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.
MMM MMM MMM MMM Crash Test Dummies
The Canadian group Crash Test Dummies broke through internationally with the strangely titled "Mmm Mmm Mmm Mmm" in 1993. Mixing alternative rock with folk and pop, the song topped charts in Europe and Australia as well as peaking at #2 in the UK.
THE POWER Snap!
Lifted off the German group's 'World Power' album, "The Power" became a worldwide smash in 1990 while widening the fanbase for Eurodance. Snap! produced the track. Its intro features words in Russian before it launches into the English verses.
WRITING TO REACH YOU Travis
Scottish band Travis altered its sound for 2nd studio album 'The Man Who'. Released in 1999, it was preceded by lead single "Writing To Reach You". The new musical direction proved a wise strategy, resulting in a series of singles that included radio staples "Why Does It Always Rain On Me", "Driftwood" and "Turn".
THE SIGN Ace Of Base
During the 1970s, Sweden offered the world ABBA. The musical "Mamma Mia" premiered in 1999. Swedish duo Roxette emerged in the Eighties and enjoyed chart hits in the Nineteies. Ace Of Base achieved international success as exponents of Swedish pop in the 1990s. "The Sign" reached #1 in America, Canada, Australia and New Zealand in 1993-4. In the UK, it peaked at #2.
With its salacious lyrics, "Pony" became a steamy R&B song that set a new benchmark for the genre. Issued in 1996, it was the debut single from American singer Ginuwine and included on his album 'Ginuwine... The Bachelor'.
FEEL SO GOOD Mase ftg. Kelly Price
The DNA of "Feel So Good" incorporated funk, hip hop and soul. Released in 1997 on Bad Boy Records, the track went Top 5 in America, Britain and Canada. Kelly Price was a guest singer on Mase's hit.
RUSH Big Audio Dynamite II
After The Clash split, Mick Jones formed Big Audio Dynamite. The band's sound fused hip hop, punk and reggae. "Rush" made use of samples. Unleashed in 1991, the track climbed to #1 in Britain, Australia and New Zealand. It was included on BAD II's album 'The Globe'.
TOO CLOSE Next
R&B trio Next dropped "Too Close" in 1997. The smooth song, included on the album 'Rated Next', featured a guest vocal from female singer Coffey Brown. In the US and New Zealand, the track reached #1.
GET READY FOR THIS 2 Unlimited
The early 90s saw an explosion of Eurodance acts that included Snap!, Culture Beat, Jam & Spoon and 2 Unlimited. The Dutch techno/ dance pop duo charted with a string of singles such as "No Limit", "The Magic Friend" and debut single "Get Ready For This". In 1991, the latter hit clubs and was soon Top 10 in Europe, Britain and Australia.
BLACK OR WHITE Michael Jackson
The world still stopped in 1991 whenever Michael Jackson premiered a new music video. Somehow, it never detracted from the song. He managed to turn the visual and his latest release into a pop culture event. "Black Or White", the lead single from 'Dangerous',boasted one of MJ's most memorable videos. The song, with its message of tolerance and unity, proved he would still be relevant in the nascent decade.The album, his first without Quincy Jones at the helm, marked a turning point.