Thomas Dolby wrote this song for Michael Jackson. He told Songfacts
: "I wrote it for him because I met with him right about the time that I was doing the video for 'She Blinded Me With Science
' and he was down the hall doing the video for 'Billie Jean
.' He was already a superstar, but this was before Thriller
took off and went multi-platinum and so on.
We became friendly and we talked a lot about grooves and about new techniques, and we both started by hip-hop and things like that. So he told me that, yeah, he was putting new material together, if I had anything to suggest to put his way, then to make him a demo. So, in fact, on the plane back from LA to London I put on my headphones and I came up with this groove and bass line for 'Hyperactive!' and a melody, and I did send it to him. And he said in the end it wasn't appropriate for the new album that he was doing. So that didn't work out. But by that time, I was in love with the song, so I did it myself."