The Jacksons

The Jacksons

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Have you ever wondered what it would be like to be in the music business, from birth? This is the life of the Jackson family. The Family consists of nine children, Joe, and Katherine.
Father, Joeseph Jackson was born in Arkansas in 1929 and raised in Tennessee. His own father, a Lutheran, was a stern schoolteacher, and had strict discipline. Joseph was a teenager when his parents divorced. Katherine Jackson was her husband's complete opposite in temperament. Katherine was born in 1930 and grew up in Alabama. A very loving parent, she played the clarinet and piano, and she influenced her children with her own love of music.
As a very young child, Katherine had been stricken with polio, a disease that killed many children and left many others severely handicapped. Yet she survived, she had to use a crutch until she was a teenager. Joseph met Katherine at a party. She fell in love with him at first sight, but Joseph's feelings for her took longer to develop. He had already been married and divorced before he married Katherine in 1949, when she was 18 and he was 21. The newlyweds settled in Gary, Indiana, a town just outside of Chicago. In 1950 Katherine gave birth to their first child, a girl whom they named Maureen (Rebbie). The following year, Sigmund Esco (Jackie) was born. Two years later, another boy, Tariano (Tito) arrived. In 1954 the Jacksons had a third son named Jermaine. LaToya, their second daughter, was born in 1956, and was followed by 3 brothers: Marlon in 1957, Michael in 1958, and Randall (Randy) in 1961. And on May 16, 1966, Janet Dameta was born. Katherine recalls " Janet was the most beautiful baby in the hospital."
When the children began to play dad's guitar and mom's piano, they soon let the oldest 5 enter talent competitions. The talent shows they entered were all competitive and they soon began winning! Michael sang lead, Tito on guitar, Jermaine on Bass, and others sang and dance. They were learning stage crafts from James Brown, The Chi-Lites, Temptations, Gladys Knight, and the Pips.

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In 1968 the group auditioned for Berry Gordy of Motown Records, who promptly signed the Jackson 5 to his pioneering label. Thanks to the precious talent of ten year old Michael, the group quickly won the hearts of America. Scoring number 1. Hits 1969-1970. Jackson Five was also featured in a TV cartoon series and were commended by congress for their contributions to American Youth, altogether a remarkable bundle of talent. The Jackson Five had 16 top 40 singles altogether with Motown between 1969 and 1975. Within a year however, their novelty was wearing off, though they still reached the top 10 with "Mama's Pearl", and "Never Can Say Goodbye". Still with upstart acts like The Osmonds and The Partridge Family, reducing the singing family shtick to cliché, Michael and Jermaine left the group to create solo careers.
Michael and his solo career was outrageous. On the night of May 16, 1983 almost 50 million people watched one of the most spectacular performances ever seen on television. If Michael would have been in charge, this never would have happened.

He was grateful to Motown for giving his family its start in show business but that was in the past. It took a personal visit from Gordy to persuade Michael to change his mine.The occasion was the special "Motown 25", a television tribute to Motown records, 25 years of producing hit records by black entertainers. Michael had developed his own dancing style. Michael had picked up a break-dance step from watching kids dancing on the street corners. Michael had planned to do the moonwalk for the first time at the "Motown 25". Michael's performance was so incredible Rolling Stone called it "The most electrifying five minutes of the evening!"
The next day one of Michael's heroes, dancer, FredAstaire called him. Astaire told Michael that he was one hell of a mover. This really made Michael so honored. Katherine claimed that as a baby Michael always had coordination and danced like an older person, unlike average babies.

Michael's favorite childhood memory of his dad was when Joe would bring home big bags of glazed doughnuts. According to Katherine, the children never got into serious trouble and rarely needed to be disciplined. The closet where Joe kept his electric guitar was practically sacred and was off limits to the kids. Tito once stole his father's prized guitar and got caught. Joe asked Tito to show him what he could play. In 1964 most six year old American kids were In 1st grade and spent most of their time participating in other childhood activities. Michael however little resembled average kids his age. Janet, Marlon, Tito, Rebbie, Jermaine, Michael, LaToya, Randy, and Jackie were all very talented people who all had success and lives. Childhood fame in the music business really did make a big impact on their lives and their future lives to come. Although Joe and Katherine raised a healthy environment they all could have had a better childhood. Now the next generation of Jackson's lives on in the 20th century.

1. Campbell, Lisa. Michael Jackson: The King of Pop. Boston: Branden Books, 1993. This book was a complete biography of Michael with little information about the other Jacksons

2. Grant, Adrian. Michael Jackson. London: Omnibus, 2001.
This book was a fulfilling book with information about the
whole family.

3.Graves, Karen. Michael Jackson. San Diego: Lucent Books, 2001.
This book told a lot of detail including plastic surgery.

4. Harper, Thomas. Penguin Encyclopedia of Rock. New York:
Penguin Books, 1994. This book told a lot about all of the family
Members and their lives.

5. Johnson, Donald. Penguin Encyclopedia of Popular Music.
London: Penguin Books, 1998. This book gave a lot of
Information and dates.

6. Locoer, Gabriel. The Jackson Five. Atlanta: Talson Books, 1994.
This book told a lot about the group and practicing as young.

7. Porter, Joseph. The Jackson Five: Children at Their Best. New
York: Branden Books, 1990. This book told about a lot of their

8. Raphael, Taylor. Janet Jackson. Boston: AGC Publishing, 1992.
This book had a lot of helpful quotes from Janet.

9. Walters, Harold. Janet Jackson: A Legend In the Making. New
York: Tasking Publishers, 1989. This book was far back into her
Life yet told a lot about her.

10. Internet. This website had
plenty of useful facts I used about the whole family.
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