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Michael Jackson's 'Hold My Hand' single debuts

Now this is more like it.

After the underwhelming unveiling of “Breaking News,” the first song from the upcoming posthumous Michael Jackson album “Michael,” people started wondering about the quality of the material that the King of Pop had left behind in the vaults.

Monday’s release of “Hold My Hand” should help put those fears to rest. The duet with Akon finds Jackson in fine voice and in true inspirational form for the uplifting midtempo R&B ballad.

The eerie feeling of the opening – where Jackson sings, “This life don’t last forever, so tell me what we’re waiting for” – quickly fades in the warmth of his delivery and the sweet simplicity of the chorus. By the end, he’s reaching for “Man in the Mirror” heights and coming close.

Like the documentary “This Is It,” “Hold My Hand” shows that Jackson really was on the edge of a comeback, which makes his untimely death last year that much more tragic. Oddly, the consoling tone of “Hold My Hand” should help with the grieving.

Hear "Hold My Hand" here

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