In the 80’s, until mid-1982, the youngest of the Jacksons was known for her career on TV, as “Penny” or even “Charlene”, her character on ‘Diff’rent Strokes’ at the time. But, to Joe Jackson, his daughter had the potential to soar even higher.
Janet launched her career singing on the Jackson family TV show, at the age of seven, so this was not her first venture with music. The desire to record an album didn’t come from her, but, once she got engaged with the project, she did not want want her brothers to have anything to do with it. “Oh, you are the sister of Michael Jackson?” was the kind of thing that Janet didn’t want to hear. “No! Michael Jackson is my brother!” She didn’t want the public to buy her debut album just because Michael had produced such a track or Jermaine had recorded the backing vocals on another one. Janet wanted them to buy it because of her.
After a few months of work, split into her studies, the studio and filmings of ‘Diff’rent Strokes’, Janet Jackson came out in the stores. The expressive album cover was photographed in a pool at the family’s house. However, very shy, Janet seemed to feel uncomfortable while promoting the album. Always questioned if she’d rather sing or act, she wouldn’t hide that tended towards the small screens. She knew the expectations upon her were big. After all, her brothers were music stars.
The album sold 300,000 copies worldwide – a number considered mediocre at the time, but she seemed to be satisfied with the result. Little did she know that much greater figures were expecting her in the future.