Janet Jackson, the ageless wonder, R&B GOAT, pop icon, and stellar actress turns 52 today.
No matter when Ms. Jackson entered your life, as Penny, dancing in Fame, or as the second greatest Jackson in a decorated family tree, she touched all forms of media that have allowed her to thrive through 4 plus decades.
For some, Janet was the blueprint. The quintessential R&B pop act for all women to aspire to, her music DNA can be directly traced to (virtually all relevant acts) Beyonce, Ciara, and the late Aaliyah.
In honor of Ms. Janets bday, The Shadow League is here to countdown our favorite milestone moments that the virtuoso has created of her legendary career.
Millicent “Penny” Gordon Woods from Good Times – 1977 – 1979
Naturally sliding into the family business, one of Janets earlier and noteworthy appearances was as the precocious and sassy child Penny from Good Times.
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Fame – 1984 -1985
The dance-centric 80s show was a hit pre-Janet, but the rising young actress added star power to Debbie Allens signature TV work.
From Fame Season 4 Episode 1 Indian Summer. To download the video and MP3 go to http://kidsfromfamemedia.blogspot.com/ To read the episode review go to http://sites.google.com/site/fametvseriesepisodeguide/ To discuss Fame got to http://www.atfreeforum.com/kidsfromfamemed/ To sign the petition to get Fame on DVD go to http://www.ipetitions.com/petition/FameTVSeriesonDVD/
Nasty Boyz – 1986
Featured on her second album Control, Nasty Boyz signified growth for Janet in many ways. Sonically, this album was powered by Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis, who were kings of the New Jack Swing sound, forced Jackson out of her comfort zone. No longer the girl next door, Janet’s lyrics reflected a grown woman attitude. And the phrase, “Ms. Jackson if you’re nasty” is still said to this day.
Janet Jackson performing Nasty (C) 1986 A&M Records
Rhythm Nation Video – 1989
While current news cycle is pumped full of racism, classism, bigotry, and oppression, back in 1989 the world was a similar space. Rhythm Nation Era Janet donned military garb and adopted a pro-black aesthetic with her dancers, that was only highlighted by her message of self-empowerment and love for her fellow (wo)man.
Best of JanetJackson: https://goo.gl/Q66LLF Subscribe here: https://goo.gl/znZzEg Music video by Janet Jackson performing Rhythm Nation. (C) 1989 A&M Records
If – 1993
This was when we all thought that Janet was part Navajo. One of her sexiest videos and songs in her catalog, “If” still holds up today. And who could forget that intro?
Download the newly remastered edition of the 1993 classic album, janet. including the classic hits “That’s the Way Love Goes”, “If”, “Again”, and many more on iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/janet./id1052459785 Music video by Janet Jackson performing If (C) 1993, 2015 Virgin Records America
Thats the Way Love Goes – 1993
With an early cameo from fly girl era Jennifer Lopez, That’s The Way Love Goes, still holds up and is a hallmark for sensual RnB playlists.
Download the newly remastered edition of the 1993 classic album, janet. including the classic hits “That’s the Way Love Goes”, “If”, “Again”, and many more on iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/janet./id1052459785 Music video by Janet Jackson performing That’s the Way Love Goes (C) 1993 Virgin Records America
Poetic Justice – 1993
Arguably her best performance as an adult, her chemistry with the late Tupac was palpable on screen. This was the birth of the “Poetic Justice braids” that we still refer to today.
Poetic Justice is a 1993 drama/romance film starring Janet Jackson and Tupac Shakur with Regina King and Joe Torry. It was written and directed by John Singleton.
I Get So Lonely – 1997
Velvet Rope era Janet leaned in more to her exploring her sexuality and produced some of her more signature work. While the Q-tip assisted “Don’t Know What You Got” still holds up, “I Get So Lonely” is a bonafide classic with a Blackstreet remix that still slaps to this day.
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Scream ft Michael Jackson – 1995
It was the duet we were all waiting for, as the prized pupils of the Jackson clan (sorry Jermaine) came together for a duet for all ages. The futuristic, recording breaking, uber expensive video directed by Marc Romanek, will always remind us that more years of success were in the future for both Janet and her late brother Michael.
Music video by Michael Jackson performing Scream. 1995 MJJ Productions Inc.