With its distinctive mandolin riff, "Losing My Religion" became R.E.M.'s third top 10 pop hit and their biggest yet peaking at #4. It won two Grammy Awards for Best Pop Performance By a Duo Or Group With Vocal and Best Short Form Video. Peter Buck of R.E.M. said the music of the song emerged from his own efforts at learning to play the mandolin.
"Motownphilly" tells the story of the discovery of Boyz II Men by New Edition and Bell Biv DeVoe member Michael Bivins. It blasted the group into the pop spotlight by climbing to #3 on the pop singles chart. The group's gorgeous vocal harmonies soon turned them into one of the top pop acts of the decade. Boyz II Men won the Grammy Award for Best R&B Performance By a Duo or Group With Vocals for their album Cooleyhighharmony which features "Motownphilly."
The inspirational ballad "Coming Out Of the Dark" was co-written by Gloria Estefan, her husband Emilio Estefan, Jr. and singer Jon Secada. Among the voices in the backing choir are Jon Secada and R&B singer Betty Wright. This was the first single released by Gloria Estefan after suffering a near fatal traffic accident in her tour bus. The recovery experience inspired the song. It became a #1 pop and adult contemporary hit.
"Gonna Make You Sweat" became mired in controversy when the diva vocals of Martha Wash were not credited on the song's release and they were lip-synched in the accompanying music video by Zelma Davis. Martha Wash sued successfully to earn proper credit and royalties for her contribution. Despite the controversy, the power of the recording is undeniable. It was a #1 hit on the pop, dance, and R&B charts.
The loud "Oh!" shout at the beginning of each chorus is the voice of American comedian Andrew Dice Clay. However the group EMF are from England and emerged out of the Madchester dance music scene in Manchester, England. "Unbelievable" with its somewhat chaotic sound leavened by a sweet pop melody and vocals went all the way to #1 on the pop singles chart in the US.
D.J. Jazzy Jeff and Will Smith turned away from the joke-filled humorous rap of their early hits to a somewhat more serious and universal tone on "Summertime." The result was their biggest hit single. It topped the rap and R&B charts and went to #4 on the pop singles chart winning a Grammy Award for Best Rap Single. "Summertime" has become a laidback summer classic.
Jesus Jones were associated with the Madchester dance music scene out of Manchester, England. Their worldwide breakthough single "Right Here, Right Now" speaks about being in the history of the moment. It was inspired by dramatic world events such as the fall of the Berlin Wall. The song topped the modern rock chart in the US and went to #2 on the pop singles chart.
Mark Wahlberg, aka Marky Mark, is the younger brother of Donnie Wahlberg, a member of New Kids On the Block. He followed his brother on to the pop charts with this single. The song is ultra-catchy and features powerful dance diva vocals from Loleatta Holloway. However, it may be the video which shows off Marky Mark's muscular physique that became one of the biggest factors in the song's success. "Good Vibrations" topped the pop singles chart.
After "Mama Said Knock You Out," LL Cool J no longer needed to fear his career was on the wane or he would be considered a sell-out to pop success. The song's most famous line is "Don't call it a comeback / I've been here for years." The song was certified gold, topped the rap chart and landed inside the top 20 on the pop singles chart.