My Celebrity Life

Here Are All the Billboard No. 1s in ‘Pass the Mic: Volume 3′

Keep passing the mic! DJ Cassidy’s series Pass the Mic is back with Volume 3, which dropped on Tuesday (Oct. 13).

This time, the MC is celebrating his musical heroes of the ’80s and ’90s — 41, to be exact — in a mere 36 minutes. The series features Cassidy at his turntables at home, passing the virtual mic to celebrated musicians as they sing their classic tunes from their own homes via Zoom.

“After releasing Pass the Mic: Volume One and Volume Two, I was simply overwhelmed with the emotional response I had received. It seemed that people’s personal connection to the artists and songs was even stronger than I had anticipated and the feeling of intimate connection to one’s musical heroes that I strived for had struck a real nerve,” Cassidy tells Billboard. “I wanted to continue my mission to celebrate my musical heroes in effort to tribute the heroes around the world on the frontlines of health, freedom, and justice, and so I began working Volume Three, an homage to the R&B of the late 1980s-early 1990s.”

“During this prolific time in music, hip-hop transformed R&B and in turn, R&B transformed the pop charts,” he continues of the project. “The sound, style, dance, and attitude of this special time in music had a truly profound cultural impact, which I’m reminded of every time I drop one of these records on dance floors around the globe.”

And in Volume Three, 14 of these tunes hit No. 1s on various Billboard charts. Below, Cassidy shares his thoughts on each of the chart toppers and what they mean to him.

Jodeci, “Come & Talk to Me”
Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs, 1992

Jodeci plus Al B. Sure plus Puff Daddy plus Andre Harrell equals cultural revolution. The genesis of hip-hop soul. The start of a movement.

SWV, “Weak”
Billboard Hot 100, Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs, Rhythmic Songs, 1993

I danced to “Weak” at my 6th grade prom, my best friend lost his virginity to it … everyone has their memory. Written and produced by Brian Alexander Morgan, “Weak” was THAT ballad, and it still is. If this record doesn’t make you warm inside, you have no soul.

TLC, “Baby-Baby-Baby”
Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs, 1992

If the temperature is above 70 degrees and I’m in a car, chances are I’m blasting “Baby-Baby-Baby.” I used to watch the music video as a child and wish I was in it, hanging with the cool kids. This song represents early ’90s style and flavor in all its glory. TLC has many hit records. This is my personal fave.

Shanice, “I Love Your Smile”
Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs, 1992

I remember buying this “cassingle” at Sam Goody across the street from Bloomingdales in New York City, and playing it over and over and over. “I Love Your Smile” is pure sunshine, and so is Shanice.

Troop, “Spread My Wings”
Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs, 1990

A little Go-Go, a little New Jack Swing, this Chuckii Booker-produced jam has always been a highlight of its era. Steve Russell’s vocals are uplifting and flawless. “Spread My Wings” is a true feel good jam.

After 7, “Can’t Stop”
Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs, 1990

Babyface producing his brothers was always simple perfection. Combine that chemistry with L.A. Reid’s Bobby Brown “Don’t Be Cruel” / “Every Little Step” era drums, and there’s nothing more to ask for.

The Boys, “Dial My Heart”
Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs, 1988

As a child, I saw Hakim of The Boys everywhere I looked: on music videos, in every ’80s sitcom (Diff’rent Strokes, Gimme a Break, The Facts of Life), and even starring in the movie Ernest Goes to Camp. Who wouldn’t have wanted to be his best friend?! Produced by L.A. & Babyface, “Dial My Heart” is a classic of its era.

En Vogue, “Hold On”
Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs, Dance Club Songs, 1990

The harmony of R&B and the attitude of hip-hop was never so well imagined as in the interaction between the vocals and the beat of “Hold On.” A bonafide classic, this record is in a true league of its own.

Christopher Williams, “I’m Dreamin’”
Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs, 1991

Chris’ song in the iconic movie New Jack City was as significant as his co-starring role in the film. If Teddy Pendergrass had recorded a New Jack Swing song, this might as well have been it. Chris’ vocals were always in their own class.

Johnny Gill, “Rub You the Right Way”
Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs, 1990

I don’t know what’s more infectious: Johnny’s voice or the track. Combined, this is simply one of my favorite iconic records of the era.

Bell Biv DeVoe, “Poison”
Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs, 1990

I’ve deejayed around the world for half my living years and I can say with certainty “Poison” is the greatest party record of the 1990s. There are some records (like Michael Jackson’s “Don’t Stop Til You Get Enough” of the 1970s) that are simply dance-floor monsters, year after year, party after party. “Poison” is undeniable, timeless, and universal.

Bobby Brown, “My Perogative”
Hot 100, Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs, 1988

Bobby Brown’s second album, Don’t Be Cruel, was flawless and will go down in history as one of the greatest albums ever. Produced by Teddy Riley, “My Prerogative” is Bobby’s definitive anthem and defines this era of R&B with all it’s incredibly raw attitude, style, and sound.

Wreckx-N-Effect, “Rump Shaker”
Hot Rap Songs, 1992

The definitive hip-hop song of the New Jack Swing era, produced, written and performed by the King of the Swing, Teddy Riley, whose production of Guy, Keith Sweat, Heavy D, Johnny Kemp, Hi-Five, Wreckx-N-Effect, SWV, and even Michael Jackson, defined the times.

Boyz II Men, “End of the Road”
Hot 100, Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs, Pop Songs, Rhythmic Songs, 1992

One of the greatest finale songs of all time. One of the greatest ballads of all time. One of the greatest records of all time. Period.

Watch DJ Cassidy’s Pass the Mic: Volume 3 below:

Credit: Original article published here.

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