Janet Jackson Unisex T-Shirt
Finally, a way to show your respect for some of the greatest icons, legends and pioneers that paved the way past and present. Rock this gear in style and bring back the moments that made you, memories they gave you and/or lessons they taught you. Scroll down for a history lesson with some of our favorite clips.
Welcome to the Respect Due family Janet Jackson! We salute you.
- 4.2 oz., 100% airlume combed and ringspun cotton
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Janet Jackson – When I Think Of You
Janet Damita Jo Jackson (born May 16, 1966) is an American singer, songwriter, actress, and dancer. A prominent figure in popular culture, she is known for sonically innovative, socially conscious and sexually provocative records, and elaborate stage shows.
The tenth and youngest child of the Jackson family, she began her career with the variety television series The Jacksons in 1976 and went on to appear in other television shows throughout the 1970s and early 1980s, including Good Times, Diff’rent Strokes, and Fame. After signing a recording contract with A&M Records in 1982, she became a pop icon following the release of her third and fourth studio albums Control (1986) and Rhythm Nation 1814 (1989). Her collaborations with record producers Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis incorporated elements of rhythm and blues, funk, disco, rap and industrial beats, which led to crossover success in popular music.
In 1991, Jackson signed the first of two record-breaking multimillion-dollar contracts with Virgin Records, establishing her as one of the highest-paid artists in the industry. Her fifth album Janet (1993) saw her develop a public image as a sex symbol as she began to explore sexuality in her music. That same year, she appeared in her first starring film role in Poetic Justice, and has since continued to act in feature films. Jackson then released her sixth studio album The Velvet Rope (1997), which is distinguished for its innovative production and dark lyrical content. By the end of the 1990s, she was named by Billboard magazine as the second most successful recording artist of the decade after Mariah Carey. Her seventh album All for You (2001) coincided with a celebration of her impact on the recording industry as the inaugural MTV Icon. After parting ways with Virgin Records, she released her tenth album Discipline (2008), her first and only album with Island Records. In 2015, she partnered with BMG Rights Management to launch her own record label, Rhythm Nation, and released her eleventh album Unbreakable the same year.
Having sold over 100 million records, Jackson is one of the world’s best-selling music artists of all time. She has amassed an extensive catalog, with singles such as “Nasty“, “Rhythm Nation“, “That’s the Way Love Goes“, “Together Again” and “All for You“; she holds the record for the most consecutive top-ten entries on the US Billboard Hot 100 singles chart by a female artist with 18. In 2008, Billboard placed her number seven on its list of the Hot 100 All-Time Top Artists, and in 2010 ranked her fifth among the “Top 50 R&B/Hip-Hop Artists of the Past 25 Years”. In December 2016, the magazine named her the second most successful dance club artist of all-time after Madonna. She has been cited as an inspiration among numerous performers. Jackson was inducted to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2019.
Janet Jackson – Driven
1966–1985: Early life and career beginnings
Janet Jackson was born on May 16, 1966 in Gary, Indiana, the youngest of ten children, to Katherine Esther (née Scruse) and Joseph Walter Jackson. The Jacksons were lower-middle class and devout Jehovah’s Witnesses, although Jackson would later refrain from organized religion. At a young age, her brothers began performing as the Jackson 5 in the Chicago-Gary area.
In March 1969, the group signed a record deal with Motown, and soon had their first number-one hit. The family then moved to the Encino neighborhood of Los Angeles. Jackson had initially desired to become a horse racing jockey or entertainment lawyer, with plans to support herself through acting. Despite this, she was anticipated to pursue a career in entertainment and considered the idea after recording herself in the studio.
At age seven, Jackson performed at the MGM Casino on the Las Vegas Strip. A biography revealed her father, Joseph Jackson, was emotionally withdrawn and told her to address him solely by his first name as a child. She began acting in the variety show The Jacksons in 1976.
In 1977, she was selected to have a starring role as Penny Gordon Woods in the sitcom Good Times. She later starred in A New Kind of Family and later got a recurring role on Diff’rent Strokes, portraying Charlene Duprey from seasons three to six. Jackson also played the role of Cleo Hewitt during the fourth season of Fame, but expressed indifference towards the series, largely due to the emotional stress of her secret marriage to R&B singer, James DeBarge. Jackson later elaborated on her time on the show in an interview with Anderson Cooper, revealing that the cast would occasionally play pranks on her, but she spoke fondly of them.
When Jackson was sixteen, her father and manager Joseph Jackson, arranged a contract for her with A&M Records. Her debut album, Janet Jackson, was released in 1982. It was produced by Angela Winbush, René Moore, Bobby Watson of Rufus and Leon Sylvers III, and overseen by her father Joseph. It peaked at No. 63 on the Billboard 200, and No. 6 on the publication’s R&B albums chart, receiving little promotion. The album appeared on the Billboard Top Black Albums of 1983, while Jackson herself was the highest-ranking female vocalist on the Billboard Year-End Black Album Artists.
Jackson’s second album, Dream Street, was released two years later. Dream Street reached No. 147 on the Billboard 200, and No. 19 on the R&B albums chart. The lead single “Don’t Stand Another Chance” peaked at No. 9 on Billboard‘s R&B singles chart. Both albums consisted primarily of bubblegum pop music.
After her second album, Jackson terminated business affairs with her family, commenting “I just wanted to get out of the house, get out from under my father, which was one of the most difficult things that I had to do.” Attempting a third album, Jackson teamed with producers Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis. They set out to achieve crossover pop appeal, while also creating a strong foundation within the urban market. Within six weeks, Jackson and the duo crafted her third studio album, Control, released in February 1986. The album shot to No. 1 on the Billboard 200, and was certified fivefold platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA), selling over ten million copies worldwide.
Control was declared “remarkably nervy and mature” for a teenage act, also considered “an alternative to the sentimental balladry” which permeated radio, likening Jackson to Donna Summer‘s position of “unwilling to accept novelty status and taking her own steps to rise above it.” The album spawned five top five singles, “What Have You Done for Me Lately“, “Nasty“, “When I Think of You“, “Control“, and “Let’s Wait Awhile“, and a top 15 hit with “The Pleasure Principle“. “When I Think of You” became her first No. 1 hit on the Hot 100. Control received six Billboard Awards, including “Top Pop Singles Artist”, and three Grammy nominations, most notably “Album of the Year“. It also won four American Music Awards from twelve nominations, an unbroken record.
At this point, Jackson was successfully “shaking off the experience of being a shadow Jackson child”, becoming “an artist in her own right”. The album’s lyrical content included several themes of empowerment, inspired by an incident of sexual harassment, with Jackson recalling “the danger hit home when a couple of guys started stalking me on the street and instead of running to Jimmy or Terry for protection, I took a stand. I backed them down. That’s how songs like ‘Nasty’ and ‘What Have You Done for Me Lately’ were born, out of a sense of self-defense.”
Its innovative fusion of dance-pop and industrial music with hip-hop and R&B undertones influenced the development of the new jack swing genre by bridging the gap between the latter two styles. The accompanying music videos shot for the album’s singles became popular on MTV, and obtained a then-unknown Paula Abdul a recording contract for her choreography work with Jackson. Billboard stated “[Jackson’s] accessible sound and spectacularly choreographed videos were irresistible to MTV, and helped the channel evolve from rock programming to a broader, beat-driven musical mix.”
Janet Jackson – When I Think Of You
Janet Jackson – The Pleasure Principle (Official Music Video)
Janet Jackson – Miss You Much (Official Music Video)
Janet Jackson – Rhythm Nation (Official Music Video)
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