Just Good Friends

“Just Good Friends” is the fifth track on Michael Jackson’s 1987 album ‘Bad’. The song features a rare duet with longtime friend and fellow Motown legend Stevie Wonder (their only other recorded collaborations being “We Are The World” (1985) and ‘Get It’ (1987).

“Just Good Friends” is the only song from the ‘Bad’ album which was not released as a single.

The song was written by Terry Britten and Graham Lyle, the same pair who crafted Tina Turner’s 1984 hit “What’s Love Got To Do With It”. It is one of two songs from the ‘Bad’ album which were not composed by Michael Jackson.

Michael Jackson: “‘Just Good Friends’...is by these two writers who wrote ‘What’s Love Got to Do with It’ for Tina Turner. We needed a duet for me and Stevie Wonder to sing and they had this song; I don’t even think they intended for it to be a duet. They wrote it for me, but I knew it would be perfect for me and Stevie to sing together.” (Source: Moonwalk, p. 203-204).

Assistant Engineer Russ Ragsdale: “We had apparently left the studio door unlocked and a homeless man wandered into the tracking room and looked on in awe...Michael and Stevie were singing together, facing each other. This was the one song on the album that was recorded with the lights on. I remember this like yesterday. The man remained standing against the wall until he was discovered and escorted back outside.” (Source: Man In The Music, p. 121).

Assistant Engineer Russ Ragsdale: “I remember standing next to Stevie Wonder as he laid down the most ripping synth solo I’d ever heard on ‘Just Good Friends’. My jaw just about hit the floor when Stevie said, ‘Bruce [Swedien], can you just burn that one and give me another?” (Source: In The Studio With Michael Jackson, p. 72).


Written and composed by Terry Britten and Graham Lyle

[Stevie]

Na na na - na na na na nah!

[Michael]

Hoo hoo!

Dancin’ - Hee!

Doggone lover!

[Stevie]

C’mon boy


[Michael]

I watched you on the floor

Cheek to cheek

She’s getting to you

You didn’t see - her eyes on me - no

She looked right through you

(Before you make)

Before you make

(A big mistake)

Remember

That looks can fool you babe, hee!


There’s something I would sure appreciate

(If you can keep a secret)


Baby loves me

But she never shows she cares

(No, you won’t see her kiss and hug me)

Baby loves me

No she acts like I’m not there

(That doesn’t mean she doesn’t love me - Ooo)

If they ask her

Tell ’em that we’re just good friends...

Dah! Chicka - chicka - chicka - ah!

Just good friends...

Ah! Chicka - chicka - ah!

Ooo

(Doot - do - do - doo...)

Hee! Aaow!

Just good friends...


[Stevie]

You better take advice

Never trust - first impressions

I tried to hide this affair

From their suspicions


So even if she’s asking you to stay

You better know where you stand

(You better know where you stand)


Baby loves me

Though she never shows she cares

(No, you won’t see her kiss and hug me)

My baby loves me

Though she acts like I’m not there

(That doesn’t mean she doesn’t love me - Ooo)


Now if they ask you

Jus’ tell ’em that we’re just good friends...


Yes...just good friends

(Just good friends...)

Root - do - do - do...

(Doot - do - do - do...)

Just good friends...


[Michael]

Listen up, hee...we’ve got a problem here

[Stevie]

I can see the signs

[Michael]

I guess the lady

(Both)

Is still making up her mind

(Mind)

(Say we’re just good friends)


[Stevie]

Baby loves me

Though she never shows she cares

(Never shows she cares)

No you won’t see her kiss and hug me

(Just good friends)

(My baby loves me)


[Michael]

Though she acts like I’m not there

You doggone lover, hee...

[Stevie]

Aaow!

(Doot - do - do - doo...)


Don’t you wanna know? My baby loves me

Though she never shows she cares

(Never shows she cares)


[Michael]

Hee! Hee!

[Stevie]

She doesn’t kiss and hug me

(Just good friends)


[Michael]

My baby loves me

She loves me, she loves me, Hee! Hee! Hee! Hoo Hoo!

(Doot - do - do - doo)

(Never shows she cares)


© 1987 WB Music Corp. All Rights Reserved. Used by Permission.

CREDITS:

“Just Good Friends” - written and composed by Terry Britten and Graham Lyle.

Vocal duet with by Michael Jackson and Stevie Wonder.

Stevie Wonder: Synthesizer solo.

Ollie E. Brown, Humberto Gatica, Bruce Swedien: Drums.

Cornelius Mims: Drum programming.

Michael Landau: Guitar.

Kim Hutchcroft, Larry Williams: Saxophones.

Gary Grant, Jerry Hey: Trumpets.

Paulinho Da Costa: Percussion.

Christopher Currell: Synclavier.

Michael Boddicker, Rhett Lawrence, Greg Phillinganes, Larry Williams: Synthesizers.

Rhythm, synthesizer and vocal arrangements by Terry Britten, Graham Lyle and Quincy Jones.

Horn arrangement by Jerry Hey.

©1987 WB Music Corp.