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Janet Jackson

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Janet Damita Jo Jackson was born on May 16, 1966 in Gary, Indiana to Joseph (Joe) and Katherine Jackson. She's the youngest of nine children. By the time she was a toddler, Janet's older brothers Jackie, Tito, Jermaine, Marlon and Michael had already begun to perform on stage at nightclubs and theaters as the Jackson 5. By the time Janet was an adolescent, the Jackson 5 were already stars and the family moved to Southern California. Janet made her public debut performance at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas in her brothers' show when she was seven.

Janet Jackson always had an interest in music, writing her first song at the age of nine, but she never aspired to be a professional singer and agreed to participate in music just to help her family. The song “Love Song For Kids” (1978), a duet with her brother Randy, was Janet’s first recording. She also participated in her family's other recordings, particularly with sister LaToya and brother Michael.

In 1982, she released her first album; the self-titled Janet Jackson was produced by soul singers Angela Winbush, Rene Moore and Leon Sylvers of the famed Sylvers family music group. The album reached the top ten of the Billboard R&B album charts, and spent forty-five weeks in the top fifty. Three singles were extracted from the album, including her first top ten hit on the Billboard R&B charts, "Young Love", and two top twenty follow-ups, "Say You Do" and "Come Give Your Love to Me". By the age of eighteen, in 1984, Janet Jackson released her second album, titled Dream Street. The album failed to make the top one hundred of the Billboard pop album charts and barely reached the top twenty on the R&B chart.

After the limited success of her first two albums, producers Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis were enlisted to enliven Janet’s music career. Jackson, Jam and Lewis worked together and gave birth to Janet’s third album Control. Control, released in 1986, became a smash hit spawning five top ten singles, including her first number one single “When I Think Of You”. By the end of the year of its release, the album had sold over five million copies in America alone. In 1989, Janet Jackson released her next album Rhythm Nation 1814 which sold six million copies by the end of the following year, and became the first album to spawn seven top five singles, as well as four number one singles.

In 1993 Jackson released her album (with Virgin Records) titled Janet from which the lead single "That's The Way Love Goes", became a number-one hit on the pop and R&B singles chart. In 1997 she released The Velvet Rope that placed number one on the Billboard 200 (it was her fourth album to do so). Jackson's seventh studio album, All for You, a more upbeat record than The Velvet Rope, was released in 2001. Her next record Damita Jo, released in 2004, received nominations from the American Music Awards, Source Music Awards, BET Music Awards and Grammy Awards.

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