Reviews of Jackson 5 Songs -
Just Enough Sugar, Daddy

It's easy to take Jackson 5 songs* for granted. But many of them aren't merely delightful. Some are exquisite examples of pop music...even soul music.

For instance--

Well, just read the song reviews below!

Reviews of Jackson 5 Songs -
"I Wanna Be Where You Are"

A terrific piece whose orchestral aspects don't flatten its R&B/pop music fizz.

Quite the opposite. Harps, violins, flutes, and harpsichordean openings aren't unique to this piece or Jackson 5 songs in general. But they do churn up and coat the trusty percussion, bass, and guitars with an extra layer of excitement.

Michael Jackson is all seriousness in this solo turn. He knows just when to jackhammer his notes and when to brush them, and barely strains as he swoops up to the chorus: "I wanna, wanna be where you are, oh oh!"

The lyrics are simple and vague enough not to distract us from Michael. Forget what he's singing; listen to how he's singing! He's still just a kid, but I feel like he fully feels those words. Along with the musical mix, his technique makes "I Wanna Be Where You Are" one satisfying tune.

Reviews of Jackson 5 Songs -

I'll say right off the bat that this is not one of my favorite Jackson 5 songs.

It's mainly the education theme. The lyrics are quite clever, but they feel too precious when welded to innocent love.

At the same time, the theme stresses the group's youth too plainly. Sometimes it is silly to give adult perspectives to kids. But these Motown singers proved so exceptional that I prefer Jackson 5 songs that don't confine them to the schoolyard.

That said, there's much to like. The words are splendidly simple--so convenient that the first letters of the alphabet, numbers, and notes of the scale end with words that rhyme, huh? "Your education ain't complete / T-T-T-Teacher's gonna show you..." are especially nifty lines.

The music is good, but Motown's production is better. I enjoy listening to the sonic textures more than the "simple melody." The "Sit down, girl!" bridge is also more engaging than the chorus. Who'd have thought that encouraging a girl to "shake it" could build so much tension?

We get to hear several Jacksons individually. Jermaine is the only non-Michael sibling who doesn't sound unnatural at the pitch he uses. For better or worse, the brothers' falsetto chirps in the background play up this Jackson 5 song's cutesy factor.

The hook in "ABC" doesn't sink into my gut like those of other Jackson 5 songs. Nonetheless, it's good fun soulfully sung.

For more on the brothers behind the Jackson 5 songs, click here for this Jackson 5 biography.

Top of Reviews of Jackson 5 Songs

* Also known as "Jackson Five songs," although not, to my knowledge, "Jackson V songs." ;) (My little note about the difference appears on the discography page.)