Joe Jackson father of Michael Jackson Passed Away at 89 of Pancreatic Cancer

K Gerard Thomas

Joseph Walter Jackson was born July 26,1928 in Fountain Hill Arkansas his linage is African American and Native American, his mother and father divorced and his 4 younger siblings moved with their mother to East Chicago just outside of Gary Indiana, Joe moved to Oakland California with his father.


When Joe’s father remarried joe moved to East Chicago to live with his mother and brothers and sisters, he took a job at the Inland Steel Company. He dropped out of high school to pursue his dream of becoming a boxer he later became a known Golden Gloves contender.


After a one year failed marriage, Joe married Katherine Scruse in 1949 Katherine was a graduate of Washington High in East Chicago. They purchased a small two bed room home in Gary Indiana located on 2300 Jackson Street. In 1950 their first child was born Maureen “Reebie” Jackson, the family began to grow and Jackson remained at Inland Steel and worked a second job at American Foundries while Kathrine worked at Sears part time.  


Joe made an unsuccessful attempt to go into show business he joined a group named the Falcons as their guitar player, it did not last long.  Joe and Kathrine 10 other children were Jackie, Tito, La Toya, Jermaine, Marlon, Michael, Randy, Janet and Brandon who preceded his siblings in 1957 he lived for one day. 


In the early 1960s Joe noticed his sons had musical talent and decided to manage the three oldest as the Jackson Brothers but once Marlon and Michael were old enough to perform the group name was changed to the Jackson 5. 


They auditioned for local talent shows and was becoming a name in Gary Indiana even playing night clubs or taverns and eventually school auditoriums.  Joe was later accused of abusing the children because of his strict rehearsals and his spanking the children for his perceived disobedience he was a hard taskmaster.


They were signed to Steel Town Records a local label in Gary, their first song with Michael as the lead was Big Boy in 1968, the following year they were auditioning for Motown Records in Detroit and was signed in 1969 to the Motown family.  


Berry Gordy took a personal interest in the group and decided to have Bobby Taylor to produce their songs, they were moved to Los Angeles to be groomed and later the rest of the family came along Joseph was their all the time. 


Their first album was titled “Diana Ross Introduces the Jackson 5” her name carried weight in the public sphere and Gordy though it best to say Diana Ross discovered them but truth be told it was Gladys Knight.  The Jackson 5 first # 1 hit I Want You Back started their national exposure and I was there next album ABC that gave us such hits as “ABC, and The Love You Save”, the first four albums were extremely successful and they made the Jackson 5 a house hold name across the world.


Joe Jackson wanted his family to have the same notoriety as the Osmond’s so he signed a deal with Las Vegas Casinos to have his family to perform on the strip, the girls and Randy also toured.  By 1975 the group decided to leave Motown but Jermaine decided to remain at the label being married to Berry Gordy’s daughter Hazel was also a major factor.


When Jermain left the group to go solo Randy was added and they changed their name to the Jacksons and signed with Epic Records, by the early eighties the brothers decided to part ways with their father as their only manager, he did assist Janet on her first album with A&M records.


Joe Jackson was stranger to controversy he is rumored to have had multiple affairs, one particular affair turned into a long term relationship lasted for 25 years and he fathered a child 1974.  Despite his affairs his wife of 60 yrs never divorced him and  all that the family has gone through accusations of abuse by La Toya, the death of Michael who was an international icon the family still managed to keep a relationship with Joe.  


Joe was played by Lawrence Hilton Jacobs in a made for television two-night miniseries The Jacksons an American Dream”, Michaels children Paris and Michael Jr posted tributes to their grandfather Paris “None of us would be anywhere near where we’re at if it weren’t for you. you are the strongest man i know. your life’s work will go down in history, as will you, to be known as one of the greatest patriarchs to ever live,” she added


The New Evening Whirl

25343 Silver Aspen Way
Valencia CA 91381

Copyright © 2019 New Evening Whirl / Thomas Publishing LLC
All Rights Reserved
80 Years of Uninterrupted Publishing