‘I’m just glad Michael’s name was Jackson’

The Jacksons
The Jacksons
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Eight years have passed since Michael Jackson’s shocking and untimely death.

And while his brothers continue the Jackson musical legacy, their little brother is still the sibling at the forefront of everyone’s minds.

“You never forget your sibling, no family forgets that,” eldest Jackson brother Jackie told The Gazette. “He will always be in my - in all our hearts.

“His music is always playing, 24:7, it’s around you. I’ll be driving in my car and will stop at the lights and see a big poster of him - like he’s saying ‘I see you big brother’.

“He was one of the greatest, and his name just happened to be Jackson, and he happened to be my brother and I’m glad his name was Jackson.”

But for Jackie, the eldest member of The Jacksons, that’s the way it should stay.

Michael even features in The Jacksons’ shows, with big screen tributes at venues - including Haydock Park Racecourse on Friday, July 7 and Blackpool’s Livewire Festival on Friday, August 25.

“Of course, it’s not the same with him not being here; he’s one of the greatest entertainers ever lived,” he said. “We feel his presence when we perform. At any given time, we know where he would have been on that stage with us.”

Even after all these years - The Jackson 5 first came to fame in 1969 with I Want You Back - they love being on stage and see the end as no time soon.

“I always say this; Mick Jagger’s still going,” 66-year-old Jackie said of the 73-year-old Rolling Stone. “As long as they are touring, I will tour.”

Jackie says the UK holds fond memories for the brothers: “I remember coming back in the early 1970s, we arrived at about 5am and the pilot told us there were eight to 10,000 fans sleeping in the airport waiting for us,” he said.

“It was amazing. The things like that you don’t forget.

“People have been loyal fans to us since day one, and we thank them for that.”

With a hits back catalogue including ABC, I’ll Be There and Never Can Say Goodbye, fans can be sure to have a night of singalong disco anthems at their live shows this summer.

“Fans want to hear their favourite songs and hopefully we’ll play the ones they want,” Jackie teased.

“We have so many we have to just do one or two verses of each or it will be a five hour show.”

We can only hope.