With Bottom Feeders we take a look at the songs on the Billboard Hot 100 that Casey Kasem never got to announce. It’s an A-Z look at songs that charted no higher than #41 in the decade. Take a listen, enjoy and comment. And don’t forget, information on the top 40, airplay and bubbling under charts are on pages 2-4.
Section 1: The Ass End
“Forever Amo’r” 1991, #77 (9 weeks) (download)
Haha. So, the ‘80s provided us with a ton of really bad tunes to formulate a worst of the decade list and while I know many of you guys don’t like a lot of the music in this series, the majority of it isn’t so horrible that it fall onto a worst of list. So when terrible songs like this come by, we have to celebrate.
The freestyle moment yielded some great tunes and some really awful ones, like “Forever Amo’r.” Same generic backbeat, horrible vocals and a really bad chorus definitely put D’Zyre on the potential worst of the ‘90s list.
“Slowly” 1992, #52 (9 weeks) (download)
With a sound that was a holdover from the ‘80s and production from Oliver Leiber, Glen Ballard and Michael Sembello, Stacy Earl had a shot to make it big but her flame burnt out after releasing the Paula Abdul clone “Romeo & Juliet” which featured Abdul’s backing duo, the Wild Pair (yeah, MC Skat Kat).
Earth, Wind & Fire
“Sunday Morning” 1993, #53 (10 weeks) (download)
I love EWF but they stopped being relevant a decade earlier. “Sunday Morning” is a fantastic song but unlike the Eagles, this wasn’t a reunion as they had continued making mediocre music throughout the latter half of the ‘80s and into the ‘90s. The best chance they really had to get another hit was in 2005 when they released Illumination which had tracks with Will.I.Am, Big Boi, Raphael Saadiq and Brian McKnight among others. If that didn’t get them on the radio, I don’t know what they’d have to release now to get there again. Fortunately, they can just kill it on the senior circuit touring the nation to “Let’s Groove” and “September.”
East Coast Family
“1-4-All-4-1” 1992, #81 (6 weeks) (download)
Another contender for worst Hot 100 hit of the decade this Michael Bivins’s idea of getting together every damn artist in his “East Coast Family” stable was possibly the worst thing he ever did. Maybe a song with Biv, ABC and Boyz II Men would have been okay but then he gave air time to a mess of shitty artists like Fruit Punch, the 1010 Crew, Lady V, Whytgize and other artists that were never heard from again. Wanna know why? Just listen to the track to find out.
First of all, Eazy-E was the worst speller ever. I felt like I was typing these titles in Russian or something and by the amount of red underlines this paragraph has in the editor, spellcheck feels the same. But that doesn’t matter, when you’ve got a legend like Eric Wright in the muthafuckin house. To be honest, I didn’t really follow Eazy after he parted ways with N.W.A. and became the preferred producer of Ruthless records. But it was hard to ignore “Real Muthaphuckkin G’s” back in the day simply because it was a response track to Dr. Dre and Snoop Doggy Dogg’s “Dre Day.” Back in the day these beefs seemed deadly serious especially within gangsta rap and this track was pretty brutal. Dre was way more popular and had a much better stable of artists for sure as Eazy was just trading verses with some dudes named Gangsta Dresta, BG and Knocc Out. But E definitely held his own in this match even so. It certainly would have been interesting to see where this would have went had Wright not died of AIDS in ’95.
Finally, the greatest superhero in the history of music arrives in Bottom Feeders. Please welcome “Captain Save a Hoe!” If you only heard this on the radio you heard about “Captain Save Them Thoe” instead, which isn’t quite as classic. The song is a piece of shit but I just find it fascinating that any record company would even think of releasing a track like this. But then again it was Sick Wid’ It records, so what the hell. Not sure why E-40 released this as a solo track as it featured all the other members of his group the Click (yep, those kats that brought you the hurricane).
The classy “Sprinkle Me” starts off with E-40 belching before proclaiming something about being hip as a hippopotamus. He’s also rhymin’ with Suga T, his sister. I actually kind of like this one.
Elastica will always be tied in with the Breeders to me, not only due to the similarities like having the token male on drums or that “Connection” could be the bratty sister of “Cannonball” but because like I said for that group as well, Elastica were part of my soundtrack to getting laid in college. At the time I was unaware that Captain Save a Hoe was out there or I just would have paid him to help me out.
“All Lips N’ Hips” 1990, #76 (6 weeks) (download)
For all of you that don’t like the R&B and hip-hop, here’s something for you. I’m not sure I ever really liked this song being that it’s the tail end of the hair metal era but as part of this series, I actually dig it a lot as this type of song isn’t showing up all that often.
It’s highly possible that Missy Elliott is the best female rapper of all time. She has such a fantastic flow and singing voice and created some of the oddest yet totally cool rap videos of all time. And although he’s had a hell of a career, when you think of Missy Elliott you think of Timbaland too. The signature Missy/Timbaland sound worked so well and spawned a million other clones. But if you want to hear this sound at its peak, you go back to her first two records, Supa Dupa Fly and Da Real World.
Joey B. Ellis & Tynetta Hare
“Go For It (Heart and Fire)” 1990, #66 (8 weeks) (download)
There’s not a chance in hell that you could have said “name the hit song from Joey B. Ellis” and I would have gotten it but even if you shrugged your shoulders like me when you saw the name, when you listen you’ll realize that you heard this next to Marky Mark all the time. Or maybe I did since Ellis was from Philly and it was used in Rocky V. Either way, it’s a rap tune that samples “Eye of the Tiger.” How can you argue with that?
“Where Ever You Are” 1995, #52 (20 weeks) (download)
Here’s another name I didn’t recognize right away because the individual members of En Vogue outside of Dawn Robinson never got talked about a lot but Ellis is the first member of the group to release any solo material. She released Southern Gal during the group’s hiatus and the disc has a lot of material with the same vibe as this tune rather than her group’s sound. I know this isn’t going to do a lot for most of you reading this but it’s a fantastic song, definitely worth a listen or two if you don’t remember it.
Elmo & Patsy
“Grandma Got Run Over By A Reindeer” 1998, #87 (1 weeks) (download)
This also bubbled under in 1992 as well. Same version from the ‘70s and ‘80s that you know so well. I wonder if Elmo & Patsy hadn’t divorced in 1985 if we would have had a Timbaland remix of this for the ‘90s?
“Reality” 1998, #75 (11 weeks) (download)
The gimmick: two sets of identical twins. Tamica and Tonya Johnson and Michelle and Marie Harris made up Elusion which clearly wasn’t going to work past the initial 15 minutes of fame.