“We are going to get old, ooooh!” says Emmy Award-winning actress-comedian Jackee’ Harry who made her mark as Sandra Clark in the 1980’s sitcom “227” with her coke-bottle shape and a pair of high heels moving across the room saying her famous tagline with a southern drawl, “Maaaaaaaaaaary.” She also is remembered as ‘Lisa Landry’ in the hit show ‘Sister, Sister’ with twins, Tia and Tamera Mowery.
“The other day I saw a gray hair and thought, ‘Oh child! I earned this,'” laughs the now 65-year-old Harry.
Harry attended the High School of Music and Art and Long Island University, where she earned a B.A. in education. Jackée Harry actually began her career as a history teacher at Brooklyn Technical High School, but left the profession after two years to follow her dream.
She learned a lot over the years, specifically from mentors in the entertainment business who took an interest in her and spent time to show her the ropes.
“Personally, Della Reese is one of my idols,” gushes Harry. “She’s a wonderful woman, a great and loving leader, and a minister now. She was one of the first women to be on the night show with Johnny Carson for years. Nobody talks about her like they do Joan Rivers. All my teachers also inspired me and molded me into who I am. Professionally, Diahann Carroll is my goddess. She taught me about jewelry (laughs). I know it sounds superficial. She taught me to separate real diamonds and pearls from fake ones. The meaning of that is what’s important in life and what’s not. She showed me how to relax in your celebrity and not be afraid of being successful. Because a lot of people are. They get up there and don’t want to outshine anyone. Sometimes you have to stand out.”
After her long-running television shows went into syndication, Jackee gained some weight and the funny woman was on the reality weight loss show, Celebrity Fit Club back in 2010. Some of the health and fitness lessons she learned, stuck with her.
“Lots of water. Water really does great things for my skin,” Jackee’ explained. “Also, my biggest thing that I haven’t told you is I take naps. I’ll take one at 11 when we have a break in the morning at the studio and then around 3. That’s my biggest secret. Water and naps. That’s the key. Water and naps.”
“I mainly do the same [workout] routine I’ve been doing for the last 10, 11 years. Also, I do take fat burners. Your metabolism gets kicked up, and when you work out,…