Category: the jackson 5

On this day in music history: June 20, 1970 – …

On this day in music history: June 20, 1970 – “The Love You Save” by The Jackson 5 hits #1 on the Billboard R&B singles chart for 6 weeks, also spending 2 weeks at #1 on the Hot 100 on June 27, 1970. Written and produced by The Corporation (Deke Richards, Freddie Perren, Fonce Mizell and Berry Gordy), it is the third consecutive chart topping single for the family group from Gary, IN. Straying away somewhat from the formula that created the groups first two number one hits “I Want You Back” and “ABC”, Songwriters Richards, Perren and Mizell start off writing a song about watching out for traffic. Through the course of writing it, the concept evolves into a song about a young girl who is too fast for her age. They quickly record a demo, and cut the instrumental track at The Sound Factory in Hollywood, CA in March of 1970. Berry Gordy attends the initial tracking session, and after listening for fifteen minutes tells the team “they’ve got it” and leaves. “The Love You Save” is the second single released from the J5’s second album “ABC”. The group perform the song on their second and final appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show airing on May 10, 1970. Issued as a single on May 16, 1970, it rockets up the pop and R&B singles chart, topping both within a month of its release. The singles B-side “I Found That Girl”, featuring Jermaine on lead vocals also garners significant airplay, and is listed on the chart jointly with “The Love You Save” after it tops the chart. “The Love You Save” sells over two million copies in the US, becoming The Jackson 5’s third consecutive Platinum selling single.

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On this day in music history: May 23, 1972 – &…

On this day in music history: May 23, 1972 – “Lookin’ Through The Windows”, the fifth studio album by The Jackson 5 is released. Produced by The Corporation and Hal Davis, it is recorded at The Sound Factory in Hollywood, CA in February 1970, and Motown/Hitsville USA West in Hollywood, CA from October 1971 – April 1972. The groups fifth release sees them beginning to move away from the trademark “bubblegum soul” feel of their earlier Motown hits toward a more mature sound. This period also marks the beginning of the groups dissatisfaction with Motown’s control over their career, in which they are not allowed to have any say or creative input in their music. It spins off two singles (three in the UK) including “Little Bitty Pretty One” (#8 R&B, #15 Pop) “Doctor My Eyes” (#9 UK), and the title track (#5 R&B, #16 Pop, #9 UK). The album is remastered and reissued on CD in 2001, as a two-fer disc with the “Goin’ Back To Indiana” TV soundtrack. It is also reissued as a 180 gram vinyl LP in Europe in 2009, with a second stand alone CD release in 2010. “Lookin’ Through The Windows” peaks at number three on the Billboard R&B album chart and number seven on the Top 200.

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On this day in music history: May 15, 1975 – &…

On this day in music history: May 15, 1975 – “Moving Violation”, the ninth studio album by The Jackson 5 is released. Produced by Hal Davis, Brian Holland, Mel Larson and Jerry Marcellino, it is recorded at the Motown Recording Studio in Hollywood, CA from October 1974 – March 1975. After scoring their first major hit in nearly three years with “Dancing Machine”, The Jackson 5 follow it with what turns out to be their final album on Motown. Feeling creatively stifled by the label by being prohibited from writing and producing their own music, the group leave the label shortly after its release for Epic Records. Legal wrangling among the two sides results in Motown claiming ownership of “The Jackson 5” name and trademark. In spite of this, the album shows the group transitioning from a kid group into young men with a more adult sound. It spins off only one single, the double A-sided hit “Forever Came Today” (#6 R&B, #60 Pop) b/w “All I Do Is Think Of You” (#50 R&B). The latter is covered by R&B vocal group Troop who hit #1 on the R&B singles chart with their version in June of 1990. The track “Body Language” is originally scheduled as the follow up single, but its release is cancelled after the group make it known that they are leaving Motown. Originally released on CD in the mid 80’s, it is remastered and reissued as a two-fer CD in 2001 with their previous album “Dancing Machine”. It is reissued again in 2010 as a stand alone CD with one bonus track added (the Disc-O-Tech remix of “Forever Came Today”). “Moving Violation” peaks at number six on the Billboard R&B album chart, and number thirty six on the Top 200.

