“Heaven Help Me” by Deon Estus (1989)

Deon Estus was a premier bass player, having apprenticed until legendary Motown session man James Jamerson. Estus’s talents were noticed by pop duo Wham!, and he was hired by the duo and became an integral part of their touring band. Deon appears prominently in the “I’m Your Man” and “Edge of Heaven” videos. Following Wham!’s… Read More “Heaven Help Me” by Deon Estus (1989)

“Got To Have Your Love” by Mantronix feat. Wondress (1989)

Mantronix was a hip-hop outfit led by DJ Curtis Mantronik. Originally, Mantronix’s music was firmly old-school electro rap in the “Planet Rock”/Whodini vein. As times changed, so did Mantronix’s sound. By 1989, Curtis’s crew had undergone personnel shifts, a label change (to Capitol from indie Sleeping Bag) and a sonic renovation. “Got To Have Your… Read More “Got To Have Your Love” by Mantronix feat. Wondress (1989)

“Don’t Take My Mind On A Trip” by Boy George (1989)

Boy George is, was and always will be a soul singer (direct precedent: Smokey), so partnering him with Teddy Riley for a couple songs on 1989’s High Hat was a masterstroke on behalf of George’s American record company (although they had no motive in mind other than making a hit, which is kinda what record… Read More “Don’t Take My Mind On A Trip” by Boy George (1989)

“Crucial (single remix)” by New Edition (1989)

On the Heart Break album, “Crucial” was one of the more incidental tracks. Despite most of the album being produced by Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis, the LP version of “Crucial” was helmed by former Time drummer Jellybean Johnson. It was a decent Minneapolis funk song. Not bad, but not a standout. Remixed and issued as Heart… Read More “Crucial (single remix)” by New Edition (1989)

“Crossroads” by Tracy Chapman (1989)

Tracy’s defiant “NO SELLOUT” move occurred with this song; the first single and title track from her all-important sophomore album. “Crossroads” came out when I was 13, and there was an honesty and resolve in her singing that resonated with me for years despite not really understanding what she was singing about. I can’t imagine the directions… Read More “Crossroads” by Tracy Chapman (1989)