After years of aborted attempts, The surviving members of The Jackson 5 are officially staging their comeback tour. Dubbed The Unity Tour, the outing will see Jermaine, Tito, Jackie and Marlon Jackson performing a set consisting largely of songs that their brother Michael made famous.
The tour begins almost 3 years to the day that Michael Jackson was found dead from an overdose of the anesthetic propofol. While some have decried the tour as crass commercialism and exploitation of their famous brother's legacy, the Jackson clan have referred to the trek as a tribute. Michael stopped performing with his brothers after the group's 1984 Victory Tour.
"The brothers don't know this, but I've broken down several times and cried during rehearsals," said Jermaine during a recent interview, "I'm so used to Michael being on the right and then Marlon, Jackie, on and on. It's just something we never get used to."
While last year's Michael Jackson themed Cirque de Soleil production garnered accolades and record ticket sales, sales for the Unity Tour have been described as "sluggish" by industry insiders.
"The Jacksons were really all about Michael," said Gary Bongiovanni, editor-in-chief of Pollstar Magazine. "The Cirque du Soleil show was successful because it was Cirque du Soleil and Michael's music. I don't know if that portends much for the remaining brothers and their ability to generate enthusiasm for ticket sales."
"We have a certain magic," said Jackie Jackson. "Once we get out here and run it down a couple times, it comes back to you. I'm not (moving) like I used to, but we still got it."
The Jacksons Unity Tour Dates
6/23 Detroit, MI Fox Theatre
6/28 New York, NY Apollo Theatre
6/29 Atlantic City, NJ Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa
6/30 Englewood, NJ Bergen Performing Arts Center
7/1 Baltimore, MD Modell Performing Arts Center at the Lyric
7/8 Atlanta, GA Chastain Park Amphitheatre
7/17 Albuquerque, NM Hard Rock Hotel & Casino
7/18 Phoenix, AZ Comerica Theatre
7/20 Las Vegas, NV The Club at Cannery Casino Hotel
7/21 Valley Center, CA Harrah's Rincon – Open Sky
7/22 Los Angeles, CA Greek Theatre
7/27 Saratoga, CA The Mountain Winery
7/28 Lincoln City, OR Chinook Winds Casino Resort
7/29 Snoqualmie, WA Snoqualmie Casino Amphitheater