Monday, September 13, 2010

Michael Monday: I Wanna Be Where You Are

When Corey wrote the other day about "Maria (You Were the Only One)," the B-side of Michael's first solo single, a reader asked about picture sleeves for Michael's solo 45s. There was only one picture sleeve issued in the U.S. for a Michael solo on Motown, and that was for "I Wanna Be Where You Are," the third single pulled from his debut solo LP.

The sleeve uses the same photograph of Michael that appeared on the LP, so it wasn't terribly creative or exciting, but it was better than nothing, which is what we usually got with our American 45s.

Kids in other fared better when it came to picture sleeves. Germany could always be counted on for a nice picture sleeve... could Italy.

The Italian sleeve had the added bonus of using a rare photo of Michael which was seldom seen in 1972.

And when it came to dependability and consistency for exciting and beautiful packaging, no one topped the Japanese...

...although this photo paired with the song title does make Michael look a little bit like a stalker.

The Japanese could always be depended on, too, for including a lyric sheet. And in the case of "I Wanna Be Where You Are," the lyrics were correctly translated, except for the second verse.

But considering Motown's stinginess with picture sleeves here in the U.S., maybe the Japanese translation comes closer to the truth: Motown, you are "making to disturb us" when you show us you can make picture sleeves, but choose not to.


  1. Very fun & funny post! It was great when this came out 'coz I was really gettin' sick of Rockin' Robin. I do love that sleeve even tho it was also the LP cover, coz I never got the album. Wasn't this the photo that had to be airbrushed because he didn't have all his (left side) teeth? I seem to remember that same pic around somewhere pre-changes.

  2. Addendum:
    Just watched Hellzapoppin'sSugar Daddy and from 1:35 - 1:45 Michael's missing tooth is visable. Maybe they shot thhe cover around then? Detective JCC?

    -By the way, that and one other Hellzapoppin clip have well over 2 million hits each, so it's popular, but I've never seen another upload of the show. It's a bit blurry and wonder if ANYBODY's got a crystal-clear version.

  3. you're tooo funny J5C

  4. D'oh. I see the blog has done a post on this very subject: J5 Fashion Friday: Wardrobe malfunction. So if anybody else wonders this, search out this July 2 2010 post.