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On this day in music history: May 8, 1970 – “A…

On this day in music history: May 8, 1970 – “ABC”, the second studio album by The Jackson 5 is released. Produced by The Corporation and Hal Davis, it is recorded at The Sound Factory and Hitsville USA West in Hollywood, CA from August 1969 – March 1970. Issued only five months after their debut album, it is a mixture of original songs written for the group as well as covers of songs originally recorded by Stevie Wonder, Diana Ross & The Supremes, The Delfonics, and Funkadelic. It spins off two singles including “The Love You Save” and the title track (both #1 R&B and Pop). In time it is widely regarded as the groups best album, selling over five million copies worldwide. The albums iconic cover art (photographed by Paul Slaughter and Joseph Hernandez) features a shot of the group taken at the beach in Malibu, CA posing with oversized letters spelling out the album title. The final image airbrushes out the original background, placing it against a solid blue background. The back cover features a photo college of the group. Originally released on CD in the mid 80’s, it is remastered and issued in 1998. The vinyl LP, out of print for more than twenty years, it is reissued on 180 gram vinyl as part of Universal Music Group’s “Back To Black” vinyl series in Europe in 2009. “ABC” spend twelve weeks (non-consecutive) at number one on the Billboard R&B album chart and peaking at number four on the Top 200.

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On this day in music history: May 1, 1971 – &l…

On this day in music history: May 1, 1971 – “Never Can Say Goodbye” by The Jackson 5 hits #1 on the Billboard R&B singles chart for 3 weeks, also peaking at #2 for 3 weeks on May 8, 1971. Written by Clifton Davis, it is the fifth R&B chart topper for the superstar family group. The track is cut at the Sound Factory in Hollywood, CA in June of 1970 with Bob West (bass), Art Wright and David T. Walker (guitars), Joe Sample (keyboards) and Gene Pello (drums). Yet another departure from their trademark “bubblegum” uptempo pop/soul sound, it is “more adult” in nature than their previous hits. During the vocal recording session, the then eleven year old Michael while looking over the lyrics to the song asks the producer Hal Davis the meaning of the word “anguish”. Davis quickly explains, then Michael nods and picks up where he had stopped singing. Released on March 16, 1971 (four weeks ahead of the album), it is the first single from The Jackson 5’s fifth album “Maybe Tomorrow”. “Never Can Say Goodbye” becomes the group’s sixth consecutive million selling single in the US. The song is covered by a number of different artists over years, most notably by Isaac Hayes whose version is released only a few months after the The Jackson 5’s. Gloria Gaynor record “Goodbye” in a dramatically revamped disco version that also becomes an instant classic, peaking at #9 on the Hot 100 and topping the Billboard Club Play chart. UK synth pop duo The Communards record a Hi-NRG dance version of the song in 1987 based on the Gloria Gaynor arrangement of the song, taking it #4 on the UK singles chart, and #2 on the US Club Play chart.

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On this day in music history: April 12, 1971 -…

On this day in music history: April 12, 1971 – “Maybe Tomorrow”, the fifth album by The Jackson 5 is released. Produced by The Corporation and Hal Davis, is recorded at The Sound Factory and Hitsville USA West in Hollywood, CA from February – August 1970 and September 1970 – February 1971. Following the huge success of the previous year, The Jackson 5 return with the first of three albums they release during 1971. The new album is their fifth full length release in just fifteen months, spinning off two singles including “Never Can Say Goodbye” (#1 R&B, #2 Pop) and the title track (#3 R&B, #20 Pop). The title track “Maybe Tomorrow” is originally intended for entertainer Sammy Davis, Jr., who is briefly signed to Motown’s short lived Ecology Records imprint. When Davis’ schedule does not allow him time to record the song, it is given to The Jackson 5 instead, who cut it in February of 1971. A number of other songs on the album including “She’s Good”, “The Wall”, “My Little Baby” and “I Will Find A Way” also become fan favorites. The album track “It’s Great To Be Here” becomes a staple in Hip Hop (in the 90’s and beyond), with its opening break being sampled many times, as well as the title track. Originally released on CD in the mid 80’s, it is remastered as a 2-fer disc, paired with “Third Album” in the US and UK in 2000. The album is also reissued as a 180 gram vinyl LP in Europe in 2009. “Maybe Tomorrow” spends six weeks at number one on the Billboard R&B album chart, peaking at number eleven on the Top 200.

