“His latest CD, “I’ll Never Get Over You,” received a Grammy nomination…”
Charles Benjamin (Chuck) Jackson was named a Friar in New York City’s prestigious Friars Club, in such company as Harry Belafonte, Sammy Davis, Jr., and Frank Sinatra. That’s not surprising for Jackson, the master showman, who adds this 2006 honor to a long list of accomplishments. He grew up in Latta, South Carolina and attended South Carolina State University on the first music scholarship ever awarded by the university.
Jackson developed his musical talent under the tutelage of the university’s music department chairman, and early mentors Ellen Simmons and Clyde Toomer. After campus riots of the 1950s forced him to leave South Carolina State, Jackson pursued a successful music career in Pittsburgh, singing lead baritone with the Del-Vikings of “Come Go With Me,” fame, writing and recording his first hit, “I Don’t Want to Cry,” and gaining fame singing a Bacharach-Hilliard tune, “Any Day Now.” That song placed Jackson among the top five male R&B and Pop singers in the world. It was one of the biggest hits of the era and among the most enduring songs in popular music in the latter half of the 20th century.
He has sung for U.S. presidents and governors. He sang the National Anthem at Yankee Stadium for the playoff game that led to the World Series, and at charity events. His latest CD, “I’ll Never Get Over You,” received a Grammy nomination for Best Duet with Dionne Warwick for the song, “If I Let Myself Go.”
Among Jackson’s honors and awards during his illustrious career are his induction into the New York City’s Apollo Theatre Hall of Fame, for headlining more shows in one year than any other performer, designation as an American Treasure of the Smithsonian Institution, induction in the National Black Sports and Entertainment Hall of Fame for Cultural Achievement, the Motown Heroes and Legends Award, the Community Works, Inc. Award from the “Harlem Is…Music” project for contributions to Harlem’s musical history, and the Anhauser Busch Eagle Award for Living Legends. He is also included in the book, “The Top Twenty Who’s Who in New York City.”
No ordinary singer, Jackson is also an accomplished producer, having produced such ‘musical giants’ as Smokey Robinson, Stevie Wonder, The Four Tops, The Temptations, Freddie Jackson and Regina Belle, Tom Jones, Michael McDonald, and Boys 2 Men. He has also produced gala and charitable events, including performances at City College of New York’s Aaron Davis Hall featuring Dionne Warwick, Luther Vandross, Nancy Wilson, Maya Angelou, Yolanda Adams, and Isaac Hayes.