Jackson, Randy 1956–
Randy Jackson 1956–
Musician, record producer
A talented and versatile bass player, Randy Jackson is also a prolific performer and record producer. After more than twenty years in the music business as a session player and record company executive, Jackson moved into the public spotlight in 2002 when he became one of the three judges on hit television talent show, American Idol.
Jackson was born in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, in 1956. He was the youngest of three children born to Herman Jackson, who worked at the local Exxon plant as a foreman, and his wife, Julia. In high school, Jackson was an accomplished athlete, but his first love was music. Inspired by hearing a local R&B band rehearsing in his neighborhood, he learned how to play the bass guitar; his brother, Herman, became a drummer. “I was so enthralled,” Jackson told People magazine in a 2003 interview. “I thought, ‘Wow, I wanna be one of those guys.’” As a teenager, he would sneak out in the evenings to hear live music and perform in local clubs.
Jackson attended Southern University in Baton Rouge, studying music. He took some time off in his senior year in order to acquire more practical experience, playing in jazz drummer Billy Cobham’s band and appearing on two of Cobham’s records. After graduating from Southern in 1979, Jackson embarked on a full-time career in music. A talented keyboardist as well as a bass player, equally at home in jazz, pop or rock, he soon found ongoing work as a session musician (as well as a nickname Randy “The Emperor” Jackson) in studios on both coasts of the United States.
After some early recording work with Jean-Luc Ponty, Bobby McFerrin, and a number of jazz fusion artists, Jackson played bass in a pickup band that included Carlos Santana and members of the Grateful Dead, playing at free concerts and benefits in and around San Francisco. He was hired by the rock group Journey to play bass on their 1983 album Frontiers and, after Jackson performed on Raised on Radio, Journey invited him to tour with them to promote the album. Although the band then went on a prolonged hiatus, Jackson maintained his friendship with front man Steve Perry, and helped him assemble a band for his 1994 solo album, For the Love of Strange Medicine, and subsequent tour.
At a Glance…
Born in 1956, in Baton Rouge, LA; married Elizabeth Jackson, (divorced 1990); married Erika Riker, 1995; children: (first marriage) Taylor, (second marriage) Zoe, Jordan. Education: Southern University, BA, music, 1979.
Career: Played bass and keyboards on over 1000 albums, 1980–; toured with Journey, 1980s; Columbia Records, vice president of A&R, 1990s; MCA Records, senior vice president of A&R, 1990s; UCLA, teacher of recording industry classes, 1990s; Fox TV’s American Idol judge, 2002–; continues to produce, perform and manage artists.
Addresses: Home —Tarzana, CA. Publicist —Brit Reece, PMK/HBH, 8500 Wilshire Blvd, Suite 700, Los Angeles, CA 90211.
Jackson later referred to the 1980s as a “bold, wild, crazy” period of his life, according to US Magazine. He became a sought-after performer, easily recognizable because of his distinctive, six-inch-high flat-top hairdo. Throughout the 1980s and early 1990s, his reputation as a stellar player won Jackson some high-profile touring and studio gigs with a diverse range of artists, including Madonna, Tracy Chapman, Kenny G, Aretha Franklin, Cher, Elton John, and Michael Bolton. He played bass on Bruce Springsteen’s Lucky Town and Human Touch albums, both released in 1992. He also played keyboard and bass on Whitney Houston’s first two albums, and performed on Celine Dion’s first English-language album, Unison. Touring with Bob Dylan, Jackson was the bass player on two Dylan albums, Down in the Groove, and Under the Red Sky.
Jackson’s musical ambitions extended beyond working as a sideman. Writing songs as well as performing, he grew “really tired of being the session guy,” he told People magazine. In the early 1990s he moved permanently to Los Angeles to find more creative opportunities.
