The Jackson 5 are an American popular music family group from Gary, Indiana. Formed in 1964 under the name the Jackson Brothers, the founding members were Jackie, Tito and Jermaine. Marlon and Michael would later join, and the band's name would be changed to The Jackson 5. After participating in talent shows and the chitlin' circuit, they entered the professional music scene in 1967 as The Jackson Five, signing with Steeltown Records and releasing two singles. In 1969, they left Steeltown Records in order to sign with Motown. They were among the first groups of black American performers to attain a crossover following. ... N'joy
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The Jackson 5 were one of the biggest phenomenons in pop music during the early '70s, and the last great group to come out of the Motown hitmaking machine before Marvin Gaye and Stevie Wonder shifted the label's focus to more individual visions. The Jackson 5's infectious brand of funky pop-soul was a definite departure from the typically smooth, elegant Motown sound, as befitting the group's youth and the dawn of a new decade. That youth, coupled with the merchandising juggernaut that sprang up behind them, inevitably got them tagged a bubblegum group. But they were far more talented musically than that label would suggest, especially lead singer Michael, and their material, while sunny and upbeat, didn't pander to its audience. Solo careers and overexposure gradually weakened The Jackson 5, but their best music still holds up surprisingly well as some of the most vibrant mainstream pop/R&B of its era.
Originally, The Jackson 5 were composed of brothers Jackie (born Sigmund Jackson, May 4, 1951), Tito (guitar, born Toriano Jackson, October 15, 1953), Jermaine (bass, lead vocals, born December 11, 1954), Marlon (born March 12, 1957), and Michael (lead vocals, born August 29, 1958). By all accounts, the Jackson family's upbringing in Gary, IN, was strict; their mother Katherine was a devout Jehovah's Witness, and their father Joe was a stern, temperamental disciplinarian. Allowed few outside interests, the boys gravitated to music, which was in their blood -- prior to his job as a crane operator for a steel company, Joe had played guitar in an R&B group called the Falcons (not the same group that launched Wilson Pickett's career). One night, Joe discovered that Jackie, Tito, and Jermaine had been playing his treasured old guitar without permission; though initially furious, he quickly discovered that his sons had genuine talent, and began to conceive of a family singing group that might eventually get them out of their tough working-class life in Gary. The eldest three sons began performing around the area together in 1962, teamed with two cousins (Johnny Jackson and Ronnie Rancifer), who were replaced by Marlon and five-year-old Michael. Supervised by Joe, who became their manager and began working only part-time, the group practiced and rehearsed often, and improved as dancers, singers, and instrumentalists at a rapid rate. In particular, Michael proved himself a dynamic performer, soon replacing Jermaine as the featured lead vocalist, and establishing himself as a nimble dancer able to mimic talents like James Brown. At first, the group was known as Ripples & Waves Plus Michael, then the Jackson Brothers, and finally The Jackson 5.
In 1966, The Jackson 5 won an important local talent competition with a Michael-led rendition of the Temptations' "My Girl." Their father, who had been chauffeuring them to out-of-state performances, also booked their first paid professional gigs that year. In 1967, the group won an amateur talent competition at Harlem's legendary Apollo Theater, where they earned an influential fan in Gladys Knight (probably the first person to recommend the group to Motown). At the end of the year, The Jackson 5 made their first studio recordings for the small Gary-based Steeltown label, and their single "Big Boy" became something of a local hit. Championed again to Motown by Bobby Taylor, a member of the Vancouvers who'd seen the group in Chicago, and Diana Ross, The Jackson 5 finally got a chance to audition for the label in the summer of 1968. Desperately needing new blood, an impressed Berry Gordy signed the group and flew them out to his new headquarters in Los Angeles, where he and his assistants groomed them to be the label's next breakout stars. Having lost his famed Holland-Dozier-Holland songwriting team, Gordy formed a new partnership with Freddie Perren, Fonce Mizell, and Deke Richards dubbed the Corporation, which set about crafting material for the group.
