Janet Jackson
Overview
Janet Damita Jo Jackson (born May 16, 1966) is an American recording artist and actress. Known for a series of sonically innovative, socially conscious and sexually provocative records, as well as elaborate stage shows, television and film roles, she has been a prominent figure in popular culture for over 25 years. She is ranked by Forbes
Forbes
Forbes is an American publishing and media company. Its flagship publication, the Forbes magazine, is published biweekly. Its primary competitors in the national business magazine category are Fortune, which is also published biweekly, and Business Week...

magazine as one of the richest women in entertainment.
Quotations

You ought to be thankful for the little things But little things are all you seem to give You're always putting off what we can do today Soap opera says you've got One Life to Live|One Life to Live Who's right, who's wrong?

"What Have You Done for Me Lately|What Have You Done for Me Lately", Control (Janet Jackson album)|Control (1986)

I'm not a prude, I just want some respect (that's right) So close the door if you want me to respond Cause privacy is my middle name My last name is control No, my first name ain't baby It's Janet — Ms. Jackson, if you're nasty

"Nasty (song)|Nasty", Control (Janet Jackson album)|Control (1986)

Relax... it's just sex.

"Sexhibition", Damita Jo (album)|Damita Jo (2004)

We are a nation with no geographic boundaries, bound together through our beliefs, we are like minded individuals, sharing a common vision, pushing toward a world rid of color lines.

"Janet Jackson", Rhythm Nation (Janet Jackson album)|Rhythm Nation

Encyclopedia
Janet Damita Jo Jackson (born May 16, 1966) is an American recording artist and actress. Known for a series of sonically innovative, socially conscious and sexually provocative records, as well as elaborate stage shows, television and film roles, she has been a prominent figure in popular culture for over 25 years. She is ranked by Forbes
Forbes
Forbes is an American publishing and media company. Its flagship publication, the Forbes magazine, is published biweekly. Its primary competitors in the national business magazine category are Fortune, which is also published biweekly, and Business Week...

magazine as one of the richest women in entertainment. The youngest child of the Jackson family, she began her career with the variety television series The Jacksons
The Jacksons (TV series)
The Jacksons is an American variety show featuring the Jackson siblings . It was the first variety show where the entire cast were siblings...

in 1976 and went on to appear in other television shows throughout the 1970s and early 1980s, including Good Times
Good Times
Good Times is an American sitcom that originally aired from February 8, 1974, until August 1, 1979, on the CBS television network. It was created by Eric Monte and Michael Evans, and developed by Norman Lear, the series' primary executive producer...

and Fame
Fame (1982 TV series)
Fame is an American television series originally produced between 1982 and 1987. The show was based on the 1980 motion picture of the same name. Using a mixture of drama and music, it followed the lives of the students and faculty at the New York City High School for the Performing Arts. Although...

.

After signing a recording contract with A&M in 1982, she became a pop icon following the release of her third studio album Control
Control (Janet Jackson album)
Control is the third studio album by American recording artist Janet Jackson, released on February 6, 1986 by A&M Records. Her collaborations with songwriters and record producers Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis resulted in an unconventional sound: a fusion of rhythm and blues, funk, disco, rap vocals,...

(1986). Her collaborations with record producers Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis
Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis
James Samuel "Jimmy Jam" Harris III and Terry Steven Lewis are an American R&B and pop-music songwriting and record production team...

 incorporated elements of rhythm and blues
Rhythm and blues
Rhythm and blues, often abbreviated to R&B, is a genre of popular African American music that originated in the 1940s. The term was originally used by record companies to describe recordings marketed predominantly to urban African Americans, at a time when "urbane, rocking, jazz based music with a...

, funk
Funk
Funk is a music genre that originated in the mid-late 1960s when African American musicians blended soul music, jazz and R&B into a rhythmic, danceable new form of music. Funk de-emphasizes melody and harmony and brings a strong rhythmic groove of electric bass and drums to the foreground...

, disco
Disco
Disco is a genre of dance music. Disco acts charted high during the mid-1970s, and the genre's popularity peaked during the late 1970s. It had its roots in clubs that catered to African American, gay, psychedelic, and other communities in New York City and Philadelphia during the late 1960s and...

, rap
Rapping
Rapping refers to "spoken or chanted rhyming lyrics". The art form can be broken down into different components, as in the book How to Rap where it is separated into “content”, “flow” , and “delivery”...

, and industrial
Industrial music
Industrial music is a style of experimental music that draws on transgressive and provocative themes. The term was coined in the mid-1970s with the founding of Industrial Records by the band Throbbing Gristle, and the creation of the slogan "industrial music for industrial people". In general, the...

 beats, which led to crossover appeal in popular music
Popular music
Popular music belongs to any of a number of musical genres "having wide appeal" and is typically distributed to large audiences through the music industry. It stands in contrast to both art music and traditional music, which are typically disseminated academically or orally to smaller, local...

. In addition to receiving recognition for the innovation in her records, choreography, music videos, and prominence on radio airplay and MTV, she was acknowledged as a role model for her socially conscious lyrics.

In 1991, she signed the first of two record-breaking, multi-million dollar contracts with Virgin Records
Virgin Records
Virgin Records is a British record label founded by English entrepreneur Richard Branson, Simon Draper, and Nik Powell in 1972. The company grew to be a worldwide music phenomenon, with platinum performers such as Roy Orbison, Devo, Genesis, Keith Richards, Janet Jackson, Culture Club, Lenny...

, establishing her as one of the highest paid artists in the industry. Her debut album under the label, Janet (1993), saw her develop a public image as a sex symbol
Sex symbol
A sex symbol is a celebrity of either gender, typically an actor, musician, supermodel, teen idol, or sports star, noted for their sex appeal. The term was first used in the mid 1950s in relation to the popularity of certain Hollywood stars, especially Marilyn Monroe and Brigitte...

 as she began to explore sexuality in her work. That same year, she appeared in her first starring film role in Poetic Justice; since then she has continued to act in feature films. By the end of the 1990s, she was named the second most successful recording artist of the decade, following Mariah Carey
Mariah Carey
Mariah Carey is an American singer-songwriter, record producer, and actress. She made her recording debut with the release of her eponymous studio album in 1990, under the guidance of Columbia Records executive Tommy Mottola, whom she later married in 1993...

. She has amassed an extensive catalog of hits, with singles such as "Nasty
Nasty (song)
"Nasty" is the second single from Janet Jackson's third studio album, Control . Released in 1986, the single peaked at number three on Billboard Hot 100 and number one on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs, and remains one of Jackson's signature songs. Paula Abdul choreographed the music video and appeared...

", "Rhythm Nation
Rhythm Nation
"Rhythm Nation" is the second single from American R&B and pop singer Janet Jackson's fourth studio album, Janet Jackson's Rhythm Nation 1814 .-Background:...

", "That's the Way Love Goes", "Together Again" and "All for You" among her most iconic.

Having sold over 100 million records, she is ranked as one of the best-selling artists in the history of contemporary music
Popular music
Popular music belongs to any of a number of musical genres "having wide appeal" and is typically distributed to large audiences through the music industry. It stands in contrast to both art music and traditional music, which are typically disseminated academically or orally to smaller, local...

. The Recording Industry Association of America
Recording Industry Association of America
The Recording Industry Association of America is a trade organization that represents the recording industry distributors in the United States...

 (RIAA) lists her as the eleventh best-selling female artist in the United States, with 26 million certified
RIAA certification
In the United States, the Recording Industry Association of America awards certification based on the number of albums and singles sold through retail and other ancillary markets. Other countries have similar awards...

 albums. In 2008, Billboard magazine released its list of the Hot 100 All-Time Top Artists, ranking her at number seven. In 2010, the magazine announced the "Top 50 R&B / Hip-Hop Artists of the Past 25 Years", ranking her at number five. One of the world's most awarded artists, her longevity, records and achievements reflect her influence in shaping and redefining the scope of popular music. She has been cited as an inspiration among numerous performers.

1966–82: Childhood and television work

Janet Jackson was born in Gary, Indiana, the youngest of ten children, to Katherine Esther
Katherine Jackson
Katherine Esther Jackson is the matriarch of the Jackson musical family.-Early life:...

 (née Scruse) and Joseph Walter Jackson. The Jacksons were lower-middle class and devout Jehovah's Witnesses
Jehovah's Witnesses
Jehovah's Witnesses is a millenarian restorationist Christian denomination with nontrinitarian beliefs distinct from mainstream Christianity. The religion reports worldwide membership of over 7 million adherents involved in evangelism, convention attendance of over 12 million, and annual...

; Jackson stated that although she was raised as a Jehovah's Witness, she eventually stopped practicing organized religion and views her relationship with God as "one-on-one". By the time Jackson was a toddler, her older brothers—Jackie
Jackie Jackson
Sigmund Esco "Jackie" Jackson is an American singer and musician, a member of The Jackson 5, and the second child in the Jackson family.-Life and career:...

, Tito
Tito Jackson
Toriano Adaryll "Tito" Jackson is an American singer and lead guitarist and original member of The Jackson 5. He is the older brother of American pop stars Michael Jackson and Janet Jackson.-Early life and rise to stardom:...

, Jermaine
Jermaine Jackson
Jermaine La Jaune Jackson 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...

, Marlon
Marlon Jackson
Marlon David Jackson is an American entertainer singer, dancer, former member of The Jackson 5, and elder brother of American pop stars Michael Jackson and Janet Jackson.-Personal life:...

 and Michael
Michael Jackson
Michael Joseph Jackson was an American recording artist, entertainer, and businessman. Referred to as the King of Pop, or by his initials MJ, Jackson is recognized as the most successful entertainer of all time by Guinness World Records...

—were performing music at nightclubs and theaters as The Jackson 5
The Jackson 5
The Jackson 5 , later known as The Jacksons, were an American popular music family group from Gary, Indiana...

. In March 1969, the group signed a record deal with Motown, and by the end of the year they had recorded the first of four consecutive number one singles. The Jackson 5's success allowed the family to move to the Encino neighborhood of Los Angeles in 1971, where they settled in a gated mansion called Hayvenhurst. Although born into a family of professional musicians, Jackson, whose love of horses resulted in a desire to become a race-horse jockey, had no aspiration to become an entertainer. Despite this, her father planned for her to pursue a career in entertainment. She once commented, "No one ever asked me if I wanted to go into show business ... it was expected."

In 1973, at the age of seven, Jackson appeared on stage in Las Vegas Strip
Las Vegas Strip
The Las Vegas Strip is an approximately stretch of Las Vegas Boulevard in Clark County, Nevada; adjacent to, but outside the city limits of Las Vegas proper. The Strip lies within the unincorporated townships of Paradise and Winchester...

 with her siblings in a routine show at the MGM Casino. Jane Cornwell documented in her biography of the singer, Janet Jackson (2002), that at age eight, her father Joseph told her not to call him "Dad" anymore since he was her manager; he told her she would henceforth address him as "Joseph". She began her career as an actress with the debut of the CBS variety show The Jacksons
The Jacksons (TV series)
The Jacksons is an American variety show featuring the Jackson siblings . It was the first variety show where the entire cast were siblings...

(1976), in which she appeared with her siblings Tito, Rebbie
Rebbie Jackson
Maureen Reillette "Rebbie" Brown is an American singer professionally known as Rebbie Jackson . Born and raised in Gary, Indiana, she is the eldest child of the Jackson family of musicians...

, Randy, Michael, Marlon, La Toya
La Toya Jackson
La Toya Yvonne Jackson is an American singer-songwriter, musician, author, television personality, actress, businesswoman, philanthropist, activist and former model. She is the fifth child of the Jackson family...

 and Jackie. In 1977, she was selected by producer Norman Lear
Norman Lear
Norman Milton Lear is an American television writer and producer who produced such 1970s sitcoms as All in the Family, Sanford and Son, One Day at a Time, The Jeffersons, Good Times and Maude...

 to play a recurring role as Penny Gordon Woods
Good Times
Good Times is an American sitcom that originally aired from February 8, 1974, until August 1, 1979, on the CBS television network. It was created by Eric Monte and Michael Evans, and developed by Norman Lear, the series' primary executive producer...

 in the sitcom Good Times
Good Times
Good Times is an American sitcom that originally aired from February 8, 1974, until August 1, 1979, on the CBS television network. It was created by Eric Monte and Michael Evans, and developed by Norman Lear, the series' primary executive producer...

. From 1979 to 1980, she starred in A New Kind of Family
A New Kind of Family
A New Kind of Family is an American sitcom that aired on ABC from September 1979 to January 1980. The series stars Eileen Brennan, Rob Lowe, and Telma Hopkins.-Synopsis:...

as Jojo Ashton, and then joined the cast of Diff'rent Strokes
Diff'rent Strokes
Diff'rent Strokes is an American television sitcom that aired on NBC from November 3, 1978 to May 4, 1985, and on ABC from September 27, 1985 to March 7, 1986...

, portraying Charlene Duprey from 1981 to 1982. She played a recurring role during the fourth season of the television series Fame
Fame (1982 TV series)
Fame is an American television series originally produced between 1982 and 1987. The show was based on the 1980 motion picture of the same name. Using a mixture of drama and music, it followed the lives of the students and faculty at the New York City High School for the Performing Arts. Although...

as Cleo Hewitt, though she later commented that the series was not a project she enjoyed working on.

1982–85: Early recordings

Although Jackson was initially apprehensive about starting a music career, she agreed to participate in recording sessions with her family. The first of these, a duet with her brother Randy titled "Love Song for Kids", took place in 1978. When she was sixteen, her father arranged a contract for her with A&M Records
A&M Records
A&M Records is an American record label owned by Universal Music Group that operates under the mantle of its Interscope-Geffen-A&M division.-Beginnings:...

. Her debut album, Janet Jackson
Janet Jackson (album)
Janet Jackson is the self-titled debut album by American recording artist Janet Jackson, released on September 21, 1982 by A&M Records. Jackson's career as a recording artist was established by her father and manager Joseph Jackson, who arranged her recording contract with A&M Records.The album's...

, produced by soul
Soul music
Soul music is a music genre originating in the United States combining elements of gospel music and rhythm and blues. According to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, soul is "music that arose out of the black experience in America through the transmutation of gospel and rhythm & blues into a form of...

 singers Angela Winbush
Angela Winbush
Angela Winbush is an American R&B/soul singer-songwriter who rose to fame first in the 1980s R&B duo René & Angela, also scoring hits as a solo artist.-Early life and career:...

, René Moore
Rene Moore
René Moore is an American singer-songwriter and producer, and is more memorable musically for hits he produced with his soul co-singer Angela Winbush as part of René & Angela, including "I'll Be Good," "Save Your Love ," "Your Smile," and "You Don't Have to Cry."-Biography:Moore and singer Angela...

 and Leon F. Sylvers III, was released in 1982, the entire production of which was overseen by her father Joseph. It peaked at number six on the Billboard Hot R&B albums chart.

Jackson's second album, Dream Street, was released two years later. Her father recruited her brothers to help produce the album: Marlon co-wrote two of the album's tracks, while Tito, Jackie and Michael provided background vocals. Dream Street reached number nineteen on the R&B albums chart; its sales were less than that of her debut album. The album's only hit, "Don't Stand Another Chance
Don't Stand Another Chance
"Don't Stand Another Chance" is the lead single from Janet Jackson's second album, Dream Street. It was Jackson's second single to enter of the top 10 of the R&B chart reaching #9 in 1984. For the first time, Jackson included the song on her 2008 "Rock Witchu Tour".The song was written by Janet...

", peaked at number nine on Billboards R&B singles chart. In late 1984, Jackson eloped with childhood friend and fellow R&B singer James DeBarge
James DeBarge
James Curtis DeBarge is an American R&B and soul singer. He was one of the members of the singing family group DeBarge, who became stars with their 1980s songs "All This Love", "In a Special Way", "Rhythm of the Night", and "Who's Holding Donna Now?".DeBarge is also known for his 1984 marriage to...

. They divorced shortly afterwards, and the marriage was annulled in mid-1985. In 1985 Jackson joined her sister, La Toya, as a chorist under La Toya's number "Baby Sister" at the Yamaha Music Festival
Yamaha Music Festival
The World Popular Song Festival, also known as Yamaha Music Festival and unofficially as the "Oriental Eurovision", was an international song contest held in 1970-1989. It was organised by the Yamaha Music Foundation in Tokyo, Japan from 1970 until 1989...

 where they ended up with a silver medallion and an "Outstanding Song Award".

1986–88: Control

Following the release of Dream Street, Jackson decided to separate her business affairs from her family. She later commented, "I just wanted to get out of the house, get out from under my father, which was one of the most difficult things that I had to do, telling him that I didn't want to work with him again." A&M Records executive John McClain hired producers Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis to work with her. Within six weeks, Jackson, Jam and Lewis crafted her third studio album, Control
Control (Janet Jackson album)
Control is the third studio album by American recording artist Janet Jackson, released on February 6, 1986 by A&M Records. Her collaborations with songwriters and record producers Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis resulted in an unconventional sound: a fusion of rhythm and blues, funk, disco, rap vocals,...

. Jackson recalled that during the recording of the album, she was threatened by a group of men outside of her hotel in Minneapolis. She stated that "[t]he danger hit home when a couple of guys started stalking me on the street ... Instead of running to Jimmy or Terry for protection, I took a stand. I backed them down. That's how songs like 'Nasty' and 'What Have You Done for Me Lately' were born, out of a sense of self-defense."

Though Jam and Lewis were concerned with achieving cross-over appeal, their primary goal was to create a strong following for the singer within the African American community first. Jam commented, "[w]e wanted to do an album that would be in every black home in America ... we were going for the black album of all time." Released in February 1986, the album peaked at number one on the Billboard 200, with over 200,000 copies sold in one week. Los Angeles Times
Los Angeles Times
The Los Angeles Times is a daily newspaper published in Los Angeles, California, since 1881. It was the second-largest metropolitan newspaper in circulation in the United States in 2008 and the fourth most widely distributed newspaper in the country....

critic Connie Johnson wrote: "Though still a teen-ager, this singer's stance is remarkably nervy and mature. She has a snotty sort of assurance that permeates several cuts, plus the musical muscle to back it up." The Newsweek
Newsweek
Newsweek is an American weekly news magazine published in New York City. It is distributed throughout the United States and internationally. It is the second-largest news weekly magazine in the U.S., having trailed Time in circulation and advertising revenue for most of its existence...

review of Control noted that the album was "an alternative to the sentimental balladry and opulent arrangements of Patti LaBelle
Patti LaBelle
Patricia Louise Holte-Edwards , better known under the stage name, Patti LaBelle, is a Grammy Award winning American singer, author and actress who has spent over 50 years in the music industry...

 and Whitney Houston
Whitney Houston
Whitney Elizabeth Houston is an American singer, actress, producer and a former model. Houston is the most awarded female act of all time, according to Guinness World Records, and her list of awards include 1 Emmy Award, 6 Grammy Awards, 30 Billboard Music Awards, 22 American Music Awards, among...

