45 Facts About Jackie Wilson


Jackie Wilson was a prominent figure in the transition of rhythm and blues into soul.

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Jackie Wilson was posthumously inducted to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1987.

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Two of Jackie Wilson's recordings were inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame in 1999.

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Jackie Wilson was honored with the Rhythm and Blues Foundation's Legacy Tribute Award in 2003.

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Jackie Wilson often visited his family in Columbus and was greatly influenced by the choir at Billups Chapel.

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Jackie Wilson began singing as a youth, accompanying his mother, an experienced church choir singer.

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Jackie Wilson was not very religious, but he enjoyed singing in public.

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Jackie Wilson dropped out of high school at age 15, having been sentenced twice to detention in the Lansing Corrections system for juveniles.

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Jackie Wilson began working at Lee's Sensation Club as a solo singer, then formed a group called the Falcons that included cousin Levi Stubbs, who later led the Four Tops.

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Tucker and Jackie Wilson collaborated as songwriters on a few songs Jackie Wilson recorded, including his 1963 hit "Baby Workout".

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Jackie Wilson was discovered by talent agent Johnny Otis, who recruited him for a group called the Thrillers.

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Jackie Wilson almost blew his chance that day, showing up calling himself "The shit" Jackie Wilson and bragging about being a better singer than McPhatter.

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Jackie Wilson was the group's lead singer for three years, but the Dominoes lost some of their stride with the departure of McPhatter.

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Shortly before Jackie Wilson signed a solo contract with Brunswick, Green suddenly died.

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Davis soon became a successful staff songwriter and producer for Chess Records, while Gordy borrowed $800 from his family and used money he earned from royalties writing for Jackie Wilson to start his own recording studio, Hitsville USA, the foundation of Motown Records in his native Detroit.

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In 1966, Jackie Wilson scored the first of two big comeback singles with the established Chicago soul producer Carl Davis with "Whispers " and " Higher and Higher", the latter a No 6 pop hit in 1967 that became one of his final hits.

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Jackie Wilson's final hit, "You Got Me Walkin'", written by Eugene Record of the Chi-Lites, was released in 1972 with the Chi-Lites backing him on vocals and instruments.

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Jackie Wilson was in the middle of singing "Lonely Teardrops" when he suffered a massive heart attack.

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Jackie Wilson briefly recovered in early 1976, and was even able to take a few wobbly steps, but slipped back into a semi-comatose state.

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Jackie Wilson was deemed conscious but incapacitated in early June 1976, unable to speak but aware of his surroundings.

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Jackie Wilson was a resident of the Medford Leas Retirement Center in Medford, New Jersey, when he was admitted into Memorial Hospital of Burlington County in Mount Holly, New Jersey, due to having trouble taking nourishment, according to his attorney John Mulkerin.

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Jackie Wilson died on January 21,1984, at the age of 49 from complications of pneumonia.

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Jackie Wilson was initially buried in an unmarked grave at Westlawn Cemetery near Detroit.

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On June 9,1987, his 53rd birthday, a ceremony was held and Jackie Wilson was interred in the mausoleum at Westlawn Cemetery in Wayne, Michigan.

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Jackie Wilson recorded a version of Lew Pollack and Jack Yellen's famed Jewish-themed song "My Yiddishe Momme" in New York in November 1960.

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On February 15,1961, in Manhattan, Jackie Wilson was shot and seriously wounded by a woman named Juanita Jones.

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Jackie Wilson was shot in the stomach; the bullet resulted in the loss of a kidney, and lodged too close to his spine to be removed.

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In early 1975, during an interview with author Arnold Shaw, Jackie Wilson maintained it actually was a zealous fan he did not know who shot him.

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In 1960, Jackie Wilson was arrested and charged with assaulting a police officer when fans tried to climb on stage in New Orleans.

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Jackie Wilson assaulted a policeman who had shoved one of the fans.

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In 1964, Jackie Wilson jumped from a second floor window at Kiel Auditorium in St Louis to avoid being arrested after a show.

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Jackie Wilson's arrest stemmed from a default of a $2,200 contract judgement in which he failed to appear at The Riviera Club in 1959.

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Jackie Wilson was caught by the police and jailed for a day before he posted a $3,000 bond.

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In 1961, Jackie Wilson declared annual earnings of $263,000, while the average annual salary at that time was just $5,000, but he discovered that, despite being at the peak of success, he was broke.

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Jackie Wilson made arrangements with the IRS to make restitution on the unpaid taxes; he re-purchased the family home at auction.

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At the age of 17, Jackie Wilson married his girlfriend Freda Hood in 1951 while she was pregnant.

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In 1967, Jackie Wilson married his second wife, model Harlean Harris, at the urging of Nat Tarnopol, who thought the marriage would help repair Jackie Wilson's public image.

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Jackie Wilson was in a relationship with Guidry, who was under the impression that she was his legal wife, until his heart attack in 1975.

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Wilson's 16-year-old son, Jackie Jr, was shot and killed on a neighbor's porch near their Detroit home in 1970.

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Jackie Wilson sank into a period of depression, and for the next few years remained mostly a recluse.

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Jackie Wilson turned to drug abuse and continued drinking in an attempt to cope with the loss of his son.

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Jackie Wilson fathered many other children out of wedlock with different women, including singer Bobby Brooks Jackie Wilson who performs his father's songs in tribute.

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I'd like to say Jackie Wilson was a wonderful entertainer.

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Jackie Wilson scored a posthumous hit in Europe when "Reet Petite" topped the charts in the Netherlands, the Republic of Ireland and the United Kingdom in 1986.

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The following year, Jackie Wilson's posthumous charting success in the United Kingdom continued when he hit the UK Singles Chart again with "I Get the Sweetest Feeling", and " Higher and Higher".

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