Obituaries: David Jackson

  • by BAR staff
  • Tuesday July 2, 2024
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David Jackson
David Jackson

March 21, 1960 — June 8, 2024

David Jackson was a professional in music business for 50 years. He was a voting member of the Recording Academy and was active in its San Francisco chapter. David was born in Oakland, and throughout his entire life, he was strongly connected to the Bay Area.

He was born to Daniel Jackson III and Anne Mae Jackson on the spring equinox 1960. He went to Saint Mary's College High School in Albany and graduated from Oakland Technical High School.

He went into the music business in 1974 when he started a band and began working as a DJ at KDIA, Oakland's famous soul music radio station. Throughout his long career, he worked with Bill Summers and Summers Heat, Wanz and Owuor Arunga of the group Macklemore, Frankie Beverly and the Maze, Cyndi Lauper, Roberta Flack, Gladys Knight, Bobby Brown, Mannie Fresh and the Cash Money Records, and many others. Recently, he was credited as a co-author of Lil Wayne's highly valued song "Mahogany" on his album "Funeral."

David co-founded a Half & Half Recording Studio in Sioux Fall, South Dakota, which received a Grammy. David was known to be a mentor to disadvantaged youth struggling with addiction and/or homelessness.

In the 1980s, David served in an elite U.S. Navy submarine fleet as a sonar technician.

David was a queer man, and in 2019, he married Ladislav Jackson, an assistant university professor from Europe. He always brought inclusion, diversity, respect, and kindness in all fields and genres he ever worked in, especially rap and hip-hop.

David died of stage 4 lung cancer in the middle of unfinished projects. In addition to his husband, David is survived by four children, Holly, Olivia, Malcolm, and David, and four older siblings, Daniel, Marlene, Gregory, and Tony. His professional and private archive will become part of the collection of the Society for Queer Memory in Prague.

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