September 27, 2010

Lyrics blog: Keep The Faith

... Continuing a wonderful idea that @doublebeee had ...

Ever since I first listened to the album Keep The Faith stood out for me. Back then I was only starting to learn English so I felt it before fully understanding what was about (it did help it had the lyrics on that beautifully designed sleeve).

Through the years this song has been a source of inspiration and energy for me. It has that gospel sound to it. Undeniably beautiful with powerful vocals it reaches for the depth of ones soul with an amazing effect of lifting it above hardship and trouble.

Bruce Swedien recalls the song took a lot out of Michael while recording it in a 1992 Rolling Stone article (Michael Jackson's "Dangerous" Mind) with trying to find the right key.
"I thought we'd have a major, major problem," I told him, 'Pull yourself together, face this now.' And it was late. I said, 'We're not going home until you've sung this all the way through. Then we'll go home and be able to sleep and continue.' That was scary. But he did it. He pulled himself together. We went in the studio, cut a whole new demo and recorded a scratch vocal all way through. A situation like that could have been a real block. We didn't leave studio till dawn."

I Know That Keepin' The Faith
Means Never Givin' Up On Love
But The Power That Love Has To Make It Right

Glen Ballard said Michael is an "incredible singer". "He'll spend two years making a record, then go out and sing all the lead vocals in a week. He's got such confidence and ability. I've worked with him sitting at a piano and having him sing, and it's just a religious experience - the guy is amazing... he's expressive, has great pitch, does incredible backgrounds. His backgrounds are probably as good as anybody I've ever heard - they're textures unto themselves."

While Teddy Riley is quoted to say  "I really admire the work that went into this track. Anything Michael does, I can admire. It doesn't really remind you of any of his other songs; this one's a bit different to his usual tracks but it stands out. Michael's always innovative. With this track, I just think he went another way due to the structure of the track and the instruments used. Well, that and him working with Glen Ballard with the writing on it – they kind of went head-on with that track."

If You Call Out Loud
Will It Get Inside

"The thing that sometimes seems to get overlooked about 
Michael Jackson is what an absolutely phenomenal singer he was. 
He had one of the greatest gospel shouts of the 20th Century, quite possibly the last of it's kind.
How many times have we found ourselves looking for something to hang onto. Something or someone who will save us and help us pull through? Daily struggles take sometimes the best of us and we forget we have this amazing resource inside of us. 
And You Can Say The Words
Like You Understand
But The Power's In Believing
So Give Yourself
A Chance

I find it hard to express into words the effect this song has on me. 

I Know That Keepin' The Faith
Means Never Givin' Up On Love

There have been many times when I thought about giving up. And sometimes I did. But this song always brought me back to trying. 
I almost never consciously set out to listen to it. But somehow it played when I needed to hear it. 
Lift Up Your Head
And Show The World You Got Pride
Go For What You Want
Don't Let 'Em Get In Your Way
You Can Be A Winner
If You Keep The Faith
Straighten Out Yourself
And Get Your Mind On Track
Dust Off Your Butt
And Get Your Self-Respect Back
You've Known Me Long Enough
To Know That I Don't Play
Take It Like You Want It
But You Got To Keep The Faith
"Keep The Faith" Credits

* Written and composed by Glen Ballard, Siedah Garrett and Michael Jackson
* Produced by Michael Jackson
* Co-produced by Bruce Swedien
* Recorded and mixed by Bruce Swedien
* Solo and background vocals: Michael Jackson
* Arrangement by Glen Ballard, Jerry Hey and Rhett Lawrence
* Choir arrangement by Andrae and Sandra Crouch, featuring the Andrae Crouch Singers
* Background vocals: Siedah Garret and Shanice Wilson
* Piano and bass: Jai Winding
* Drums, percussion and synthesizer: Rhett Lawrence
* Drums and percussion: Bruce Swedien
* Synthesizers: Michael Boddicker
* Guitar: David Williams
Also read:

Bruce Swedien: Recording Michael Jackson


doublebeee said...

You know how much I LOVE this song. It has had and continues to have a major effect on my life!

A real masterpiece and one of the MJ songs closest to my heart!!!

AA said...

I agree with you both. Love, Love, Love, the power of this song. This and "Man in the Mirror." Very inspirational and moving.

mike1909 said...

@doublebeee & @AA I actually wrote it having in mind our conversations about it.

yogadancer7 said...

oh--this is sooooo unbelievable! i just printed these lyrics to use on "a million trees for michael" JUST NOW. and then i thought i'd stop by here and here this is---wow! we really are connected--"...there is no separation...." I LOVE u guys! xo

CJL said...


mike1909 said...

@yogadancer7 :) i truly believe that - that we are connected

@CJL YES!!!!

yogadancer7 said...

yes @mike1909 , @CJL -there is no separation---i really do Love u guys. xo :)

Giselly said...

OMG! I love this song so much! This song have a great meaning to my life! I listened to this song for the first time when I was giving up of my dreams, when all my faith was going away, I saw it by searching for random songs from Michael Jackson on youtube, the title catch my attention, and THIS video on this post was the video that I saw when I listen this song for the first time, my english was very bad! (worse than now LOL)but I understood somethings, I understood the message of the song, it touched my heart (and I cried so much...) then I gave up of give up my dreams! Now I'm fighting hard to reach them! My dreams are work and live with music, and Michael Jackson is my biggest inspiration to it, as he is for many persons ♥ How lovely post! *_* Sorry my bad english, xoxo ♥ God bless you all ;*

ItsAllForLove-Webteam said...

Fully agree- Michael´s message gets through, even if we didn´t understand a word.(Your english is fine, by the way.)

We wish you from our hearts that you will succeed to reach your dreams.

Sending out love and blessings in return to yours.

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