Jermaine Jackson

Jermaine JacksonJermaine La Jaune Jackson (also known as Muhammed Abdul Aziz) (born December 11, 1954) is an American singer, bassist, composer, a member of The Jackson 5, older brother of American pop stars Michael Jackson and Janet Jackson and occasional film director. He also produced and recorded duets with American singer Whitney Houston in her early years as a recording artist.

Early life

Jackson is the fourth child of Joseph and Katherine Jackson, born in Gary, Indiana after his brother Tito Jackson. His brothers and sisters are Rebbie, Jackie, Tito,Marlon, La Toya,  Michael, Randy and Janet. He was raised as a Jehovah’s Witness by his devout mother (though he later converted to Islam in 1989 after a trip to Bahrain). Jermaine was the original lead singer and rhythm guitarist of the Jackson Brothers—an earlier incarnation of The Jackson Five—until 1968, when younger brother Michael began assisting with lead vocals. He remained the lead vocalist with Michael for many years. Jackson graduated from Birmingham High School in Van Nuys, Los Angeles, California in 1973.

The Jackson 5

Jermaine and his brothers signed with Motown Records in 1968. As the co-lead singer of The Jackson 5 after his brother Michael, Jermaine sang notable parts of “I Want You Back”, “I’ll Be There”, “The Love You Save”,”Dancing Machine”, and many other Jackson 5 songs. In 1975, after six years performing with his brothers, Jermaine split from the Jackson 5 to continue his solo career at Motown Records while the other Jackson brothers left to sign with Epic Records. In 1983, he reunited with his brothers for the Motown 25: Yesterday, Today, Forever television special. After the success of the broadcast, he rejoined the band to record the album Victory and participated in the Victory Tour. He stayed with the group for their final album 2300 Jackson Streetin 1990. In 2001, he reunited with his brothers to perform for the 30th anniversary

Solo career

Jermaine JacksonLike Michael, Jermaine began a solo career while still a member of The Jackson 5, and had a hit with the 1972 Shep and the Limelites cover “Daddy’s Home”. It sold over one million copies by March 1973, and was awarded a gold disc. When The Jackson 5 left Motown, Jermaine left the group and stayed at Motown, as he had married Hazel Gordy and  Motown head Berry Gordy was his father-in-law. In 2009, Jermaine claimed on the family reality series The Jacksons: A Family Dynasty it was because “Motown was gonna make us like the Beatles. We were the Jackson 5 and that’s all I wanted.”

Jermaine was nominated for the Grammy Award for Best Male R&B Vocal Performance for his 1980 album Let’s Get Serious. He had numerous Billboard Top 30 hits throughout the 1970s and 1980s, including “Daddy’s Home” (#9), “That’s How Love Goes”, “Let’s Be Young Tonight”, “Bass Odyssey”, “Feel the Fire”, “Let Me Tickle Your Fancy” (featuring Devo on backing vocals) (#18), “Let’s Get Serious” (#9, also one of his only two UK hits, peaking at #8), “Dynamite” (#15), “Do What You Do” (#13), and “I Think It’s Love” (#16). A duet with his brother Michael, “Tell Me I’m Not Dreamin’ (Too Good to Be True)”, hit #1 on the dance chart in 1984. He and Michael also collaborated with Rockwell, both providing guest vocals on his 1984 hit single, “Somebody’s Watching Me”. In 1985, his duet with Pia Zadora, When the Rain Begins to Fall, topped several singles charts in Europe. His final chart success, 1989′s “Don’t Take It Personal”, hit #1 on the Billboard  R&B singles chart. Some of Jermaine’s finest moments as a singer can be heard in the soulful “Castle of Sand” and the Earth Wind & Fire inspired “You Need To Be Loved”.

Jackson is proficient on the electric guitar and is a talented bass guitar player. Already at an early age he performed the parts of legendary bass player James Jamerson etc., when J5 performed live. Jermaine also composed and produced for other artists like Switch. He also produced and sang a couple of duets on Whitney Houston’s debut album on Arista Records. In 1992, he produced The Jacksons: An American Dream,an award-winning and highly-rated miniseries about the history of The Jackson 5. Jermaine Jr. portrayed his father as a young teenager in the miniseries.

Jermaine JacksonOn December 15, 1973, Jackson married Hazel Gordy, who is the daughter of Motown Records founder Berry Gordy. The couple had three children together, Jermaine La Jaune “Jay” Jackson, Jr., (born January 27, 1977), Autumn Joy Jackson (born July 10, 1978), and Jaimy Jackson (born March 17, 1987).

After his divorce from Gordy in 1988, Jackson started living with Margaret Maldonado. The couple had two children, Jeremy Maldonado Jackson, (born December 16, 1986) and Jourdynn Michael Jackson, (born January 5, 1989).

Halima Rashid is Jermaine Jackson’s wife, currently living in Los Angeles and often travel around the world. Jackson converted to Islam in 1989 after a trip to Bahrain and publicly expressed his religious beliefs during his appearance on Big Brother. While filming the program, Jackson  prayed and fasted. He also expressed his hopes to convert his brother Michael to Islam, saying it would provide him with peace and help to heal his problems.

He supported his brother Michael Jackson, during the 2005 child-abuse trial. He came to Michael’s defense on CNN’s Larry King Live and appeared with him in court on many occasions. On June 25, 2009, Jermaine held a press conference at Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center and broke the news of Michael Jackson’s death to the media.

Jackson attended the memorial service for his brother Michael on July 7, 2009 at the  Staples Center in Los Angeles. He acted as a pallbearer, and performed the song Smile by  Charlie Chaplin, which was believed to be his brother’s favorite song, in tribute. Jackson is an avid Los Angeles Dodgers fan. In 2009 while wearing a Manny Ramirez jersey, he made a one-handed catch of a foul ball while seated behind the Dodgers dugout.