Tuesday, January 3, 2023

#56-60 Janet Jackson

Her name ain't baby; It's Janet... Ms. Jackson, if you're nasty.

I like Janet Jackson's music fine, especially the Control through Rhythm Nation 1814 era, with those hit singles being all over the radio and MTV when I was young.

She's got 8 MusiCards total: the 5 consecutive here in Series 1, plus one in the UK edition, one "alternate design" promo, and one regular design promo. We'll hit most of those in this "speed round" post, trying to get the blog back in the swing of things after it sank into a hiatus the latter half of 2022.

Good variety of photos in the group.

1991 Pro Set MusiCards #56 Janet Jackson

This one features a lot of hair.

1990 sure was a big year for her.

1991 Pro Set MusiCards #57 Janet Jackson

She could almost pass for LaToya from this angle. Heck, squint your eyes and it could be her brother Michael.

It's tough for me to pick a favorite Janet Jackson song, but "Pleasure Principle" would be up there.

Janet Jackson - "Pleasure Principle"

1991 Pro Set MusiCards #58 Janet Jackson

This one's all business. A rare time the awkward MusiCards design actually works well with a photo.

Back picture here, featuring Janet as a blonde with her hair up, is similar to that on card #57, likely from the same photoshoot. Almost look like they could be stills from a video. Actually, yeah, looks like that might be from the "Love Will Never Do (Without You)" video.

Janet Jackson - Love Will Never Do (Without You)

1991 Pro Set MusiCards #59 Janet Jackson

This horse cameo might be the first animal sighting in the set so far unless I'm forgetting something. Wikipedia mentions Janet wanted to be a horse racing jockey when she was little.

I remember getting a little sick of the "Rhythm Nation" video getting played so much on MTV at the time, but it's a good song.

Janet Jackson - "Rhythm Nation"

1991 Pro Set MusiCards #60 Janet Jackson

Looks like this image is from the "Love Will Never Do (Without You)" video shoot, as with the back of cards #57 and #58. A bit grainy, but cute pic.

I watched the big Janet documentary on Hulu (think it was originally on Lifetime) last year and enjoyed it. Learned a lot about her and the Jackson Five. That also inspired me to find and watch Poetic Justice, the 1993 film she starred in with Tupac. That was a decent flick. Talented lady, no doubt.

Now here's the unnumbered promo card-- note the different font in the logo. These "cello pack promos" as TCDB currently lists them, are often early versions of cards that went on to appear in the final 1991 MusiCards set-- that is to say they use the same photograph-- but there's no non-promo doppelganger sharing this straightjacket-pose shot. Promo exclusive, baby! Ms. Jackson!

The back photo didn't get reused either. Probably the earliest photo of the bunch, from the looks of it.

Janet Jackson - "Miss You Much"

The write-up says "Miss You Much" was the most played single of 1989, though fact-checking that claim, looks like the Billboard Year-End Hot 100 singles of 1989 (Wikipedia entry) has it ranked at #5. But I guess they're talking about radio and/or MTV play, which is likely a somewhat different list.

Notice the colors are flipped on the back of the promo.

Finally, here's Janet's alternate design promo card from 1990. This photo was also not used on any of her retail MusiCards. It looks very close to the back photo of card #56, but nope, different photo.

Seems like the same picture at first glance, but it's like one of those "spot the differences" exercises when you take a closer look.

BTW, I'm not covering her card in the UK edition in this post, but that one features the same "a lot of hair" photo we saw earlier at card #56.

Most of the bio information here is mentioned on her other MusiCards, though this one does share the tidbits that she loves eating Mexican food (me too! so relatable!) and visiting Paris in spring. I dig the "sexy mummy" photo, too.

"Escapade" is another favorite song of mine. Listened to it a lot on a special playlist made for Friday afternoons when I got off work, with its whole vibe of "whew, I'm done working for a while, time to have some fun" helping ring in the weekend.

And so there's a bunch of Janet Jackson cards. Any thoughts or memories coming to mind when you think of her? Favorite song(s)? Feel free to share in the comments.


  1. I feel like Janet has been around my whole life. When I was about ten or so she started on the Jacksons variety show. She was about the same age but she was very funny on the show. Then it was on to Diff'rent Strokes before she became a big singing star. I was never as into her music as I was that of Michael and her other brothers, but plenty of good stuff there. I suppose my favorite is "Miss You Much". An underrated hit of hers is "The Best Things In Life Are Free" with Luther Vandross and most of New Edition.

  2. I'm going to say it: She was the best Jackson, better than even Michael.

  3. For those of a certain age, Janet Jackson was a child actor first, and then it was odd to see her singing. My favorite song of hers has always been "When I Think Of You" from her first big album. Most of her songs have that mass appeal, although I was always a bit annoyed with her talking bits in some of her songs.

  4. Most of my memories of her are from watching Good Times in syndication as a kid. Musically, her stuff never did much for me.

  5. I have a few Janet songs on my R&B Spotify playlists... and own two of her CD's: Control and Rhythm Nation. One of my co-workers is going to her concert this summer and was asking if I was interested in going. I passed, but it has nothing to do with her music. I'm just not into crowds as much as I used to be. As for favorite songs, I'd probably say All For You and That's The Way Love Goes.