Janet Jackson, the youngest of nine children in the musical Jackson family, was born in 1966 in Gary, Indiana.
Growing up, Jackson made appearances with family group the Jackson 5 but primarily focused her energies on acting. As a child star, she appeared in shows including Diff’rent Strokes and Fame.
Proving she could act, Jackson then set out to conquer the music industry. Although the singer is now considered to be a staple in the American music scene, it wasn’t until her third album, Control, that she found her tune – and sold five million records.
Her albums that followed, including Rhythm Nation 1814, Velvet Rope and All For You (which sold 600,000 copies in its first week out) were enormous successes.
During a performance at the 2004 Super Bowl halftime show, Justin Timberlake accidentally exposed Janet Jackson, leading to major backlash. The actress was blacklisted from the entertainment industry at the time, leading her to part ways with Virgin Records. She produced one album with Island Records four years later, only to launch her own record label in 2015. She has continued to release her music as an independent artist since her involvement with Rhythm Nation, in partnership with BMG Rights Management.
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The pop culture icon married James DeBarge in 1984, but the union was annulled the following year. Janet went on to marry René Elizondo Jr. in 1991. They divorced nine years later. The “All for You” singer was involved in a long-term relationship with music exec Jermaine Dupri, but rumors of a split swirled when Dupri was noticeably absent from Michael Jackson‘s funeral in July 2009. The “Black Cat” singer moved on with billionaire Wissam Al Mana, the duo got married in 2012 and welcomed a son five years later. The twosome announced their separation in 2017.