tradition of naming Jackson's albums after one of its songs. The title track was co-written and co-produced by Jackson and Jerkins. According to reports, in August 2013, Timbaland revealed he was working on a Jackson song, apparently titled "Chicago." He then released a snippet of another Jackson song, named, "Slave to the Rhythm," in March 2014.
Jackson died in 2009 in Los Angeles, aged 50, from an overdose of propofol, a powerful anesthetic, given to him by his personal physician. He was rehearsing for a series of 50 come-back concerts in London at the time.
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John Branca and John McClain, co-executors of the Estate of Michael Jackson, said in support of the new album: “Michael was always on the cutting edge and was constantly reaching out to new producers, looking for new sounds. He was always relevant and current. These tracks, in many ways, capture that spirit. We thank L.A. Reid for his vision.”