Section 1: The Ass End
“Chattahoochee” 1993, #46 (20 weeks) (download)
“Little Bitty” 1996, #58 (10 weeks) (download)
“Right On the Money” 1998, #43 (12 weeks) (download)
“Gone Crazy” 1999, #43 (13 weeks) (download)
“Pop A Top” 1999, #43 (17 weeks) (download)
“Went down yonder on the Chattahoochee / it gets hotter than a hoochie coochie.” That’s the first line of “Chattahoochee” and the only one I needed to simply pass on all five of these tunes. (Though, his ballads are much better than the ones ready for a hoedown.)
“Word to the Badd!!” 1991, #78 (2 weeks) (download)
I’m actually a big fan of the third most popular member of the Jackson clan. He put out some super funky records in the ‘80s like “Dynamite” and “Let’s Get Serious” and one of my favorite pop songs of the decade, “I Think It’s Love.” His 1991 album – You Said – however, was supposed to be the record that put him in the company of his brother Michael and sister Janet. It was his only record for LaFace records and has a very typical Babyface feel to it. Michael had Quincy Jones, Janet had Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis and now Jermaine had his own superstar producers. It all backfired for him though when “Word to the Badd!!” came out. The original version was Jermaine tearing up Michael and when the label didn’t want to go there, he recut the record as you hear it now, to be about a girl. But take the word “girl” out of this and it’s really about Michael stealing Jermaine’s spotlight. The original version leaked to radio, created some awkwardness and Jermaine’s music career stalled right there even though this is a pretty fantastic song (and that’s T-Boz from TLC on vocals too.)
Michael Jackson’s songs are just so memorable that I often forget that in the decade he only released Dangerous (’91), HIStory (’95) and his remix record Blood on the Dance Floor (’97).
Dangerous is of course a classic record, albeit just way too long. HIStory is not a classic record, though underrated in my opinion (if anything that has sold close to 10 million copies worldwide can be considered underrated) and Blood, well, that is what it is.
The title track to the remix record is simply fantastic though. It was written by Michael with Teddy Riley and was supposed to be used on Dangerous but didn’t make the cut. And six years later it’s the title track to his record and still sounds fresh.
After releasing that, Epic went back to the HIStory well and released “Stranger In Moscow” which is also a fantastic song. I can always do without “Childhood” “2Bad” with Shaq and of course “D.S.” which is a song that should have never seen the light of day but overall, that second disc of HIStory is still typical way-beyond-anyone-else MJ.
Jade was a trio of ladies who parlayed the catchy sample filled “Don’t Walk Away” into a decent career either though nothing about them stood out.
“The Way That You Talk” 1997, #65 (9 weeks) (download)
You know, this might not be a bad song if it wasn’t for Da Brat and mainly JD ruining it with their raps. I’m pretty sure that JD shouldn’t be rapping on anything. As a producer he was fine but this song would have been much better without him.
“Sweet Thing” 1993, #84 (5 weeks) (download)
As one of the greatest rock stars of all time, it’s hard to talk shit about Mick Jagger but I just don’t get tracks like this from him. His vocals are just terrible. Terrible enough that if it was anyone but him I’d be laughing like it was a joke but instead I’m just chalking it up to Jagger being Jagger.