Jackson became vice president of A&R at Columbia Records, a position he held for eight years. At Columbia, Jackson produced and co-produced a number of albums, including Eddie Money’s Right Here, Trisha Covington’s Slow Down, and Flesh and Bone by Richard Marx. He also worked on a number of soundtracks and compilations, including First Wives’ Club and The Truth About Cats & Dogs. He subsequently spent four years at MCA Records as senior vice president of A&R, producing Rahsaan Patterson’s Love in Stereo, Gladys Knight’s At Last, and Jesse Powell’s 2001 album, JP.
At Columbia Records, he had met and worked with Mariah Carey, who asked him to write and produce two songs, “Fireworks” and “I Know,” for her 2001 film, Glitter. He also co-wrote two songs on Carey’s 2003 album, CharmBracelet, “My Saving Grace” and “Irresistible.”
In early 2002, Jackson’s agent suggested he meet the production team behind a new reality TV show, American Idol. Developed by former Spice Girls manager and powerhouse producer Simon Fuller, American Idol was based on the popular British sensation, Pop Idol. The format was a televised singing contest, in which young singers competed for a recording contract, their performances assessed each week by a panel of judges. The show’s twist was the involvement of the general public, who voted in record numbers by telephone to keep favorite contestants. Pop Idol had made a star of several of its young performers, as well as one of the judges, sharp-tongued record producer Simon Cowell.
After more than a decade in Los Angeles, Jackson was a respected industry veteran, whose credits included over a thousand gold and platinum albums. His first reaction to the concept of American Idol was not positive. “TV’s corny, cheesy, whatever,” he told LA radio DJ JoJo Wright, in an interview posted on the deejay’s website. Despite his years of experience in the music business, Jackson had spent little time in front of the camera—aside from a 1992 bass guitar instruction video, Randy Jackson: Mastering the Groove, and a guest appearance in the 1990 television special, Mother Goose Rock n’ Rhyme. “I’ve been behind the scenes with all these artists,” he said in a Newsweek on-line interview. “I’ve seen celebrity up close, but I’ve never really lived it.”
Believing the music business to be in a creative slump, Jackson had strong feelings about the increased emphasis on looks over talent, as well as concerns about the longevity of many new artists. But watching tapes of the original British version of the show persuaded Jackson to change his mind, joining Simon Cowell and singer Paula Abdul on the American Idol judging panel. “I’m doing the same thing I do as an A&R person,” Jackson was quoted as saying in an interview with the Miami Herald. “You know what you’re looking for, what makes a star.”
American Idol’s star search attracted tens of thousands of aspiring singers in seven cities. In Los Angeles alone, an estimated 11,000 people registered for the second season’s auditions, only two of whom made it through to the show’s final 12, according to a special American Idol edition of People magazine. Although the judges were not asked to hear all the contestants, Jackson found the grueling audition process exhausting and at times dispiriting, despairing of the delusions of many of the hopefuls. “This is a hard, tough, tough business,” he told Newsweek, “I think karaoke has done the record industry a huge disservice.”
American Idol proved a massive hit for the Fox network, swiftly graduating, said US magazine, “from guilty pleasure to outright pop culture obsession.” The first season attracted an average of 12.7 million viewers, while the second season averaged 21.7 million, with more than 38 million viewers tuning in for the finale, according to The New York Times. Because of the public appetite for the show, it was expanded from 25 to 38 episodes in its second season. The series spawned a movie, concert tours, compilation albums, an interactive video game, associated merchandise and a spin-off series called American Juniors, while Newsweek reported on foreign versions of the show in more than a dozen countries. The album by first season winner Kelly Clarkson, debuted at number one on the Billboard charts in April of 2003. By the end of the second season, Jackson felt confident enough about the integrity of the judging process and public vote to laud the show’s contribution. “This gives me hope for music,” he told Newsweek. “It could be the start of a music business where it’s based on talent, like it was in the ‘60s and ‘70s.”
