James Ingram, 'It's Your Night' (1983)
One of Thriller's most charismatic singles was "P.Y.T. (Pretty Young Thing)," and it was co-written by a relative unknown named James Ingram. Jones fans knew Ingram from the producer's 1981 solo album The Dude, on which Ingram contributed lead vocals to songs such as the Grammy-nominated "One Hundred Ways." Ingram's vocals were the perfect instrument for Jones: unobtrusive, easygoing and able to communicate emotion simply and directly. As a testament to Ingram's winning humbleness, the singer recounted to the Chicago Tribune what happened when he – who had previously made his living as a jazz keyboardist – first heard from Jones about the possibility of working together: "I hung up on Quincy. I was never no singer. I never shopped a deal, none of that. My wife said, 'James, that was Quincy.' He called back, and we started talking." Following the success of The Dude, Jones signed on to produce Ingram's debut album, It's Your Night. Released in 1983, the record contained "Yah Mo B There," a Grammy-winning duet with Michael McDonald that beautifully showcased Jones' silky R&B side.