." Rob Hoerburger of Rolling Stone
Rolling Stone
Rolling Stone is a US-based magazine devoted to music, liberal politics, and popular culture that is published every two weeks. Rolling Stone was founded in San Francisco in 1967 by Jann Wenner and music critic Ralph J...

asserted, "Control is a better album than Diana Ross
Diana Ross
Diana Ernestine Earle Ross is an American singer, record producer, and actress. Ross was lead singer of the Motown group The Supremes during the 1960s. After leaving the group in 1970, Ross began a solo career that included successful ventures into film and Broadway...

 has made in five years and puts Janet in a position similar to the young Donna Summer
Donna Summer
LaDonna Adrian Gaines , known by her stage name, Donna Summer, is an American singer/songwriter who gained prominence during the disco era of the 1970s. She has a mezzo-soprano vocal range. Summer is a five-time Grammy winner and was the first artist to have three consecutive double albums reach...

's—unwilling to accept novelty status and taking her own steps to rise above it." Five of the album's singles—"What Have You Done for Me Lately
What Have You Done for Me Lately
"What Have You Done for Me Lately?" is the lead single from Janet Jackson's third studio album, Control .-Song information:The song was written by Jackson and Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis and produced by Jam and Lewis. Jackson helped with the lyrics of the song and was credited as a "co-producer",...

", "Nasty
Nasty (song)
"Nasty" is the second single from Janet Jackson's third studio album, Control . Released in 1986, the single peaked at number three on Billboard Hot 100 and number one on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs, and remains one of Jackson's signature songs. Paula Abdul choreographed the music video and appeared...

", "When I Think of You
When I Think of You
"When I Think of You" is the third single from Janet Jackson's third studio album, Control . Written by Jackson and Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis, and produced by Jam and Lewis, the song is about a person who finds relief and fun in a lover...

", "Control
Control (Janet Jackson song)
"Control" is the fourth single from Janet Jackson's third album Control. The song was written by Jackson, James Harris III, and Terry Lewis and produced by Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis. Its arrangement, built upon complex rhythmic tracks, showcased state-of-the-art production. The song is about...

", and "Let's Wait Awhile
Let's Wait Awhile
"Let's Wait Awhile" is the fifth single from Janet Jackson's third studio album, Control . It was written by Jackson, and the Flyte Tyme duo, Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis. It was produced by Jackson, Jam and Lewis...

"—peaked within the top 5 of the Billboard Hot 100
Billboard Hot 100
The Billboard Hot 100 is the United States music industry standard singles popularity chart issued weekly by Billboard magazine. Chart rankings are based on radio play and sales; the tracking-week for sales begins on Monday and ends on Sunday, while the radio play tracking-week runs from Wednesday...

. "When I Think of You" became Jackson's first single to peak at number one. "The Pleasure Principle
The Pleasure Principle (song)
"The Pleasure Principle" is the sixth single from Janet Jackson's third studio album, Control . The photo for the single cover was shot by famed fashion photographer David LaChapelle.-Song information:...

" became a top 20 hit, peaking at number fourteen. Most of the Control music videos were choreographed by a then-unknown Paula Abdul
Paula Abdul
Paula Julie Abdul is an American singer-songwriter, dancer, choreographer, actress and television personality.In the 1980s, Abdul rose from cheerleader for the Los Angeles Lakers to highly sought-after choreographer at the height of the music video era before scoring a string of pop music-R&B hits...

. Jonathan Cohen of Billboard magazine commented "[Jackson's] accessible sound and spectacularly choreographed videos were irresistible to MTV, and helped the channel evolve from rock programming to a broader, beat-driven musical mix."

Control was certified five times platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America, and has sold over fourteen million copies worldwide. It won four American Music Awards, from twelve nominations—a record that has yet to be broken—and was nominated for Album of the Year
Grammy Award for Album of the Year
The Grammy Award for Album of the Year is the most prestigious award category at the Grammys. It has been awarded since 1959 and though it was originally presented to the artist alone, the award is now presented to the artist, the producer, the engineer and/or mixer and the mastering engineer...

 at the 1987 Grammy Awards. Musicologist Richard J. Ripani Ph.D., author of The New Blue Music: Changes in Rhythm & Blues, 1950–1999 (2006), observed that the album was one of the first successful records to influence the rise of new jack swing
New jack swing
New jack swing or swingbeat is a fusion genre spearheaded by Teddy Riley and Bernard Belle which became extremely popular from the late-1980s into the mid-1990s. Its influence, along with hip-hop, seeped into pop culture and was the definitive sound of the inventive Black New York club scene...

 by creating a fusion of R&B, rap, funk, disco and synthesized percussion. The success of Control, according to Ripani, bridged the gap between R&B and rap music.

1989–92: Janet Jackson's Rhythm Nation 1814

In September 1989, Jackson released her fourth album, Janet Jackson's Rhythm Nation 1814. Though executives at A&M wanted an album similar to Control, she was determined to imbue her music with a socially conscious message that complimented her songs about love and relationships. She stated, "I'm not naive—I know an album or a song can't change the world. I just want my music and my dance to catch the audience's attention, and to hold it long enough for them to listen to the lyrics and what we're saying." Producer Jimmy Jam told The Boston Globe, "We would always have a TV turned on, usually to CNN
CNN
Cable News Network is a U.S. cable news channel founded in 1980 by Ted Turner. Upon its launch, CNN was the first channel to provide 24-hour television news coverage, and the first all-news television channel in the United States...

 ... And I think the social slant of songs like Rhythm Nation, State of the World and The Knowledge came from that." Rolling Stone magazine's Vince Aletti observed Jackson shifted from "personal freedom to more universal concerns—injustice, illiteracy, crime, drugs—without missing a beat."

Peaking at number one on the Billboard 200, the album was later certified six times platinum and eventually sold over fourteen million copies worldwide. The release became the only album in history to produce number one hits on the Billboard Hot 100 in three separate calendar years—"Miss You Much
Miss You Much
"Miss You Much" is the lead single from American R&B and pop singer Janet Jackson's fourth studio album, Janet Jackson's Rhythm Nation 1814 . The song was written and produced by Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis.-Song information:...

" in 1989, "Escapade
Escapade (song)
"Escapade" is the third single from American R&B and pop singer Janet Jackson's fourth studio album, Janet Jackson's Rhythm Nation 1814 .-Song information:...

" and "Black Cat
Black Cat (song)
"Black Cat" is the sixth single from American recording artist Janet Jackson's fourth studio album, Janet Jackson's Rhythm Nation 1814 . The song was written by Jackson herself...

" in 1990, and "Love Will Never Do (Without You)
Love Will Never Do (Without You)
"Love Will Never Do " is the seventh single from American R&B and pop singer Janet Jackson's fourth studio album, Janet Jackson's Rhythm Nation 1814...

" in 1991—and the only album in the history of the Hot 100 to have seven top 5 hit singles. The corresponding music video for "Rhythm Nation" won the 1989 Grammy Award for Best Long Form Music Video
Grammy Award for Best Long Form Music Video
The Grammy Award for Best Long Form Music Video is an accolade presented at the Grammy Awards, a ceremony that was established in 1958 and originally named the Gramophone Awards, to performers, directors, and producers of quality videos or musical programs...

. Billboard named Rhythm Nation 1814 the number-one selling album of the year in 1990, winning multiple music awards. The Rhythm Nation World Tour, Jackson's first world tour in support of a studio album, became the most successful debut tour by any recording artist. As Jackson began her tour, she was acknowledged for the cultural impact of her music. Joel Selvin
Joel Selvin
Joel Selvin is a San Francisco-based music critic and author known for his weekly column in the San Francisco Chronicle which ran from 1972 to 2009. Selvin has written books covering various aspects of pop music and has interviewed a large number of musical artists...

 of the San Francisco Chronicle
San Francisco Chronicle
thumb|right|upright|The Chronicle Building following the [[1906 San Francisco earthquake|1906 earthquake]] and fireThe San Francisco Chronicle is a newspaper serving primarily the San Francisco Bay Area of the U.S. state of California, but distributed throughout Northern and Central California,...

wrote "the 23-year-old has been making smash hit records for four years, becoming a fixture on MTV and a major role model to teenage girls across the country", and William Allen, then-executive vice president of the United Negro College Fund
United Negro College Fund
The United Negro College Fund is an American philanthropic organization that fundraises college tuition money for black students and general scholarship funds for 39 private historically black colleges and universities. The UNCF was incorporated on April 25, 1944 by Frederick D. Patterson , Mary...

, told the Los Angeles Times
Los Angeles Times
The Los Angeles Times is a daily newspaper published in Los Angeles, California, since 1881. It was the second-largest metropolitan newspaper in circulation in the United States in 2008 and the fourth most widely distributed newspaper in the country....

, "Jackson is a role model for all young people to emulate and the message she has gotten to the young people of this country through the lyrics of 'Rhythm Nation 1814' is having positive effects." She established the "Rhythm Nation Scholarship" as a joint venture with the United Negro College Fund, as well as donating funds from her concert tour to other educational programs, raising over $1/2 million dollars to fund educational projects. Routledge International Encyclopedia of Women: Global Women's Issues and Knowledge (2000) documented that Jackson's success during this time period placed her on par with several other recording artists, including her older brother Michael Jackson, Madonna
Madonna (entertainer)
Madonna is an American singer-songwriter, actress and entrepreneur. Born in Bay City, Michigan, she moved to New York City in 1977 to pursue a career in modern dance. After performing in the music groups Breakfast Club and Emmy, she released her debut album in 1983...

 and Tina Turner
Tina Turner
Tina Turner is an American singer and actress whose career has spanned more than 50 years. She has won numerous awards and her achievements in the rock music genre have led many to call her the "Queen of Rock 'n' Roll".Turner started out her music career with husband Ike Turner as a member of the...

.

With the release of Rhythm Nation 1814, Jackson fulfilled her contract with A&M Records. In 1991, after being approached personally by Virgin Records
Virgin Records
Virgin Records is a British record label founded by English entrepreneur Richard Branson, Simon Draper, and Nik Powell in 1972. The company grew to be a worldwide music phenomenon, with platinum performers such as Roy Orbison, Devo, Genesis, Keith Richards, Janet Jackson, Culture Club, Lenny...

 owner Richard Branson
Richard Branson
Sir Richard Charles Nicholas Branson is an English business magnate, best known for his Virgin Group of more than 400 companies....

, she signed a highly publicized multi-million dollar contract with the label. The contract value, estimated between $32–50 million, made her the highest paid recording artist in contemporary music, until her brother Michael signed a $65 million dollar contract with Sony
Sony Music Entertainment
Sony Music Entertainment ' is the second-largest global recorded music company of the "big four" record companies and is controlled by Sony Corporation of America, the United States subsidiary of Japan's Sony Corporation....

 only a few days later. Ebony
Ebony (magazine)
Ebony, a monthly magazine for the African-American market, was founded by John H. Johnson and has published continuously since the autumn of 1945...

reported: "No individual or group has impacted the world of entertainment as have Michael and Janet Jackson, who both signed multimillion dollar contracts in recent months ... There are many imitators, but few can match Michael and Janet's stunning style and dexterity." Her reputation as a fashion icon also garnered recognition, in that "[a]s Janet was entertaining 2 million fans during her triumphant Rhythm Nation tour, hoards of teen girls were imitating her distinctive look—black quasi-military long jackets, black tight-tight pants, and big white shirts." That same year, she secretly entered into her second marriage with long-term friend—dancer, songwriter and director René Elizondo, Jr. In early 1992, Jackson recorded a song entitled "The Best Things in Life Are Free
The Best Things in Life Are Free
"The Best Things in Life Are Free" is a song by Luther Vandross and Janet Jackson.-Song information:Released in 1992, the song was originally recorded for the Mo' Money soundtrack...

" with Luther Vandross
Luther Vandross
Luther Ronzoni Vandross was an American singer-songwriter and record producer. During his career, Vandross sold over twenty-five million albums and won eight Grammy Awards including Best Male R&B Vocal Performance four times...

, featuring Bell Biv DeVoe
Bell Biv DeVoe
Bell Biv DeVoe is an American R&B musical group which branched off from New Edition. It consists of three of New Edition's previous members, Ricky Bell, Michael Bivins, and Ronnie DeVoe...

 and Ralph Tresvant
Ralph Tresvant
Ralph Tresvant , aka Rizz, is an American tenor singer, best known as one of the lead singers in New Edition.-New Edition:Tresvant sang lead on many of the New Edition lead singles including "Candy Girl", "Cool It Now" and "If It Isn't Love"...

, for the Mo' Money
Mo' Money (soundtrack)
Mo' Money is a 1992 soundtrack for the movie Mo' Money. The soundtrack was very successful, it reached and peaked at number six on the US Billboard 200, and peaked at number two on the Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums chart...

film soundtrack.

1993–96: Janet, Poetic Justice and Design of a Decade 1986/1996

In August 1992, after completing work on Poetic Justice, Jackson set out to plan on recording her first album for Virgin Records. Recording sessions for the album began in September 1992, commencing in the first quarter of 1993.
In May 1993, Jackson's fifth studio album Janet, was released and debuted at number one on the Billboard 200. She commented, "[c]ertain people feel I'm just riding on my last name ... That's why I just put my first name on janet. and why I never asked my brothers to write or produce music for me." Billboard magazine's Larry Flick noted she "also broadens her musical scope on 'janet.' by layering deep house
Deep house
Deep house is a subgenre of house music that fuses elements of Chicago house into the 1980s jazz-funk and touches of soul music. In the early compositions , influences of jazz music were most frequently brought out by using more complex chords than simple triads which are held for many bars and...

, swing jazz, hip hop
Hip hop
Hip hop is a form of musical expression and artistic culture that originated in African-American and Latino communities during the 1970s in New York City, specifically the Bronx. DJ Afrika Bambaataa outlined the four pillars of hip hop culture: MCing, DJing, breaking and graffiti writing...

, rock, and Caribbean elements on top of a radio-minded jack/funk foundation." Rolling Stone wrote: "As princess of America's black royal family, everything Janet Jackson does is important. Whether proclaiming herself in charge of her life, as she did on Control (1986), or commander in chief of a rhythm army dancing to fight society's problems (Rhythm Nation 1814, from 1989), she's influential. And when she announces her sexual maturity, as she does on her new album, Janet., it's a cultural moment." The New Rolling Stone Album Guide (2004) commented that the album's number one hit single "That's the Way Love Goes"—winner of the 1994 Grammy Award for Best R&B Song
Grammy Award for Best R&B Song
The Grammy Award for Best R&B Song has been awarded since 1959. From 1969 to 2000 it was known as the Grammy Award for Best Rhythm & Blues Song, from 1962 to 1968 it was known as Best Rhythm & Blues Recording, and from 1959-1961 as Best Rhythm & Blues Performance...

—and the top 10 singles "If
If (Janet Jackson song)
"If" is a song by American recording artist Janet Jackson from her fifth studio album, janet. . Written and produced by Jackson and Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis, it was released as the album's second single in July 1993, and became Jackson's second top five hit from the janet. album.-Song...

", "Because of Love
Because of Love
"Because of Love" is a song by American singer Janet Jackson from her fifth studio album, janet. . Released as the album's fourth single in January 1994, the track is a love song written and produced by Jackson, James Harris III, and Terry Lewis. A remix of the song, the Frankie & David Treat Mix,...

", "You Want This
You Want This
"You Want This" is a song by American singer Janet Jackson from her fifth studio album, janet. . Released as the album's seventh single in August 1994, the track was written and produced by Jackson and Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis.-Song information:Based on samples from Diana Ross & the Supremes'...

", and "Any Time, Any Place
Any Time, Any Place
"Any Time, Any Place" is a song by American singer Janet Jackson from her fifth studio album, janet. . Released as the album's fifth single on May 23, 1994 it reached number two on the Billboard Hot 100 and became another R&B chart-topper for Jackson.Jackson has performed the song on some of her...

", all contained "grown-up desires". Janet was certified six times platinum by the RIAA, with worldwide sales exceeding twenty million copies.

In July 1993, Jackson made her film debut in Poetic Justice. Rolling Stone described her performance as "a beguiling film debut" despite her inexperience, while The Washington Post
The Washington Post
The Washington Post is Washington, D.C.'s largest newspaper and its oldest still-existing paper, founded in 1877. Located in the capital of the United States, The Post has a particular emphasis on national politics. D.C., Maryland, and Virginia editions are printed for daily circulation...

considered her "believably eccentric". Several reviews were also negative, as Owen Gleiberman of Entertainment Weekly noted she "isn't an inept actress, yet there are no more edges to her personality than there are to her plastic Kewpie-doll visage." Jackson's ballad "Again
Again (Janet Jackson song)
"Again" is a song by American singer Janet Jackson from her fifth studio album, janet. . Written and produced by Jackson, James Harris III, and Terry Lewis, the ballad was released as the album's third single in October 1993. "Again" topped the U.S...

" was featured in the film, and she received her first Golden Globe
Golden Globe Award for Best Original Song
Golden Globe Award for Best Original Song was awarded for the first time in 1962 and has been awarded annually since 1965 by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association.-1960s:...

 and Academy Award
Academy Award for Best Original Song
The Academy Award for Best Original Song is one of the awards given annually to people working in the motion picture industry by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences . It is presented to the songwriters who have composed the best original song written specifically for a film...

 nominations for Best Original Song. In September 1993, Jackson appeared topless on the cover of Rolling Stone magazine with the hands of her then-husband René Elizondo, Jr. covering her breasts. The photograph is the original full-length version of the cropped image used on the cover of the Janet album, shot by Patrick Demarchelier
Patrick Demarchelier
Patrick Demarchelier is a French fashion photographer.-Life:Born near Paris in 1943 to a modest family, he spent his childhood in Le Havre with his mother and four brothers. For his seventeenth birthday, his stepfather bought him his first Eastman Kodak camera...