American Idol propelled Jackson firmly into the public consciousness. Although he never became a media darling like the acerbic, controversial Cowell, Jackson became a household name. Some commentators poked gentle fun at Jackson’s way of speaking: Newsweek suggested that the most notable change in season two was that “Randy, Randy, Randy has stopped saying names in triplicate and adopted a new verbaltic—Dawg.” Described by Newsweek as “the least high maintenance of the three judges,” Jackson was praised for his amiable, laid back approach to American Idol. Simon Cowell was quoted in People magazine as saying: “Randy is the only person on this show … who has remained totally and utterly unaffected by it.”
Jackson, who has taught A&R classes at UCLA, continued to work as a music producer throughout his commitments to American Idol. He recently produced vocals on a duet between Mariah Carey and Justin Timberlake, and made a personal appearance in the music video for Carey’s song “Bringin’ on the Heartbreak.” Describing bass playing as “therapy”, Jackson still chose to play at occasional studio sessions, including Kelly Clarkson’s debut, Thankful.
Jackson manages his own artists, including former child star and singer Nikka Costa, and singer-songwriter Van Hunt, with whom he co-produced Dionne Farris’ 1997 hit song “Hopeless.” In addition to his television appearances as a judge on American Idol, Jackson was a presenter at the 2002 MTV Video Music Awards and, in the same year, made a guest appearance on the Wayne Brady Show. He also appeared on British television in 2003, on alternative variety show Ant and Dec’s Saturday Night Takeaway.
Randy Jackson has been married twice. He divorced his first wife, singer-songwriter Elizabeth Jackson, in 1990, and married former ballet dancer, Erika Riker, in 1995. He has one daughter, Taylor, from his first marriage, and two children, Zoe and Jordan, from his second. In interviews, he is eager to correct the impression that he is related to either musical superstar Michael Jackson (who has a brother named Randy) or actor Samuel L. Jackson. He lives in Tarzana, a suburb of Los Angeles.
Jean-Luc Ponty, Civilized Evil, 1980.
Jean-Luc Ponty, Mystical Adventures, 1982.
Bobby McFerrin, Bobby McFerrin, 1982.
Jean-Luc Ponty, Individual Choice, 1983.
Journey, Frontiers, 1983.
Whitney Houston, Whitney Houston, 1985.
Aretha Franklin, Who’s Zoomin’ Who?, 1985.
Eddie Money, Can’t Hold Back, 1986.
Journey, Raised on Radio, 1986.
Aretha Franklin, Aretha, 1986.
Kenny G, Duotones, 1986.
Whitney Houston, Whitney, 1987.
Michael Bolton, Hunger, 1987.
Bob Dylan, Down in the Groove, 1988.
Madonna, Like a Prayer, 1989.
Bob Dylan, Under the Red Sky, 1990.
Celine Dion, Unison, 1990.
Elton John, To Be Continued, 1990.
Michael Bolton, Time, Love & Tenderness, 1991.
Cher, Love Hurts, 1991.
Michael Bolton, Timeless: The Classics, 1992.
Mariah Carey, MTV Unplugged, 1992.
Bruce Springsteen, Human Touch, 1992.
Bruce Springsteen, Lucky Town, 1992.
Tracy Chapman, Matters of the Heart, 1992.
Mariah Carey, Merry Christmas, 1994.
Aretha Franklin, Greatest Hits 1980-1994, 1994.
Kenny G, Miracles: The Holiday Album, 1994.
Dionne Farris, Wild Seed—Wild Flower, 1995.
Bon Jovi, These Days, 1995.
Tracy Chapman, Collection, 2001.
Various Artists, American Idol: Greatest Moments, 2002.
Kelly Clarkson, Thankful, 2003.
Trisha Covington, (with Marc Nelson, Kyle West) Slow Down, 1995.
Truth About Cats & Dogs soundtrack, 1996.
First Wives Club soundtrack, 1996.
Rahsaan Patterson, (co-producer) Love in Stereo, 1999.
As producer and musician
Eddie Money, Right Here, 1991.
Richard Marx, Flesh & Bone, 1997.