In August 1969, shortly before Michael turned 11, The Jackson 5 opened for Diana Ross at the L.A. Forum, and in December, they issued their debut album, Diana Ross Presents the Jackson 5. On October 7, 1969, The Jackson 5 released their first single, "I Want You Back," a Corporation composition that had originally been intended for Gladys Knight. It was an instant smash, hitting number one on both the pop and R&B charts. So did their next two singles, "ABC" and "The Love You Save" (both from their second album, ABC), which solidified the group's so-called bubblegum-soul sound and certified them as pop sensations. Third Album was released before year's end, spawning the hit ballad "I'll Be There," which not only proved that the group (and lead singer Michael) were more mature and versatile than their bright, bouncy initial singles let on, but also made them the first group in pop history to have their first four singles hit number one. It also became the best-selling single in Motown history, spending a stellar five weeks at number one. And it had still been less than a year since the group's national debut.
A virtual Jackson 5 cottage industry sprang up in the wake of their success, producing everything from dolls to a cartoon show on -- what else? -- the ABC network (during the summer of 1971). Younger and younger listeners were brought into the fold, adding to an already broad appeal that transcended color lines, and the record label that once billed itself as "the Sound of Young America" could once again lay legitimate claim to the title. Meanwhile, following their four straight number ones, The Jackson 5 opened 1971 with a pair of number two hits, "Mama's Pearl" and the ballad "Never Can Say Goodbye"; "Maybe Tomorrow" was their first single not to make the pop Top Ten, though it still reached the R&B Top Five. That year, Motown executives began grooming Michael and Jermaine for solo careers that would run concurrently with The Jackson 5. Michael was the first to debut on his own (toward the end of 1971), and was an instant success; his first two singles, "Got to Be There" and "Rockin' Robin," both made the Top Five, and later in 1972 he scored his first pop number one with "Ben." Jermaine debuted at the end of 1972, and his first single, "Daddy's Home," reached the Top Ten, though the follow-ups didn't sustain the momentum as well as Michael.
In the meantime, the fantastically hyped Jackson 5 craze was beginning to cool down. Their prolific LP release schedule slowed a bit, and while their singles continued to perform reliably well on the R&B charts, they were no longer a sure-fire bet for the pop Top Ten. After a relatively lengthy drought, The Jackson 5 scored what would be their last major smash for Motown, the 1974 number two hit "Dancing Machine," a nod to the emerging sound of disco (it also topped the R&B charts). The group's frustrations with Motown had been building -- not only did the label seem less interested in their career, but they still refused to allow the Jacksons to write or choose their own material, or play their own instruments on their records. Finally, in early 1976, they left Motown to sign with Epic. When the legal battles finally ended, Motown won a breach-of-contract settlement and retained rights to the Jackson 5 name, forcing the group to become the Jacksons. They also lost Jermaine, whose marriage to Berry Gordy's daughter Hazel made it extremely impractical for him to join his brothers. He was replaced by younger brother Randy (born Steven Randall Jackson, October 29, 1961), who had been appearing (unofficially) with the group as a percussionist for some time.
In 1997, The Jackson 5 were inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame.
