‘Return of the Mack’ and 2 Other Inexplicable Old School Hip Hop Crowd Pleasers
Originally this post’s mandate was to isolate hip hop songs that most people could agree were cheesy beyond belief. When I drew up my list, I peppered it with songs that no true hip hop fan considered tight, but still found enjoyable to listen to. What I found instead was my top three songs were beloved and cherished classics in spite of and very much because of their cheeseosity. I’m not talking about corny tracks loved by hipsters in a painfully ironic way, but cuts that made a splash with true believers and have continued to enjoy favored status.
“Return of the Mack” – Mark Morrison
When I crowd sourced this track on Facebook I was stunned by the response. People love and identified this corny ass high box fade of a song! My hip hop connoisseur sister said, “Something resonated about 30… I had to let folk know I was returning.” And while my sister is often given to being wildly cheeky and hilarious, I knew she was being earnest here. Echoing her sentiment was a longtime e-bud who confessed the track – with its Oran Juice Jones like arrangement and Keith Sweat turbo whining intro – had helped him get his groove back after the end of a challenging relationship. A high school friend from my favorite history class went the cheeky route with, “There were a few years in the mid-late 90’s where I insisted (if you wanted my attendance) that this song was played upon my entrance into a party.” and knowing him I believe it. But my friend Erin said it all when she said, “I literally just posted this on one of my friends pages the other day because it came on the radio in my car and made me sooo cheesy happy.” None of these folks are ironic about music or have bad taste. And they love this song!
“Miss Jackson” – Outkast
Forget the rants against baby mama’s mamas and the obvious diss of an ex, people are gonna dance it out whenever this song is played. I don’t care how much people bitched about how over played this song got; they gonna get up and dance it out whenever this song is played. I don’t care if you’re on Team Erykah; folks are gonna get up and dance it out whenever this song is played.
“This is How We Do It” – Montell Jordon
I have long been in a deep dark closet regarding this song, but have recently come out swinging on this track. I associate it with the music they play over the PA system in movie theaters while they fuck around in the projection room and we all shout answers at the world’s easy trivia questions being projected on the screen. Hint: it’s always Tom Hanks and anything with a V in the scramble is always Viggo. I never saw this song as a real entry in the hip hop discourse. I still don’t actually know who Montell is or why I know how tall he is. I just know there aren’t many people who dislike this song. But then who wants to admit they come whack on an old school track?