. Sonia Murray of The Vancouver Sun
The Vancouver Sun
The Vancouver Sun is a daily newspaper first published in the Canadian province of British Columbia on February 12, 1912. The paper is currently published by the Pacific Newspaper Group, a division of Postmedia Network. It is published six days a week, Monday to Saturday...

later reported, "Jackson, 27, remains clearly established as both role model and sex symbol; the Rolling Stone photo of Jackson ... became one of the most recognizable, and most lampooned, magazine covers of the year." David Ritz
David Ritz
David Ritz is an American author, most of whose books are biographies of soul music and R&B legends such as Ray Charles, Smokey Robinson, Aretha Franklin, Marvin Gaye, and Janet Jackson. On four occasions, his co-authored autobiographies of musicians have been awarded the Ralph J...

 likened her transformation to Marvin Gaye
Marvin Gaye
Marvin Pentz Gay, Jr. , better known by his stage name Marvin Gaye, was an American singer-songwriter and musician with a three-octave vocal range....

, stating "[j]ust as Gaye moved from What's Going On
What's Going On
What's Going On is the eleventh studio album by soul musician Marvin Gaye, released May 21, 1971, on the Motown-subsidiary label Tamla Records...

to Let's Get It On
Let's Get It On
Let's Get It On is the twelfth studio album by American soul musician Marvin Gaye, released August 28, 1973, on Tamla Records. Recording sessions for the album took place during June 1970 to July 1973 at Hitsville U.S.A. and Golden World Studio in Detroit, and at Hitsville West in Los Angeles...

, from the austere to the ecstatic, Janet, every bit as serious-minded as Marvin, moved from Rhythm Nation to janet., her statement of sexual liberation." Her second world tour—the Janet World Tour—garnered critical acclaim as Michael Snyder of the San Francisco Chronicle described Jackson's stage performance as erasing the line between "stadium-size pop music concerts and full-scale theatrical extravaganzas."

During this time period, her brother Michael was immersed in a child sex abuse scandal
1993 child sexual abuse accusations against Michael Jackson
In 1993, Evan Chandler accused Michael Jackson of sexually abusing his thirteen-year-old son, Jordan. The relationship between Jackson and Jordan began in May 1992. Evan initially welcomed and encouraged the friendship, and bragged about his connection to a celebrity. The friendship became well...

, of which he denied any wrongdoing. She gave moral support to her brother, and denied allegations made by her sister La Toya in her book La Toya: Growing Up in the Jackson Family
La Toya: Growing up in the Jackson Family
La Toya: Growing up in the Jackson Family is an autobiography written by American singer La Toya Jackson, and co-authored by celebrity biography author Patricia Romanowski...

(1991) that their parents had abused her and her siblings as children. In an interview with Lynn Norment of Ebony
Ebony (magazine)
Ebony, a monthly magazine for the African-American market, was founded by John H. Johnson and has published continuously since the autumn of 1945...

, she commented on her sister's then-estrangement from the family, stating, "her [husband Jack Gordon] has ... brainwashed her so much she keeps herself away from us." In addition, she criticized her brother Jermaine for attacking Michael in his 1991 single "Word to the Badd". In December 1994, she collaborated with her brother Michael on "Scream
Scream/Childhood
"Scream"/"Childhood" is the lead single from Michael Jackson's ninth studio album, HIStory: Past, Present and Future, Book I where "Scream" is the first song and "Childhood" is the tenth song on the second disc of the album HIStory Continues. The A-side, "Scream", is a duet with his younger sister...

", the lead single from his 1995 album HIStory, which was written by both siblings as a response to the media scrutiny he suffered from being accused of child sexual abuse. The song debuted at number five on the Hot 100 singles chart, becoming the first song ever to debut in the top 5. "Scream" is featured in the Guinness Book of Records as the "Most Expensive Music Video Ever Made" at a cost of $7 million, which was filmed in May 1995. Jackson and her brother won the 1995 Grammy Award for Best Short Form Music Video
Grammy Award for Best Short Form Music Video
The Grammy Award for Best Short Form Music Video is an honor presented at the Grammy Awards, a ceremony that was established in 1958 and originally called the Gramophone Awards, to performers, directors, and producers of quality short form music videos...

 for "Scream".

In October 1995, Jackson's first compilation album, Design of a Decade 1986/1996
Design of a Decade 1986/1996
Most music reviewers had a positive reception to Design of a Decade, mainly because of the amount of chart-topping singles it contained, but many noted the "misleading title" as the content predominantly spanned a five-year period....

, was released via A&M Records. It debuted at number four and peaked at number three on the Billboard 200. The lead single "Runaway
Runaway (Janet Jackson song)
"Runaway" is a song by American singer Janet Jackson from her first greatest hits album, Design of a Decade 1986/1996 . Written and produced by Jackson and Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis, the track was released as the album's lead single on August 29, 1995...

" became the first song by a female artist to debut within the top ten of the Hot 100, which eventually peaked at number three. Design of a Decade 1986/1996 was certified two times platinum by the RIAA and sold over four million copies worldwide. Jackson's influence in popular music continued to garner recognition, as Steve Morse of The Boston Globe remarked: "If you're talking about the female power elite in pop, you can't get much higher than Janet Jackson, Bonnie Raitt
Bonnie Raitt
Bonnie Lynn Raitt is an American blues singer-songwriter and a renowned slide guitar player. During the 1970s, Raitt released a series of acclaimed roots-influenced albums which incorporated elements of blues, rock, folk and country, but she is perhaps best known for her more commercially...

, Madonna and Yoko Ono
Yoko Ono
is a Japanese artist, musician, author and peace activist, known for her work in avant-garde art, music and filmmaking as well as her marriage to John Lennon...

. Their collective influence ... is beyond measure. And who could dispute that Janet Jackson now has more credibility than brother Michael?" In January 1996, Jackson renewed her contract with Virgin Records for a reported $80 million dollars. The contract established her as the then-highest paid recording artist in contemporary music, surpassing the recording industry's then-unparalleled $60 million dollar contracts earned by her brother, Michael Jackson, and Madonna.

1997–99: The Velvet Rope

During the two year period prior to the release of her sixth studio album, The Velvet Rope
The Velvet Rope
The Velvet Rope is the sixth studio album by American recording artist Janet Jackson, released October 7, 1997 by Virgin Records. Prior to its debut, Jackson had been at the center of a second high-profile bidding war over her recording contract...

, Jackson reportedly suffered from depression and anxiety. Michael Saunders of The Boston Globe
The Boston Globe
The Boston Globe is an American daily newspaper based in Boston, Massachusetts. The Boston Globe has been owned by The New York Times Company since 1993...

considered the album to be an introspective look into her bout with depression, describing it as a "critical self-examination and an audio journal of a woman's road to self-discovery." The Velvet Rope also introduced sadomasochism into Jackson's music. Eric Henderson of Slant Magazine
Slant Magazine
Slant Magazine is an online publication that features reviews of movies, music, TV, DVDs, theater, and video games, as well as interviews with actors, directors, and musicians. The site covers various film festivals like the New York Film Festival.- History :...

 wrote, "The Velvet Rope is a richly dark masterwork that illustrates that, amid the whips and chains, there is nothing sexier than emotional nakedness." Larry Flick of Billboard called The Velvet Rope "[t]he best American album of the year and the most empowering of her last five." Released in October 1997, The Velvet Rope debuted at number one on the Billboard 200. In August, 1997 the album's lead single, "Got 'til It's Gone
Got 'Til It's Gone
"Got 'til It's Gone" is a song by American singer Janet Jackson, featuring American rapper Q-Tip and Canadian singer Joni Mitchell. It was released as the lead single from Jackson's sixth studio album, The Velvet Rope .-Song information:...

", was released to radio, peaking at number 12 on the Billboard Rhythmic Airplay Chart
Rhythmic Airplay Chart
The Rhythmic Airplay Chart is an airplay chart that is featured weekly in Billboard Magazine. The chart tracks and measures the airplay of songs played on Rhythmic stations, whose playlist includes mostly hit-driven R&B/Hip-Hop, Rhythmic pop, and some Dance tracks...

. The single sampled
Sampling (music)
In music, sampling is the act of taking a portion, or sample, of one sound recording and reusing it as an instrument or a different sound recording of a song or piece. Sampling was originally developed by experimental musicians working with musique concrète and electroacoustic music, who physically...

 the Joni Mitchell
Joni Mitchell
Joni Mitchell, CC is a Canadian musician, singer songwriter, and painter. Mitchell began singing in small nightclubs in her native Saskatchewan and Western Canada and then busking in the streets and dives of Toronto...

 song "Big Yellow Taxi
Big Yellow Taxi
"Big Yellow Taxi" is a song written and originally performed by Joni Mitchell in 1970. It was a big hit in her native Canada as well as Australia and the UK...

", and featured a cameo appearance by rapper Q-Tip
Q-Tip (rapper)
Kamaal Ibn John Fareed , better known by his stage name Q-Tip, is an American hip hop artist, producer, singer, and actor from St. Albans, Queens, New York, part of the critically acclaimed group A Tribe Called Quest...

. "Got 'til It's Gone" won the 1997 Grammy Award for Best Short Form Music Video
Grammy Award for Best Short Form Music Video
The Grammy Award for Best Short Form Music Video is an honor presented at the Grammy Awards, a ceremony that was established in 1958 and originally called the Gramophone Awards, to performers, directors, and producers of quality short form music videos...

. The album's second single "Together Again", became her eighth number one hit on the Billboard Hot 100 singles chart, and placing her on par with Elton John
Elton John
Sir Elton Hercules John, CBE, Hon DMus is an English rock singer-songwriter, composer, pianist and occasional actor...

, Diana Ross, and The Rolling Stones
The Rolling Stones
The Rolling Stones are an English rock band, formed in London in April 1962 by Brian Jones , Ian Stewart , Mick Jagger , and Keith Richards . Bassist Bill Wyman and drummer Charlie Watts completed the early line-up...

. The single spent a record 46 weeks on the Hot 100, as well as spending 19 weeks on the UK singles chart. "I Get Lonely
I Get Lonely
"I Get Lonely" is a song by American singer Janet Jackson from her sixth studio album, The Velvet Rope . Released as the album's third single in late February 1998, it became a top five on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100, as well as Jackson's twelfth U.S. R&B chart-topper...

" peaked at number three on the Hot 100. The Velvet Rope sold over ten million albums worldwide and was certified three times platinum by the RIAA.

Jackson donated a portion of the proceeds earned from "Together Again" to the American Foundation for AIDS Research
AmfAR
amfAR, The Foundation for AIDS Research, is an international nonprofit organization dedicated to the support of AIDS research, HIV prevention, treatment education, and the advocacy of sound AIDS-related public policy.-History:...

. Neil McCormick of The Daily Telegraph
The Daily Telegraph
The Daily Telegraph is a daily morning broadsheet newspaper distributed throughout the United Kingdom and internationally. The newspaper was founded by Arthur B...

observed, "[Jackson] even makes a bid for gay icon status, delivering a diva-ish performance reminiscent of Diana Ross on 'Together Again' (a post-Aids pop song), singing a paean to homosexuality on the jazzy 'Free Xone' and climaxing (if that's the right word) with a bizarre lesbian reinterpretation of Rod Stewart
Rod Stewart
Roderick David "Rod" Stewart, CBE is a British singer-songwriter and musician, born and raised in North London, England and currently residing in Epping. He is of Scottish and English ancestry....

's 'Tonight's the Night'
Tonight's the Night (Gonna Be Alright)
"Tonight's the Night " is a song by Rod Stewart, recorded at Muscle Shoals Sound Studio in Muscle Shoals, Alabama for his 1976 album A Night on the Town. The song became his second US chart topper, peaked at #5 in UK, #3 in Australia and charted well in other parts of the world as well...

." Rolling Stone regarded "Free Xone" as the album's "best song", describing it as an "anti-homophobia track [which] shifts moods and tempos on a dime, segueing from a Prince
Prince (musician)
Prince Rogers Nelson , often known simply as Prince, is an American singer, songwriter, musician, and actor. Prince has produced ten platinum albums and thirty Top 40 singles during his career. Prince founded his own recording studio and label; writing, self-producing and playing most, or all, of...

-like jam to a masterful sample from Archie Bell and the Drells' 'Tighten Up'." The Velvet Rope was honored by the National Black Lesbian and Gay Leadership Forum, and received the award for Outstanding Music Album at the 9th Annual GLAAD Media Awards
GLAAD Media Awards
The GLAAD Media Award is an accolade bestowed by the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation to recognize and honor various branches of the media for their outstanding representations of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community and the issues that affect their lives...

.

In 1998, Jackson began The Velvet Rope World Tour, an international trek that included Europe, North America, Africa, Asia, New Zealand and Australia. Robert Hilburn of The Los Angeles Times reported, "[t]here is so much of the ambition and glamour of a Broadway musical in Janet Jackson's new Velvet Rope tour that it's only fitting that the concert program credits her as the show's 'creator and director'." Her HBO special, The Velvet Rope: Live in Madison Square Garden, was watched by more than fifteen million viewers. The two hour concert beat the ratings of all four major networks in homes that were subscribed to HBO. The HBO concert special was awarded four Emmy
Emmy Award
An Emmy Award, often referred to simply as the Emmy, is a television production award, similar in nature to the Peabody Awards but more focused on entertainment, and is considered the television equivalent to the Academy Awards and the Grammy Awards .A majority of Emmys are presented in various...

 nominations including one win. Jackson donated a portion of her concert ticket sales to America's Promise
America's Promise
America's Promise — The Alliance for Youth is a foundation founded by Colin Powell in 1997 to help children and youth from all socioeconomic sectors in the United States.In late April 1997 Presidents Bill Clinton, George H. W...

, a non-profit organization designed by Colin Powell
Colin Powell
Colin Luther Powell is an American statesman and a retired four-star general in the United States Army. He was the 65th United States Secretary of State, serving under President George W. Bush from 2001 to 2005. He was the first African American to serve in that position. During his military...

 to assist disenfranchised youth.

The following month, Jackson separated from Elizondo Jr. As her world tour came to a close in 1999, Jackson lent guest vocals to a number of songs by other artists, including Shaggy's
Shaggy (musician)
Orville Richard Burrell , better known by his stage name Shaggy, is a Jamaican-American reggae singer and rapper. He is perhaps best known for his 1995 single "Boombastic" and 2000 single "It Wasn't Me"...

 "Luv Me, Luv Me
Luv Me, Luv Me
"Luv Me, Luv Me" is a song by Jamaican-American reggae singer Shaggy, released on September 17, 2001 as the third official single from his multi-platinum album Hot Shot...

", for the soundtrack to How Stella Got Her Groove Back
How Stella Got Her Groove Back (soundtrack)
How Stella Got Her Groove Back is the soundtrack to the 1998 film, How Stella Got Her Groove Back. It was released on August 11, 1998 through MCA Records, consisted mainly of R&B music, and was entirely produced by the production duo, Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis...

, "God's Stepchild" from the Down on the Delta soundtrack, "Girlfriend/Boyfriend
Girlfriend/Boyfriend
"Girlfriend/Boyfriend" is the second and final single by R&B group Blackstreet from their third album Finally. Janet Jackson is also featured in the song as well as a rappers Ja Rule and Eve...

" with BLACKstreet
Blackstreet
Blackstreet is an American R&B group founded in 1991 by Thomas Taliaferro and Teddy Riley, the inventor of New Jack Swing known for his work as a member of Guy. Chauncey Hannibal and Levi Little were signed under production and management contracts with Thomas Taliaferro and were merged into what...

, and "What's It Gonna Be?!
What's It Gonna Be?!
"What's It Gonna Be?!" is a single released in 1999 by rapper Busta Rhymes Featuring R&B singer Janet Jackson. It proved to be an international success, gaining the highest peak on the Billboard Hot 100 chart at #3....

" with Busta Rhymes
Busta Rhymes
Trevor Tahiem Smith, Jr., better known by his stage name Busta Rhymes ,Smith is an American rapper, producer and actor. Chuck D of Public Enemy gave him the alias Busta Rhymes after NFL wide receiver George "Buster" Rhymes...

. She also performed a duet with Elton John for the song "I Know the Truth". At the 1999 World Music Awards
World Music Awards
The World Music Awards is an international awards show founded in 1989 that annually honors recording artists based on worldwide sales figures provided by the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry . John Martinotti is an executive producer and co-founder of the show...

, Jackson received the Legend Award alongside Cher
Cher
Cher is an American recording artist, television personality, actress, director, record producer and philanthropist. Referred to as the Goddess of Pop, she has won an Academy Award, a Grammy Award, an Emmy Award, three Golden Globes and a Cannes Film Festival Award among others for her work in...

 for "outstanding contribution to the pop industry." As 1999 ended, Billboard magazine ranked Jackson as the second most successful artist of the decade, behind Mariah Carey
Mariah Carey
Mariah Carey is an American singer-songwriter, record producer, and actress. She made her recording debut with the release of her eponymous studio album in 1990, under the guidance of Columbia Records executive Tommy Mottola, whom she later married in 1993...

.

2000–03: Nutty Professor II: The Klumps and All for You

In July 2000, Jackson appeared in her second film, Nutty Professor II: The Klumps
Nutty Professor II: The Klumps
Nutty Professor II: The Klumps is a 2000 comedy film directed by Peter Segal. It is the sequel to the 1996 film The Nutty Professor and stars Eddie Murphy and Janet Jackson. Murphy plays not only the inept but brilliant scientist, Sherman Klump, as in the first film, but also most of Sherman's...

, as Professor Denise Gaines, opposite Eddie Murphy
Eddie Murphy
Edward Regan "Eddie" Murphy is an American stand-up comedian, actor, writer, singer, director, and musician....

. The film became her second to open at number one at the box office, grossing an estimated $42.7 million dollars in its opening weekend. Her contribution to the film's soundtrack, "Doesn't Really Matter
Doesn't Really Matter
"Doesn't Really Matter" is a song recorded by American R&B-pop singer Janet Jackson for the soundtrack to the 2000 film Nutty Professor II: The Klumps...

", became her ninth number one Billboard Hot 100 single. In the same year, Jackson's husband filed for divorce. Jeff Gordinier of Entertainment Weekly reported that for eight of the thirteen years she and Elizondo had known one another, "[they] were married—a fact they managed to hide not only from the international press but from Jackson's own father." Elizondo filed a multi-million dollar lawsuit against her, estimated between $10–25 million; they did not reach a settlement until 2003.

Jackson was awarded the American Music Awards' Award of Merit
American Music Award of Merit
-2000s:*American Music Awards of 2008**Annie Lennox*American Music Awards of 2004**Bon Jovi*American Music Awards of 2003**Alabama*American Music Awards of 2002**Garth Brooks*American Music Awards of 2001**Janet Jackson*American Music Awards of 2000...

 in March 2001 for "her finely crafted, critically acclaimed and socially conscious, multi-platinum albums." She became the inaugural honoree of the "mtvICON
MTV Icon
MTV Icon was a series of annual television specials produced by MTV between 2001 and 2004, each paying homage to a musical artist or band selected as a cultural icon, in a format similar to the network's annual Video Music Awards and Movie Awards events...