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Less than two weeks before the 1960s were left to be deciphered in the history books, Motown unleashed Diana Ross Presents the Jackson 5 (1969) and in doing so fittingly marked the beginning of a new era in crossover pop and soul. For all intents and purposes, this dozen-song disc introduced the world to the sibling talents of Jackie, Tito, Jermaine, Marlon, and most significantly of all, a prepubescent powerhouse named Michael Jackson. The brothers' inextricably tight vocal harmonies were fueled by the ebullience of youth and inexperience while the flames of their collective success were stoked with the funkified vibe of urban America. Immediately evident is the influence that Sly & the Family Stone (whose "Stand!" is an unmitigated zenith in the Jackson 5's care), James Brown, and even Funkadelic had on the J5. In fact, the quintet would actually cover George Clinton's "I Bet You" on their sophomore effort, ABC (1970). The burgeoning sounds coming out of Philly were having a similarly sizable impact, as evidenced by the addition of the Thom Bell/William Hart track "Can You Remember," which is one of the album's highlights. Another discernibly affective force was found closer to home, as they also drew on the considerable Motown back catalog with "My Cherie Amour," "Standing in the Shadows of Love," and a powerful reading of "(I Know) I'm Losing You." Under the moniker of "the Corporation," Motown staffers and artists including Bobby Taylor, instrumentalists Deke Richards (guitar), Freddie Perren (keyboard) , and Fonce Mizell (keyboards), and the label's co-founder, Berry Gordy, came up with a handful of dominant originals. Prominent among them are the midtempo "Nobody" and their double-sided chart-topping single "I Want You Back" b/w the Smokey Robinson-penned "Who's Lovin' You."
The Jackson 5 - Diana Ross Presents The Jackson 5 (flac 256mb)
01 Zip A Dee Doo Dah 3:08
02 Nobody 2:46
03 I Want You Back 2:56
04 Can You Remember 2:56
05 Standing In The Shadows Of Love 4:02
06 You've Changed 3:00
07 My Cherie Amour 3:37
08 Who's Loving You 3:55
09 Chained 2:44
10 (I Know) I'm Losing You 2:12
11 Stand 2:31
12 Born To Love You 2:26
The Jackson 5 - Diana Ross Presents (ogg 100mb)
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Not even six months after the Jackson 5 issued their debut long-player, Diana Ross Presents, the vocal quintet returned with ABC (1970), arguably the brothers' most solid effort of the early '70s. The Jacksons' collective (and respective) talents, coupled with exemplary material and the finest behind the scenes crew Motown had to offer, were directly responsible for the enormous success that placed the LP at the crest of the R&B chart and into the Top Five of the pop survey, while the title track and the double-sided hit single "The Love You Save" b/w "I Found That Girl" all went directly to the number one position across the board. Not too shabby for a group whose oldest member was barely in his teens. Granted, the familiar tunes are undeniably the focal point, making it easy to overlook some of the other stellar selections. As was customary, Motown's cache of house composers provide the lion's share of the songs, most notably the Holland-Dozier-Holland-penned "(Come 'Round Here) I'm the One You Need" -- brought to prominence by Smokey Robinson & the Miracles -- and Stevie Wonder's "Never Had a Dream Come True," which Wonder himself had recently included on his own Signed, Sealed & Delivered (1970). There are also a few contemporary nuggets from beyond the boundaries of Detroit, as "La-La (Means I Love You)" is derived from the up-and-coming Philly soul movement and "I'll Bet You" was gleaned from George Clinton's incipient incarnation of Funkadelic. However, the cuts credited to "the Corporation" -- with Bobby Taylor and instrumentalists Deke Richards (guitar), Freddie Perren (keyboard), and Fonce Mizell (keyboards), as well as Motown founder Berry Gordy -- were of primary significance not only on the ABC album, but within the entire Jackson 5 oeuvre.
