The ’59 2018 #146: 180526
Joe Jackson – Night & Day (1982)
This year, Jem of Jemtunes, born in 1959, turns 59. So ‘The ’59’ celebrates 59 years of cracking tunes with a few albums from each year – 1959 through 2018. Currently we’re at year 24 – 1982.
Night and Day was Joe Jackson’s fifth album, released in June 1982. It reached the Top 5 in both the UK and US and sold over one million copies, earning platinum disc status.
The main single release from the album – “Steppin’ Out” – earned Grammy nominations for Record of the Year and Best Pop Vocal Performance, Male. It reached No.6 on both the UK and the US charts. The follow-up single release – “Breaking Us in Two” -reached No.59 in the UK and No.18 across the pond.
In 2016 independent record label Intervention Records reissued Night and Day on 180-gram vinyl.
The Epic 2017 Project #123: 170503
Joe Jackson – Look Sharp (1979)
Joe Jackson and his band, using money earned by Jackson from touring with the cabaret band Koffee ‘n’ Kream, began recording ‘Look Sharp’ from late 1977 to spring 1978 in a studio in Portsmouth. However, after producer David Kershenbaum heard a demo tape from Jackson, he signed Jackson to A&M Records in 1978, after which Jackson and his band quickly re-recorded the album. This was then followed by a tour to promote it.
“Is She Really Going Out with Him?” was released as a single in the UK prior to the release of Look Sharp!, but it, as well as follow-ups “Sunday Papers” and “One More Time,” failed to make an impact on the charts. Look Sharp! also stalled upon its initial release, but upon the re-release of “Is She Really Going Out with Him?” in Britain (as well as a single release in the US), the album grew in popularity, reaching the top 20 in America. After the performance of the first album, the band quickly recorded a follow-up, I’m the Man, which Jackson describes as “Part Two of Look Sharp!”
Sometime after the album’s release, Jackson put this on website:
What can anyone say about something they did so long ago?! I’m not embarrassed by it, or not by most of it, anyway. It positively reeks of London 1978–79 and, well, it is what it is. I’m glad people liked it, and still like it, though I think some of that is nostalgia and a tendency to romanticise peoples’ first albums, as though later ones must somehow be less ‘authentic’. For a first album, this one’s not bad, but I was only 23 when I made it and it would be pretty weird if I didn’t think I’d done better things since.
For the second instalment of the Jemtunes ‘Eighties Greatest’ series, here’s Joe Jackson’s Jumpin’ Jive from 1981