When pop singer Michael Jackson died, many people the world over grieved the loss of such a talented individual. As some may know, there was some music that was never released. Until recently, that is, when Sony Music Entertainment released the 2010 album entitled “Michael.”
But while a number of fans rejoiced in the chance to hear their favorite singer one more time, some questioned the authenticity of the album. More to the point, some questioned whether the lead vocals on a few of the tracks were actually that of MJ himself. The debate over who actually performed the tracks has now turned into a potential class-action lawsuit that could leave the album’s producers liable for damages.
The heart of the legal issue, as we said above, revolves around a series of tracks on the 2010 album. Although Sony has insisted that the voice on the tracks is in fact Jackson, several people have come forward to disagree with this claim and assert that he did not perform the tracks. The doubt led to an analysis of the tracks to which an audio expert concluded that it was unlikely that Jackson sang the lead vocals on the tracks in question. Another audio expert agreed with this assertion upon review of the findings.
So what happens if it turns out that Jackson did not in fact perform on the tracks as advertised? It’s possible then that some of the defendants could be held liable for misrepresenting the content on the album. And if the lawsuit gains class action status, then fans who purchased the album or the songs may be entitled to restitution depending on how a judge decides in the case later on.
Source: Courthouse News Service, “Posthumous Michael Jackson Album Is a Fraud, Fan Says,” Matt Reynolds, June 18, 2014