" award, "an annual recognition of artists who have made significant contributions to music, music video and pop culture while tremendously impacting the MTV generation." Jackson's seventh album, All for You, was released in April 2001, debuting at number one on the Billboard 200. Selling 605,000 copies, All for You had the highest first-week sales total of her career. Stephen Thomas Erlewine
Stephen Thomas Erlewine
Stephen Thomas Erlewine is a senior editor for Allmusic. He is the author of many artist biographies and record reviews for Allmusic, as well as a freelance writer, occasionally contributing liner notes. He is also frontman and guitarist for the Ann Arbor-based band Who Dat?Erlewine is the nephew...

 of Allmusic stated "[Jackson's] created a record that's luxurious and sensual, spreading leisurely over its 70 minutes, luring you in even when you know better", and Jon Pareles
Jon Pareles
Jon Pareles is an American journalist who is the chief popular music critic in the arts section of the New York Times. He played jazz flute and piano, and graduated from Yale University with a degree in music. In the 1970s he was an associate editor of Crawdaddy!, and in the 1980s an associate...

 of The New York Times
The New York Times
The New York Times is an American daily newspaper founded and continuously published in New York City since 1851. The New York Times has won 106 Pulitzer Prizes, the most of any news organization...

commented, "[a]s other rhythm and blues strips down to match the angularity of hip-hop, Ms. Jackson luxuriates in textures as dizzying as a new infatuation."
The album's title-track, "All for You", debuted on the Hot 100 at number fourteen, the highest debut ever for a single that was not commercially available. Teri VanHorn of MTV dubbed Jackson "Queen of Radio" as the single made radio airplay history, "[being] added to every pop, rhythmic and urban radio station that reports to the national trade magazine Radio & Records" in its first week. The single peaked at number one, where it topped the Hot 100 for seven weeks. It received the 2001 Grammy Award for Best Dance Recording
Grammy Award for Best Dance Recording
The Grammy Award for Best Dance Recording is an award presented at the Grammy Awards, a ceremony that was established in 1958 and originally called the Gramophone Awards, to recording artists for works containing quality vocal performances in the dance music genre...

. The second single, "Someone to Call My Lover
Someone to Call My Lover
"Someone to Call My Lover" is a song by American recording artist Janet Jackson from her seventh studio album, All for You. Written and produced by Jackson and Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis, the song was released as the album's second single on June 26, 2001....

", which contained a heavy guitar loop of America's
America (band)
America is an English-American folk rock band that originally included members Gerry Beckley, Dewey Bunnell and Dan Peek. The three members were barely out of their teens when they became a musical sensation during 1972, scoring #1 hits and winning a Grammy for best new musical artist...

 "Ventura Highway
Ventura Highway
"Ventura Highway" is a popular 1972 song by the rock 'n' roll band America from its album, Homecoming.-Background:The vocalist and writer of the song Dewey Bunnell has said that the lyric "alligator lizards in the air" in the song is a reference to the shapes of clouds in the sky...

", peaked at number three on the Hot 100. All for You was certified double platinum by the RIAA and sold more than nine million copies worldwide.

Jackson's All for You Tour
All for You Tour
The All for You Tour was a worldwide concert tour in 2001 by American pop/R&B singer Janet Jackson in support of her multi-platinum album All for You...

 began in July, 2001. Los Angeles Times pop music critic Robert Hilburn gave a negative review of the concert tour, comparing it unfavorably to Madonna's Drowned World Tour
Drowned World Tour
The Drowned World Tour was the fifth concert tour by American singer-songwriter Madonna in support of her seventh and eighth studio albums Ray of Light and Music. It was also her first tour in eight years, following The Girlie Show World Tour in 1993...

 and Britney Spears
Britney Spears
Britney Jean Spears is an American recording artist and entertainer. Born in McComb, Mississippi, and raised in Kentwood, Louisiana, Spears began performing as a child, landing acting roles in stage productions and television shows. She signed with Jive Records in 1997 and released her debut album...

' Dream Within a Dream Tour
Dream Within a Dream Tour
The Dream Within a Dream Tour was the third concert tour by American recording artist Britney Spears. It promoted her third studio album Britney in North America and Japan. The Dream Within a Dream Tour was promoted by Concerts West, marking the first time Spears did not tour with Clear Channel...

. Hilburn remarked: "At 35, Jackson is only eight years younger than Madonna, but her presentation feels more akin to Britney Spears'. Madonna knows how to dig beneath the surface; Jackson lives on it." Hilburns' review sparked backlash from those who felt Jackson gave the superior performance. David Massey commented that "Janet outdid the Material Girl by a mile ... And the gall to bring Britney Spears' name into the picture by saying Janet's show is like Britney's? Hello, it's the other way around!" Similarly, Rudy Scalese complimented Jackson's performance, stating: "Janet Jackson hasn't skipped a beat. She is still the Queen of Pop." Jackson donated a portion of the proceeds from the tour's ticket sales to the Boys & Girls Clubs of America, with President Roxanne Spillett stating, "[t]he increased awareness she will bring to our cause, along with her generous financial contribution, will help us reach an even greater number of young people in search of hope and opportunity."

In 2002, Jackson collaborated with reggae
Reggae
Reggae is a music genre first developed in Jamaica in the late 1960s. While sometimes used in a broader sense to refer to most types of Jamaican music, the term reggae more properly denotes a particular music style that originated following on the development of ska and rocksteady.Reggae is based...

 singer Beenie Man
Beenie Man
Anthony Moses Davis , better known by his stage name Beenie Man, is a Grammy award winning Jamaican reggae artist. He is the self-proclaimed "King of the Dancehall".-Biography:...

 on the song "Feel It Boy
Feel It Boy
- Song information :The song was written by Beenie Man and produced by award-winning duo The Neptunes. It was released as a single on September 16, 2002, peaking in the top 20's and 30's in most countries. It spent 12 weeks on the Billboard Hot 100 peaking at #28...

". She later admitted regret over the collaboration after discovering Beenie Man's music often contained homophobic lyrics, and soon issued an apology to her gay
Gay community
The gay community, or LGBT community, is a loosely defined grouping of LGBT and LGBT-supportive people, organizations and subcultures, united by a common culture and civil rights movements. These communities generally celebrate pride, diversity, individuality, and sexuality...

 fans in an article published in The Voice
The Voice (newspaper)
The Voice is a British national weekly tabloid newspaper owned by the Jamaican publisher, GV Media Group, aimed at the British Afro-Caribbean community. The paper is based in the London Docklands and is published every Monday.-History:...

. Jackson also began her relationship with record producer Jermaine Dupri
Jermaine Dupri
Jermaine Dupri Mauldin , known as Jermaine Dupri or JD, is an American record producer, songwriter and rapper.- Early life and career :...

 that same year.

2004–05: Super Bowl XXXVIII and Damita Jo

For the Super Bowl XXXVIII
Super Bowl XXXVIII
Super Bowl XXXVIII was an American football game played on February 1, 2004 at Reliant Stadium in Houston, Texas to decide the National Football League champion following the 2003 regular season....

 halftime show in February 2004, Jackson performed a medley of her singles "All for You" and "Rhythm Nation"; she then performed alongside Justin Timberlake
Justin Timberlake
Justin Randall Timberlake is an American pop musician and actor. He achieved early fame when he appeared as a contestant on Star Search, and went on to star in the Disney Channel television series The New Mickey Mouse Club, where he met future bandmate JC Chasez...

. As Timberlake sang the lyric "gonna have you naked by the end of this song" from his single "Rock Your Body
Rock Your Body
"Rock Your Body" is the third single from Justin Timberlake's solo debut album Justified. The song features Vanessa Marquez. She was at that time to Star Trak Entertainment....

", he tore open her top, exposing her right breast. After the performance, Jackson apologized, calling it an accident, and said that Timberlake was supposed to pull away the bustier
Bustier
A bustier is a form-fitting garment for women, which is traditionally worn as lingerie. Its primary purpose is to push up the bust by tightening against the upper midriff and forcing the breasts up, while gently shaping the waist. Nowadays, it might also be worn as a push-up bra under a low-backed...

 and leave the red-lace bra intact. She further commented, "I am really sorry if I offended anyone. That was truly not my intention ... MTV, CBS, the NFL had no knowledge of this whatsoever, and unfortunately, the whole thing went wrong in the end." Timberlake also issued an apology, calling the accident a "wardrobe malfunction
Wardrobe malfunction
A wardrobe malfunction is a euphemism for accidental exposure of intimate parts. It is different from flashing, as the latter implies a deliberate exposure...

". TIME reported that the incident became the most replayed moment in TiVo
TiVo
TiVo is a digital video recorder developed and marketed by TiVo, Inc. and introduced in 1999. TiVo provides an on-screen guide of scheduled broadcast programming television programs, whose features include "Season Pass" schedules which record every new episode of a series, and "WishList"...

 history and Monte Burke of
Forbes
Forbes
Forbes is an American publishing and media company. Its flagship publication, the Forbes magazine, is published biweekly. Its primary competitors in the national business magazine category are Fortune, which is also published biweekly, and Business Week...

magazine reported "[t]he fleeting moment enticed an estimated 35,000 new [TiVo] subscribers to sign up." Jackson was later listed in the 2007 edition of Guinness World Records
Guinness World Records
Guinness World Records, known until 2000 as The Guinness Book of Records , is a reference book published annually, containing a collection of world records, both human achievements and the extremes of the natural world...

 as "Most Searched in Internet History" and the "Most Searched for News Item". CBS, the NFL
National Football League
The National Football League is the highest level of professional American football in the United States, and is considered the top professional American football league in the world. It was formed by eleven teams in 1920 as the American Professional Football Association, with the league changing...

, and MTV (CBS's sister network, which produced the halftime show), denied any knowledge of, and all responsibility for, the incident. Still, the Federal Communications Commission
Federal Communications Commission
The Federal Communications Commission is an independent agency of the United States government, created, Congressional statute , and with the majority of its commissioners appointed by the current President. The FCC works towards six goals in the areas of broadband, competition, the spectrum, the...

 continued an investigation, ultimately losing its appeal for a $550,000 fine against CBS.

As a result of the incident, CBS would only allow Jackson and Timberlake to appear during the 46th Grammy Awards ceremony if they each made a public apology to the network, without attributing the incident to a "wardrobe malfunction". Timberlake issued an apology, but Jackson refused. Jermaine Dupri resigned from his position on the Grammy Award
Grammy Award
A Grammy Award — or Grammy — is an accolade by the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences of the United States to recognize outstanding achievement in the music industry...

s committee as a result. The controversy halted plans for Jackson to star in a made-for-TV biopic
Biographical film
A biographical film, or biopic , is a film that dramatizes the life of an actual person or people. They differ from films “based on a true story” or “historical films” in that they attempt to comprehensively tell a person’s life story or at least the most historically important years of their...

 on the life on singer Lena Horne
Lena Horne
Lena Mary Calhoun Horne was an American singer, actress, civil rights activist and dancer.Horne joined the chorus of the Cotton Club at the age of sixteen and became a nightclub performer before moving to Hollywood, where she had small parts in numerous movies, and more substantial parts in the...

 for ABC-TV
American Broadcasting Company
The American Broadcasting Company is an American commercial broadcasting television network. Created in 1943 from the former NBC Blue radio network, ABC is owned by The Walt Disney Company and is part of Disney-ABC Television Group. Its first broadcast on television was in 1948...

. Though Horne was reportedly displeased by the Super Bowl incident and insisted that ABC pull Jackson from the project, according to Jackson's representatives, she withdrew from the project willingly.

In March 2004, Jackson's eighth studio album, Damita Jo (Jackson's middle name), was released debuting at number two on the Billboard 200. Allmusic's Stephen Thomas Erlewine
Stephen Thomas Erlewine
Stephen Thomas Erlewine is a senior editor for Allmusic. He is the author of many artist biographies and record reviews for Allmusic, as well as a freelance writer, occasionally contributing liner notes. He is also frontman and guitarist for the Ann Arbor-based band Who Dat?Erlewine is the nephew...

 referred to the album as "the aural equivalent of hardcore pornography—it leaves nothing to the imagination and it's endlessly repetitive." Alternatively, a review by Ann Powers
Ann Powers
Ann Powers is an American writer and pop music critic.Powers has been writing about popular music and society since the early 1980s...

 of
Blender
Blender (magazine)
Blender was an American music magazine that billed itself as "the ultimate guide to music and more". It was also known for sometimes steamy pictorials of celebrities....

magazine asserted: "Artfully structured, unapologetically explicit, Damita Jo is erotica at its friendliest and most well-balanced. This hour-plus of Tantric flow even erases the memory of Jackson’s clunky Super Bowl breast-baring." By the end of the month it was certified platinum by the RIAA, and eventually sold over three million albums worldwide. Although the album debuted at number two, its four singles all failed to become top 40 hits. Keith Caulfield of Billboard commented, "[f]or a singles artist like Jackson, who has racked up 27 top 10 Hot 100 singles in her career, including 10 No. 1s, this could probably be considered a disappointment." Billboards Clover Hope reported Damita Jo "was largely overshadowed by the Super Bowl fiasco" and that Jermaine Dupri, the then-president of the urban music department at Virgin Records, expressed "sentiments of nonsupport from the label."

Jackson appeared as a host of Saturday Night Live
Saturday Night Live
Saturday Night Live is a live American late-night television sketch comedy and variety show developed by Lorne Michaels and Dick Ebersol. The show premiered on NBC on October 11, 1975, under the original title of NBC's Saturday Night.The show's sketches often parody contemporary American culture...

on April 10, 2004 and also appeared as a guest star on the television sitcom Will & Grace
Will & Grace
Will & Grace was an American television sitcom that was originally broadcast on NBC from September 21, 1998 to May 18, 2006 for a total of eight seasons. Will & Grace remains the most successful television series with gay principal characters...

portraying herself. In November 2004, Jackson was honored as an African-American role model by 100 Black Men of America
100 Black Men of America
100 Black Men Of America is a men's civic organization and service club whose stated goal is to educate and empower African American children and teens. As of 2009 the organization has 110 chapters and over 10,000 members in different cities in the United States and throughout the world...

, Inc., who presented her with the "organization's Artistic Achievement Award saluting 'a career that has gone from success to greater success'." Though the New York Amsterdam News reported "[t]here were a number of attendees who expressed dismay over presenting an award to the 38-year-old performer" because of the Super Bowl incident, the organization's President Paul Williams responded, "[a]n individual's worth can't be judged by a single moment in that person's life." In June 2005, she was honored with a Humanitarian Award by the Human Rights Campaign
Human Rights Campaign
The Human Rights Campaign is the United States' largest LGBT advocacy group and lobbying organization; according to the HRC, it has more than one million members and supporters...

 and AIDS Project Los Angeles
AIDS Project Los Angeles
AIDS Project Los Angeles is a 5013 non-profit organization, "dedicated to improving the lives of people affected by AIDS disease, reducing the incidence of HIV infection, and advocating for fair and effective HIV-related public policy."...

, in recognition of her work and involvement in raising money for AIDS charities.

2006–07: 20 Y.O. and Why Did I Get Married?

To promote her ninth studio album, 20 Y.O.
20 Y.O.
20 Y.O. is the ninth studio album by American recording artist Janet Jackson, released by Virgin Records America on September 20, 2006 in Japan, September 22 internationally, and September 26 in Canada and the United States...

, Jackson appeared on the cover of Us Weekly
Us Weekly
Us Weekly is a celebrity gossip magazine, founded in 1977 by The New York Times Company, who sold it in 1980. It was acquired by Wenner Media in 1986. The publication covers topics ranging from celebrity relationships to the latest trends in fashion, beauty, and entertainment...

in June 2006, which became one of the magazine's best-selling issues. Virgin Records released 20 Y.O. in September 2006, which debuted at number two on the Billboard 200. Janine Coveney of Billboard reported the album title, 20 Years Old, represents "a celebration of the joyful liberation and history-making musical style of her 1986 breakthrough album, Control." Rolling Stone magazine's Evan Serpick remarked "[t]he title of Janet Jackson's latest album refers to the two decades since she released her breakthrough, Control, with hits like 'Nasty' and 'What Have You Done for Me Lately.' If we were her, we wouldn't make the comparison." However, Glenn Gamboa of Newsday gave the album a positive rating, stating that "[o]n '20 Y.O.' she skips all that drama of breaking free and asserting herself. She also keeps most of the tie-me-up, tie-me-down sexual raunch of her recent albums in the closet. This album is all about dancing and returning to her R&B roots."

The album's lead single "Call on Me
Call on Me (Janet Jackson song)
"Call on Me" is a song by American R&B singer Janet Jackson and American rapper Nelly from Jackson's ninth studio album, 20 Y.O. . Written by Jermaine Dupri, Johnta Austin, James "LRoc" Phillips, Nelly, James Harris III, and Terry Lewis, it was released as the album's lead single in mid-2006,...

", a duet with rapper Nelly
Nelly
Cornell Iral Haynes, Jr. , better known by his stage name Nelly, is an Grammy Award winning American rapper and actor. He has performed with the rap group St. Lunatics since 1993 and signed to Universal Records in 1999. Under Universal, Nelly began his solo career in 2000 with his debut album...

, peaked at number twenty-five on the Hot 100. 20 Y.O. was certified platinum by the RIAA and sold 679,000 copies in the U.S. and 1.2 million worldwide. Billboard magazine reported the release of 20 Y.O. satisfied Jackson's contract with Virgin Records; Jermaine Dupri, who co-produced 20 Y.O., left his position as head of urban music at Virgin following the "disappointing performance" of Jackson's album.

In January 2007, Jackson was ranked the seventh richest woman in the entertainment business by Forbes magazine, having amassed a fortune of over $150 million. Later that year, she starred opposite Tyler Perry as a psychotherapist named Patrica in the feature film Why Did I Get Married?
Why Did I Get Married?
Why Did I Get Married? is a 2007 comedy-drama film adaptation written, produced, directed, and starring Tyler Perry, which was inspired by the play of the same name. The film stars Janet Jackson, Jill Scott, Malik Yoba, Sharon Leal, Tasha Smith, Michael Jai White, Richard T. Jones, and Keesha Sharp...

