Friday, March 12, 2010

March 12

Happy Birthday to Marlon Jackson, as underappreciated a Jackson as any not named Michael, Janet, or Samuel. He was the sixth born in the family, slightly older than Michael and Janet; wonder if that explains how things turned out. He was also the fourth of the Jackson 5, and while he didn't have the raw talent that his younger siblings did (or even his older siblings,) he had the family work ethic, so he developed his performing skills to keep up with his brothers.
He stuck through their transition to The Jacksons, right through Michael's post-Thriller success. He shocked the family when he left the band after the Victory tour and tried out for a solo career of his own.
But here's the thing: he seemed to find a stronger life outside the limelight than his siblings. For one thing, he's celebrating 35 years of marriage this year, with three kids and two grandkids; he's the only Jackson boy to never divorce. For another, he's found more success offstage than on - as a real estate agent and investor (although there's still some controversy about that resort development in Badagry, Nigeria.) Perhaps that's why his solo career was one album and done; besides the occasional reunion with his brothers, he seems happy with a relatively normal life.
Anyway, here's the Jacksons single, "Body", which was written, produced, and sung lead by Marlon. The video is as cheesy-sexy as 80's videos get, but you can still see Marlon might just be the Charlie Hustle* of the Jacksons.

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