Gladys Knight, At Last, 2000.
Jesse Powell, JP, 2001.
Newsweek, May 5, 2003, p. 71; May 26, 2003, pp. 52-58.
New York Times, May 23, 2003, Section C, p.1.
People Extra, May 2003, pp. 16, 24, 79.
People Weekly, March 24, 2003, p. 67.
TV Guide, May 17-23, 2003, pp. 24-27, 47.
US, April 14, 2003, p. 71; May 5, 2003, pp. 40-45.
“Encyclopedia of Record Producers, Randy Jackson,” Mohave Music, www.mojavemusic.com (June 10, 2003).
“Fox Mulls How to Exploit The Mojo of ‘American Idol,’” New York Times, www.nytimes.com (June 6, 2003).
“‘Idol’ Dreams,” Miami Herald, www.miami.com/mld/miamiherald/entertainment/3537040.htm (June 6, 2003).
“‘Idol’ Maker, Newsweek web exclusive,” MSNBC Stacks, http://stacks.msnbc.com/news/864019.asp (April 28, 2003).
“Interview,” Music Life Online, www.musicislifeonline.com/randyjacksoninterview.1.htm (April 28, 2003).
“Mariah Carey’s film Glitter,” DivaMc.de, www.divamc.de/pages/movies/glittersongs.html (June 6, 2003).
“New ‘Idol’ sings for Fox in solid Tuesday victory,” Hollywood Reporter, www.hollywoodreporter.com/hollywoodreporter/television (June 6, 2003).
“Randy Jackson,” Happygrrls, www.happygrrls.com/arts/americanidol2.html (July 11, 2003).
“Randy Jackson,” Internet Movie Database, www.imdb.com (June 6, 2003).
“Randy Jackson,” The Journey Tribute Page, www.jrnydv.com/Sections/Band/jackson.htm (June6, 2003).
“Randy Jackson—Biography,” Fox, www.fox.com/idol/judges/ind/randy/randy.htm (June 6, 2003).
“Randy Jackson In-Studio Interview,” JoJo Wright Official Website, www.jojowright.com/world_of_jojo/RandyJacksonlnterview.htm. (June 6, 2003).
“Randy Jackson worked on Mariah Carey’s 2003 album CharmBracelet,” Mariah Carey Organization, www.mariahc.nu/info/discography/charmbracelet.shtml (June 6, 2003).
“Randy ‘The Emperor’ Jackson,” All Music Guide, www.allmusic.com (July 11, 2003.)
“Recent Filmography,” MSN Entertainment, www.entertainment.msn.com/celebs/celeb.aspx? c=54179 (June 6, 2003).
“To The Point with Gary Jackson,” Network, www.thenetworkmag.com/issues/025/urban/urban.htm (June 6, 2003).
—Paula J.K. Morris
"Jackson, Randy 1956–." Contemporary Black Biography. . Encyclopedia.com. (December 14, 2018). https://www.encyclopedia.com/education/news-wires-white-papers-and-books/jackson-randy-1956
"Jackson, Randy 1956–." Contemporary Black Biography. . Retrieved December 14, 2018 from Encyclopedia.com: https://www.encyclopedia.com/education/news-wires-white-papers-and-books/jackson-randy-1956
Encyclopedia.com gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).
Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.
Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia.com cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use Encyclopedia.com citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:
Modern Language Association
The Chicago Manual of Style
American Psychological Association
- Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most Encyclopedia.com content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
- In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.
Television personality, musician, music producer
A music industry insider for more than 30 years, Randy Jackson has performed in a range of styles and produced and guided the careers of a multitude of stars. He has channeled his endless energy and depth of knowledge to enhance the recognition of one the most popular reality shows of the 2000s, American Idol. The show tests the star quality of wannabe singers as they face the judges, including Jackson, and the television audience. The show has made Jackson a celebrity, taking him from his decades of behind-the-scenes work and putting his beaming smile and hearty laugh in front of millions of viewers. Jackson explained his satisfaction with his work on American Idol to Jeanne McDowell of Time, "It's the best job ever. It never gets old for me."
