In the 1970s Jackson Five



One of the most powerful singing families in the world that spawned the prince of pop Michael. Michael died at the age of 50, but the story of Michael Jackson in the 1970s will be in another article. This is about the group called The Jackson Five, The Jackson 5 or even the Jacksons. Take your choice it is all the same super group.

There is no doubt that the brothers had talent and that there were good looking, and of course the right place for them to be was on the Motown label. But was the “white” world ready for this super pop group? The answer was yes.

Motown really were good at PR by changing the boys ages down to make them younger to the teen audiences and to get the “ahh” from parents. They also put out a story that it was Diana Ross who discovered them, but it was in fact Gladys Knight who did that. But however they started, and whoever tweaked with the truth The Jackson Five were a great dance and singing band. All of them immensely talented too.

The brothers Jackie Jackson born in 1951, Tito Jackson born in 1953, Jermaine Jackson born in 1954 and he took vocal leads on a lot of the early Jackson hits, before  Michael was pushed to the front of the band. Marlon Jackson born in 1957 and Randy Jackson born in 1961.

The guys were in magazines, on TV and they had their own cartoon series too. The song was their first hit in 1970, and number .1 in the USA and No. 8 in the UK. The song came from the album ABC, and the single is famous for knocking the Beatles and Let It Be off the No. 1 position. The song was called ABC.



Michael was eleven at this time and was on lead vocals. The follow up is the not so remembered The Love You Share another U.S. No. 1(No.7 UK). Michael and Jermaine on lead with a song about a girl being asked to slow down a little.

But the biggest hit of that year was I’ll Be There again No1 U.S. (No. 4 UK). It was the most successful single at that time for Motown and was the first ever 4th consecutive No. 1 in the U.S. charts for a black male group. The single sold over six million across the world, and remains the group’s biggest selling single.

That single was followed in the U.S. only by Mama’s Pearl , Never Can Say Goodbye, Maybe Tomorrow, Sugar Daddy and Little Bitty Pretty One. The next hit for both the UK and USA was Lookin’ Through TheWindows, which came from the album of the same name. Again Michael very much at the front in terms of lead vocal. This is the time the infighting in the group started to raise its head, and the group’s overall dissatisfaction with the way Tamla Motown were treating them.

In the same year of 1972 the group had a No. 9 hit in the UK with Doctor My Eyes a song written by Jackson Browne. Jackson also released it as a single getting to No. 8 in the U.S.

1973 the biggest U.S. single was Get It Together, but in the UK it was Skywriter which was a style of record that seemed to be pushing the Jackson away from the traditional style of song. No hits in the UK, but the U.S. pushed out five with Dancing Machine being the biggest and gave the group their second Grammy nomination too. In 1976 the group moved to CBS from Motown and had hits like Enjoy Yourself.



The songs were more funky such as the No.1 UK Show You The Way To Go which had an amazing video to go with the song. It was something never really seen before with the brothers falling through computerized back drops. The song was written by award winging writers Huff and Gamble. Smaller hits trickled in the charts in 1977.

1978 saw Blame It On The Boogie which had two versions going up and down the charts at the same time. The song had been written by English man Mick Jackson, who also released it at the same time as the Jackson Five. He put up a great fight, but the group beat him in the battle of the record charts.

1979 and Shake Your Body Down To The Ground came from the 1978 album Destiny and was written by Randy and Michael Jackson themselves, and also went silver in the UK. It was the last top twenty hit for the super group in the UK. The group had eight top twenty hits in the States in the 1970s. 

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