Today In MJJ HIStory
1969 – Following day for recording Session: Who’s Lovin’ You.
The most famous cover of “Who’s Lovin’ You”, and the one most future covers were based upon, was recorded on 1969 by The Jackson 5. Michael Jackson was the lead singer on this recording, with his brothers Marlon, Tito, Jermaine, and Jackie on background vocals; Bobby Taylor of The Vancouvers served as producer. The Jackson 5 version of “Who’s Lovin’ You” was one of a number of early recordings the group made at the Hitsville U.S.A. recording studio in Detroit, Michigan, with the Funk Brothers on instrumentation. Just after recording this song, Berry Gordy moved the entire Jackson family to Los Angeles, California to record the hit pop songs he would co-write for the group with The Corporation.
The song was issued as the b-side to The Jackson 5’s first single, “I Want You Back”, with a full version included on the first Jackson 5 LP, Diana Ross Presents the Jackson 5. The single went to #1 on both the pop and R&B charts. An alternate take featuring fewer backing vocals was released on Michael’s Love Songs compilation release in 2002.
1971 – Jackson 5ive in Concert, Toledo (Ohio)
1972 – Jackson 5ive in Concert, Tulsa (Oklahoma)
1973 – Jackson 5ive in Concert, Long Pond (Pennsylvania)
1974 – Jackson 5ive in Concert, Richmond (Virginia)
1984 – The Jacksons perform Victory Tour in Concerts in Jacksonville (Florida) by Gator Bowl, attending 45,000.
The show has a simple story line, based on the tale of the sword in the stone. Huge creatures called Kreetons appear on the stage. They’re followed by several warriors who attempt to pull a sword from a stone. One warrior, Randy Jackson, does just that. He slays a Kreeton and thereby paves the way for the kingdom of the Jacksons.
Moments later, Randy, Michael, Tito, Marlon and Jermaine appear majestically on stage, pump the entrance for all its worth, and delight the fans. Fantasyland? You bet.
The Jacksons’ show, written and designed by Michael, is part Walt Disney World and part Music Television.
It’s an escapist pop show for those in love with fantasy; entertainment for those who hanker for movies like Star Wars, E.T. and Peter Pan; a musical for those who enjoy exquisite dancing and singing.
Surely the Jacksons have realized that a larget percentage of their fans are of the MTV generation, roughly ages 10 to 30. Such audiences understand video-styled theatrics in live shows, and crave the heightened pleasure that stems from sensastional effects created with lasers, lights, and booming sound. This is the same age group that made Star Wars such a hit.
And the Jacksons play to this audience. Even so, the Jacksons have made an unprecedented move with their stage production, and this isn’t lost on the fans.
2001 – Michael Jackson’s Speechless is released.
Michael Jackson wrote “Speechless” after a water balloon fight with children in Germany. In an interview with Vibe magazine, the musician commented, “I was so happy after the fight that I ran upstairs in their house and wrote ‘Speechless’. Fun inspires me. I hate to say that, because it’s such a romantic song.” He added, “But it was the fight that did it. I was happy, and I wrote it in its entirety right there. I felt it would be good enough for the album. Out of the bliss comes magic, wonderment, and creativity.”
“Speechless” was one of only two song from Invincible to be written solely by Jackson.
Vaughn Watson of The Providence Journal hailed “Speechless” as Invincible’s “best song, and one of Jackson’s finest of any album”. He added that with the song, the musician acknowledged the pain that accompanies isolation.
2003 – Michael Jackson said that he believed that the U.S. Congress should make no laws that would put people in jail for illegally downloading songs over the Internet.
I am speechless about the idea of putting music fans in jail for downloading music. It is wrong to illegally download, but the answer cannot be jail. Here in America we create new opportunities out of adversity, not punitive laws, and we should look to new technologies like Apple’s new Music Store for solutions. This way, innovation continues to be the hallmark of America. It is the fans that drive the success of the music business.
~ Press statement (21 July 2003), quoted in “Jackson attacks music piracy bill” in BBC News (22 July 2003)