Born Randall Darius Jackson on June 23, 1956, in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, Jackson's father worked for Exxon and his mother was a homemaker. He took an early interest in music, which would seem likely in a region spilling over with a diverse range of styles. Growing up, Jackson was exposed to blues, jazz, and zydeco as well as fusion and rock music. He started out playing saxophone but eventually settled in with bass playing. During high school he managed to play football but also play music at night in places around town. When he was 17 years old he was playing in the band John Fred and the Playboys. The group enjoyed a modicum of success in 1967 with "Judy in Disguise (with Glasses)," a parody of "Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds" by the British pop band the Beatles.
After graduation Jackson attended Southern University in Baton Rouge, but his talent as a musician was quickly recognized by Billy Cobham, one of the best fusion drummers in the world. Cobham was visiting the Southern University campus and was impressed with Jackson's ability. He asked Jackson to join his band. Jackson left school and toured with Cobham for the next three years. He also worked with jazz violinist Jean-Luc Ponty, recording three albums with him. After years of touring, Jackson eventually felt he needed to settle down and start getting some work outside the arena of jazz.
In the 1980s, Jackson became a session musician in Los Angeles and found himself in demand working for a number of popular artists. Most of this work came to him through his association with Narada Michael Walden, a drummer and songwriter from the jazz fusion scene, who had established a production company in San Francisco. When Bruce Springsteen split for a short time from longtime backup band the E Street Band, Jackson stepped in on bass for the albums Lucky Town and Human Touch. Other artists he recorded with include Canadian pop star Celine Dion and American pop diva Madonna. He is a longtime pal of Mariah Carey, whom he met when she was a teenager. He worked with her on her 2002 comeback album Charmbracelet.
During the 1990s, Jackson took on yet another role in the music business and stepped up to become vice president of artists and repertoire for Columbia Records. He held that position for eight years before moving on to MCA Records, where he became senior vice president of artists and repertoire. In that time, he helped find new talent while also figuring out ways to market them to audiences. With all his experience and know-how, he was perfectly prepared for the next step in his career.
In the early 2000s, Jackson was shown a copy of the British basis for American Idol called Pop Idols. He enjoyed the show and agreed to become one of three judges for the American version. During his tenure as judge, Jackson has provided balance to overly cynical and snide comments from fellow judge Simon Cowell and the extremely enthusiastic Paula Abdul. His term "dawg" has become synonymous with his laid-back enthusiasm and down-to-earth advice for contestants.
Jackson has been married twice. He has a daughter, Taylor, from his first marriage to Elizabeth Jackson. In 1995, Jackson married Erika Riker, with whom he has a daughter, Zoe, and a son, Jordan. In 2001, Jackson was diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes. He immediately changed his diet and began exercising but felt the changes were taking too long to have an effect. In 2003, he opted to undergo gastric bypass surgery. The resulting weight loss added up to more than 100 pounds.
In early 2008, Jackson brought together a number of talents to create Randy Jackson's Music Club, Vol. 1. He explained to Shirley Halperin of Entertainment Weekly, "It's kind of a Quincy Jones record with all sorts—country, pop, hip-hop, R&B, jazz songs." Jackson's fellow judge, Paula Abdul, performed the first single from the album, "Dance Like There's No Tomorrow." Other performers include pop star Mariah Carey, country music star Travis Tritt, guitarist and songwriter Richie Sambora from the rock band Bon Jovi, European pop singer Barbi Esco, and newcomer Kelli Selah.
Not one to rest for long, Jackson worked throughout 2007 putting together the reality show America's Best Dance Crew. In 2008, the first season of the show was incredibly popular. That same year saw Jackson heading into his seventh season as a judge on American Idol. He also hosts a weekly radio countdown show called "Randy Jackson's Hit List." Debuting in 2005 on the Westwood One radio network, Jackson's show airs for three hours, during which he shares music he enjoys. He explained to BMI.com, "[T]here's no better way to reach the music listener than through radio."
