Quite a few Joe Jacksons… the father of Michael and The Jackson Five… Shoeless Joe Jackson… and of course, the great English musician we are listening to today.
Joe Jackson – Night and Day
Yes, I love 1979’s Look Sharp! It is quite the album with “Sunday Papers,” the title song and of course the monster hit “Is She Really Going Out with Him?” Great, great record!
Wikipedia says that “along with Elvis Costello and Graham Parker, Jackson was a part of the trio of English artists who challenged the punk scene and brought a New Wave sound to the United States in the late 1970s.”
You may or may not know that I am (or was) a huge Elvis Costello fan. I will get back to him in due time, but as of now, I still have some fairly large issues with some of his political stances, comments and actions. It is frustrating when our heroes suddenly become flawed and reveal a dark side… It’s similar to the discussion I brought up when talking about Charlie Parker… Is there a way to separate the man and the music? I don’t know… but either way, that is another discussion for another day.
This is Joe’s fifth album and was released in 1982. The title comes from the Cole Porter song and is an homage of sorts to “the wit and style of Cole Porter (and indirectly to New York).”
The whole album is a gorgeous infusion of rock and jazz and my favorite songs are “Steppin’ Out”, “Breaking Us In Two” and “Real Men.” I remember there was a bit of a controversy with this last song, as it discussed New York’s “gay culture.” I cannot recall if he had come out at this point or not… Although I am guessing he must have. I know… it seems odd now that it would be so controversial, but we are still behind the times and have a long way to go. Hopefully we are getting there.
In the meantime, if you are in the mood for some lush rock n’ roll, Mr. Joe Jackson’s neighborhood is worth a visit… or a re-visit.