. It became her third consecutive film to open at number one at the box office, grossing $21.4 million in its first week. Variety
Variety (magazine)
Variety is an American weekly entertainment-trade magazine founded in New York City, New York, in 1905 by Sime Silverman. With the rise of the importance of the motion-picture industry, Daily Variety, a daily edition based in Los Angeles, California, was founded by Silverman in 1933. In 1998, the...

magazine's Ronnie Scheib described Jackson's performance as charming, yet bland, while Wesley Morris of The Boston Globe commented that Jackson portrayed her character with "soft authority". In February 2008, Jackson won the NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Motion Picture
NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Motion Picture
The NAACP Image Award winners for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Motion Picture:-Stats:Performances that earned Oscar nominations or wins* Sophie Okonedo - Hotel Rwanda* Jennifer Hudson - Dreamgirls [won Image Award]...

 for her role.

2008–09: Discipline, death of Michael Jackson and Number Ones

In July 2007, Jackson changed labels and signed a record contract with Island Records
Island Records
Island Records is a record label that was founded by Chris Blackwell in Jamaica. It was based in the United Kingdom for many years and is now owned by Universal Music Group...

. Her tenth studio album, Discipline
Discipline (Janet Jackson album)
Discipline is the tenth studio album by American recording artist Janet Jackson, released by Island Records on February 26, 2008. It was her only album released for Island Records, after her five-album deal with Virgin Records was fulfilled with the release of 20 Y.O....

, was released in February 2008, debuting on the Billboard 200 at number one. Margeaux Watson of Entertainment Weekly remarked, "her boy-crazy lyrics—which often sound like the cheesy text messages of a lovesick adolescent—certainly lack the flavor needed to put this once-celebrated pop star back on top of critics' lists." Andy Kellman of Allmusic expressed: "Janet probably won't hit that late-'80s peak again, but that is no excuse to write her off." Her single, "Feedback
Feedback (song)
"Feedback" is a song by American singer Janet Jackson. The R&B/dance-pop song was written by Rodney "Darkchild" Jerkins, Dernst Emile, Tasleema Yasin, and LaShawn Daniels, and was produced by D'Mile and Jerkins. "Feedback" was released as the lead single from Jackson's tenth studio album,...

", peaked at number nineteen on the Hot 100. In April 2008, Jackson received the Vanguard Award
GLAAD Media Awards
The GLAAD Media Award is an accolade bestowed by the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation to recognize and honor various branches of the media for their outstanding representations of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community and the issues that affect their lives...

 at the 19th Annual GLAAD Media Awards, honoring her contributions in promoting equal rights for LGBT
LGBT
LGBT is an initialism that collectively refers to "lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender" people. In use since the 1990s, the term "LGBT" is an adaptation of the initialism "LGB", which itself started replacing the phrase "gay community" beginning in the mid-to-late 1980s, which many within the...

 people. GLAAD President Neil G. Giuliano commented, "Ms. Jackson has a tremendous following inside the LGBT community and out, and having her stand with us against the defamation that LGBT people still face in our country is extremely significant." Jackson's fifth concert tour—the Rock Witchu Tour
Rock Witchu Tour
The Rock Witchu Tour was the fifth concert tour by American singer-songwriter, Janet Jackson, in support of her tenth studio album Discipline. This was Jackson's first tour in nearly seven years. The tour visited North America...

—began in September 2008. That same month, she and her record label parted ways through mutual agreement. Rodney 'Darkchild' Jerkins
Rodney Jerkins
Rodney "Darkchild" Jerkins is an American songwriter, record producer, and musician. Jerkins received two Grammy nominations in 2011.-Biography:...

, who produced the album expressed, "I felt like it wasn't pushed correctly ... She just didn't get her just-do as an artist of that magnitude." In the fourteen months she was associated with Island, her record had sold 449,000 copies and did not receive RIAA certification. Billboard reported that because of Jackson's dissatisfaction with her album's promotion, "the label agreed to dissolve their relationship with the artist at her request."

In June 2009, Jackson's brother Michael died
Death of Michael Jackson
On June 25, 2009, American singer Michael Jackson died of acute propofol intoxication after he suffered a respiratory arrest at his home in the Holmby Hills neighborhood in Los Angeles. His personal physician, Conrad Murray, said he found Jackson in his room, not breathing, but with a faint pulse,...

 at age 50. At the 2009 BET Awards
BET Awards
The BET Awards were established in 2001 by the Black Entertainment Television network to celebrate African Americans and other minorities in music, acting, sports, and other fields of entertainment over the past year. The awards are presented annually and broadcast live on BET...

, she spoke publicly for the first time concerning his death, stating "I'd just like to say, to you, Michael is an icon, to us, Michael is family. And he will forever live in all of our hearts. On behalf of my family and myself, thank you for all of your love, thank you for all of your support. We miss him so much." In an exclusive interview with Harper's Bazaar
Harper's Bazaar
Harper’s Bazaar is an American fashion magazine, first published in 1867. Harper’s Bazaar is published by Hearst and, as a magazine, considers itself to be the style resource for “women who are the first to buy the best, from casual to couture.”...

, she revealed she had first learned of her brother's death while filming on location in Atlanta for Why Did I Get Married Too?
Why Did I Get Married Too?
Why Did I Get Married Too? is a 2010 American comedy-drama film produced by Lionsgate and Tyler Perry Studios and stars Janet Jackson, Tyler Perry, and Tasha Smith...

. Amidst the public and private mourning with her family, she focused on work to deal with the grief, avoiding any news coverage of her sibling's death; she stated "[i]t's still important to face reality, and not that I'm running, but sometimes you just need to get away for a second." During this time, she also ended her seven year relationship with Jermaine Dupri. In September 2009, she performed "Scream" at the 2009 MTV Video Music Awards
2009 MTV Video Music Awards
The 2009 MTV Video Music Awards took place on September 13, 2009, at Radio City Music Hall in New York City, honoring the best music videos from June 19, 2008, to June 29, 2009. Comedian Russell Brand hosted the event for the second time in a row. The awards were held a few months after Michael...

 as part of a tribute to Michael. MTV General Manager Stephen Friedman stated: "We felt there was no one better than Janet to anchor it and send a really powerful message." She worked with several world renowned choreographers, with her personal creative director, Gil Duldulao, coordinating the performance. It was lauded by several critics and Michael Slezak of Entertainment Weekly commented, "[s]he worked that stage harder than an underpaid assistant doin’ overtime, and as tributes go, this was as energetic as it was heartfelt."

Her single, "Make Me
Make Me
"Make Me" is a song by American recording artist Janet Jackson. It is the lead single and final track from her second greatest hits compilation Number Ones . The song was written by Jackson, Rodney "Darkchild" Jerkins, Thomas Lumpkins, and Michaela Shiloh...

", was released following the VMA performance initially as an audio stream
Streaming media
Streaming media is multimedia that is constantly received by and presented to an end-user while being delivered by a streaming provider.The term "presented" is used in this article in a general sense that includes audio or video playback. The name refers to the delivery method of the medium rather...

 on her official web site, and was later made available for digital download. Soon after its release, the single became Jackson's 19th number one Hot Dance Club Songs chart. Later that month, Jackson chaired the inaugural benefit of amfAR
AmfAR
amfAR, The Foundation for AIDS Research, is an international nonprofit organization dedicated to the support of AIDS research, HIV prevention, treatment education, and the advocacy of sound AIDS-related public policy.-History:...

, The Foundation for AIDS Research, held in Milan
Milan
Milan is the second-largest city in Italy and the capital city of the region of Lombardy and of the province of Milan. The city proper has a population of about 1.3 million, while its urban area, roughly coinciding with its administrative province and the bordering Province of Monza and Brianza ,...

 in conjunction with fashion week
Fashion Week
A fashion week is a fashion industry event, lasting approximately one week, which allows fashion designers, brands or "houses" to display their latest collections in runway shows and buyers and the media to take a look at the latest trends. Most importantly, these events let the industry know...

. CEO Kevin Robert Frost commented, "[w]e are profoundly grateful to Janet Jackson for joining amfAR as a chair of its first event in Milan ... She brings incomparable grace and a history of dedication to the fight against AIDS." One of the signature pieces sold for the auction was a pair of crystal-studded boots her brother Michael had intended to wear for the This Is It
This Is It (Michael Jackson concerts)
This Is It was a planned series of fifty concerts by Michael Jackson to be held at The O2 Arena in London. They were scheduled to begin in July 2009 and continue through to March 2010. However, with all concerts sold out, Jackson died less than three weeks before the first concert date...

 concert tour, which sold for $14,650. The event raised a total of $1.1 million for the nonprofit organization. She stated, "I'd just like to thank everyone here in the global fashion community who've done so much to help amfAR and to support HIV/AIDS research." Her second greatest hits compilation, Number Ones
Number Ones (Janet Jackson album)
Sal Cinquemani of Slant Magazine gave the album four-and-a-half stars, commenting "the songs on Janet Jackson's first-ever comprehensive hits collection, Number Ones, have been sequenced in chronological order only magnifies the impact she had on late-'80s and early-'90s pop, when she helped define...

—titled The Best outside of the United States—was released in November, 2009 as a joint venture between Universal Music Enterprises
Universal Music Enterprises
Universal Music Enterprises, a.k.a. UMe is the catalogue division of Universal Music Group. It includes Hip-O Records, Universal Chronicles and UM3 ....

 (UMe) and EMI Music
EMI
The EMI Group, also known as EMI Music or simply EMI, is a multinational music company headquartered in London, United Kingdom. It is the fourth-largest business group and family of record labels in the recording industry and one of the "big four" record companies. EMI Group also has a major...

. It debuted at number twenty-two on the Billboard 200, selling 37,000 copies in its first week of release. She performed as the opening act for the 37th annual American Music Awards
American Music Awards of 2009
The 37th American Music Awards took place on November 22, 2009 at the Nokia Theatre in Los Angeles, California. The nominees were announced on October 13, 2009. For the first time in history, there was no host for the year's ceremony. Instead, various celebrities introduced the performers similar...

 and as one of the performing acts of the Capital FM December 2009 Jingle Bell Ball
Jingle Bell Ball
The Jingle Bell Ball is a concert held every year in December, by Global Radio at O2 Arena. Headline acts have included superstars like Rihanna, Janet Jackson, Lady Gaga, The Black Eyed Peas and Kylie Minogue...

 at the London O2 arena
The O2 arena (London)
The O2 Arena is a multi-purpose indoor arena located in the centre of The O2, a large entertainment complex on the Greenwich peninsula in London, England.With a capacity of up to 20,000 depending on the event, it is second largest...

.

2010–present: Film projects, Blackglama, True You and Number Ones: Up Close and Personal

In April, 2010, Jackson reprised her role in Tyler Perry's Why Did I Get Married? sequel, Why Did I Get Married Too?
Why Did I Get Married Too?
Why Did I Get Married Too? is a 2010 American comedy-drama film produced by Lionsgate and Tyler Perry Studios and stars Janet Jackson, Tyler Perry, and Tasha Smith...

The film earned $30.1 million at the box office its opening weekend, debuting at number two. Wesley Morris of The Boston Globe expressed the overall experience of the film to be "120 minutes of emotional Stairmaster" and added that "watching a hysterical—and hysterically coiffed—Janet Jackson redecorate a house with a golf club burns 500 calories. Mike Hale of The New York Times referred to her performance as "invigorating and oddly funny" while Jackie K. Cooper of The Huffington Post
The Huffington Post
The Huffington Post is an American news website and content-aggregating blog founded by Arianna Huffington, Kenneth Lerer, and Jonah Peretti, featuring liberal minded columnists and various news sources. The site offers coverage of politics, theology, media, business, entertainment, living, style,...

comments "[s]he is very impressive at times and less so at others. She does show a willingness to be seen at her most disheveled." Her performance earned a nomination for the 2011 NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Actress in a Motion Picture
NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Actress in a Motion Picture
The NAACP Image Award winners for Outstanding Actress in a Motion Picture:Number of Performances that won or nominated for Oscars:*1. Whoopi Goldberg - The Color Purple*2. Angela Bassett - What's Love Got to Do With It?...

. She recorded the lead single for the film's soundtrack entitled, "Nothing
Nothing (Janet Jackson song)
"Nothing" is a song recorded by American R&B-pop singer Janet Jackson for the soundtrack to the 2010 film Why Did I Get Married Too?. It was released digitally via iTunes as the lead single to the soundtrack on March 23, 2010. The song was included in the Icon version of Janet Jackson's Number Ones...

", which was released prior to the film's debut. In May 2010, she appeared on the season
American Idol (season 9)
The ninth season of American Idol premiered on January 12, 2010 and concluded on May 26, 2010 on Fox. Simon Cowell, Randy Jackson and Kara DioGuardi all returned as judges, and Ellen DeGeneres permanently replaced Paula Abdul as the fourth judge. Idol Gives Back also returned for the season and was...

 finale of American Idol
American Idol
American Idol, titled American Idol: The Search for a Superstar for the first season, is a reality television singing competition created by Simon Fuller and produced by FremantleMedia North America and 19 Entertainment...

, where she performed "Again", "Nothing", and "Nasty".

Jackson headlined the 2010 Essence Music Festival alongside Alicia Keys
Alicia Keys
Alicia Augello Cook , better known by her stage name Alicia Keys, is an American singer-songwriter, record producer, and occasional actress. She was raised by a single mother in the Hell's Kitchen area of Manhattan in New York City. At age seven, Keys began playing the piano...

 and Mary J. Blige
Mary J. Blige
Mary Jane Blige is an American singer-songwriter, record producer and occasional actress. She is a recipient of nine Grammy Awards and four American Music Awards, and has recorded eight multi-platinum albums. She is the only artist with Grammy Award wins in Pop, Rap, Gospel, and R&B. Blige has...

. According to the Associated Press, "Janet Jackson enthralled the Essence Music Festival audience Friday, kept them on their feet for more than two hours and reminded fans why seeing her in concert was worth waiting two years." In July 2010, Jackson became a spokeswoman for fur label American Legend Cooperative
American Legend Cooperative
The American Legend Cooperative is an agricultural marketing cooperative of mink fur farmers in the United States and Canada, best known for its "Blackglama" and "American Legend", brands of fur....

's Blackglama "What Becomes a Legend Most?" campaign, previously endorsed by celebrities such as Lena Horne, Elizabeth Taylor
Elizabeth Taylor
Dame Elizabeth Rosemond "Liz" Taylor, DBE was a British-American actress. From her early years as a child star with MGM, she became one of the great screen actresses of Hollywood's Golden Age...

, Lauren Bacall
Lauren Bacall
Lauren Bacall is an American film and stage actress and model, known for her distinctive husky voice and sultry looks.She first emerged as leading lady in the Humphrey Bogart film To Have And Have Not and continued on in the film noir genre, with appearances in The Big Sleep and Dark Passage ,...

 and Diana Ross
Diana Ross
Diana Ernestine Earle Ross is an American singer, record producer, and actress. Ross was lead singer of the Motown group The Supremes during the 1960s. After leaving the group in 1970, Ross began a solo career that included successful ventures into film and Broadway...

. According to the company's press release, she was selected as the campaign's latest "Legend" because she "is an icon in the world of music and entertainment, a true legend. She represents everything that this storied campaign embodies. Janet is to entertainment what Blackglama is to luxury." Her endorsement sparked outrage from animal rights group People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals
People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals
People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals is an American animal rights organization based in Norfolk, Virginia, and led by Ingrid Newkirk, its international president. A non-profit corporation with 300 employees and two million members and supporters, it claims to be the largest animal rights...

 (PETA) as well as activist Pamela Anderson
Pamela Anderson
Pamela Denise Anderson is a Canadian-American actress, model, producer, author, activist, and former showgirl, known for her roles on the television series Home Improvement, Baywatch, and V.I.P. She was chosen as a Playmate of the Month for Playboy magazine in February 1990...

. Anderson and PETA senior vice president, Dan Mathews, found Jackson's decision hypocritical, as she has declined to endorse the wearing of fur in the past. In August, 2010, UMe released her third greatest hits collection, Icon: Number Ones
Icon: Number Ones
Icon: Number Ones is the third compilation album by American recording artist Janet Jackson released by Universal Music Enterprises , the catalog division of Universal Music Group...

, as part of the debut of the Icon album series; according to the press release, the series features "the greatest hits, signature tunes and fan favorites of the most popular artists in music history."

In November, 2010, she starred as Joanna in the drama For Colored Girls, Tyler Perry's film adaptation of Ntozake Shange
Ntozake Shange
Ntozake Shange born October 18, 1948, is an American playwright, and poet. As a self proclaimed black feminist, much of the content of her work addresses issues relating to race and feminism....

's play For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide When the Rainbow Is Enuf
For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide When the Rainbow Is Enuf
For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide When the Rainbow Is Enuf is a 1975 experimental play by Ntozake Shange. Initially staged in California, it has been performed Off-Broadway and on Broadway, and adapted as a book, a television film, and a theatrical film...

(1975). Christopher John Farley of The Wall Street Journal
The Wall Street Journal
The Wall Street Journal is an American English-language international daily newspaper. It is published in New York City by Dow Jones & Company, a division of News Corporation, along with the Asian and European editions of the Journal....

complimented her performance, stating that "[she] recites verses written by Ntozake Shange, the author of the play that inspired the film ... But instead of offering up a mannered coffeehouse reading of the lines, Jackson makes the words sound like ordinary—though very eloquent—speech." Matt Zoller Seitz of Salon.com
Salon.com
Salon.com, part of Salon Media Group , often just called Salon, is an online liberal magazine, with content updated each weekday. Salon was founded by David Talbot and launched on November 20, 1995. It was the internet's first online-only commercial publication. The magazine focuses on U.S...

 said she "outdoes herself here—especially in the scene where she confronts her husband over his secret life ... It's not just Jackson's short haircut and traumatized eyes that might remind viewers of Jane Wyman
Jane Wyman
Jane Wyman was an American singer, dancer, and character actress of film and television. She began her film career in the 1930s, and was a prolific performer for two decades...

 or Joan Crawford
Joan Crawford
Joan Crawford , born Lucille Fay LeSueur, was an American actress in film, television and theatre....

