Lisa Lisa remembers a friend who ran off to New York in the subdued “Little Jackie Wants To Be A Star.”
People are talking at a bus stop in the opening. The bus drives off as a ruminative guitar strums in the background. Lisa Lisa says her friend, Jackie, dreamed of becoming someone who was admired.
“Oh, little Jackie (Little Jackie)/Oh, little Jackie, she wants to be a star.”
One day, out of nowhere, Jackie bought a ticket and left her family behind. She and her parents had been fighting over everything. Nothing she could do or say was right. Jackie decided to pursue her dream of becoming a famous actress.
However, she didn’t know one action in her life affected what she could do next. Lisa Lisa advises Jackie to learn that fact now.
“She got off the Greyhound searching for fame, hoping to find a better way to leave her troubles behind/Little did she know that life sometimes is touch and go/Some never get it, open your eyes or you’ll learn to regret it.”
In the chorus, Lisa Lisa and the Cult Jam note that Jackie is learning what it’s like to be an adult. However, she still have the naivete of a child.
“Oh little Jackie, she wants to be a star/She’s caught in the middle (Of reality and what she’s dreamin’ of)/Oh little Jackie, she wants to be a star/(Smack dab in the middle of) Oh, growin’ up.”
Cars honk to start the second verse. Jackie has arrived in New York City. The Cult Jam wonder if she has what it takes. While walking on the street, Jackie meets a hot guy. However, he asks her if she wants some cocaine. Jackie responds that she’s not into it. The Cult Jam advise her to stay away from him. He will try to get her hooked and then screw her up. They remind her that Jackie could get killed if she gets involved with the guy. “(Times Square)/Is this where she makes it/Some people never get there/Then she met a guy (so fine) /But he wants to buy nothing but a $5 high./Jackie say ‘no (He’ll try to change ya)’ or rearrange ya (Or rearrange ya)/Remember what you’re mama done told ya/Never ever take gifts from a stranger.”
The chorus is sung again.
Lisa Lisa adlibs “I’m talking, said I’m talking about Jackie” over a twangy guitar.
In the bridge, Lisa Lisa says being out on your own isn’t what she dreamed it would be. They tell her not to get believe the people who are saying otherwise. They say that she’s young and not to become a victim. Jackie, however, is a runaway, not a famous actress. Lisa Lisa hopes Jackie will find a home or encounter a friendly family who will take her off the streets.
“All that glitters isn’t gold/Don’t let the green eyes fool ya/You’re only 16 years old/Don’t let the streets rule ya/You never meant to be a runaway, oh no/There’s got to be a better way today, today.”
Lisa Lisa tells Jackie not to give up. She thinks Jackie can do it. She needs to think she can.
“Talkin’ about Jackie (I believe ya, I believe ya)/If you believe in yourself, I really think you’re gonna make it/Oh, oh/Talkin’ about Jackie (I believe ya, I believe ya)/If you believe in yourself, I really think you’re gonna make it.”
The chorus is sung twice.
In the last section, Lisa Lisa adds that Jackie is still wishing to be interviewed on Access Hollywood and landing big movie roles.
“(I believe ya, I believe ya), Oh little Jackie, she wants to be a superstar/ (If you believe in yourself, I think you’re gonna make it)/Smack dab in the middle of growing up.”
The cautionary tale in “Little Jackie Wants To Be A Star” is preachy and heavy-handed. Although Lisa Lisa tries to remain optimistic, it’s not believable after the horror story she just told. The single is packed with so much drama, it forgets to have fun.