Ciara's 6th release, Jackie, was hands-down the best nap I've ever had and the longest it took me to write a review (see other articles written by Eddie J. here). The lack of excitement that permeated the production and songwriting, and the monotonous musical composition and vocal performances solidified that no matter how much potential Ciara has as a performer, she won't have the ingredients necessary to reach it.
If you're wondering who Jackie is or hadn't heard, she's Ciara's mother. Having her 1st child last year, Ciara "said" she wanted this album to be an homage to maternity. I put "said" in quotations because it's anything but. The intro/title-track's ("Jackie (B.M.F.)") premise, for example, could've been that she better understands her mother's experiences now that she's a parent, but instead, it was about how she's a "bad mother *cker." Yep, that's what "B.M.F." stands for. Does she expect her mother to listen to this song or be proud it's named after her? I'd be embarrassed, not just because of the vulgarity (and how it should've had the musicality of the bridge in the 3rd movement), but because of the absence of direction that afflicts the whole record. It's almost as if she wasn't aware of each song's subject matter and had to come up with an all-encompassing title to embody a false concept. Motherhood, and more specifically Ciara's mother, is the last thing I think of after hearing this project. It's club and sex-centered, which isn't bad in theory, but the title should've reflected that. Only if Jackie was a pseudonym for her vagina, or her best friend who goes to the club with her every night, would there be any correlation between the name and the content.
Jackie's music and production is as blasé as the last few efforts, to the point I'm doubtful Ciara has any influence or say-so in her album construction. This record was excruciatingly difficult to get through, and even harder to muster motivation to review. A slab of mid-tempo cuts is generally okay, but because there was no cohesion or effort to keep the material engaging, it was a cesspool of filler that felt like a 50 minute long song. "That's How I'm Feelin,'" featuring Pitbull and Missy Elliott, is generic in chord structure, bland in production and easily forgettable, even with Ester Dean belting for her life in the chorus. "Lullaby" has the typical R&B chord progression, like that of "Make Love In This Club (Part 2)" by Usher, "Can't Raise a Man" by K. Michelle and countless others (you know it when you hear it). The attempt at bringing back the 90s-era skating rink beat to random tracks like "Fly" only added an unnecessary datedness. The vocals and lyrics do nothing to help the redundancy of the music, which is so overtaking that the lackluster single "I Bet" is the peak of the album and sticks out as a "gem," though it doesn't fit with the rest of the songs subject-wise and doesn't serve an overall purpose.