By Lola Rossi

Music Icons The Jacksons celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the Jackson 5 by heading out for their 2015 Unity Tour and tearing up the stage with an exciting, high energy show at Fantasy Springs Casino, this Saturday, February 28, at 8 p.m.

Born and raised in Gary, Indiana, Jermaine, Tito, Jackie, Marlon and Michael Jackson, started their musical journey, winning the Roosevelt High School Talent Show in 1965. A lot of hard work and dedication went into the act before they made it. They performed at the Apollo Theater during their summer vacations and performed at nightclubs for almost five years. While at the Regal Theater, Bobby Taylor introduced them to Motown; and Berry Gordy used Diana Ross to present The Jackson 5 to the world. Their dream became a reality.

I highly recommend going to The Jacksons Official website and viewing them on YouTube. The Jackson Family live their lives with love and respect for each other. They have their ups and downs in life, just like anybody else, but the bond they have as a Family and their Faith in God, keeps them focused. They are very appreciative of all the fans who have supported them over the years.

They made history when their first four singles reached #1. This gave them International fame and yet, they never won a Grammy nor an American Music Award, but they really enjoyed being inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame with The Bee Gees in 1997; and the Vocal Hall of Fame in 1999.

During a telephone interview with Marlon Jackson, I mentioned a photo I saw on The Jacksons FB Page. It was of Tito, Jackie and Marlon visiting an orphanage. “While on tour, we went to visit the Selangor Orphanage in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, and the kids were just so excited,” said Jackson. “We stopped at McDonald’s and we brought food for about 80 kids. They had fun, we had fun running around and we came to find out, the lady had two homes, side by side, and all of these kids were staying with her, because they were homeless. She was taking care of them, raising them and making sure they went to school.”

Before they left the orphanage, they found out the ladies were behind in their rent and didn’t have money for the following Month. The Jackson Brothers talked about it and decided to pay their rent for the entire year.

“The ladies were so excited and it was at that moment, I really felt in my heart, this is the reason why the Lord put us in this position, for these types of movements. How could we not do it? I tell people all the time, when I leave this earth, we aren’t going to be judged for what we’ve done for ourselves and for the material things we have; we will be judged for what we have done for others.”

The Jacksons started touring again in 2011 with their first performance in Montreal, Canada. Since then, they have toured all over the world, sharing the Love with their fans. Music is what they were born to do. When I hear a song on the radio, it brings back memories of where I was when I heard it for the first time. According to Marlon, when he hears a song, he thinks about where they were and what they were doing in the recording studio. And how they were tutored in hotel rooms and when Jermaine was reading his book upside down. They were living their dream and enjoying it.

“God plays a very important role in our lives because without Him, none of this would be possible. What I have come to realize, as I’ve gotten older, is that there is a reason why the Lord put my family or put me in a position to travel the globe and to experience all of the various Cultures and to see things that a lot of people will not see in their lifetime. And, I’ve come to understand that with all the fame and notoriety internationally, it comes with some sort of responsibility as well. So, to be able to help in certain ways, when you can help, you do it.”

A project dear to his heart; in the process of being formed and soon to be “officially” announced, is The Marlon Jackson Study Peace Foundation. “I really do believe that the world needs to unite as one and live in a more peaceful environment, not only for us, but for our youngsters who are our future. Everything I do is from the Lord.”