Music

Madlib and Oh No’s Father Otis Jackson, Sr. Has Died

Otis Jackson, Sr. former soul vocalist and father to Madlib and Oh No died on April 13th. He was 77-years-old.

Otis Jackson, Sr. father of Madlib and Oh No died on April 13th at 77-years-old. The announcement came on Sunday, just seven days before what would have been Jackson’s 78th birthday, via Egon, who founded reissue imprint Now-Again Records in 2002.

Born May 8th, 1944 in Shreveport, Louisiana, Jackson went on to become a soul singer, bandleader and session musician for acts including Tina Turner, Bobby “Blue” Bland, and Johnnie Taylor. During the 1970s, Jackson released a number of singles including 1974’s “Beggin’ for a Broken Heart” and “Message to the Ghetto.” In 2006, Jackson released his full-length debut album The Art of Love.

In a 2007 profile with Wax Poetics, Oh No reflected on Jackson’s musical teachings.

“Growing up, my brother and I were in the lab the whole time. And our father was real strict about us not clowning around when it came to music,” he said. “There were always cats jamming in the studio, and my father made sure we were always there and well behaved. I was only like five years old then, but I remember funk being played 24-7.”

Egon mentioned that he’ll be releasing a compilation of Jackson’s rare singles into an album, which will release sometime next year. The Now-Again Records founder also teased an excerpt of album’s liner notes from author, music journalist and DJ, Jeff Mao.

“Encompassing tenor and baritone ranges in performance, and punctuated by an occasional mischievous chuckle in conversation, his instrument reflects the ups-and-downs of a decades-long journey – from community gospel prodigy to independent soul navigating an unforgiving music industry to parent and mentor of two revered hip-hop production auteurs,” the excerpt read. “It also happens to command, with a grace and gravitas commensurate with these experiences, as impeccable a handful of rare soul recordings as you’ll hear.”

Jaelani Turner-Williams

Jaelani Turner-Williams is a contributing news writer for Okayplayer with bylines at Billboard, MTV News, NYLON, Recording Academy and more. Read her mind on Twitter at @hernameisjae.

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