; Perry gets at the mix of masculine hyper-competitiveness and feminine vulnerability that has always defined Jackson, and links it to the wily, lonely coldness often captured in Wyman and Crawford performances, a directorial gambit of tremendous perceptiveness." Manohla Dargis of The New York Times
The New York Times
The New York Times is an American daily newspaper founded and continuously published in New York City since 1851. The New York Times has won 106 Pulitzer Prizes, the most of any news organization...

commented: "Ms. Jackson is, to put it gently, an actress of limited expression. But her quiet presence has force, partly because of her eerie resemblance to her brother Michael, though also because her character’s brittle hauteur, self-involved privilege and artificiality has—like the martyrs in ermine played by the likes of Lana Turner
Lana Turner
Lana Turner was an American actress.Discovered and signed to a film contract by MGM at the age of sixteen, Turner first attracted attention in They Won't Forget . She played featured roles, often as the ingenue, in such films as Love Finds Andy Hardy...

—its own weird truth." A number of critics have compared her portrayal of Jo to Meryl Streep
Meryl Streep
Mary Louise "Meryl" Streep is an American actress who has worked in theatre, television and film.Streep made her professional stage debut in 1971's The Playboy of Seville, before her screen debut in the television movie The Deadliest Season in 1977. In that same year, she made her film debut with...

's Miranda Priestly in The Devil Wears Prada
The Devil Wears Prada (film)
The Devil Wears Prada is a 2006 comedy-drama film, a loose screen adaptation of Lauren Weisberger's 2003 novel of the same name. It stars Anne Hathaway as Andrea Sachs, a recent college graduate who goes to New York City and gets a job as a co-assistant to powerful and demanding fashion magazine...

. Her performance earned her nominations for the 2011 Black Reel Awards
Black Reel Awards
The Black Reel Awards began in 2000 and were designed to annually recognize and celebrate the achievements of black people in feature, independent and television films...

 in the categories for Outstanding Supporting Actress
Black Reel Award: Best Supporting Actress
Here are the winners & nominees for the Black Reel Award for Best Supporting Actress.* Taraji P. Henson, Viola Davis, Rosario Dawson, Kerry Washington, Gabrielle Union, Queen Latifah, Joy Bryant, Nia Long & Angela Bassett are currently tied for the most nominations with two each.*6...

 and Outstanding Ensemble
Black Reel Award: Best Ensemble
-Winners/Nominees:...

.

On November 18, in an exclusive interview with AOL
AOL
AOL Inc. is an American global Internet services and media company. AOL is headquartered at 770 Broadway in New York. Founded in 1983 as Control Video Corporation, it has franchised its services to companies in several nations around the world or set up international versions of its services...

 Music's '"The Boombox", Jackson announced plans to go on her "largest ever world tour" in 2011, supporting her second greatest hits collection, Number Ones. The tour, entitled Number Ones: Up Close and Personal
Number Ones: Up Close and Personal
Number Ones: Up Close and Personal is the sixth concert tour by American recording artist Janet Jackson. Described as her "largest world tour", the show is in support of her second compilation album, Number Ones...

, will hold concerts in 35 global cities. The cities will be picked by fans who can submit suggestions on her official website. During the tour, she will perform her 35 number one hits and dedicate a song to each city. Jackson partnered with Mattel
Mattel
Mattel, Inc. is the world's largest toy company based on revenue. The products it produces include Fisher Price, Barbie dolls, Hot Wheels and Matchbox toys, Masters of the Universe, American Girl dolls, board games, and, in the early 1980s, video game consoles. The company's name is derived from...

 to release a limited-edition Barbie
Barbie
Barbie is a fashion doll manufactured by the American toy-company Mattel, Inc. and launched in March 1959. American businesswoman Ruth Handler is credited with the creation of the doll using a German doll called Bild Lilli as her inspiration....

 bearing her resemblance. Titled "Divinely Janet", the doll was auctioned for $15,000 with proceeds being donated to Project Angel Food
Project Angel Food
Project Angel Food is a nonprofit agency whose mission is to nourish the body and spirit of men, women and children affected by HIV/AIDS, cancer and other life-threatening illnesses. Volunteers and staff cook and deliver free and nutritious meals prepared with love throughout Los Angeles County,...

. A new self-help book penned by Jackson, True You: A Journey to Finding and Loving Yourself
True You: A Journey to Finding and Loving Yourself
True You: A Journey to Finding and Loving Yourself is a self-help book co-authored by American entertainer Janet Jackson and biographer David Ritz, released on February 15, 2011. In the book, Jackson opens up about her struggles with food, body image, and relationships. It topped The New York Times...

, was released on February 15, 2011, topping The New York Times Best Seller list the following month. In March 2011, she signed a film production contract with Lionsgate "to select, develop and produce a feature film for the independent studio." Lionsgate president of motion picture production and development Mike Paseornek stated: "She is a powerful on-screen presence, with a vast audience, and we believe she will be an equally powerful presence behind the scenes ... We are honored to be able to provide a home for her ideas, passion and immense talent.” Jackson became the first female pop star to perform at the I. M. Pei
I. M. Pei
Ieoh Ming Pei , commonly known as I. M. Pei, is a Chinese American architect, often called a master of modern architecture. Born in Canton, China and raised in Hong Kong and Shanghai, Pei drew inspiration at an early age from the gardens at Suzhou...

 glass pyramid at the Louvre Museum. To raise contributions for the restoration of iconic works of art, she performed "in conjunction with the museum's biannual fundraising event, 'Liaisons au Louvre,' on Tuesday, June 14." Louvre President-Director Henri Loyrette stated: "Janet Jackson is one of the world’s greatest artistic treasures ... Accordingly, we are profoundly honored, and believe it most fitting, that her performance in the Louvre Museum will be yet another masterpiece captured under our glorious glass pyramid." In August, 2011, she was announced as the first celebrity to be featured in the Blackglama "What Makes A Legend Most?" campaign for two consecutive years. Blackglama CEO Joe Morelli stated: "It became clear in our discussions of who the Legend should be this year, that continuing the momentum with Janet made complete sense ... She embodies glamour, luxury, and sophistication, everything that Blackglama stands for." In November 2011, Jackson partnered with the label to release a 15-piece collection of luxury fur products, to be carried by Saks Fifth Avenue
Saks Fifth Avenue
Saks Fifth Avenue is a luxury American specialty store owned and operated by Saks Fifth Avenue Enterprises , a subsidiary of Saks Incorporated. It competes in the high-end specialty store market in the Upper East Side of Manhattan, i.e. 'the 3 B's' Bergdorf, Barneys, Bloomingdale's and Lord & Taylor...

 and Bloomingdales.

Musical style and performance

Jackson has a mezzo-soprano
Mezzo-soprano
A mezzo-soprano is a type of classical female singing voice whose range lies between the soprano and the contralto singing voices, usually extending from the A below middle C to the A two octaves above...

 3 octave vocal range. Many critics have observed she has never been considered a strong vocalist, noting her voice is often enveloped by the production of her music. Biographer David Ritz commented, "[h]er wispy voice was a pale echo of Michael's, but on Janet's albums—and in her videos and live performances, which revealed a crisp, athletic dance technique not unlike her brother's—singing wasn't the point", commenting that importance was instead placed on "[h]er slamming beats, infectious hooks, and impeccable production values." Music critic J.D. Considine noted that "[o]n albums, Jackson's sound isn't defined by her voice so much as by the way her voice is framed by the lush, propulsive production of Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis." Her voice has also been praised on occasion. Eric Henderson of Slant magazine claimed critics who judged Jackson harshly for her thin voice "somehow missed the explosive 'gimme a beat' vocal pyrotechnics she unleashes all over 'Nasty' ... Or that they completely dismissed how perfect her tremulous hesitance fits into the abstinence anthem 'Let's Wait Awhile'." Classical composer Louis Andriessen
Louis Andriessen
Louis Andriessen is a Dutch composer and pianist based in Amsterdam. He teaches composition at the Royal Conservatory of The Hague...

 has also praised Jackson for her "rubato
Tempo rubato
Tempo rubato is a musical term referring to expressive and rhythmic freedom by a slight speeding up and then slowing down of the tempo of a piece at the discretion of the soloist or the conductor...

, sense of rhythm, sensitivity, and the childlike quality of her strangely erotic voice."
Jackson's music has encompassed a broad range of genres, including R&B, soul, disco, hip hop, rap, pop, rock, and dance music. Qadree EI-Amin, Jackson's former personal manager, commented, "[s]he's bigger than Barbra Streisand
Barbra Streisand
Barbra Joan Streisand is an American singer, actress, film producer and director. She has won two Academy Awards, eight Grammy Awards, four Emmy Awards, a Special Tony Award, an American Film Institute award, a Peabody Award, and is one of the few entertainers who have won an Oscar, Emmy, Grammy,...

 because Streisand can't appeal to the street crowd, as Janet does. But Streisand's rich, elite crowd loves Janet Jackson." Her records from the 1980s have been described as being heavily influenced by Prince
Prince (musician)
Prince Rogers Nelson , often known simply as Prince, is an American singer, songwriter, musician, and actor. Prince has produced ten platinum albums and thirty Top 40 singles during his career. Prince founded his own recording studio and label; writing, self-producing and playing most, or all, of...

, as her producers are ex-members of The Time
The Time (band)
The Time is a funk and dance-pop ensemble formed in 1981. They are close Prince associates and arguably the most successful artists who have worked with him.-Prince, Formation and Success:...

. Sal Cinquemani wrote that in addition to defining Top 40 radio, she "gave Prince's Minneapolis sound
Minneapolis sound
The Minneapolis sound is a hybrid mixture of funk, rock, pop, R&B and New Wave that was pioneered by Prince in the late 1970s. Its popularity was given a boost throughout the 1980s, thanks to his musical adherents, including The Time, Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis, Morris Day, Vanity 6, Apollonia 6, Ta...

 a distinctly feminine—and, with songs like 'What Have You Done for Me Lately?,' 'Nasty,' 'Control,' and 'Let's Wait Awhile,' a distinctly feminist—spin." Richard J. Ripani documented that when record producers Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis collaborated with Jackson on her 1986 album Control, the trio "crafted a new sound that fuses the rhythmic elements of funk and disco, along with heavy doses of synthesizers, percussion, sound effects, and a rap music sensibility." Rickey Vincent stated in his book Funk: The Music, The People, and The Rhythm of The One (1996) that she has often been credited for redefining the standard of popular music with the industrial
Industrial music
Industrial music is a style of experimental music that draws on transgressive and provocative themes. The term was coined in the mid-1970s with the founding of Industrial Records by the band Throbbing Gristle, and the creation of the slogan "industrial music for industrial people". In general, the...

-strength beats of the album. Richard Rischar in "A Vision of Love: An Etiquette of Vocal Ornamentation in African-American Popular Ballads of the Early 1990s" notes that "[t]he black pop ballad of the mid-1980s had been dominated by the vocal and production style that was smooth and polished, led by singers Whitney Houston, Janet Jackson, and James Ingram
James Ingram
James Ingram is an American soul musician. He is best known as a vocalist. He is also a self-taught musician who plays piano, guitar, bass, drums and keyboards...

." She continued her musical development by blending contemporary urban sound with hip hop in the 1990s. This included a softer representation of R&B, articulated by lush soulful ballads and up-tempo dance beats. She has been described as "an artist who has reshaped the sound and image of rhythm and blues" within the first decade of her career. Critic Karla Peterson remarked that "[s]he is a sharp dancer, an appealing performer, and as 'That's the Way Love Goes' proves—an ace pop-song writer." Her material from the 2000s decade has been viewed less favorably, as Sal Cinquemani comments that "[e]xcept for maybe R.E.M., no other former superstar act has been as prolific with such diminishing commercial and creative returns."

Jackson has changed her lyrical focus over the years, becoming the subject of analysis in musicology
Musicology
Musicology is the scholarly study of music. The word is used in narrow, broad and intermediate senses. In the narrow sense, musicology is confined to the music history of Western culture...

, African American studies
African American studies
African American studies is a subset of Black studies or Africana studies. It is an interdisciplinary academic field devoted to the study of the history, culture, and politics of African Americans...

, and gender studies
Gender studies
Gender studies is a field of interdisciplinary study which analyses race, ethnicity, sexuality and location.Gender study has many different forms. One view exposed by the philosopher Simone de Beauvoir said: "One is not born a woman, one becomes one"...

. David Ritz compares Jackson's musical style to that of Marvin Gaye, stating, "[l]ike Marvin, autobiography seemed the sole source of her music. Her art, also like Marvin's, floated over a reservoir of secret pain." Much of her success has been attributed to "a series of powerful, metallic grooves; her chirpy, multi-tracked vocals; and a lyrical philosophy built on pride and self-knowledge." Ritz has also stated: "The mystery is the low flame that burns around the perimeters of Janet Jackson's soul. The flame feeds off the most highly combustible elements: survival and ambition, caution and creativity, supreme confidence and dark fear." During the 1980s, her lyrics embodied self-actualization, feminist principles and politically driven ideology. Gillian G. Gaar, author of She's a Rebel: The History of Women in Rock & Roll (2002), described Control as "an autobiographical tale about her life with her parents, her first marriage, and breaking free." Referring to Janet Jackson's Rhythm Nation 1814 as an embodiment of hope, Timothy E. Scheurer, author of Born in the USA: The Myth of America in Popular Music from Colonial Times to the Present (2007) wrote: "It may remind some of Sly Stone
Sly Stone
Sly Stone is an American musician, songwriter, and record producer, most famous for his role as frontman for Sly & the Family Stone, a band which played a critical role in the development of soul, funk and psychedelia in the 1960s and 1970s. In 1993, he was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of...

 prior to There's a Riot Going On
There's a Riot Goin' On
There's a Riot Goin' On is the fifth studio album by American funk and soul band Sly & the Family Stone, released November 20, 1971 on Epic Records. Recording sessions for the album took place primarily throughout 1970 to 1971 at Record Plant Studios in Sausalito, California...

 and other African-American artists of the 1970s in its tacit assumption that the world imagined by Dr. King
Martin Luther King, Jr.
Martin Luther King, Jr. was an American clergyman, activist, and prominent leader in the African-American Civil Rights Movement. He is best known for being an iconic figure in the advancement of civil rights in the United States and around the world, using nonviolent methods following the...

 is still possible, that the American Dream is a dream for all people."

On Janet, Jackson began to deal primarily with sexual themes. Shayne Lee, author of Erotic Revolutionaries: Black Women, Sexuality, and Popular Culture (2010), wrote that her music over the following decade "brand[ed] her as one of the most sexually stimulating vocalists of the 1990s." In You've Come A Long Way, Baby: Women, Politics, and Popular Culture (1996), Lilly J. Goren observed that "Jackson's evolution from politically aware musician to sexy diva marked the direction that society and the music industry were encouraging the dance-rock divas to pursue." Joshua Klein wrote in The Washington Post
The Washington Post
The Washington Post is Washington, D.C.'s largest newspaper and its oldest still-existing paper, founded in 1877. Located in the capital of the United States, The Post has a particular emphasis on national politics. D.C., Maryland, and Virginia editions are printed for daily circulation...

that Jackson's public image over the course of her career had shifted "from innocence to experience, inspiring such carnal albums as 1993's 'Janet' and 1997's 'The Velvet Rope', the latter of which explored the bonds—figuratively and literally—of love and lust." The song "Free Xone" from The Velvet Rope, which portrays same-sex relationships in a positive light, is described by sociologist Shayne Lee as "a rare incident in which a popular black vocalist explores romantic or sensual energy outside the contours of heteronormativity
Heteronormativity
Heteronormativity is a term invented in 1991 to describe any of a set of lifestyle norms that hold that people fall into distinct and complementary genders with natural roles in life. It also holds that heterosexuality is the normal sexual orientation, and states that sexual and marital relations...

, making it a significant song in black sexual politics." Jackson explained the recurring themes on her later albums by saying, "I love love and I love sex." She stated during promotion for Janet, "I love feeling deeply sexual—and don't mind letting the world know. For me, sex has become a celebration, a joyful part of the creative process." The sexual explicit content of her latter albums have drawn mixed reactions—ranging from acclaim to abhorrence—often in juxtaposition to Madonna, who is seen as her counterpart. Stephen Thomas Erlewine comments "[w]hile sex indisputably fuels much great pop music, it isn't an inherently fascinating topic for pop music—as with anything, it all depends on the artist.

Music videos and choreography

Jackson drew her inspiration for her music videos and performances from the musicals she watched in her youth, and was heavily influenced by the choreography of Fred Astaire
Fred Astaire
Fred Astaire was an American film and Broadway stage dancer, choreographer, singer and actor. His stage and subsequent film career spanned a total of 76 years, during which he made 31 musical films. He was named the fifth Greatest Male Star of All Time by the American Film Institute...

 and Michael Kidd
Michael Kidd
Michael Kidd was an American film and stage choreographer.-Life and career:Born Milton Greenwald in New York City on the Lower East Side, the son of Abraham Greenwald, an immigrant barber, and his wife Lillian, Michael Kidd moved to Brooklyn with his family and attended New Utrecht High School there...

, among others. Throughout her career, she has worked with numerous professional choreographers such as Paula Abdul
Paula Abdul
Paula Julie Abdul is an American singer-songwriter, dancer, choreographer, actress and television personality.In the 1980s, Abdul rose from cheerleader for the Los Angeles Lakers to highly sought-after choreographer at the height of the music video era before scoring a string of pop music-R&B hits...

, Michael Kidd, and Tina Landon
Tina Landon
Tina Landon is an award-winning Mexican-American choreographer based in Los Angeles who has worked with Prince, Anastacia, Mýa, Pink, Jay-Z, Marc Anthony, Kristi Yamaguchi, Aerosmith, Jennifer Lopez, Christina Aguilera, Ricky Martin, Janet Jackson, Michael Jackson, Shakira, Pussycat Dolls, Tina...

. Landon also took part in the choreography for Michael and Janet Jackson's 1995 music video Scream. Janine Coveney of Billboard observed that "Jackson's musical declaration of independence [Control] launched a string of hits, an indelible production sound, and an enduring image cemented by groundbreaking video choreography and imagery that pop vocalists still emulate." Qadree EI-Amin remarked that artists such as "Britney Spears
Britney Spears
Britney Jean Spears is an American recording artist and entertainer. Born in McComb, Mississippi, and raised in Kentwood, Louisiana, Spears began performing as a child, landing acting roles in stage productions and television shows. She signed with Jive Records in 1997 and released her debut album...

 and Christina Aguilera pattern their performances after Janet's proven dance-diva persona."

