Little did I know as a young publicist working on the infamous Rhythm Nation tour that it would go on to become the best selling tour debut of any artist ever – a record held to this day by the legendary Janet Jackson. Meeting her was a definite career high light for sure and you know my Rhythm Nation is tattered and torn, but I will never let it leave my clutches…lol.
For decades, rumors and speculation focusing not only on her public persona, but her private life have run rampant. Now Miss Jackson lays it all out on the table in her way with her words in new Lifetime and A&E doc simple titled Janet Jackson. spanning over two nights on January 28th and 29th.
Jackson, now 55, pulled back the curtain on her most private battles, including her complicated relationships with her later father Joe and brother Michael, and her ill-fated marriages to James DeBarge and René Elizondo Jr.
Jackson and brother Randy take us back to Jackson Street in Gary, Indiana where it all began and then we segue to her years as a young performer on the Vegas strip to her roles as Penny on ‘Good Times’ and Cleo on ‘Fame‘ all leading to that infamous meeting with Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis who changed he sound and image for eternity. We witness never before seen footage shot over a ten year period from now ex-husband René and how the complicated pain of loving and being grateful to her father Joseph has it double edged sword. Interviews from Jimmy Jam, Terry Lewis, Debbie Allen, siblings Tito, Randy and Rebbie add an extra layer of info not provided by or sometimes in contradiction to what Janet spills.
The most intriguing and enlightening revelation will be how she addresses the rumors of the ‘secret baby’ with James DeBarge and that she is not just a pretty face with no substance or talent. Footage of her recording sessions and an intimate collaboration with her big brother Michael show a Janet Jackson the public never knew and that is just night one!
I can tell you for sure the Janet Jackson I encountered briefly was strong, professional, smart nad knew exactly what she wanted and how. Has that changed or shifted? What lies ahead in night two? Tune in because I promise it is a doozy!!! Check local listings for exact timing.