Although the lyrics of “What About” describe situations that aren’t the same as this year’s reckoning of sexual assault and sexual harassment, it wasn’t a stretch to assign an abundance of vile male behavior to the dancer as he received Jackson’s message.
How did the audience know the personal relevance of “What About”? Jackson concluded the song by saying, “This is me.”
The forceful statement arrived as one of a handful of onstage remarks by Jackson, who lived in Gary, Ind., for the first few years of her life.
“I have to tell you, it feels so good to perform for my home state,” she said near the end of Sunday’s show.
Jackson returned to Gary, where she and her iconic siblings lived in a house roughly the size of a two-car garage, following a Chicago tour stop in October. Speaking to students at Roosevelt High School, the 51-year-old talked about the February birth of her first child.
“Every doctor told me it wasn’t possible. But I’ve got a beautiful, healthy son,” Jackson said.
Youth provides one theme for Jackson’s “State of the World” tour. Despite an overall assessment that things aren’t great, a new generation can bring change.
Jackson performed 1990 chart-topper “Escapade” with two female dancers who resembled high-school students pulling the best job-shadowing assignment ever.
And Jackson deserves all credit for radiating youth at 51. She’s breezy, fit and holding onto a teenager’s bold attitudes.
Minimalism defines the “State of the World” production. Jackson began the night wearing black military boots and she steamrolled through more than one medley of hit songs.
The sound mix was far from finessed, so it was great to hear Jackson sing the melodies of “Control,” “What Have You Done for me Lately” and “Pleasure Principle” back-to-back-to-back above her rough-edged band.
A satellite stage or some type of catwalk would help the show keep pace with other modern productions as well as bring Jackson closer to her fans.
She clearly was at ease during the show’s middle segment, when she wore a denim jacket and track pants covered by a flannel shirt.
This part of the program delivered the highlight of her latest studio album, 2015’s “Unbreakable.” With assistance from rapper J. Cole via video, Jackson navigated the seductive beats of “No Sleeep.”
An audience estimated at 8,000 attended the show, making it a smaller event in the arena’s 2017 parade of blockbuster concerts starring Garth Brooks, Bruno Mars, Ed Sheeran, Billy Joel and Lady Gaga.
Jackson last performed in Indianapolis in October 2001, a wait made even longer by canceled plans between then and now. Her 2011 concert at the Indiana State Fair didn’t happen in the wake of the fatal stage-rigging accident the night country-pop duo Sugarland was scheduled to perform.
Sunday’s show originally was set for January 2016 and then pushed back again from July 2016.
With a performance as strong as Sunday’s, there’s no reason we won’t see her again on an Indianapolis stage.
Jackson closed the show with “Well Traveled,” an “Unbreakable” selection inspired by her life’s countless adventures: “I never want to arrive. Because if I ever reach there, there’s no place left to go.”
Janet Jackson knows how to celebrate.
On Thursday, the singer, 51, performed in Chicago as part of her State of the World tour, and on Friday, she indulged at RPM Italian with her dancers and choreographer.
The group of 14 dined “discreetly in a private space,” according to a spy.
The table shared lobster ravioli with white truffles, ribeye and filet mignon, chicken Parmesan, spaghetti carbonara, wood-roasted octopus, among other dishes. Jackson likes the bucatini, Brussels sprouts and tuna bruschetta so much that she “placed a to-go order of the same items before leaving that night to pick up the next day,” the spy said.
Jackson made her way around town during her time there. She stopped by Deadbolt bar on Thursday night after her show, and she visited her childhood home in Gary, Indiana, on Friday.
Teyana Taylor’s dream has come true!
The singer and actress met her idol, Janet Jackson, over the weekend at a Toldeo show.
Taylor was set to meet Jackson at her “State of the World” tour stop in Milwaukee earlier this month, but couldn’t make it due to a delayed flight. However, Jackson surprised the distraught singer by FaceTiming her and vowing to meet her at a later date.
Now, the two have finally met and their meeting is as epic as expected.
Taylor paid homage to Jackson in August at MTV’s VMAs, where she took home the award for Best Chorepgraphy In A Video, the same award Jackson and her late brother Michael took home in 1995.
Singer Janet Jackson and her brother Randy Jackson have visited their childhood home in Gary, Indiana, and talked with local high school students.
The (Northwest Indiana) Times reports that the Jacksons made the visit Friday, a day after Janet Jackson’s concert in the Chicago area. Janet Jackson told students at Roosevelt High School that she started crying when she saw the small house. She said, “me and my family are so blessed. I’m so thankful.”
The 51-year-old said she was 8-years-old the last time she was in Gary. The family moved out of the industrial city about 30 miles (50 kilometers) southwest of Chicago after the Jackson 5 recorded their first album in 1969, when Janet Jackson was a toddler.
She also told students she misses performing with her siblings.
She’s in the midst of a divorce from Qatari multi-millionaire husband Wissam Al Mana.
But it was a noticeably happy and smiling Janet Jackson who touched down in New York on Monday.
The singer was bringing baby Eissa home to America for the first time since his birth in London back in January.
The Escapade singer was 50 when she welcomed the now six-month-old, who is her first child.
And from her behavior as she strolled through the airport, it was clear Janet has taken to motherhood.
The doting mother carried her child in her arms, holding him close to her face as she reassured the inquisitive youngster with kisses and caressed him after the long transatlantic flight.
Dressed all in the black, Janet looked noticeably slimmed down.
She is currently in the midst of a divorce from Eissa’s father and previously said the divorce was ‘in God’s hands’.
Janet said: ‘I just want to keep it real with you guys for a second. Yes, I separated from my husband, we are in court and the rest is in God’s hands.’
And it was previously claimed Janet is leaning on her family following her split from Wissam.
An insider said: ‘As the babies of the family, they have an unbreakable bond. She trusts him more than anyone.
‘They are amicable. Janet hates mess just like Michael [Jackson] did and would have preferred to keep the split as quiet as possible … She couldn’t stay in the marriage.’
However, it is thought Janet still has a ‘strong friendship’ with Wissam despite their split.
The source added: ‘Janet really trusts Wissam and he trusts her. She and Wissam are working together to co-parent. They have a strong friendship. There is no fighting between them. They are very disciplined and the baby is already on a strict schedule.
‘It seems like she will stay in London for now while the baby is so young, but I can see her eventually moving back to the States. Janet is doing really well. She is just so happy to have her baby.’