[ENTERTAINMENT]Janet Jackson's New CD Is Easy on the EarsJanet Jackson looks and sounds much more comfortable and intrepid in her latest release, "All For You." She appears on the album cover with only a white fur wrap covering her body and a seductive smile on her face. Her big brother, Michael Jackson, who once gave her sports outfits urging her to go on a diet, would have never expected that his plump little sister could be so bold, beautiful and tantalizing.
It is perhaps discourteous to mention a lady's age, but 36-year-old Janet is still alive and kicking all these years after her solo debut in 1982. Indeed, she and her music seem to have grown more sophisticated over the years and she even looks more youthful in her recent pictures.
Since she made her performance debut in 1973 with her brothers at the tender age of seven, she has released 11 albums and a number of singles. She also pursued an acting career, appearing in movies such as "Poetic Justice" (1993) and most recently, "Nutty Professor II: The Klumps" (2000).
For this album, she gave up her prestigious surname and proudly wrote just her first name, proving that she is now one of the most popular icons in the worldwide music scene, not as a member of the Jackson family but as an individual. The main track, "All For You" was on the Billboard pop single charts even before the album was released, proving her status in the U.S. music scene.
But her success was not achieved easily. Most people do not know of her first two albums from the early 1980s, including her self-titled debut album released in 1982. To the media, Janet said, "My parents taught us that you never give up," and she didn't. In 1986, she distinguished herself with the release titled "Control." And that was only the beginning of her road to success. In 1997, her most well-received album, "The Velvet Rope" came out, winning both popularity and critical acclaim.
In March, she was honored with an inaugural show on MTV which featured a number of performers, such as 'N Sync, Destiny's Child and Britney Spears, paying tribute to her musical career. This was a testament to the fact that she is now an influential artist popular with contemporary audiences.
In the new release, she presents 20 songs, including impressive first and last tracks. Her voice, tender and lilting yet ample and strong, does her reputation justice.
The main track, "All For You" is easy listening dance music spiced with rhythmic soul style, while "Someone to Call My Lover" contains exciting upbeat dance music. On the other hand, the song, "When We Oooo" is a melodious and appealing ballad, flavored with an up-tempo soul rhythm.
And "Son of the Gun (I Betcha Think This Song Is About You)," featuring Carly Simon, has a sophisticated and delightful narrative. The album also features a remake of the hit "Doesn't Really Matter" from "Nutty Professor II: The Klumps."
Janet Jackson is embarking on a worldwide tour in July. Unfortunately, she will probably spend some days in Japan, but none in Korea.
by Chun Su-jin