Wednesday, 29 May 2013

One Hit Wonders

Have you ever had something so good that you want it again and again, but you can't? Like the expression chasing the dragon - one hit wonders come into our lives and pull a Houdini just when we started liking their material. For some that break through was pure lucky, a lucky song pick accompanied by a dope beat, whilst some it's their talent that made us take notice and made us like them. Just like the mist – they just disappeared into thin air.

Skee-Lo - I Wish"
Skee-Lo's only hit is something of an underdog anthem. It's for everyone who wished they could be a little bit better at something. Who can't identify with that? Oddly enough, it rose up the charts and earned Skee-Lo a Grammy nomination for Best Rap Solo Performance in 1996 (he lost out to Coolio's "Gangsta's Paradise). But months after the song was released, Skee-Lo essentially retired from rap due to legal disputes with his label, Sunshine Records, over who wrote and produced the song.

Vanilla Ice - Ice Ice Baby
This 1990 song may have become a punch line of sorts, but it was the first hip hop song to top the Billboard charts, changing the game in terms of what the genre could and couldn't do commercially. Aight, stop/ Collaborate and listen, the iconic opening lines to Ice Ice Baby, a song so great that it destroyed Robbie Van Winkle AKA Vanilla Ice’s career.

985 - Utlwa
I remember many ladies hated DI’s verse – DI was the female member of the group or was she – hell no one ones and cares. She rapped about how her body would self-destruct, how she got wetter than a tap, more like Lil’ Kim’s SA very own. (For all youngings - YouTube them.) Deipkloof natives blew up with Utlwa, but we couldn’t hear any more hit from them. They are still around, still chasing that mainstream hit. 

All The Coca Cola Pop Stars: 101, Adilah And Ghetto Lingo
101 was the first group put together Idols style and they went on to release two or one tracks that grabbed people’s attention and it was downhill. Then came in Adilah, four pretty faces and a dude, they gave us sesfikile and dropped off the radar. Lastly came, Ghetto Lingo – honestly when I heard their first single – I went straight to the graveyard to grieve their careers. Like a sneeze – they were all gone.

Cali Swag District - Teach Me How to Dougie
A lot of rap songs in the past few years are accompanied by a signature dance move, but none reached the heights of this 2010 hit, immortalized when First Lady Michelle Obama busted it out with Dr. Oz at a Washington D.C. elementary school. Cali Swag District's follow-up efforts were derailed later the following year, when group dancer M-Bone was shot and killed. Cali Swag District's song went viral and wound up amassing over 30 million plays on YouTube. It also sold over 2 million copies. And oh yeah, it certainly didn't hurt, but CSD suffered a setback when M-Bone, the group's dancer, was shot and killed. They have yet to recapture the same level of success.

Mims -This Is Why I'm Hot
Mims had been grinding it out as a serious underground rapper, when-perhaps frustrated with the way things were going-he decided to make something with a tad more commercial appeal. The irony of it all was that he admitted right on the song that it was all kind of some elaborate joke. "I can sell a mill sayin' nothing on the track," he spit. And then he did! Joke's on you, buddy.

Wikid ‎– Anger Management
Wikid was or is still is a dope MC wherever he is but he couldn’t maintain longevity for whatever reason. He blew up rolling with Amu and Mr Selwyn and dropped Anger Management and that was it. Wikid dawg, what happened?

Nonchalant - 5 O’clock In The Morning
Released in 1996, "5 O'Clock" was a story about hustling, told from a women's perspective. At the time, that was a point of view on the subject that hadn't been tackled and the beautifully gloomy tune shot up the charts and became a #1 rap single. Unfortunately, Nonchalant's follow-up efforts weren't received as well.

Zulu Mobb - Comfort Me
“Jesus relieve my stress,” rapped a group known as Zulu Masters Of Black Bravery AKA Zulu Mobb consisting of Inshala and Dez. When you set the bar high, a lot will be expected from you and nothing less. The guys never lived up to the hype proving the saying don’t believe the hype.

J-Kwon -Tipsy
Missouri rapper J-Kwon will forever be remembered for this contribution to hip-hop. "Tipsy" went to No. 2 on the Billboard Hot 100. With its "We Will Rock You" drums and catchy hook, "Tipsy" seemingly came out of nowhere. Then Kwon disappeared just as quickly, which in hindsight, most rap fans are probably OK with.

GP gangster - Brand New Day
Hailing from Zola - Bafana, Nkosana and Tumza, made their names through writing for others and someone might have influenced them to drop an album. So they did and broke through with Brand New Day, but failed to live up to it.

Rich Boy “Throw Some Ds”
When rap fans were hungry for a new song about protruding car rims - this also coincided with rap’s obsession with the ‘dirty south’ and was the perfect time for a fresh-faced fella by the name of Rich Boy. Straight out of Alabama, a state more associated with Nascar than rap music, he hit like a juggernaut wearing a Jesus piece with the instant classic Throw Some D’s. Sadly for Rich though the track was a hit based on the addictive beat rather than his close-to-incomprehensible molasses thick voice. Producer Polow Da Don has become hit-maker for the stars while Rich Boy remains in rap purgatory, plotting his mainstream comeback.

My Man Ft Lebo Mathosa -  Siyavuma
If memory proves me right, My Man was the first none Skwatta member on Buttabing Entertainment and dude resembled US rapper Game. The track blazed through the airwaves and was certified a hit and went on to drop an album called, Imenemene. That was the last we heard from him and word has it that he stepped on some Ventilation(Slikour) toes and learned the hard way.

Guerilla Black
Compared to Brooklyn’s legend the late great Notorious B.I.G – Black’s career was in serious trouble from start. Dude had two hits Compton, featuring Beanie Man and You're The One, featuring Mario Winans. That was that, his short contribution to hiphop. The last we heard, he was arrested for credit card fraud – guess times are hard.

Honourable Mention
Pitch Black Afro
Now Afro wasn’t a one hit wonder per say - his first album Styling Gel had a few hits – he’s more like a one hit album dude. Yeah we will call him that, produced by the legendary DJ Cleo, the album hard hits like Pitch Black Afro, Matofotofo and Pidipidi just name a few. Clubbers danced to his songs, cars blazed them and then something happened between him and Cleo - dude fell off and his career was never the same.

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