Making it personal

Making it personal

Star celebrates a Valentine's date with her Hong Kong fans by dedicating a song to the city

November 04, 2012
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For Janet Jackson, 35 is more than just a number. The figure is not only the total of chart toppers she's racked up over her illustrious career, it's also the number of cities she will visit in her largest world tour to date.

She is well aware, though, of the downside of having such a large number of number ones.

"It wouldn't be possible for me to sing all of my number ones [at each concert]," says Jackson. "I wish I could, but that would keep everyone there all night. Not that I would mind!"

For her Number Ones: Up Close and Personal tour, Jackson has dedicated a number one song to each city she'll play. For Hong Kong, she decided on If, the R&B-dance number from her fifth album, Janet.

"When we shot the video for If, I was inspired by the beauty, mystery and love that I have always found in Asia," she says. "When we were in Hong Kong for my Black Cat tour, I was so inspired. Everyone was wonderful and I am so excited to be coming back."

Tomorrow night's Valentine's date with Hong Kong marks a special first for the 44-year-old. "This [will be] the first time I have performed on Valentine's Day," she says. "This concert is a love affair with my fans that have supported me all these years."

Jackson's love of interacting with her fans was a big influence on her choice of venue for her first Hong Kong performance in 19 years. "I usually play arenas, which is a lot of fun, but it can be hard to interact with everyone," she says.

"Performing at the Hong Kong Convention & Exhibition Centre will be much more intimate. It will be about me and the fans connecting and having a good time."

Meeting fans was an important goals for the tour. To make it happen, Jackson set up a system to meet and greet young people she felt were worthy of recognition and praise. People could visit her website and nominate exceptional people under the age of 20 who have made worthy contributions to their communities. Winners from each city will receive VIP treatment: concert tickets and backstage meet and greet sessions with the diva.

Hitting stores on Tuesday is True You: A Journey to Finding and Loving Yourself, a book Jackson wrote touching on topics that are close to her heart.

"I have always struggled with weight and self esteem issues," she says. "I wanted to write True You so that people, especially the kids, know that they are not alone. It is not an autobiography. It is a true look at how I have gotten to where I am today and it is full of antidotes from my life and letters from my fans. I also have information from my friend Tony Martinez, who is my personal trainer, and Chef Andre of Acafe has provided recipes that I love.

"I really want kids to know that they are perfect just the way they are."

Jackson performs tomorrow at 8pm. Tickets from HK Ticketing

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