Following the loss of her father, Janet Jackson is forging ahead in the career he helped to create. And obviously, Janet Jackson misses her dad to the core! The American singer addressed the recent death of her father Joe Jackson on a Sunday night during her closing act at New Orleans’ Essence Fest. The performance was Janet’s first since Joe Jackson’s death on June 27, 2018.
“Quite honestly, it was really hard for me,” an emotional Janet admitted of her father’s death to the crowd. “I didn’t know what to do. I didn’t know how to move forward if I should cancel this festival or cancel the entire tour.” reports The Hollywood Reporter.
Continuing through tears, she said, “My father was a great man. My brother asked me, ‘If he were here right now listening to this conversation, what do you think he would say to you?’ and I think my father would’ve said, ‘Janet, please, finish what you started and I will be there with you every step of the way in your heart.'” She then dedicated the performance to her dad and said, “Let’s celebrate my father. My father would want to celebrate his life.”
Joe Jackson died at the age of 89 following a battle with cancer. While the Jackson family patriarch is credited with thrusting his children into the spotlight and nurturing the careers of Michael, Janet and the Jackson 5, Michael would later accuse him of severe child abuse. Despite Joe’s conflicted reputation, Janet had only praise for her late father.