State of Shock (song)

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"State of Shock"
Single by The Jacksons featuring Mick Jagger
from the album Victory
B-side"Your Ways"
ReleasedJune 18, 1984 (1984-06-18)[1]
GenreFunk rock, blues rock, dance-rock
4:05 (7")
Producer(s)Michael Jackson
The Jacksons singles chronology
"Walk Right Now"
"State of Shock"
Mick Jagger singles chronology
"Memo from Turner"
"State of Shock"
"Just Another Night"

"State of Shock" is a 1984 single by the Jacksons featuring frontman Michael Jackson and Mick Jagger. It was written by Jackson and guitarist Randy Hansen. The track was originally sung with Freddie Mercury as a duet with Jackson,[2] and was later slated for the Thriller album; however, due to differing time schedules, Jackson ended up recording it with his brothers and Jagger. A clip of the song (an instrumental part) was used on the Immortal album in 2011.

Song information[edit]

"State of Shock" was the biggest hit from the Jacksons' Victory album, reaching number 3 on the US Billboard Hot 100 and number 14 on the UK Singles Chart.[3][4] The song was originally recorded with Freddie Mercury, as Jackson and Mercury had been working on several tracks at that time (1981–1983), e.g. the unreleased title track "Victory" for the eponymous album and "There Must Be More to Life Than This" from Mr. Bad Guy. The final version featured lead vocals by Michael Jackson and Mick Jagger. In 2002, a demo of Mercury and Jackson singing "State of Shock" was leaked online. In his book Michael Jackson: Unauthorized, author Christopher P. Andersen described "State of Shock" as a hard rock song and commented on Mick Jagger, saying, "The lead singer of the Rolling Stones eyed the phenomenal success of Thriller with envy. As an artist he respected Jackson's work, adding that Arthur Collins, then president of Rolling Stones Records said, "Mick became obsessed with Michael Jackson" and explained it saying, "He wanted to know every detail about Jackson's life, his contract with Columbia, how the Thriller singles were selling,...".[3] "State of Shock" was the last top ten hit for the Jacksons, as well as their last single to be certified gold. The song was later revived by Jagger when he performed it with Tina Turner during their 1985 performance at Live Aid. In 2014, William Orbit remixed the Mercury/Jackson track. It was intended for Queen Forever, but was unreleased.


An Extended Dance Mix (5:41) is available as a digitally remastered release.


  • Music written, composed, arranged, produced, linn drum machine programming and handclaps by Michael Jackson
  • Lyrics by Michael Jackson and Randy Hansen
  • Lead vocals by Michael Jackson and Mick Jagger
  • Background vocals by Jackie Jackson, Marlon Jackson, Michael Jackson and Johnny Ray Nelson
  • David Williams: Guitars, bass guitar
  • Paulinho Da Costa: Percussion


Chart (1984) Peak
U.K. Singles Chart 14
U.S. Billboard Hot 100 3
U.S. Billboard Hot Dance/Disco Top 80[5] 3
U.S. Billboard Black Singles[6] 4
Year-end chart (1984) Rank
US Top Pop Singles (Billboard)[7] 61


"Weird Al" Yankovic used the song multiple times. It was featured in "Hooked on Polkas" on his Dare to be Stupid album. Also, "State of Shock"'s style was used for the song "UHF".[citation needed] The song is also performed, with comically cheap special effects, in the mockumentary The Compleat Al by industry veteran Harvey Leeds.

Later Versions[edit]

Insane Clown Posse recorded the song as a tribute to Michael Jackson on their album Covered, Smothered, & Chunked, which is in the "Red Pop" version of The Mighty Death Pop![8] In 2012, Kelly Clarkson and Robin Thicke performed the song on the show Duets.[9]


  1. ^ Lecocq, Richard; Allard, François (2018). "Bad". Michael Jackson All the Songs: The Story Behind Every Track. London, England: Cassell. ISBN 9781788400572.
  2. ^ McAlpine, Fraser. "The Story Of Those Freddie Mercury And Michael Jackson Demos". BBC America. Retrieved 2019-11-24.
  3. ^ a b Andersen, Christopher P. (1994). Michael Jackson: unauthorized. Simon & Schuster. p. 155. ISBN 0-671-89239-8. Retrieved April 24, 2010. The most memorable cut on the Victory album — and its only top five single — was "State of Shock," Michael's hard rock duet with Mick Jagger. ... "Mick became obsessed with Michael Jackson," said Arthur Collins, then president of Rolling Stones Records.
  4. ^ Rees, Dafydd; Crampton, Luke (1991). Rock movers & shakers, Volume 1991, Part 2. ABC-CLIO. p. 261. ISBN 0-87436-661-5. Retrieved April 24, 2010. Jackson duets with Freddy Mercury on the album's lead-off single State Of Shock (US #3 and UK #14).
  5. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2004). Hot Dance/Disco: 1974-2003. Record Research. p. 132.
  6. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2004). Top R&B/Hip-Hop Singles: 1942-2004. Record Research. p. 287.
  7. ^ "Talent Almanac 1985: Top Pop Singles". Billboard. Vol. 96 no. 51. December 22, 1984. p. TA-19.
  8. ^ Psychopathic Records (20 April 2012). "Insane Clown Posse - The Mighty Death Pop - Infomercial" – via YouTube.
  9. ^ "'Duets' Week 2 performance rounds: Live blog". 31 May 2012.