I can picture it now. My 8 year old self is sitting in the backseat of my mom’s 93 white Toyota Corolla (my older sister got to sit in front of course), and I am innocently muttering along to some song that my mom was listening to on either Kost 103.5 or Kbig 104.3. Unbeknownst to myself at the time, I was probably singing along to some of the dirtiest lyrics of the 90′s. And I don’t mean dirty as in, obviously dirty, with cussing and innuendos, but I mean subtlety dirty. In between Kenny G and Phil Collins, there were some songs that, on the surface seemed innocent enough, but once you really listen to them, you’re like “what the…that’s what she said?!” “Ew! That’s what he meant?” Only as I grew older did I realize how dirty/disturbing some of these songs are. In fact, I am shocked that my mom would even let us listen to these songs, let alone sing along to them. She was probably cracking up listening to us sing to these supposed innocent 90′s classics….either that or she wasn’t paying attention to the lyrics, or maybe didn’t understand them (English isn’t her first language.) Anywho, here is a list of the top four songs of shame I sang along to as a kid:
4) Breathe Again – Toni Braxton
Don’t you just love how dramatic those 90′s songs were? I love Toni Braxton. She had so many great songs that played on KOST that I sang along to, but just lately I realized how dramatic and horny she was in her songs. In her deep, sultry voice she would sing with a cracked voice,“If I never feel you in my arms again, if I never feel your tender kiss again, if I never hear I love you now and then, will I never make love to you once again, please understand, if love ends, then I promise you I promise you that, that I shall never breathe again, BREATHE again, BREATHE again, that I shall never breathe (BREATHE) again.” In case you missed it, she won’t ever breathe again. It is the end of her life. How is she supposed to breathe with no air, air? This is serious. Come on, really, Toni? You have an amazing voice, you are super attractive, will you really cease to breathe because some idiot guy left you? You have sold over 60 million records worldwide, just wipe your tears with some dollar bills. Man, I’m surprised that listening to these kind of songs didn’t make me super dependent on men. At least she came back with “Man enough for me” in 2000. She began to realize that girls singing about how dumb men were was becoming more popular than being a clingy, needy woman of the 90′s.
(Video Note: An unrecognizable Toni Braxton. Who decides, apparently, to set this music video as a Spanish soap opera, with long, crazy-ass sideburns, a confusing maze, a hot lover, and a naked Dove Commercial in the end.)
3)It’s all coming back to me now – Celine Dion
The song starts out innocent enough. There were those nights when it was so cold, days when the sun was just oh so cruel (damn you sun!) and she decided not to shed one more tear when her lover left. She also decided to banish all his memories, but in the next second, remembers when he touched her like this, and he touched her like that…and now it’s all coming back to her y’all. And then Celine just crosses the line. I can’t believe I belted this out as a kid– “there were nights of endless pleasure, it was more than any laws allow!” Ears are bleeding. Eyes are being scratched out. Can anyone really picture sweet little innocent Celine getting it on with a lover?? All I can picture her with is her 90 year old husband, and that sight just ain’t pretty. Glad none of these thoughts came to my mind as an eight year old. For all I knew, nights of endless pleasure meant them having long and fun nights of playing barbies and eating pizza.
(Video Note: I just had to share this with you guys, cause I was cracking up. It just goes to show you just how dramatic the 90′s were. I assumed that her lover left her cause he cheated or whatever, but no, in the video, HE DIES. By riding his motorcycle-scooter in the pouring rain, with thunder and lightning! And then Celine reminisces on those who so fun nights of pleasure, that apparently took place in a haunted mansion…and all she has left is her precious JC Penny photo frame.)
2) Queen of the Night – Whitney Houston
She’s got the stuff that you want, the thing that you need, she’s got more than enough to make you drop to your knees, cause she’s the queen of the night, the queen of the night, oh yeah, oh YEAH, OH YEEEAAHH. I loved Whitney Houston growing up. I probably listened to the Bodyguard soundtrack and danced to all those songs like 100 times, no joke. This song was one of my favorites to dance to. I had NO IDEA what this song was about until I was older and I think my sister was like uhh…you DO know what this song is about right? And I’m like, well she is the queen of the night….hmm queen of the night….ohhh…that queen of the night. So it wasn’t just this girl power song saying that she didn’t have a problem with who she was. She liked being bad and being loose, turning it up for YOU. I can just picture my mom sitting on the couch watching me dance, probably laughing inside when I sang how I just wanted to be loose and make you fall to your knees. Ahh good times.
(Video Note: There is none cause this video sucked!)
1) Into the Night – Benny Mardones
By far, this one is the winner in “most deceptive innocent song of the 90′s”. Seriously, WHAT THE EFF. Not only is it dirty, it is flippin disturbing. How deceived I was by the catchy chorus and great beat. (You were too admit it!). How could I sing along with a pedophile?? “She’s just 16 years old, leave her alone, they said….” They, as in the police?! Damn straight you better leave her alone. “But I want you to know, if I could fly, I’d pick you up, I’d take you into the night, and show you love like you’ve never seen, ever seen…” Ahh really, that’s how you feel Benny? Thanks for sharing your secret love to a 16 year old with the world. I really needed to know that if you could fly, (aka there were no laws against statutory rape,) you would take her into the night and show her love that she has never seen (gotta take advantage of the fact that she had no daddy to love her). I wonder how much crap he got about this song. Didn’t anyone notice what they were singing along to?? Were they all blind like I was to the awesome catchiness of the chorus? I can talk hate all I want on the lyrics of this song, but I’m not gonna lie, if that song came on right now, I would turn it up and sing at the top of my lungs,”BUT I WANT YOU TO KNOW!!….. damn song.
Video Note: There are no words. Ok there are a couple. If this song was ever “controversial” for not really being about what we really know it is about, the video clearly proves us right. It starts out with a 16 year old girl with her permed hair flying in the fans, looking all seductive in a dark basement with small concert lights for Benny to enjoy his fantasies (gag). More shots of random women here and there posing as if they were models…wouldn’t that be funny if that’s what they told those girls? “Hey ladies, you wanna model for us?! We can make you big! Here pose for us, yeah, that’s it! (hey Fred, make sure those cameras are rolling, this is going to be great for our new video!)….keep smiling girls!”