…This need can bring out the best in us, yet the worst in us. This need created The Velvet Rope.
The Velvet Rope is Janet Jackson’s “Most Personal” album to date. This album for Janet was one of self-discovery and maneuvering through past demons. Timing in the studio for the pop star is normally shorter than the six months it took for her to record Velvet Rope. To have so much going on throughout her life, Janet just dealt with things her way. In an interview with MTV’s John Norris, Janet said “There is nothing more depressing than having everything and still being sad.” Some think that having everything, gives you a life of happiness. It doesn’t.
While recording a song entitled “You”, Janet would have to take breaks due to how difficult it was for her. It was speculated that the song was about her brother Michael due to their distance at the time. Janet flat out denied it and said that the song was about her, she commented that she should have named it “Me”. Some fans have wondered over the years about if Janet was in to BDSM or being into girls. Her reply “What does it matter?”
Janet understands that everyone is entitled to their own opinions as far as to who they listen to or who they like. Janet’s music, particularly Velvet Rope, is to inspire people and to show that through the many problems that they face, she can relate too. Although the star is a private person and has a need to keep some things to herself, she wants to be able to uplift people who go through troubled times.
Over the past 20 years, we have all heard how Janet’s music inspires, but Velvet Rope has been the album to allow not only adults, but teens as well to feel alive and help them through their own demons. The Velvet Rope is nicknamed “The Album That Saved My Life”, by so many. This album has made it possible for everyone to live their lives as they please without regrets. Everyone needs to feel special.
The Honesty of the Velvet Rope led to the praise behind the album as well. Janet didn’t shy away from any subject matter. The raw nature made it seem as if it was a raunchy guttural sex blazing album. All in, it wasn’t. It was an album of self awareness and becoming free of the bondage and chains of life. This album is about love, but the different sides of love. What About is a song about how you claim you love someone and can’t live without them, but all you do is abuse them physically, emotionally and verbally. This song is about living through hurt and pain for so long, then finally finding the strength to overcome it and become stronger. Janet always said to know what is going on in her life, listen to her music. This is a true statement. She confirms it on her State of the World Tour. Janet Jackson is an ageless and timeless legend. No matter when any of her songs were written and recorded, their meaning lives on today.
The word legend is deemed on so many new artists whose feet are not even in the water. Janet has been a legend since her Control album. Her career and personal life deem her so. The awards don’t give her legend status, it goes beyond that. Her humanitarian work has a part in her legendary status. One instance in particular, Houston was ravaged by Hurricane Harvey about two weeks before Janet was to be in concert. Janet not only toured the shelters of the victims that were affected, she met with some of the survivors and made contributions including giving 100 percent of her proceeds to help the people.
Janet has grown into a woman who still continues to take on life as it is and bring awareness to what matters. The Velvet Rope was a glimpse into what it takes for an artist to deal with personal as well as career struggles. This album was like can you be honest enough to balance everything, or will you let it get to you and cause you to crash and burn. Janet’s honesty through the Velvet Rope is why so many of us choose to never give up the fight. Cause in the end, it can make or break you.