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Janet Is ‘Figuring Out Her Landscape’


Well, at least according to Jermaine Dupri, she is. Should Janet stop making albums? This off-shoot of the larger, music industry-wide question of the future of full albums of music feels strange. She made it clear that she'll still be making music and performing because, well, it's what she does and loves. But can she sustain a career on singles and videos alone? As one of the progenitors of the current wave (let's call it the viral wave) of music videos, can she hang with the new breed? Or is she beyond the Beyoncés and the Gagas and the Aguileras (and the Biebers...)? What do you think, Bouncers? Where do pop icons like Janet fit into the new "landscape" of music?
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24 Responses

  1. Janet is for all intent and purposes done. Instead of aging gracefully and making more mature music, she's on some lady gaga dance bullshit. I cant front I use to dig the shit out of Janet back in the early 90's, it's 2010 damn near 2011 and her music has gotten worse and worse. Stop trying to be a sex kitten and stealing Madonnas sex act. Either make some decent music or please stop making any music at all..................

  2. Never take anything Jermaine Dupri, of all people, says about Janet at face value. This is the same man who tattooed a picture of her from 1992 on his ribcage a week before they broke up. Let Janet speak for Janet, please.

  3. This post is pointless. Janet Jackson is a legend and I'm sure she isn't pressed about Gaga, Beyonce, or Madonna' s old white ass. Quit hating. She's made her mark. People never would have started dogging her anyway if the SB shit had never happened, and colored folks are so stupid we feel the need to buy into that media-fueled crap.

  4. Janet has been giving you the same album since all for you and the same I'm sexy Lets talk about my picachu sincce 93. She needs to change up the style in a big way. Madonna had her overly sexual period from 90-93 then let it go. Janet for some reason still has to shoove it down our throats every album.

  5. i have been a janet fan since 'don't stand another chance' way back in 84. watching her reach superstar status over the past 25 years has been amazing. i've gotten every one of her cd's. but like many other fans, i'm weary of the overtly sexual themes she's presented since 93. janet will be 44 next sunday. it's time for her music to age as well. i have no idea what exactly that sounds like, but it starts with eliminating the sex themes. 20 years ago i couldn't imagine a 44 year old janet jackson. i suppose janet now is like diana ross trying to make a comeback in 1989...it fell flat. no one brought it. will they buy a 44 year old janet's music? not if it doesn't change...
    maybe she should just act. her performance in why did i get married too was intense. go back to where she began, on the screen. she is still a beautiful woman to look at.

  6. Jackson's legacy is that, a legacy. From "Janet Jackson" to "Discipline," catalog is consistent, rife with great musical finds. I think people need to come off her "sexual" thing. Everyone has a trick that is theirs, it's hers. If Erykah Badu can continually mumble about being progessive, Sade muse about being in love, poor, etc. then Janet Jackson can continue to do her musical themes as well. Her music has stayed quite good, she isn't going anywhere.-QH

  7. Oh. And to the person who made the comment about Diana Ross' return to Motown album "Workin' Overtime," the title track was a #3 R&B hit. She followed up that lukewarm record with the U.K. platinum smash '91 LP "The Force Behind the Power," WO was a misstep, but not without a few moments worth investigating.
    Maybe digging into her catalog outside of your surface knowledge of her may assist in having a better understanding of her discography.-QH

  8. I have been a Janet fan since the beginning and i remember being a young girl and having to sneak to enjoy all of the tantalizing sensuality that was her 1993 album janet.
    Janet is the formula, the definition, the epitome of what these younger female artists aspire to be. These girls (Bey, Gaga, Ciara, Cassie, Christina, etc....) are about my age and also remember being kids and watching Janet on MTV and dying to dance like her in her If video, dance she did in the Pleasure Principle video, among others. I feel like it would be doing Janet a disservice to think she doesn't have a place in today's "pop landscape". Every time you see a video/song from these younger generations of artists, you are seeing a little bit of Janet's influence. So, I feel her place is rightfully so smack dab in the middle of this new musical climate.
    I feel Janet is just as relevant now as she was when she first hit BIG on the music scene some 24 years ago with Control. Of course, throughout a career as long as Janet's there are bound to be a couple missteps, but overall like QH said, Janet has a consistent catalog which I believe she can continue if she'd like. It's ultimately up to her if she'd like to continue to record, and if she did decide to, she'd stay afloat because she is legendary, she has that it factor that keeps everyone coming back for more, and a fan base that is crazy large. So, just because she's about to be 44 don't count her out of the game.