The Jackson 5 - ABC (flac 252mb)
01 The Love You Save 2:59
02 One More Chance 2:56
03 ABC 2:55
04 2-4-6-8 2:54
05 (Come 'Round Here) I'm The One You Need 2:40
06 Don't Know Why I Love You 3:45
07 Never Had A Dream Come True 2:57
08 True Love Can Be Beautiful 3:24
09 La-La Means I Love You 3:27
10 I'll Bet You 3:16
11 I Found That Girl 2:56
12 The Young Folks 2:49
The Jackson 5 - ABC (ogg 99mb)
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Less than three months following the release of ABC came the Jackson 5's aptly titled follow-up, Third Album. This two-fer CD also includes their subsequent long-player, Maybe Tomorrow. As with their predecessors, these albums contain a diverse mixture of R&B, funk, and soul styles, all the while remaining vibrant, fresh, young, and most definitely pop. Although still formulaic in approach, the Corporation -- consisting of Motown founder Berry Gordy along with Deke Richards, Freddie Perren, and Fonce Mizell -- were able to garner significant success by blending a few well-placed cover songs, such as "Bridge Over Troubled Waters" and "16 Candles," with continued contributions from Philly soul stylists Thom Bell and William Hart on "Ready or Not (Here I Come)." As the Jackson 5 phenomenon continued, however, the Corporation became increasingly dependant upon their own skills and formidable credentials. Not only were all four singles -- two from each album -- written and produced by the team, they also provided the majority of the material for Maybe Tomorrow. Tracks such as "I'll Be There," "Goin' Back to Indiana," "Mama's Pearl," and "Sugar Daddy" would become well-known performance staples and fan favorites. The secondary layer of material is equally matched for the high-energy soul antics of Michael's imposing talent. That is not to dismiss the formidable contributions of the other brothers, especially on "It's Great to Be Here" and "My Little Baby." Their increased role as support and co-leads were forging new boundaries.
The Jackson 5 - Third Album (flac 262mb)
01 I'll Be There 4:01
02 Ready Or Not Here I Come (Can't Hide From Love) 2:35
03 Oh How Happy 2:17
04 Bridge Over Troubled Water 5:53
05 Can I See You In The Morning 3:10
06 Goin' Back To Indiana 3:34
07 How Funky Is Your Chicken 2:42
08 Mama's Pearl 3:09
09 Reach In 3:29
10 The Love I Saw In You Was Just A Mirage 4:23
11 Darling Dear 2:38
The Jackson 5 - Third Album (ogg 97mb)
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Maybe Tomorrow (1971) was the Jackson Five's fourth long-player in less than two years, actually their fifth if you count the excellent holiday offering Jackson 5 Christmas Album (1970). Tito, Jermaine, Marlon, Randy and Michael continue their prolific run, building off the same combination of swooning slow jams and funky rockers that had catapulted their previous outings into the Top Five R&B and Pop Album surveys. No doubt influenced by the recent success of "I'll Be There," the focus tunes extracted as singles were the heartfelt and Michael-led ballads "Never Can Say Goodbye," as well as the title track "Maybe Tomorrow." Although the youngest member of the Jackson 5, he consistently turned in precociously age-defying performances. Once again Motown's self-inclusive team of Bobby Taylor, instrumentalists Deke Richards (guitar), Freddie Perren (keyboard), Fonce Mizell (keyboards) and the label's co-founder Berry Gordy -- known collectively as the Corporation -- supplied a majority of the grooves. However, it was increasingly the tunes brought in from elsewhere that were gaining the most attention. Actor/composer/performer Clifton Davis supplied "Never Can Say Goodbye," while Hal Davis' mid-tempo arrangement of the Crests' 1958 hit "16 Candles" is a perfect vehicle for Jermaine. He would return to his R&B ancestry for the significant solo side, a cover of Shep & the Limelites' "Daddy's Home"." Standouts from the Corporation's contributions are the fun, though admittedly lightweight "My Little Baby," the harder driving "It's Great to Be Here" and the upbeat funk vibe "I Will Find a Way" that concludes the platter.
The Jackson 5 - Maybe Tomorrow (flac 249mb)
01 Maybe Tomorrow 4:46
02 She's Good 2:59
03 Never Can Say Goodbye 2:56
04 The Wall 3:01
05 Petals 2:30
06 16 Candles 2:45
07 (We've Got) Blue Skies 3:12
08 My Little Baby 2:55
09 It's Great To Be Here 2:59
10 Honey Chile 2:47
11 I Will Find A Way 2:58
The Jackson 5 - Maybe Tomorrow (ogg 89mb)
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