Just about everyone knows about the legend of Michael Jackson. The “King of Pop” was arguably the “biggest” singing star in the history of entertainment. Catapulted into stardom at a very young age with his brothers, they achieved monumental fame as the “Jackson 5” when they were with Motown Records. Once acts began leaving Motown it wasn’t too long before the Jackson 5 followed suit. They then changed their name to “the Jacksons” (I’m sure this change had something to do with contractual obligations and who had real ownership of the original name) and achieved moderate fame at that point. However, Michael was the star attraction and (like with a lot of successful groups and their lead singers) Michael eventually struck out on his own. I don’t think anyone could argue about how great Michael’s career was. He was the ultimate entertainer, singer and dancer. However, was it “right” to exclude his brothers from performing onstage with him? Granted, they didn’t sing much of the backgrounds on the recordings (from listening to most of the recordings I only heard Michael’s voice, Jermaine’s voice and maybe Tito’s on occasion, but mostly just Michael’s in the backgrounds). Still, they put on an electric show whenever they performed together. I have heard stories that Michael thought his brothers were “extra weight” that he didn’t need to carry on the show (Also, it is quite possible they may have demanded more money than regular background singers). Here is a snippet of the group performing live as the Jackson 5:
When I first saw Michael perform a live song without his brothers, I felt somewhat cheated. They started this rise to fame with him, and blood should be thicker than water. Seeing other people with him felt “weird.” However, I just don’t know what facilitated the need to leave family behind. Michael was also managed by his father Joe and Michael relieved him of that job as well (That move I could “fully” understand). When they interviewed Joe Jackson after Michael’s death, he was so shook up that he could barely talk about his new record label (yes, there is sarcasm here). No matter how turbulent the family situation, should his brothers have been terminated from the shows? There is probably a lot that we don’t know, but I can say that I would have loved to have seen Michael’s brother perform with him. Maybe one day someone will write a “tell-all” book that explained what really happened. In the meantime we can only “ponder.” Thank you for checking out my Daily Thought today, and as always I wish you the very best that life has to offer.
Janet Jackson and Brett Jolly onstage