  9. What I also find funny is, as a Madonna fan, how no one talks about how Madonna has spent the better part of the latter '90's onward until the dismal "Hard Candy" LP, pontificating about fame and its uselessness, and "higher thought," which doesn't bother me. However, thematic repetition is not new to Janet Jackson, Prince does it, Michael did it, most recording acts do, but yet we want to act like Janet is this awful creature when she does it.
    Get real.-QH

  10. If what Jermaine says is to be believed, I think Janet is right for taking a minute to look at the market. As proven by some of the responses to the OP, the market is fickle. Until she discovers something that works, then I think its thoughtful to step back. I am personally glad that she's taking an "acting" break and hope she does more. No matter what she decides about this phase of her career, she is the blueprint.
    I guess I will go to my grave trying to figure out what 30 and 40 year olds have against dance music that is faster in tempo than a two step/"Cupid Shuffle" song. I am one year older than Janet and still thought "Feedback", "All Nite", "Rock With U" and other recent club hits were pretty cool songs and nice additions to her "classic" catalog.

  11. janet has been in the business for over 30 years.her legendary status is set in stone

  12. at the last commenter... what is lady gaga dance bullshit.
    Janet has done dance and pop tracks for years.... why does ageing mean you have to do waltzes?
    Tina Turner had the same music and act for decades. The difference is her audience is white and for some reason more supportive of a black woman sexy at any age. Maddonna can do dance music and flash her pop her cooch, Cher can dance around in a thong and sheer tights in If I could hold back time and still make a comeback with Stronger and Believe. I think perhaps Micheal got the whole turning yourself white for longevity right in some twisted way. Black fans are very hard and make the most unbelievably nasty comments especially about black legends who still inspire artistes making money off rippiing the off. "sit yo tired ass down" "retire bitch" are just a few things i see EVERY time Janet is ABOUT to put out an album. For jeavens sake shes 44 not 104.

  13. typos everywhere! i hope i still make sense

  14. Janet has stayed relevant, her latter albums actually have song's that are youthful and more mature. so she's not trying to be a 21 one yr old, her thing is grown n sexy....at this point in the industry,when you reach 40 plus you have to do niche albums a jazz album, covers album ect. or thats been the trend, to public re-gain notoriety. all that said she is a LEGEND

  15. Keith, it's called aging, now at 30 you still have it, but at 40 you can have it, but believe me, no one is going to the clubs to party hard at that age...that becomes a every 3 months event.
    Also, let's get real, you want a song that is funky, smooth and with a great flow. All that hard crap winds up giving you a headache.
    Janet is wise to think it over and step back and take a look. I was watching Toni Braxton the other day on Ellen, she was standing in one spot and running out of breath.

  16. @stoneyisland Stealing Madonna's sex act???? You are really funny..Janet is the queen of baby making slow songs.. And how can she be on some "lady Gaga dance" when Janet was doing dance while lady gaga was still in grade school?
    @baybruh... Take a close look at Madonna's performance and tell me she gave up the sex act..

  17. I don't get a sincere interest in music from Janet anymore. I can't pinpoint the exact year or album, but perhaps around Damita Jo it appeared she didn't have much investment in the material, the dancing, etc. she was just there. I don't think she needs to worry so much about her status as a legend or competing with this industry, but rather, focus on what makes her happy and healthy. She shouldn't just go through the motions of releasing albums she should enjoy doing it.

