The importance of Michael Jackson's Off the Wall cannot be overstated. Recorded when he was just 20 years old, the album heralded Michael's stunning emancipation as a singular musical force and creative visionary. It smashed the ceiling on record sales for black artists, ushering in an exciting new era of R&B-to-pop crossover airplay, chart, marketing and sales trends not seen before in modern pop music. It's the record that "invented modern pop as we know it," wrote Rolling Stone. For fellow black artists of the day, Michael served as an illuminating inspiration.
To Black America, Off The Wall transcended music and entertainment altogether. The success of the album marked a level of national and international achievement that conjured pride in a culture that as late as the end of the 1970s was still fighting for the kind of social acceptance that Michael's album received. Because of Off the Wall's indelible influence, 21st century artists as disparate as Beyonce, Pharrell, Kendrick Lamar and The Weeknd all have a blueprint they turned to for creating their superstardom.
The first single from Off The Wall, "Don't Stop 'Til You Get Enough," was Michael's first Grammy and first single to hit #1 in the U.S. and internationally as a solo artist. With the singles "Rock With You," "Off the Wall" and "She's Out of My Life" Jackson became the first solo artist in history to have four singles from the same album peak inside the top 10 of the Billboard Hot 100. The album was an enormous commercial success; as of 2014 it is certified eight times platinum in the U.S. and has sold more than 30 million copies worldwide, making it one of the best-selling albums of all time.
1. Don't Stop 'Til You Get Enough
2. Rock With You
3. Workin' Day and Night
4. Get on the Floor
5. Off The Wall
7. She's out of My Life
8. I Can't Help It
9. It's the Falling in Love
10. Burn This Disco Out