Beretta E. Smith-Shomade, author of Shaded Lives: African-American Women and Television (2002) wrote that "Jackson's impact on the music video sphere came largely through music sales successes, which afforded her more visual liberties and control. This assuming of control directly impacted the look and content of her music videos, giving Jackson an agency not assumed by many other artists—male or female, Black or White." Parallel Lines: Media Representations of Dance (1993) documents that her videos have been often been reminiscent of live concerts or elaborate musical theater. Many of her video from Control, Including "Nasty" and "When I Think of You", were choreographed using influences from Broadway theatre. Multiculturalism
Multiculturalism
Multiculturalism is the appreciation, acceptance or promotion of multiple cultures, applied to the demographic make-up of a specific place, usually at the organizational level, e.g...

 has also been a cornerstone of the imagery represented in Jackson's music videos. The militant iconography of her 1989 video for "Rhythm Nation" signifies a need for both racial and gender equality; she and her dancers perform in identical uniforms while Jackson herself "is performing asexually and almost anonymously in front of, but as one of the members of the group." In the 1990s, her videos such as 1993's "If"—which "[exudes a] 'Last Emperor
The Last Emperor
The Last Emperor is a 1987 biopic about the life of Puyi, the last Emperor of China, whose autobiography was the basis for the screenplay written by Mark Peploe and Bernardo Bertolucci. Independently produced by Jeremy Thomas, it was directed by Bertolucci and released in 1987 by Columbia Pictures...

' lust and mystery"—and 1995's "Runaway" drew cultural influences from the orient
Orient
The Orient means "the East." It is a traditional designation for anything that belongs to the Eastern world or the Far East, in relation to Europe. In English it is a metonym that means various parts of Asia.- Derivation :...

. Others, such as 1997's "Got 'til It's Gone" and "Together Again" explore African roots and the serengeti
Serengeti
The Serengeti ecosystem is a geographical region in Africa. It is located in north Tanzania and extends to south-western Kenya between latitudes 1 and 3 S and longitudes 34 and 36 E. It spans some ....

. Jackson's music videos have also found rapport within the gay community
Gay community
The gay community, or LGBT community, is a loosely defined grouping of LGBT and LGBT-supportive people, organizations and subcultures, united by a common culture and civil rights movements. These communities generally celebrate pride, diversity, individuality, and sexuality...

, as the dramatic imagery in "Rhythm Nation" led to reenactments of the video in gay clubs and her 1990 video for "Love Will Never Do (Without You)" is said to explore the aesthetic of the male body from both the heterosexual female and gay male perspective. She received the MTV Video Vanguard Award
MTV Video Vanguard Award
The following is a list of recipients of the MTV Video Vanguard Award.The Video Vanguard Award, also known as the Michael Jackson Video Vanguard Award or the Lifetime Achievement Award, is given to musicians who have made a profound effect on the MTV culture...

 in 1990 for her contributions to the art form, and in 2001 became the first recipient of the mtvICON award, celebrating her impact on the music industry as a whole.

Her music videos have contributed to a higher degree of sexual freedom among young women, as Jean M. Twenge, author of Generation Me: Why Today's Young Americans are More Confident, Assertive, Entitled—and More Miserable Than Ever Before (2007) wrote: "In Alfred Kinsey
Alfred Kinsey
Alfred Charles Kinsey was an American biologist and professor of entomology and zoology, who in 1947 founded the Institute for Sex Research at Indiana University, now known as the Kinsey Institute for Research in Sex, Gender, and Reproduction, as well as producing the Kinsey Reports and the Kinsey...

's studies in the 1950s, only 3% of the young women had received oral sex from a man. By the mid-1990s, however, 75% of women aged 18-24 had experienced cunnilingus
Cunnilingus
Cunnilingus is an oral sex act performed on a female. It involves the use by a sex partner of the mouth, lips and tongue to stimulate the female's clitoris, vulva, or vagina...

. Music videos by female artists have contributed to the trend, with both Mary J. Blige
Mary J. Blige
Mary Jane Blige is an American singer-songwriter, record producer and occasional actress. She is a recipient of nine Grammy Awards and four American Music Awards, and has recorded eight multi-platinum albums. She is the only artist with Grammy Award wins in Pop, Rap, Gospel, and R&B. Blige has...

 and Janet Jackson heavily implying male-on-female oral sex in music videos by pushing down on a man's head until he's in exactly the right position." Similarly, Paula Kamen in Her Way: Young Women Remake the Sexual Revolution (2000) states that "[i]n the early to mid-1990s, oral sex even reached mainstream music as politically charged demand of truly liberated women," citing TLC
TLC (band)
TLC is an American musical trio whose repertoire spanned R&B, hip-hop, soul, funk, and new jack swing. Originally consisting of singer Tionne "T-Boz" Watkins, rapper-singer Lisa "Left Eye" Lopes and singer Rozonda "Chilli" Thomas it found success in the 1990s while also enduring a series of spats...

, Mary J. Blige and Janet Jackson as examples of females artist simulating cunnilingus in their videos. However, accusations of cosmetic surgery, skin lightening and increasingly hypersexual imagery have led to her being viewed as conforming to a white, male-dominated view of sexuality, rather than liberating herself or others.

Jet magazine reported "Janet's innovative stage performances during her world tours have won her a reputation as a world-class performer." Chris Willman of Los Angeles Times stated the "enthralling" choreography of Jackson's Rhythm Nation 1814 Tour "represents the pinnacle of what can be done in the popping 'n' locking style—a rapid-fire mixture of rigidly jerky and gracefully fluid movements." The Independent writer Nicholas Barber commented in his review for The Velvet Rope Tour that "Janet's concerts are the pop equivalent of a summer blockbuster movie, with all the explosions, special effects, ersatz sentimentality, gratuitous cleavage and emphasis on spectacle over coherence that the term implies." When Los Angeles Times reporter Robert Hilburn asked Jackson "[d]o you understand it when people talk about [The Velvet Rope Tour] in terms of Broadway?", she responded, "I'm crazy about Broadway ... That's what I grew up on." Her Number Ones: Up Close and Personal tour deviated from the full-scale theatricality found in her previous concert arena settings in favor of smaller venues. Critics noted being scaled down did not effect the impact of her showmanship, and in some cases, enhanced it. Greg Kot of the Chicago Tribune
Chicago Tribune
The Chicago Tribune is a major daily newspaper based in Chicago, Illinois, and the flagship publication of the Tribune Company. Formerly self-styled as the "World's Greatest Newspaper" , it remains the most read daily newspaper of the Chicago metropolitan area and the Great Lakes region and is...

wrote: "In past tours, Jackson's thin voice was often swallowed up by the sheer size of her production ... In the more scaled-down setting, Jackson brought a warmth and a passion that wasn't always evident in stadiums ... the best Janet Jackson performance I've covered in 20-plus years."

Thor Christensen of The Dallas Morning News
The Dallas Morning News
The Dallas Morning News is the major daily newspaper serving the Dallas, Texas area, with a circulation of 264,459 subscribers, the Audit Bureau of Circulations reported in September 2010...

reported that Jackson lip sync
Lip sync
Lip sync, lip-sync, lip-synch is a technical term for matching lip movements with sung or spoken vocals...

s in concert; he wrote, "Janet Jackson—one of pop's most notorious onstage lip-syncers—conceded ... she uses 'some' taped vocals to augment her live vocals. But she refused to say what percentage of her concert 'voice' is taped and how much is live." Richard Harrington of The Washington Post
The Washington Post
The Washington Post is Washington, D.C.'s largest newspaper and its oldest still-existing paper, founded in 1877. Located in the capital of the United States, The Post has a particular emphasis on national politics. D.C., Maryland, and Virginia editions are printed for daily circulation...

observed, "[s]ince the advent of MTV and the proliferation of dance-oriented singers like Milli Vanilli
Milli Vanilli
Milli Vanilli was a pop/dance music project formed by Frank Farian in Germany in 1988, visually fronted by Fab Morvan and Rob Pilatus. The group's debut album achieved international success and earned them a Grammy Award for Best New Artist on Feb. 21, 1990. Milli Vanilli became one of the most...

, Madonna, Paula Abdul, Janet Jackson, George Michael
George Michael
George Michael is a British musician, singer, songwriter and record producer who rose to fame in the 1980s when he formed the pop duo Wham! with his school friend, Andrew Ridgeley...

, MC Hammer
MC Hammer
Stanley Kirk Burrell , better known by his stage name MC Hammer , is an American rapper, entertainer, business entrepreneur, dancer and actor. He had his greatest commercial success and popularity from the late 1980s until the mid-1990s...

, Michael Jackson and the New Kids on the Block
New Kids on the Block
New Kids on the Block are an American boy band from Boston, Massachusetts, assembled in 1984 by producer Maurice Starr. The band currently consists of brothers Jordan and Jonathan Knight, Joey McIntyre, Donnie Wahlberg, and Danny Wood.New Kids on the Block enjoyed success in the late 1980s and...

, audience expectations have been drastically redefined" noting that few entertainers are capable of recreating the spectacle of elaborately choreographed music videos while delivering studio precision vocals. Michael MacCambridge of the Austin American-Statesman
Austin American-Statesman
The Austin American-Statesman is the major daily newspaper for Austin, the capital city of Texas. It is an award-winning publication owned by Cox Enterprises. The Newspaper places focus on issues affecting Austin and the Central Texas region....

, who reviewed Jackson's Rhythm Nation 1814 Tour, described lip-syncing as a "moot point", stating, "Jackson was frequently singing along with her own pre-recorded vocals, to achieve a sound closer to radio versions of singles." MacCambridge also observed "[i]t seemed unlikely that anyone—even a prized member of the First Family of Soul Music—could dance like she did for 90 minutes and still provide the sort of powerful vocals that the '90s super concerts are expected to achieve." Similarly, Chris Willman commented, "[e]ven a classically trained vocalist would be hard-pressed to maintain any sort of level of volume—or, more appropriately, 'Control'—while bounding up and down stairs and whipping limbs in unnatural directions at impeccable, breakneck speed." Critics observed that in the smaller scale of her Number Ones: Up Close and Personal tour, she forewent lip-syncing. Chris Richards of The Washington Post stated "even at its breathiest, that delicate voice hasn’t lost the laserlike precision that seems to be a part of the Jackson family DNA." He complemented her physically strenuous performance, stating "[g]o on, Janet. Let ’em see you sweat. Because in a 21st-century popscape where concerts are driven by spectacle, we need to know that beneath all of the sci-fi costumes, strobe lights and Auto-Tune
Auto-Tune
Auto-Tune is a proprietary audio processor created by Antares Audio Technologies. Auto-Tune uses a phase vocoder to correct pitch in vocal and instrumental performances. It is used to disguise off-key inaccuracies and mistakes, and has allowed singers to perform apparently perfectly tuned vocal...

, we’re still witnessing a performance by the living, breathing, profusely sweating human being whose name is stamped on the tickets we just emptied our wallets for."

Influences

Jackson has credited her older brothers Michael and Jermaine as her primary musical influences. She describes actress/singer Lena Horne as a profound inspiration, not only in her own career, but for black entertainers across multiple generations. Upon Horne's death in 2010, she stated "[Horne] brought much joy into everyone's lives—even the younger generations, younger than myself. She was such a great talent. She opened up such doors for artists like myself." Similarly, she considers Dorothy Dandridge
Dorothy Dandridge
Dorothy Jean Dandridge was an American actress and popular singer, and was the first African-American to be nominated for an Academy Award for Best Actress...

 to be one of her idols. Describing herself as "a very big Joni Mitchell fan", she explained: "As a kid I was drawn to Joni Mitchell records ... Along with Marvin Gaye and Stevie Wonder, Joni's songs spoke to me in an intimate, personal way." She holds reverence for Tina Turner, stating: "Tina has become a heroic figure for many people, especially women, because of her tremendous strength. Personally, Tina doesn't seem to have a beginning or an end in my life. I felt her music was always there, and I feel like it always will be." She has also named other socially conscious acts, such as Tracy Chapman
Tracy Chapman
Tracy Chapman is an American singer-songwriter, best known for her singles "Fast Car", "Talkin' 'bout a Revolution", "Baby Can I Hold You", "Give Me One Reason" and "Telling Stories". She is a multi-platinum and four-time Grammy Award-winning artist.-Biography:Tracy Chapman was born in Cleveland,...

, Sly and the Family Stone and U2
U2
U2 are an Irish rock band from Dublin. Formed in 1976, the group consists of Bono , The Edge , Adam Clayton , and Larry Mullen, Jr. . U2's early sound was rooted in post-punk but eventually grew to incorporate influences from many genres of popular music...

 as sources of inspiration. Other artists attributed as influences on Jackson's music according to Rolling Stone are The Ronettes
The Ronettes
The Ronettes were a 1960s girl group from New York City, best known for their work with producer Phil Spector. The group consisted of lead singer Veronica Bennett ; her older sister, Estelle Bennett; and their cousin Nedra Talley...

, Dionne Warwick
Dionne Warwick
Dionne Warwick is an American singer, actress and TV show host, who became a United Nations Global Ambassador for the Food and Agriculture Organization, and a United States Ambassador of Health....

, Tammi Terrell
Tammi Terrell
Thomasina Winifred Montgomery, known as Tammi Terrell was an American singer-songwriter most notable for her association with Motown and her duets with Marvin Gaye. As a teenager she recorded for the Scepter–Wand, Try Me and Checker record labels. She signed with Motown in April 1965 and enjoyed...

 and Diana Ross.

Legacy

The baby sister of the "precious Jackson clan", Janet Jackson has striven to distance her professional career from that of her older brother Michael and the rest of the Jackson family. Steve Dollar of Newsday wrote that "[s]he projects that home girl-next-door quality that belies her place as the youngest sibling in a family whose inner and outer lives have been as poked at, gossiped about, docudramatized and hard-copied as the Kennedys
Kennedy family
In the United States, the phrase Kennedy family commonly refers to the family descending from the marriage of the Irish-Americans Joseph P. Kennedy, Sr. and Rose Elizabeth Fitzgerald that was prominent in American politics and government. Their political involvement has revolved around the...

." Phillip McCarthy of The Sydney Morning Herald
The Sydney Morning Herald
The Sydney Morning Herald is a daily broadsheet newspaper published by Fairfax Media in Sydney, Australia. Founded in 1831 as the Sydney Herald, the SMH is the oldest continuously published newspaper in Australia. The newspaper is published six days a week. The newspaper's Sunday counterpart, The...

noted that throughout her recording career, one of her common conditions for interviewers has been that there would be no mention of Michael. Joshua Klein wrote, "[f]or the first half of her recording career, Janet Jackson sounded like an artist with something to prove. Emerging in 1982 just as big brother Michael was casting his longest shadow, Jackson filled her albums not so much with songs as with declarations, from 'The Pleasure Principle' to the radical-sounding 'Rhythm Nation' to the telling statement of purpose, 'Control'." Steve Huey of Allmusic asserted that despite being born into a family of entertainers, Janet Jackson has managed to emerge a "superstar
Superstar
A superstar is a widely acclaimed celebrity.Superstar or superstars may also refer to:-People:* Warhol Superstar, associates of Andy Warhol* WWE Superstar, the term used to refer to entertainers from the WWE...

" in her own right, rivaling not only several female recording artists including Madonna and Whitney Houston, but also her brother, while "successfully [shifting] her image from a strong, independent young woman to a sexy, mature adult." By forging her own unique identity through her artistry and her business ventures, she has been esteemed as the "Queen of Pop". Klein argued that "stardom was not too hard to predict, but few could have foreseen that Janet—Miss Jackson, if you're nasty—would one day replace Michael as true heir to the Jackson family legacy."
She has also been recognized for playing a pivotal role in crossing racial boundaries in the recording industry, where black artists were once considered to be substandard. In Right to Rock: The Black Rock Coalition and the Cultural Politics of Race (2004), author Maureen Mahon states: "In the 1980s, Whitney Houston, Michael Jackson, Janet Jackson, and Prince were among the African American artists who crossed over ... When black artists cross over into pop success they cease to be black in the industry sense of the word. They get promoted from racialized black music to universal pop music in an economically driven process of racial transcendence." Routledge International Encyclopedia of Women: Global Women's Issues and Knowledge (2000) documented that Jackson, along with other prominent African-American women, had achieved financial breakthroughs in mainstream popular music, receiving "superstar status" in the process. She, alongside her contemporaries "offered viable creative, intellectual, and business paths for establishing and maintaining agency, lyrical potency, marketing and ownership." Her business savvy has been compared to that of Madonna, gaining a level of autonomy which enables "creative latitude and access to financial resources and mass-market distribution."

Musicologist Richard J. Ripani identified Jackson as a leader in the development of contemporary R&B, as her 1986 album Control and its successor Janet Jackson's Rhythm Nation 1814 created a unique blend of genre and sound effects, that ushered in the use of rap vocals into mainstream R&B. Ripani also argues that the popularity of Jackson's signature song
Signature song
A signature song is the one song that a popular and well-established singer or band is most closely identified with or best known for, even if they have had success with a variety of songs...

 "Nasty" influenced the new jack swing genre developed by Teddy Riley. Leon McDermott of the Sunday Herald
Sunday Herald
The Sunday Herald is a Scottish Sunday newspaper launched on 7 February 1999. The ABC audited circulation in April 2011 showed sales of 31,123.From the start it has combined a centre-left stance with support for Scottish devolution...

wrote: "Her million-selling albums in the 1980s helped invent contemporary R&B through Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis's muscular, lean production; the sinuous grooves threaded through 1986's Control and 1989's Rhythm Nation 1814 are the foundation upon which today's hot shot producers and singers rely." Jim Cullen observed in Popular Culture in American History (2001) that although it was Michael Jackson's Thriller that originally synchronized music video with album sales, Janet Jackson was also among the first generation of artists that saw the visualization of their music elevate them to the status of a pop culture icon
Pop icon
A pop icon is a celebrity, character, or object whose exposure in pop culture constitutes a defining characteristic of a given society or era. The categorization is usually associated with elements such as longevity, ubiquity, and distinction. Moreover, "pop icon" status is distinguishable from...

. In July, 1999, she placed at number 77 on VH1
VH1
VH1 or Vh1 is an American cable television network based in New York City. Launched on January 1, 1985 in the old space of Turner Broadcasting's short-lived Cable Music Channel, the original purpose of the channel was to build on the success of MTV by playing music videos, but targeting a slightly...

