Joe Jackson

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About Joe Jackson

English musician Joe Jackson was initially compared to biting New Wave singer/songwriters such as Elvis Costello. His 1979 major-label debut, Look Sharp!—featuring the sinewy hit “Is She Really Going Out With Him?”—and its follow-up, I’m the Man, established his mainstream bona fides. However, Jackson very quickly carved out a unique niche by focusing on sophisticated pop music. Drawing from his teenage days playing piano in bars, he turned to blues and swing covers in 1981 on Jumpin’ Jive and then had the simmering, jazz-influenced hit “Steppin’ Out” on the Cole Porter-inspired Night and Day. Having that success freed Jackson up to dabble in not just jazz but also R&B, salsa, and reggae. Much later, he won a Grammy for 1999’s classical-leaning Symphony No. 1—although he’s since returned to piano-driven songwriting efforts, such as 2019’s Fool.

Burton-upon-Trent, England
August 11, 1954

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