  18. @anon She was just having a hard time dealing with her record label and radio/mtv not playing her music.. I'm glad she kept making music because we got Do It to Me, With you, Enjoy, Take Care and love2love on 20yo. Feedback, Rock with U, Can't be good, Luv and Curtains on Discipline.

  19. Janet has consistently made, since her 1986 Control masterpiece, good albums. Her last 3 studio albums have not been an exception. When she performs, whether in person or onscreen, she proves time and again that she's a highly talented, competitive artist. However, the radio industry is so format driven and age-biased that I really think it's extremely hard for Jan to have an across the board radio smash. I really think that is the biggest thing working against her. Heavy airplay turns haters into believers and thus and such, hits keep a music career thriving. She hasn't had a "big" pop/R&B hit in a long time, though Feedback came close. Regardless though, I support everything that she does. I believe she's earned my loyalty.

  20. @ QH If you visit any popular MAdonna Fan forun on the web you will the see that compliants about Madonna from her own fans. They complain ALLLL Day every day how they want M to do something different and get out of her musical rut. I think discipline had the makings of a big comeback for JJ but IDJ totally fucked the project and all Janet did was show up and sing. She didn't write ONE lyric..wassup with that. @ssa I've seen plenty of Madonna shows and performances and Ive yet to see any recent overly sexual appearances. Janet talks about her twat atleast 2 times and album M hasnt done it since 93. It's just the way American audiences are now.they have the musical attention span of a nat. there was a time when a female artist over 40 could have a huge hit and be all over the radio but those days are gone and it doesnt matter how good the music is. Mariah is seeing the agism for herself. When she hit 40, radio stopped playing her.

  21. I don't see what all the fuss is about. Longevity and Pop Artist have never went hand in hand We'll be having this coversation about Beyonce, Lady Gaga and the rest when they reach Janet's age. 20 plus years in the game as a pop artist is a great run and she'll still be relevant because of her past work. Let's face it when you were 18, the coolest hippest 27 yr old seemed like the old girl in the room. Pop music is primarily for kids, always has always will be.

  22. @ babybruh, I guess you didn't catch all the drops to Madonna's snatch she made in "Candy Shop" from "Hard Candy" about her sugar being "raw," "sticky & sweet," etc. Like I said. Madonna gets a fairer shake for several reasons, which are too long to go into here. Madonna thrusts her crotch, flips off her audiences, and makes plenty of sexual inneudo, but because she is Madonna, it gets labeled "progressive." if anything, Janet's come ons seem far more erotic and natura, versus Madonna's more confrontational approaches, and this is from a Madonna fan.
    Janet Jackson has a portion of her musical persona that deals with sexuality, love it or leave it at this point. She isn't changing it. So many other artists have these ticks and such in their music, and no one bats an eye. In terms of "Discipline," so Jackson wanted a disconnect lyrically, is that an issue? People dogged her out for writing on the previous three albums that preceded it, so either way, she can't win.
    I just find this arguement to be so moot and stupid. Records like "Damita Jo" and "20 Y.O." will praised years down the line, sadly it will be after people wake up and learn to think for themselves than reading some review from someone who didn't even play the record in its entirety before panning it.
    I feel that at the end of the day, you do the music you love, and leave a discography rife with classics known & unknown for us to appreciate, and Janet Jackson has done it.-QH

  23. @QH word play in Candy shop is TOTALLY different than talking about her heavy flow or how her lips hurt which Janet does more often than not. Atleast in CS M lets your imagination do some work unlike JJ. Also M flipping off the audience is not dragging someone on stage EVERYTOUR and tying then up for some forced tired lap dance..ok I'm done

  24. @baybruh You are still giving Madonna a pass for the same thing Janet does.. You also mention her "dragging"someone on stage, last time I went to her concert..people were begging her to pick them.. Every tour she had since the Janet. Tour, the audience loves that part of the show. Also when ever Janet has a new cd out they are already picking which song she should perform during that section of the show.



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