's "100 Greatest Women of Rock and Roll". She also placed at number 134 on their list of the "200 Greatest Pop Culture Icons of All Time" and at number two on "50 Greatest Women of the Video Era", behind Madonna. In March 2008, Business Wire
Business Wire
Business Wire is a company that disseminates full-text news releases from thousands of companies and organizations worldwide to news media, financial markets, disclosure systems, investors, information web sites, databases and other audiences. The company distributes news via its own patented...

 reported "Janet Jackson is one of the top ten selling artists in the history of contemporary music; ranked by Billboard magazine as the ninth most successful act in rock and roll history, and the second most successful female artist in pop music history." She is the only female artist in the history of the Hot 100 to have 18 consecutive top ten hit singles, from "Miss You Much" (1989) to "I Get Lonely" (1998). The magazine ranked her at number seven on their Hot 100 50th Anniversary "Hot 100 All-Time Top Artists", making her the third most successful female artist in the history of the chart, following Madonna and Mariah Carey. In November 2010, Billboard released its "Top 50 R&B / Hip-Hop Artists of the Past 25 Years" list and ranked her at number five. She ranks as the top artist on the chart with 15 number ones in the past twenty-five years, garnering 27 top ten hits between 1985 and 2001, and 33 consecutive top 40 hits from 1985 through 2004. The most awarded artist in the history of the Billboard Music Awards
Billboard Music Award
The Billboard Music Award is an honor given by Billboard magazine, the preeminent publication covering the music business. The Billboard Music Awards show had been held annually in December until it went dormant in 2007, but it returned in May 2011...

 with 33 wins, she is one an elite group of musical acts, such as Madonna, Aerosmith
Aerosmith
Aerosmith is an American rock band, sometimes referred to as "The Bad Boys from Boston" and "America's Greatest Rock and Roll Band". Their style, which is rooted in blues-based hard rock, has come to also incorporate elements of pop, heavy metal, and rhythm and blues, and has inspired many...

, Garth Brooks
Garth Brooks
Troyal Garth Brooks , best known as Garth Brooks, is an American country music artist who helped make country music a worldwide phenomenon. His eponymous first album was released in 1989 and peaked at number 2 in the US country album chart while climbing to number 13 on the Billboard 200 album chart...

 and Eric Clapton
Eric Clapton
Eric Patrick Clapton, CBE, is an English guitarist and singer-songwriter. Clapton is the only three-time inductee to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame: once as a solo artist, and separately as a member of The Yardbirds and Cream. Clapton has been referred to as one of the most important and...

, whom Billboard credits for "redefining the landscape of popular music."

Den Berry, Virgin Records CEO and Chairman stated: "Janet is the very embodiment of a global superstar. Her artistic brilliance and personal appeal transcend geographic, cultural and generational boundaries." Similarly, Virgin Records executive Lee Trink expressed: "Janet is an icon and historic figure in our culture. She's one of those gifted artists that people look up to, that people emulate, that people want to believe in ... there's not that many superstars that stand the test of time." Her musical style and choreography have influenced and inspired a younger generation of recording artists. Sarah Rodman of the Boston Herald
Boston Herald
The Boston Herald is a daily newspaper that serves Boston, Massachusetts, United States, and its surrounding area. It was started in 1846 and is one of the oldest daily newspapers in the United States...

remarked: "For every hand-fluttering, overwrought, melisma
Melisma
Melisma, in music, is the singing of a single syllable of text while moving between several different notes in succession. Music sung in this style is referred to as melismatic, as opposed to syllabic, where each syllable of text is matched to a single note.-History:Music of ancient cultures used...

 addict out there aping Mariah's dog calls, there's an equal number trying to match Jackson's bubbling grooves and fancy footwork, including Britney, Aaliyah
Aaliyah
Aaliyah Dana Haughton , who performed under the mononym Aaliyah , was an American R&B recording artist, actress and model. She was born in Brooklyn, New York, and was raised in Detroit, Michigan. At the age of 10, she appeared on the television show Star Search and performed in concert alongside...

 and Destiny's Child
Destiny's Child
Destiny's Child was an American R&B girl group whose final line-up comprised lead singer Beyoncé Knowles alongside Kelly Rowland and Michelle Williams. Formed in 1997 in Houston, Texas, Destiny's Child members began their musical endeavors in their pre-teens under the name Girl's Tyme...

." Pop music critic Gene Stout commented she "has so broadly influenced a younger generation of performers, from Jennifer Lopez
Jennifer Lopez
Jennifer Lynn Lopez is an American actress, singer, record producer, dancer, television personality, and fashion designer. Lopez began her career as a dancer on the television comedy program In Living Color. Subsequently venturing into acting, she gained recognition in the 1995 action-thriller...

 ... to Britney Spears, who has copied so many of Jackson's dance moves." Elysa Gardner of USA Today wrote: "Jackson claims not to be bothered by the brigade of barely post-adolescent baby divas who have been inspired by—and, in some cases, have flagrantly aped—the sharp, animated choreography and girlish but decidedly post-feminist
Postfeminism
Post-feminism is a reaction against some perceived contradictions and absences of second-wave feminism. The term post-feminism is ill-defined and is used in inconsistent ways...

 feistiness that have long been hallmarks of her performance style." Artists who are considered to have followed in her footsteps have been referred to as "Janet-come-lately's."

Sociologist Shayne Lee commented that, "[a]s Janet enters the twilight of her reign as erotic Queen of Pop, Beyoncé Knowles
Beyoncé Knowles
Beyoncé Giselle Knowles , often known simply as Beyoncé, is an American singer, songwriter, record producer, and actress. Born and raised in Houston, Texas, she enrolled in various performing arts schools and was first exposed to singing and dancing competitions as a child...

 emerges as her likely successor." Knowles has expressed her fondness of Jackson, stating: "I love Janet Jackson! ... I have nothing but positive things to say about her." Toni Braxton
Toni Braxton
Toni Michelle Braxton is an American R&B singer-songwriter, record producer, and actress. Braxton has won six Grammy Awards, seven American Music Awards, and five Billboard Music Awards and has sold over 60 million records worldwide...

 stated that she was inspired by Janet Jackson "because when she released her Control album, she made it easy for P.K.'s [Preachers' kids] who were supposed to be sweet and docile to get comfortable with feeling sexy." Aaliyah commented, "I admire her a great deal. She's a total performer ... I'd love to do a duet with Janet Jackson." Jennifer Lopez lauded Jackson's videography, stating her music videos "had such an impact on me as a fan but also as an artist." 'N Sync
'N Sync
N Sync was an American boy band formed in Orlando, Florida, in 1995 and launched in Germany by BMG Ariola Munich, *NSYNC consisted of JC Chasez, Justin Timberlake, Lance Bass, Joey Fatone and Chris Kirkpatrick...

 and Usher
Usher (entertainer)
Usher Terry Raymond IV , who performs under the mononym Usher, is an American singer-songwriter, and actor. He is considered around the world to be the reigning King of R&B. Usher rose to fame in the late 1990s with the release of his second album My Way, which spawned his first Billboard Hot 100...

, who performed as two of the opening acts for The Velvet Rope World Tour, credit her for teaching them how to develop stage show into theatrical performance. Usher stated: "I learned a lot about how to make an artist look like a star. On the personal side, I got a chance to hug her." Rozonda "Chilli" Thomas
Rozonda Thomas
Rozonda Ocelean Thomas , best known by her stage name Chilli, is a four-time Grammy Award–winning American R&B singer and actress who rose to fame as one third of the successful R&B/Hip-Hop/Pop girl group TLC.-Early life:...

 of TLC
TLC (band)
TLC is an American musical trio whose repertoire spanned R&B, hip-hop, soul, funk, and new jack swing. Originally consisting of singer Tionne "T-Boz" Watkins, rapper-singer Lisa "Left Eye" Lopes and singer Rozonda "Chilli" Thomas it found success in the 1990s while also enduring a series of spats...

 recalled that when the group was first forming, she declared "I'm ready to be the next Janet Jackson!" Britney Spears commented, "I've always been majorly inspired by Janet in everything she does." Christina Aguilera
Christina Aguilera
Christina María Aguilera is an American recording artist and actress. Aguilera first appeared on national television in 1990 as a contestant on the Star Search program, and went on to star in Disney Channel's television series The Mickey Mouse Club from 1993–1994...

 recalled: "I remember watching MTV as a little girl. To me, Janet had it all; amazing videos, hot songs and the sexiest voice." Cassie has referred to herself as a "die-hard Janet Jackson fan" and elaborated, "I'd love to emulate Janet's career—totally ... She's incredible, from her moves to her voice." Jay Bobbin of the Chicago Tribune remarked, "Cassie isn't the first artist to be measured against Janet Jackson, and odds are she won't be the last." Ciara
Ciara
Ciara Princess Harris , known mononymously as Ciara, is an American singer-songwriter, dancer, actress and fashion model. Born in Austin, Texas, she traveled around the world during her childhood, only to land in Atlanta, Georgia where she met music producer, Jazze Pha...

 has acknowledged Jackson as one of her primary influences, stating: "It seems like just yesterday I was watching Janet Jackson on TV; now, some people compare me to her." Kelly Rowland
Kelly Rowland
Kelendria Trene "Kelly" Rowland is an American singer, songwriter, actress, dancer, and television personality. She rose to fame as one of the founding members of the American girl group Destiny's Child...

 named her the biggest inspiration of her career because "she works extremely hard." Rihanna
Rihanna
Robyn Rihanna Fenty , better known as simply Rihanna, is a Barbadian recording artist. Born in Saint Michael, Barbados, Rihanna moved to the United States at the age of 16 to pursue a recording career under the guidance of record producer Evan Rogers...

 has commented that "[s]he was one of the first female pop icons that I could relate to ... She was so vibrant, she had so much energy. She still has power. I’ve seen her on stage, and she can stand there for 20 minutes and have the whole arena scream at her. You have to love Janet." Keri Hilson
Keri Hilson
Keri Lynn Hilson is an American R&B singer-songwriter. Born and raised in Decatur, Georgia, Hilson began her music career as a songwriter, penning tracks for several artists in the mid-2000s as part of the five-person production and songwriting team, The Clutch...

 stated that she admired Jackson for "just being herself. A great performer." Japanese singer Crystal Kay
Crystal Kay
Crystal Kay Williams , known by her stage name Crystal Kay, is a singer and songwriter from Yokohama, Kanagawa, Japan...

 commented: "I've always listened to American music and the artists I admire most are American, like Janet Jackson." Australian DJ and singer Havana Brown
Havana Brown (DJ)
Havana Brown , is an Australian DJ and recording artist. She is signed to Universal Music Australia, and has been releasing her Crave compilation series ever since. Brown has also toured with artists such as, Britney Spears, Rihanna, Chris Brown, Enrique Iglesias and the Pussycat Dolls...

 claimed Jackson as her biggest influence, stating "she's my idol" and "I want to be Janet Jackson! But the DJ-slash-Janet Jackson—I want to be able to put on big shows, I want dancers, I want fireworks, I want it all." Other artists who have drawn comparison to Jackson include Brandy
Brandy Norwood
Brandy Rayana Norwood , known professionally as Brandy, is an American singer-songwriter, producer, actress, and dancer. In 2009, she introduced her rap alter-ego Bran'Nu....

, Tatyana Ali
Tatyana Ali
Tatyana Marisol Ali is an American actress and R&B singer, best known for her childhood role as Ashley Banks on the NBC sitcom The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air...

, Christina Milian
Christina Milian
Christine Flores , better known by her stage name Christina Milian , is an American singer-songwriter, actress, dancer, and model....

, Mýa
Mya
-A person:* Bo Mya , Chief Commander of the Karen National Union* Mýa , American R&B singer-songwriter and actress** Mýa , a 1998 album by Mýa-A code:* Burmese language, ISO 639-3 code is mya* Moruya Airport's IATA code...

, Lady Gaga
Lady GaGa
Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta , better known by her stage name Lady Gaga, is an American singer and songwriter. Born and raised in New York City, she primarily studied at the Convent of the Sacred Heart and briefly attended New York University's Tisch School of the Arts before withdrawing to...

, Namie Amuro
Namie Amuro
is a Japanese R&B and pop singer, entertainer, and former actress who at the height of her popularity was referred to as the "Teen Queen" and the title "Queen of Japanese Pop Music". Born in Naha, Okinawa, Amuro debuted at the age of 14 as an idol in the girl group Super Monkey's...

, and BoA
BoA
Boa Kwon , commonly stylized and known by her stage name BoA, which is a backronym for Beat of Angel, is a Korean singer, active in South Korea, Japan, and the United States and sometimes referred to as the "Queen of Korean Pop Music"....

. Joan Morgan of Essence magazine remarked: "Jackson's Control, Rhythm Nation 1814 and janet. established the singer-dancer imprimatur standard in pop culture we now take for granted. So when you're thinking of asking Miss Jackson, 'What have you done for me lately?' remember that Britney, Ciara and Beyoncé live in the house that Janet built."

Discography

  • Janet Jackson
    Janet Jackson (album)
    Janet Jackson is the self-titled debut album by American recording artist Janet Jackson, released on September 21, 1982 by A&M Records. Jackson's career as a recording artist was established by her father and manager Joseph Jackson, who arranged her recording contract with A&M Records.The album's...

    (1982)
  • Dream Street (1984)
  • Control
    Control (Janet Jackson album)
    Control is the third studio album by American recording artist Janet Jackson, released on February 6, 1986 by A&M Records. Her collaborations with songwriters and record producers Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis resulted in an unconventional sound: a fusion of rhythm and blues, funk, disco, rap vocals,...

    (1986)
  • Janet Jackson's Rhythm Nation 1814 (1989)
  • janet. (1993)
  • The Velvet Rope
    The Velvet Rope
    The Velvet Rope is the sixth studio album by American recording artist Janet Jackson, released October 7, 1997 by Virgin Records. Prior to its debut, Jackson had been at the center of a second high-profile bidding war over her recording contract...

    (1997)
  • All for You (2001)
  • Damita Jo (2004)
  • 20 Y.O.
    20 Y.O.
    20 Y.O. is the ninth studio album by American recording artist Janet Jackson, released by Virgin Records America on September 20, 2006 in Japan, September 22 internationally, and September 26 in Canada and the United States...

    (2006)
  • Discipline
    Discipline (Janet Jackson album)
    Discipline is the tenth studio album by American recording artist Janet Jackson, released by Island Records on February 26, 2008. It was her only album released for Island Records, after her five-album deal with Virgin Records was fulfilled with the release of 20 Y.O....

    (2008)

Other works

Television
  • The Jacksons
    The Jacksons (TV series)
    The Jacksons is an American variety show featuring the Jackson siblings . It was the first variety show where the entire cast were siblings...

    (1976–77)
  • Good Times
    Good Times
    Good Times is an American sitcom that originally aired from February 8, 1974, until August 1, 1979, on the CBS television network. It was created by Eric Monte and Michael Evans, and developed by Norman Lear, the series' primary executive producer...

    (1977–79)
  • A New Kind of Family
    A New Kind of Family
    A New Kind of Family is an American sitcom that aired on ABC from September 1979 to January 1980. The series stars Eileen Brennan, Rob Lowe, and Telma Hopkins.-Synopsis:...

    (1979–80)
  • Diff'rent Strokes
    Diff'rent Strokes
    Diff'rent Strokes is an American television sitcom that aired on NBC from November 3, 1978 to May 4, 1985, and on ABC from September 27, 1985 to March 7, 1986...

    (1980–84)
  • Fame
    Fame (1982 TV series)
    Fame is an American television series originally produced between 1982 and 1987. The show was based on the 1980 motion picture of the same name. Using a mixture of drama and music, it followed the lives of the students and faculty at the New York City High School for the Performing Arts. Although...

    (1984–85)


Film
  • Poetic Justice (1993)
  • Nutty Professor II: The Klumps
    Nutty Professor II: The Klumps
    Nutty Professor II: The Klumps is a 2000 comedy film directed by Peter Segal. It is the sequel to the 1996 film The Nutty Professor and stars Eddie Murphy and Janet Jackson. Murphy plays not only the inept but brilliant scientist, Sherman Klump, as in the first film, but also most of Sherman's...

    (2000)
  • Why Did I Get Married?
    Why Did I Get Married?
    Why Did I Get Married? is a 2007 comedy-drama film adaptation written, produced, directed, and starring Tyler Perry, which was inspired by the play of the same name. The film stars Janet Jackson, Jill Scott, Malik Yoba, Sharon Leal, Tasha Smith, Michael Jai White, Richard T. Jones, and Keesha Sharp...

    (2007)
  • Why Did I Get Married Too?
    Why Did I Get Married Too?
    Why Did I Get Married Too? is a 2010 American comedy-drama film produced by Lionsgate and Tyler Perry Studios and stars Janet Jackson, Tyler Perry, and Tasha Smith...

    (2010)
  • For Colored Girls (2010)


Tours
  • Rhythm Nation World Tour (1990)
  • Janet World Tour (1993–95)
  • The Velvet Rope World Tour (1998–99)
  • All for You Tour
    All for You Tour
    The All for You Tour was a worldwide concert tour in 2001 by American pop/R&B singer Janet Jackson in support of her multi-platinum album All for You...

     (2001–02)
  • Rock Witchu Tour
    Rock Witchu Tour
    The Rock Witchu Tour was the fifth concert tour by American singer-songwriter, Janet Jackson, in support of her tenth studio album Discipline. This was Jackson's first tour in nearly seven years. The tour visited North America...

     (2008)
  • Number Ones: Up Close and Personal
    Number Ones: Up Close and Personal
    Number Ones: Up Close and Personal is the sixth concert tour by American recording artist Janet Jackson. Described as her "largest world tour", the show is in support of her second compilation album, Number Ones...

     (2011)

Books
  • True You: A Journey to Finding and Loving Yourself
    True You: A Journey to Finding and Loving Yourself
    True You: A Journey to Finding and Loving Yourself is a self-help book co-authored by American entertainer Janet Jackson and biographer David Ritz, released on February 15, 2011. In the book, Jackson opens up about her struggles with food, body image, and relationships. It topped The New York Times...

    (2011)

See also

  • Honorific nicknames in popular music
  • List of best-selling music artists
  • List of best-selling music artists in the United States
  • List of artists who reached number one in the United States


Further reading

  • Bronson, Fred
    Fred Bronson
    Fredric M. Bronson is an American journalist, author and writer. He is best known for his appearances on American Idol, the weekly "Chart Beat" column in Billboard magazine, and as the author of books related to Billboard charts.Born to Irving and Mildred Bronson and raised in Culver City,...

    . The Billboard Book of Number One Hits. Billboard Books, 2003. ISBN 0-8230-7677-6
  • Hyatt, Wesley. The Billboard Book of Number One Adult Contemporary Hits. Billboard Books, 1999. ISBN 0-8230-7693-8
  • Warner, Jay. On this Day in Black Music History. Hal Leonard, 2006. ISBN 0-634-09926-4


External links

The source of this article is wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.  The text of this article is licensed under the GFDL.
 
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