Friday, March 12, 2021


Anyone with even the most cursory knowledge of this site will appreciate that there is likely little hip hop demographic within the reading or the writing. By way neither of apology or excuse, I guess this is a an age and colour thing, old white guys seldom experts outside their narrow zones of comfort. If I were younger, maybe a bit more: my son was a huge fan of the genre twenty odd years ago and certainly gave me limitless opportunity to absorb, wanted or not. And, I admit, largely not. But, as I peruse my i-tunes, I have rather more than I realised, and have no little grudging respect for certain artists, tending to prefer the melodic to the militant, the abstract to the angry. Like this, the contrast between the staccato delivery of the verses and the dreamy chorus grabbing my ears back then, even as I was scrubbing the graffiti off my son's bedroom walls.

Now, I guess I could now make this a hastily regurgitated precis of the life and times of the band, OutKast, or the duo, as they were, but I fear my sources would be obvious. Plus, we can all read wikipedia for ourselves, but I hadn't realise that the song relates to the relationship of Andre 3000, one of the pair, with singer Erykah Badu, or more specifically with her mother, the Ms "Jackson" the lyrics are addressed to. Whilst not necessarily a fan of the individual, she apparently loved the song, a fair bit more, in fact, than her daughter, who found it a little close to the bone. So, nearly avoiding also any clumsy link to the other OutKast song in my collection, lets celebrate a couple or so other Ms Jacksons...

Wanda Jackson isn't either actually quite my demographic, this little ditty hailing from the year of my birth, and comes from days when cultural sensitivities were, shall we say, less well honed. But, as a piece of rough hewn rockabilly, it certainly has some pizazz and she has continued ploughing that field right up until, astonishingly, as recently as 2012, that being when her last record was released. Little had changed.

So which one's Luscious, you ask? And given the Lucious, no s, Jackson was a male basketball player, and after whom this all-girl band named themselves, does this fit the strict criterion I apply to all my nonsense. Hell, no, but it's my post, and I like the band, as much for being there as for the music they produced.

Jade Jackson is/was 'One of 10 New Country Artists You Should Know", according to Rolling Stone in 2017, and has a bit more balls than many of the winsome souls who that sort of category might have you bringing to mind. In fact, she has me thinking more of a modern day Wanda. I know little of her beyond this song, but I like it. In fact, I may go check out some of her other work.

From the present back to the past I tread, desperately trying to bypass the Ms Jackson that is Janet, Mahalia being one I cannot possible exclude, a truly majestic vocal presence that lingers to this day. Whether gospel is or not your thing, I defy you to ignore the power and presence displayed. No wonder that Sinead O'Connor chose to revisit just this song for her latest come-back.

Who's your favourite Ms Jackson?

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