With Bottom Feeders we take a look at the songs on the Billboard Hot 100 that only got a little love. 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
“Sweet Honesty” 1998, #91 (5 weeks) (download)
So we start the week off with a girl that I’ve never even remotely heard of. And since there were at least 10 versions of this tune, I’m posting the version I have and the version I’ve found on Youtube. The Youtube version is significantly better so maybe that was the single version?
Mia X & Charlie Wilson
“Whatcha Wanna Do?” 1998, #41 (7 weeks) (download)
This was right in the heart of when Charlie Wilson was trying to make a comeback as the singer on a bunch of rap tunes. This is a pretty crappy one so I’m sure this didn’t do much to further his career.
It’s a real shame George Michael can’t keep his dick covered in public places or else I’d like to think he’d have a much bigger career than he’s had. Granted, he’s had his share of hits but I really think he could have a similar status to Elton John right now if he had focused on his music more and had fewer distractions. But such is life and while we’re still waiting for his sixth record which has been rumored to be released for nearly a year now, he’s still got some fantastic records in his catalog.
Listen Without Prejudice, Vol. 1 is a fantastic album from start to finish and even though it’s an extremely mellow record, it was able to generate four hits. I didn’t realize until now that “Freedom ‘90” wasn’t the first single, nor the biggest hit. “Praying For Time” hit the top spot as the lead single from the record. “Mother’s Pride” was from that album too and was actually the B-side to “Waiting For that Day” but ended up getting a lot of play during the Gulf War.
There actually was a Listen Without Prejudice, Vol. 2 planned but Michael scrapped it after suing Sony for not promoting Vol. 1 enough. “Too Funky” was one of the songs planned for that record.
“Killer/Papa Was A Rollin’ Stone” was a special single mix of the second and third track on Five Live which was recorded at the Freddie Mercury tribute concert.
Yvette Michele had a decent voice but she had shitty songs to work with. Interesting though is “DJ Keep Playin’ On” which samples “Super Sporm” by Captain Sky. The version I have here is the only one I own, which poorly recreates Notorious B.I.G.’s “Mo Money Mo Problems” pretty horribly. The single is in the video below.
Midi, Maxi & Efti
“Bad Boys” 1992, #98 (3 weeks) (download)
I’ve been waiting for this one since the series started as it was the first song the King of Grief mentioned to me when I announced I was doing the series. At the time, these girls were 16 years old and living in Sweden. Midi & Maxi (which were their real names) were Ethiopian refugees while their friend “Efti (not her real name) was from the African state of Eritrea. They left for Sweden with their parents in 1985 and decided they were going to form a group. They released one album, did a tour and then broke up.
I really need to sit back and take a look at where my musical tastes are going. With everything you know about me at this point, I should hate these tunes but for some reason, I don’t. That’s not to say I like them per se, but they really aren’t terrible either. So my aging ass has just admitted that I can listen to Bette Midler songs. I feel ashamed right now.
“Blue Sky Mine” 1990, #47 (10 weeks) (download)
If you’ve never heard any Midnight Oil outside of their radio hits, you’re missing out. They were a fantastic group right from their start in 1978 to their final record in 2002. Although Diesel and Dust gave them the song they are really known for in the US (“Beds Are Burning”) and is a start-to-finish masterpiece, Blue Sky Mining was actually their biggest album in the US in terms of sales. You can’t go wrong with either of those records though.
The Mighty Dub Katz
“Magic Carpet Ride” 1995, #58 (20 weeks) (download)
One of a thousand boring tunes created by Norman Cook aka Fatboy Slim.
Mike + the Mechanics
“Word of Mouth” 1991, #78 (6 weeks) (download)
“Word of Mouth” was the title track from the third record by Mike + the Mechanics which happens to be an extremely underrated disc in my opinion. It’s a ball of pop energy which has went under appreciated over the years. That’s Paul Young on vocals here and despite being labeled as live in many places, it is in fact not. A crowd effect was dubbed in afterwards to give it that sing along feel (and it does do that, for sure).