Jackson has his own production company, Dream Merchant 21, at Warner Brothers where he develops shows, both reality and scripted. Dream Merchant 21 is also his recording company, which he used to launch his first record. Seemingly not able to rest on any of his numerous laurels, Jackson wrote a book, What's Up Dawg?: How to Become a Superstar in the Music Business, in 2003 to help new talent find their way in the music business. He has also tested his acting skills in episodes of the television shows Kevin Hill and Dr. Vegas.
A strong desire to give back to the community leads Jackson to donate his time and name to many causes. He has toured and spoken for the American Heart Association and the Million Cat Rescue. He is an ambassador for the United States arm of Save the Children. He also started a foundation with his wife, Erika, called the Randy Jackson Family Foundation, which focuses on fighting childhood obesity.
For the Record …
Born Randall Darius Jackson on June 23, 1956, in Baton Rouge, LA, to Herman (an Exxon employee) and Julia (a homemaker) Jackson; married: Elizabeth Jackson (divorced, 1990); Erika Riker, 1995-; children: Taylor (from first marriage), Zoe, and Jordan. Education: Attended Southern University, Baton Rouge, LA, mid-1970s.
Began playing bass at age 13; played in jazz, soul, and R&B bands, including with jazz drummer Billy Cobham, circa 1976-79; session musician and touring member of rock band Journey, 1983-86; session musician for artists such as Whitney Houston, Mariah Carey, Celine Dion, Madonna, Bob Dylan, 1980s-90s; vice president of artists and repertoire (A&R), Columbia Records, early 1990s; senior vice president of A&R, MCA Records, late 1990s; judge for television talent show American Idol, 2002-present; radio host, "Randy Jackson's Hit List," 2005-present; released Randy Jackson's Music Club Vol. 1, 2008.
Awards: Americans for the Arts, National Artist Advocacy Award, 2007.
Addresses: Record company—Dream Merchant 21, Concord Music Group, 100 N. Crescent Dr., Ste.. 275, Beverly Hills, CA 90210, phone: 310-385-4455.
When discussing the music industry in particular, Jackson admits it's hard to succeed. He explained to MSNBC.com, "[T]he journey to get anywhere near the top is really hard. In order to keep on that road, you have to have a pretty strong interior and exterior." Jackson must be one strong person having successfully navigated the music industry for more than 30 years. His work has appeared on more than 1,000 high sales records, including gold and multiplatinum albums. All told his work as a musician and an executive has figured in the sales of more than 200 albums that have sold over a million copies. He played a major, yet invisible, role in American popular music for two decades. Since American Idol he has expanded his role while enjoying the perks of being a recognizable celebrity.
With Billy Cobham
Simplicity of Expression: Depth of Thought, Columbia Records, 1977.
Magic, Columbia Records, 1977.
With Jean-Luc Ponty
Civilized Evil, Atlantic Records, 1980.
Mystical Adventures, Atlantic Records, 1981.
Individual Choice, Atlantic Records, 1983.
With Aretha Franklin
Who's Zoomin' Who?, Arista Records, 1985.
Raised on Radio, Columbia, 1986.
With Bruce Springsteen
Lucky Town, Columbia Records, 1992.
Human Touch, Columbia Records, 1992.
With Mariah Carey
MTV Unplugged, Sony Records, 1992.
Charmbracelet, Mercury Records, 2002.
With Boyz II Men
Motown: A Journey through Hitsville U.S.A., Decca Records, 2007.
With various artists
Randy Jackson's Music Club, Vol. 1, Concord Records, 2008.
Jackson, Randy, What's Up Dawg! How to Become a Superstar in the Music Business, Hyperion, 2004.
American Idol, 2002-.
Dr. Vegas, 2004.
