[artist id="1090"]Janet Jackson[/artist] paid loving tribute to late brother Michael Jackson at the 2009 MTV Video Music Awards in September. But on Sunday night (November 22) at the American Music Awards, it was all Janet.
The singer’s powerhouse singing-and-dancing clinic opened the show and included the new single “Make Me,” a song featured on her recently released greatest hits collection, Janet: Number Ones, as well as a trip through her back catalog, leaning heavily on Control. The singer performed on a night when Michael is nominated for five awards, including Artist of the Year.
Opening in silhouette, Janet and her dancers bounded into “Miss You Much” as she skipped across the stage, throwing off some of her classic side-to-side shuffles and head fakes while wearing a buckskin outfit and brown suede boots. Though the outfit featured a plunging neckline, it was somewhat demure for the artist known as much for her provocative outfits as her chart dominance.
After a bit of “What Have You Done for Me Lately,” she busted into “If,” cribbing a move from her brother and grabbing a crotch … hers and that of a male dancer. Jackson then slid into the new single, “Make Me,” a fun-time disco jam that returns to her high-energy early singles and features a lyrical hat-tip to Michael’s “Don’t Stop ‘Til You Get Enough.”
Crowd shots found members of the Black Eyed Peas, brother Jermaine Jackson, Mary J. Blige and Carrie Underwood cheering Jackson on during the fast-paced routine.
The medley ended with the hyped-up “Together Again” as Janet stood alone at center stage, smiling as the audience showered her with applause.