“What have you done for me lately?” Another way of saying what have you done for me, period. Where have you been. It’s one of those things that people say when someone who isn’t very close with them suddenly appears out of nowhere and asks for help. And someone might say, “why should I even care and help you, where were you when I needed you, what have you done for me lately?” Janet Jackson is a very good communicator and app at using her music to communicate a broader message. Her 1989-90 album Rhythm Nation was about race relations in America and is a perfect example of that. This is not one of my favorite songs, but it’s a great song in the sense that the message is clear. And is about someone perhaps in Janet’s life who perhaps hasn’t been there for her lately and perhaps that person was once close with her and what’s she saying in this song about that person is essentially where have you been. And “What Have You Done For Me Lately” I believe is her way of delivering that message.
This weekend as music fans we’ve mourned the lost of Whitney Houston. Who I consider is the voice of at least my generation. And there’s a separate post about her today and I want to take the time with this blog, to share my thoughts about another very talented musical artist, who’s still alive and very well and from the same generation. Which is a credit to my generation, which is perhaps better known for our style and not substance.
But in Janet Jackson’s case she’s known and should be known for her great talent as a performer. As a singer and dancer and even a songwriter, but also one of the sexiest and best looking performers not only of our generation, but also ever. A women who combines, beautiful baby-face looks and with a great tight sexy body to go with it.
Janet Jackson has a keen intelligence, who knows the world around her. And what’s important and what she thinks about it and what she believes needs to be said. That perhaps isn’t said enough, overlooked perhaps, or communicated in a way where the most people possible can hear and understand it. This is what Janet Jackson is about and why she’s gone as far as she has to the point I believe her music and act, has topped her brother Michael.
But Janet probably doesn’t have the same popularity as far as the number of great songs she’s produced. She’s completely involved in producing her own music. Because she knows better than anyone what she’s trying to communicate. When I think of Janet Jackson and her music, I think of songs like Black Cat which is a great classic rock song. She performs this song as well as any classic rocker. Even though she’s basically a R&B Singer and a great one.
And that’s another thing about JJ, her versatility. Her ability to combine two great sounds into one song. Another song from JJ would be Love Will Never Do, again the same Rhythm Nation album. Twenty years later still her best album another very sexy video shot on a beach, the actual song Rhythm Nation. Where she sings about we are all members of the same world basically. So lets us make the most of it.
Janet Jackson combine both physical beauty, sex appeal, intelligence, talent. All into one package and can communicate all of these abilities as a singer, dancer and commentator on world events as well as can be done right now and one of the best ever. Whitney Houston is the voice of this generation, but Janet Jackson is the best spokesperson as far as how are generation looks at the World.