Caffe` Latte` presents…
Many new sub-genres were launched during the 1990s as hybrids of various styles were fused to create innovative new sounds. Females infiltrated the once misogynistic world of rap as it evolved into hip-hop. New Jack Swing gave way to New Jill Swing. Grunge exploded around the world. The music industry grappled with dwindling sales and the threat of piracy. Here are the 200 songs that mattered most -in terms of lasting impact, influence and enduring quality- in the final decade of the previous millennium.
MR. JONES Counting Crows
Released in late 1993, "Mr. Jones" was the breakthrough hit for American alternative rock band Counting Crows. Included on the 'August And Everything After' album, the single enjoyed extensive radio airplay and charted well around the world.
GIRLS AND BOYS Blur
In 1994, Blur scored its biggest hit to date with "Girls And Boys". The single meshed dance, new wave, Britpop and punk. The Pet Shop Boys remixed the track for its single release. The lyrically clever song did much to raise the profile of Blur. Soon, the popular group would be catapulted into a rivalry with fellow Britpop band Oasis.
MR. VAIN Culture Beat
Culture Beat was a leading exponent of the Eurodance of the early 1990s. The German group's "Mr. Vain" featured Tania Evans on lead vocals and included a rap by Jay Supreme. In 1993, the dance track topped charts in Britain, Europe and Australia.
BABY GOT BACK Sir Mix-A-Lot
Rap was still largely unwelcome in the early 1990s but some songs created cracks in the mainstream arena. In 1992, Sir Mix-A-Lot's tribute to women with big butts attracted controversy and, as a result, sales. Some regarded this as a celebration of plus-sized females, while others dissed it as a sexist rant. The single reached #1 in the U.S.A.
AT THE RIVER Groove Armada
There were no rules during the 1990s regarding the fusion of sounds and genres. "At The River" is a glowing example of how beautiful the results could be. Constructed around a sample of "Patti Page's 1957 track "Old Cape Cod", Groove Armada throw in a lush trombone solo, drum beats, ambient techno and other glorious sounds into the 1997 track.
SMOOTH Santana ftg. Rob Thomas
Matchbox 20's lead vocalist Rob Thomas delivered a guest vocal on "Smooth". American rock embraced Latin rhythms on this universally radio-friendly hit. It revived the fortunes of Santana. The track. lifted off the 'Supernatural' album, collected Grammy Awards and topped charts all over the planet.
CREAM Prince & The New Power Generation
Prince knew how to woo his fans and he went all out on "Cream". The 1991 single topped the US chart and made the Top 5 in Europe, Australia and New Zealand. The prolific R&B musician was backed by his group The New Power Generation on the sexy track.
WHERE THE WILD ROSES GROW
Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds with Kylie Minogue
Australian dance/pop artist Kylie Minogue reinvented herself on an unlikely collaboration with alternative / punk singer-songwriter Nick Cave and his band The Bad Seeds. The 2 Australian acts were worlds apart musically, yet, somehow, the pairing produced a haunting and alluring result. It peaked at #2 in Australia and reached the Top 10 across Europe in 1995-6.
SHINE Collective Soul
1993 saw the debut of American alternative rock group Collective Soul. "Shine", the band's 1st single release, was a radio hit and climbed to the Top 10 on the Canadian and Australian charts. The single preceded the release of the band's 'Hints Allegations And Things Left Unsaid'.
NEVER EVER All Saints
The 1990s saw the emergence of girlpower. Female singer-songwriters were embraced as was a stream of girl groups. All Saints were second only to The Spice Girls in the UK in terms of female acts that enjoyed chart success. In 1997-8, "Never Ever" took the vocal group to #1 in Britain, Australia and New Zealand. The R&B-flavoured pop track also reached the Top 10 in America, Europe and Canada.