Monday, September 5, 2022

"Nothin' (That Compares 2 U)" by The Jacksons

Song#:  3920
Date:  06/03/1989
Debut:  93
Peak:  77
Weeks:  7
Genre:  R&B, New Jack Swing

Pop Bits:  The last time the Jacksons were together was for the 1984 album Victory. while that LP would reach #4 and go double-platinum, it wasn't necessarily considered a huge success especially following Michael Jackson's blockbuster Thriller. After Victory and its associated tour, Michael would choose to leave the family group and return to his solo career. He would then release Bad in '87. Brother Marlon would also choose to leave and try for a solo career. The remaining four brothers would soldier on, but it seemed their label, Epic, lost interest in the group after the departures. Still, they went on and recorded a couple of songs and presented them to the label, who finally got on board. The Jacksons would then record the album 2300 Jackson Street. In addition to writing and producing some of their own tracks, they also worked with songwriter Diane Warren, producer Michael Omartian, and the team of L.A. Reid and Babyface, who wrote and produced this first single. The song would do well at R&B reaching #4. However, it wouldn't catch on at Pop and it fizzled near the bottom of the chart. The album's title track would be the second single and it would get to #9 R&B. It would not make the Pop chart. The album would then peak at #14 R&B/#59 Pop. It would fail to reach gold level sales. And that would pretty much wrap things up for The Jacksons. They would not record another album together. In 2012, Jackie, Tito, Jermaine, and Marlon would reunite for the Unity Tour.

ReduxReview:  To boost their sound and credibility for the late 80s, the Jacksons got together with L.A. Reid and Babyface who supplied this new jack track. It was a good tactic and it ended up working out at R&B, but it seems pop radio just wasn't interested in a new jack song from the Jacksons. I think the problem was that the Jacksons got lost behind a wall of new jack production. Really, any pop/R&B boy band could have recorded this and it would have sounded nearly the same. There was just a lack of identity. The autobiographical "2300 Jackson Street" had a much better Jackson sound, but as sweet as the tune was, it didn't have mainstream appeal. The album was a last gasp effort for relevancy by the remaining participating Jackson brothers that just couldn't compete or even compliment their classic legacy recordings.

ReduxRating:  4/10

Trivia:  Double Shot!  1) This single was the only one in the group's history to not feature or include Michael Jackson. For the title track song, which was about the family's childhood home in Gary, Indiana, Michael and Marlon joined in along with sisters Rebbie and Janet. It has remained the last charting single from the Jacksons.  2) As mentioned above, Marlon left the group after the Victory tour. He did go for a solo career and in '87 released the album Baby Tonight for Capitol Records. Marlon would mostly write and produce the album himself. It would get to #22 R&B/#175 Pop mainly on the strength of the #2 R&B single "Don't Go." It would end up being Marlon's only solo effort. All the brothers would record their own albums at some point in time. Obviously, Michael had the greatest success followed by Jermaine who would earn two gold albums along with six Pop Top 20 hits and five R&B Top 10s including two #1s.


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