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On this day in music history: April 4, 1970 – …

On this day in music history: April 4, 1970 – “ABC” by The Jackson 5 hits #1 on the Billboard R&B singles chart for 4 weeks, also topping the Hot 100 for 2 weeks on April 25, 1970. Written and produced by The Corporation, it is the second consecutive chart topping single for the Gary, IN based family group fronted by lead singer Michael Jackson. The basic track for “ABC” is recorded in December 1969 at The Sound Factory in Hollywood, CA. When they begin formulating the follow up , the writers form the basis for “ABC” out of the chorus section of “I Want You Back”. Recorded with the same group of musicians (including Wilton Felder (bass), Gene Pello (drums), David T. Walker, Louie Shelton, and Don Peake (guitars) ), the track is cut live in a single take. The single sells over a million copies in under twelve days, eventually selling over 2.2 million copies. To commemorate this achievement, Motown Records re-services DJ’s with another promotional 45 pressing of “ABC” pressed on clear gold vinyl, and packaged in a title sleeve. These 45’s become highly sought after by collectors, and are among the rarest Jackson 5 promotional items. An alternate mix of the track (with a slightly longer running time and different vocals not included in the original mono and stereo mixes) appear on the Japanese quadraphonic stereo LP of the groups first “Greatest Hits” album released in 1975. “ABC” also makes Billboard chart history as one of the shortest song titles to top the charts. One of The Jackson 5’s most popular and beloved songs, “ABC” is inducted into the Grammy Hall Of Fame in 2017, becoming the group’s third single (after “I Want You Back” and “I’ll Be There”) to receive that honor.

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On this day in music history: March 16, 1971 -…

On this day in music history: March 16, 1971 – “Never Can Say Goodbye” by The Jackson 5 is released. Written by Clifton Davis, it is the sixth single release for the superstar family vocal group. With the Jackson 5’s career in full swing having scored two consecutive chart toppers, and about to land their third by the Summer of 1970, Motown continues to search for top notch material for the group to record. Producer Hal Davis finds “Never Can Say Goodbye” when he overhears songwriter Clifton Davis (no relation), auditioning the song for potential music publishers. Davis likes the song and offers to record it immediately. It is recorded in June 1970 at Hitsville West in Los Angeles, CA, with the producer quickly assembling the musicians for the session which include David T. Walker, Art Wright (guitars), Joe Sample (keyboards), Bob West (bass), and Gene Pello (drums). The song is shelved for several months by Motown’s A&R department who feels the song is “too mature” for the young group. One day, a frustrated Davis is overheard by Berry Gordy blasting the song in his office. Gordy quickly sanctions its release upon hearing it. “Never Can Say Goodbye” spends three weeks at number one on the Billboard R&B singles chart, and three weeks at number two on the Hot 100 in May of 1971.

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On this day in music history: March 11, 1969 -…

On this day in music history: March 11, 1969 – The Jackson 5 officially sign with Motown Records. Having begun negotiations several months before, the label buys the group out of their contract with local Gary, IN label Steeltown Records. Shortly afterward, the Jacksons move from Gary, Indiana to Los Angeles, California, to start intensive rehearsals and enter the studio to begin recording with producer Bobby Taylor, the man who brought them to Motown founder Berry Gordy, Jr.’s attention. By the Summer of 1969, the group begin recording sessions, mostly cutting cover material until Gordy replaces Taylor with The Corporation (Deke Richards, Freddie Perren, Fonce Mizell, and Gordy himself), who are responsible for many of The Jackson 5’s hits. Within less than a year, the group have landed the first of four consecutive chart topping singles on the pop and R&B singles charts.

On this day in music history: January 10, 1970…

On this day in music history: January 10, 1970 – “I Want You Back” by The Jackson 5 hits #1 on the Billboard R&B singles chart for 4 weeks, also topping the Hot 100 for 1 week on January 31, 1970. Written and produced by The Corporation, it is the first of four consecutive chart topping singles for the five brothers from Gary, IN. The track is recorded at The Sound Factory in Hollywood, CA in August 1969, and features Wilton Felder (bass), David T. Walker, Louie Shelton, and Don Peake (guitars), Gene Pello (drums), Joe Sample & Freddie Perren (keyboards) and Sandra Crouch (tambourine). After the records’ release in October of 1969, the group begin the task of promoting their debut single for Motown. Their first nationally televised appearance being on The Hollywood Palace" variety series the same month. Their second live television performance on The Ed Sullivan Show on December 14, 1969, plays a vital role in giving the record the final push needed to send it on its way to the top of the R&B and pop singles charts. In time, “I Want You Back” is regarded as a landmark release in the history of Motown, and one of the greatest pop singles of all time. Its enduring popularity and influence is further confirmed when it is inducted into the Grammy Hall Of Fame in 1999, The Jackson 5’s first record to receive that honor. “I Want You Back” is certified Platinum in the US by the RIAA.