Kevin Hill, 2005.
America's Best Dance Crew, 2008.
Entertainment Weekly, December 21, 2007, p. 20.
"Q&A with Randy Jackson," Time.com, http://www.time.com/printout/0,8816,1581046,00.html (June 29, 2008).
"Randy Jackson!," Bass Player,http://www.bassplayer.com/article/randy-jackson/mar-08/34265 (June 4, 2008).
"Randy Jackson: More Than an Idol-Maker," BMI.com, http://www.bmi.com/musicworld/entry/234500 (June 29, 2008).
"Randy Jackson is Ready for His Close-Up," MSNBC.com, http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/6890979/ (June 4, 2008).
"Jackson, Randy." Contemporary Musicians. . Encyclopedia.com. (December 14, 2018). https://www.encyclopedia.com/education/news-wires-white-papers-and-books/jackson-randy
"Jackson, Randy." Contemporary Musicians. . Retrieved December 14, 2018 from Encyclopedia.com: https://www.encyclopedia.com/education/news-wires-white-papers-and-books/jackson-randy
Modern Language Association
The Chicago Manual of Style
American Psychological Association
Jackson, Randy 1956–
Jackson, Randy 1956–
Born June 23, 1956, in Baton Rouge, LA; son of Herman (a plant foreman) and Julia (a homemaker) Jackson; married first wife, Elizabeth (a singer and songwriter; divorced, 1990); married Erika Riker (a ballet dancer), 1995; children: (first marriage) Taylor (daughter); (second marriage) Zoe, Jordan. Education: Southern University, Baton Rouge, LA, B.A., 1979.
Addresses: Agent—Jeff Frasco, Creative Artists Agency, 9830 Wilshire Blvd., Beverly Hills, CA 90212.
Career: Actor, musician (bass player and keyboard artist), record company executive, music director, record producer, and writer. Performed with Billy Cobham's jazz band; session musician for numerous recording artists and more than 1,000 albums, 1980–; Journey (band), bass guitarist, 1983–86; toured with various performers, including Bob Dylan. Columbia Records, vice president of artist and repertory for eight years; MCA Records, senior vice president of artist and repertory for four years; also manager of recording artists, including Nikka Costa and Van Hunt. University of California Los Angeles, teacher of artist and repertory classes.
Awards, Honors: Emmy Award nominations, outstanding reality or competition program (with others), 2003 and 2004, both for American Idol: The Search for a Superstar.
Television Appearances; Series:
Judge, American Idol: The Search for a Superstar (also known as American Idol, American Idol 2, and American Idol 3), Fox, 2002–.
Television Appearances; Specials:
Mother Goose Rock n' Rhyme, 1990.
Band member, Mariah Carey, NBC, 1993.
Bubblegum Babylon, VH1, 2002.
Judge, American Idol: The Final Two, Fox, 2003.
Judge, American Idol: Best of the Worst, Fox, 2003.
Judge, American Idol: Halfway Home, Fox, 2003, 2004.
Interviewee, Intimate Portrait: Gladys Knight, Lifetime, 2003.
Interviewee, Paula Abdul: The E! True Hollywood Story, E! Entertainment Television, 2003.
Judge, American Idol: Uncut, Uncensored, and Untalented, Fox, 2004.
Judge, American Idol: The Road to Hollywood, Fox, 2004.
Interviewee, American Idol: The Phenomenon, Fox, 2004.
Judge, American Idol: The Final Three, Fox, 2004.
American Idol: Life on the Road, Fox, 2004.
Host and interviewer, Baileys in Tune, VH1, 2004.
Television Appearances; Awards Presentations:
Presenter, The Teen Choice Awards 2002, Fox, 2002.
Presenter, MTV Video Music Awards 2002, MTV, 2002.
Presenter, The 17th Annual Soul Train Music Awards, The WB, 2003.
Presenter, The 55th Annual Primetime Emmy Awards, Fox, 2003.
