12. "Man in the Mirror"
Jackson's most ambitious, emotional ballad was written toward the end of the Bad sessions by Glen Ballard and Siedah Garrett. "It was the last weekend; we were going to close out the Bad record, and Quincy said, "Don't you guys have anything for us?" Ballard recalled. "We did a quick demo with Siedah singing, and she drove over and played it for Quincy the next day. He loved it, and he played it for Michael on Monday, and he said, 'Make a track.' So we started building this track, and it was magic." Jackson took it from there, asking Garrett to add backing vocals and bringing in San Francisco's Andrae Crouch choir and the Winans to back him. "He said, 'I want you to make it big – do it however you hear it. Just make it sound real gospel. Make it sound like church,' " recalls Sandra Crouch, who was leader Andrae's sister. "And that's what we did." Upon hearing the song, singer Mavis Staples interpreted Jackson's unforgettable made-up entreaty "sch-mon!" as an homage to her performance in the Staple Singers' R&B classic "I'll Take You There," another song with deep gospel roots.