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Tito Jackson explains how a Charles Barkley diss inspired his solo career: “I was hurt”

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Courtesy of Tariano Jackson/Beatroot LLCRock and Roll Hall of Famer Tito Jackson has enjoyed an iconic career as a member of The Jackson Five and The Jacksons, and he recently released a remix of “One Way Street” from his 2016 debut solo album, Tito Time.  But as he tells ABC Audio, he only launched his solo career because of something he heard Charles Barkley say.

As Tito explains, he was content touring with his brothers, and promoting the career of the trio 3T, featuring his sons, TJ, Taj and Taryll.  But when Barkley dissed him by implying that The Jacksons were nothing without Michael Jackson, he was inspired to step out on his own.

“Charles Barkley had made a comment saying that the rest of the guys [in the group], they weren’t very good, and I said, ‘Oh no.’ I said, ‘I need to step out more,’” Tito tells ABC Audio. “I need to let them know who I am and what I can do. That gave me incentive. Thank you Charles.”

Tito says the Basketball Hall of Famer’s remarks were hurtful because he admired his skills on the court.

“I’m [an avid] lover of Charles Barkley’s basketball and his personality is similar to my father’s, so I was hurt a little bit, more than anything,” Tito continues.

“I look back on it and say, ‘You know what? It’s him who push[ed] you to do this. Push[ed] you past the line,” the 66-year old musician says. “The whole motivation behind it is that comment.” 

Tito recently performed “One Way Street” on October 4 at the Living Legends Foundation Gala in Los Angeles, where several urban music executives were honored.

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