In 1964, Michael Jackson and brother Marlon joined the Jackson Brothers….which was a band formed by their father which included brothers Jackie, Tito, and Jermaine as backup musicians playing congas and tambourine. In 1965, Michael began sharing lead vocals with his older brother Jermaine, and the group’s name was changed to the Jackson 5. The following year, the group won a major local talent show with Michael performing the dance to Robert Parker’s 1965 hit “Barefootin'” ….while singing lead to The Temptations’ “My Girl”. From 1966 to 1968 they toured the Midwest….where the Jackson 5 frequently performed at a string of black clubs known as the “chitlin’ circuit” as the opening act for artists such as Sam & Dave, the O’Jays, Gladys Knight and Etta James. The Jackson 5 also performed at clubs and cocktail lounges….where striptease shows and other adult acts were featured….and at local auditoriums and high school dances. In August 1967, while touring the East coast….the group won a weekly amateur night concert at the Apollo Theater in Harlem.
The Jackson 5 recorded several songs, including their first single “Big Boy” in 1968 for Steeltown Records, a Gary record label before signing with Motown in 1969. They left Gary in 1969 and relocated to Los Angeles….where they continued to record music for Motown. Rolling Stone later described the young Michael as “a prodigy” with “overwhelming musical gifts” who “quickly emerged as the main draw and lead singer.” The group set a chart record when its first four singles “I Want You Back” in 1969…. “ABC” in 1970….“The Love You Save” in 1970….and “I’ll Be There” also in 1970…..as all peaked at # 1 on the Billboard Hot 100. In May 1971, the Jackson family moved into a large home on two-acre estate in Encino, California. During this period, Michael evolved from child performer into a teen idol….evidenced by this video herewith….as Jackson began to emerge as a solo performer in the early 1970’s….while maintaining ties to the Jackson 5 and Motown.
By the time this video was recorded in 1971…..Michael Jackson was a widely experienced 13 year old young man….who really fit the song he was singing…..as he was 13 going on 30 when he performed for this video.