The 35th NAACP Image Awards, Fox, 2003.
Presenter, The 2004 Billboard Music Awards, Fox, 2004.
Presenter, Nickelodeon's 17th Annual Kids' Choice Awards, Nickelodeon, 2004.
Presenter, The 2004 Teen Choice Awards, Fox, 2004.
Presenter, The 36th Annual NAACP Image Awards, Fox, 2005.
Nickelodeon Kids' Choice Awards, Nickelodeon, 2005.
Television Appearances; Episodic:
Himself, General Hospital, ABC, 2004.
Himself, "That Old Mac Magic," The Bernie Mac Show, Fox, 2004.
Mr. Grundy, "Occupational Hazard," Kevin Hill, UPN, 2005.
Appeared as manager of the Four Tops in an episode of American Dreams, NBC.
Television Guest Appearances; Episodic:
Today, NBC, 2002.
Total Request Live, MTV, 2002.
The Wayne Brady Show, syndicated, 2002, 2004.
Mad TV, Fox, 2002.
Ant & Dec's Saturday Night Takeaway, ITV (England), 2003.
"Most Shocking Moments in Entertainment," E!'s 101, E! Entertainment Television, 2003.
Howard Stern, E! Entertainment Television, 2003, 2004.
Good Day Live, syndicated, 2003, 2004, 2005.
The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, NBC, 2003, 2004, 2005.
The Oprah Winfrey Show, syndicated, 2004.
The Late Late Show with Craig Kilborn, CBS, 2004.
Larry King Live, Cable News Network, 2004.
Tavis Smiley, PBS, 2004.
On-Air with Ryan Seacrest, syndicated, 2004.
The Hollywood Squares, syndicated, 2004.
Jimmy Kimmel Live, ABC, 2004, 2005.
Late Night with Conan O'Brien, NBC, 2004, 2005.
The View, ABC, 2005.
The Tony Danza Show, syndicated, 2005.
The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson, CBS, 2005.
Television Appearances; Pilots:
Desmond, Dr. Vegas, CBS, 2004.
Television Work; Series:
Co-executive producer, American Idol: The Search for a Superstar (also known as American Idol, American Idol 2, and American Idol 3), Fox, 2002–.
Television Music Director and Performer; Specials:
Mariah around the World, UPN, 1998.
Mariah Carey's Homecoming Special, Fox, 1999.
(With Journey) Frontiers, 1983.
Also recorded (with Journey) Raised on Radio.
Randy Jackson: Mastering the Groove, 1992.
Appeared in music videos, including "Bringin' On the Heartbreak" and "It's like That" by Mariah Carey and "Hopeless" by Dionne Farris.
Songs Featured in Films:
"Fireworks" and "I Know," Glitter, Twentieth Century-Fox, 2001.
(With K. C. Baker) What's Up Dawg? How to Become a Superstar in the Music Business, Hyperion, 2003.
Songwriter, including (with others) "Irresistible" and "My Saving Grace," songs included on the album Charm Bracelet by Marian Carey, 2003.
Contemporary Black Biography, Volume 40, Gale, 2003.
Jet, March 7, 2005, p. 14.
Los Angeles Times, May 12, 2005.
People Weekly, March 24, 2003, p. 67.
TV Guide, December 7, 2002, p. 14; March 1, 2003, pp. 34-35; May 17, 2003, pp. 24-27, 47.
US, April 14, 2003, p. 71; May 5, 2003, pp. 40-45.
"Jackson, Randy 1956–." Contemporary Theatre, Film and Television. . Encyclopedia.com. (December 14, 2018). https://www.encyclopedia.com/education/news-wires-white-papers-and-books/jackson-randy-1956-0
"Jackson, Randy 1956–." Contemporary Theatre, Film and Television. . Retrieved December 14, 2018 from Encyclopedia.com: https://www.encyclopedia.com/education/news-wires-white-papers-and-books/jackson-randy-1956-0