Monday, 22 April 2013

The Best Of 1993 - part 4

JUMP TO: 100-76 II 75-51 II 50-26 II 25-1


We've reached the top 25 of my list of favourite singles from 1993 and in this batch of songs are a number of groups I'd go on to see perform live in the following years.

There was no mistaking that hair - or M-People
singer Heather Small's voice - in 1993

I'd been a late starter when it came to going to concerts - and I actually saw my first live tour, Madonna's The Girlie Show, in 1993. I had wanted to go to concerts before that but was either too young or couldn't find anyone who wanted to see who I wanted to see (Debbie Gibson, Kylie Minogue).

I made up for my lack of concert-going experience over the next couple of years, seeing M-People, Pet Shop Boys and Depeche Mode when they came to Australia. All three of those groups feature in my top 25 for 1993 - although I won't talk about the PSB or DM songs again, since I've dealt with them elsewhere (follow the links and see!).


Number 25 "Love Me The Right Way" by Rapination featuring Kym Mazelle
Despite the sound of their name, Italian production and remix duo Rapination were dance rather than hip-hop-oriented and had recently turned Take That's overblown album version of "Could It Be Magic" into a fun, radio-friendly single remix. So, the time was right for a single release under their own steam - and they drafted in house vocalist Kym Mazelle for this club anthem and minor UK hit.




Number 24 "Can You Forgive Her?" by Pet Shop Boys
Previously featured here

Number 23 "Let Me Show You" by K-klass
Another year, another awesome single from K-klass - and, unlike "Rhythm Is A Mystery" and "Don't Stop", this one actually received some attention in Australia, reaching the dizzy heights of number 16 for two weeks.




Number 22 "Pray" by Take That
Mentioned below

Number 21 "Movin' On Up" by M-People
Mentioned below

Number 20 "Relight My Fire" by Take That featuring Lulu
1992 had been a good year for Take That - but in 1993 the British boy band was unstoppable, landing their first UK number 1 with "Pray" (number 22 on this list) and following it up with two more before the year was out, including this cover of the Dan Hartman single from 1979. Pop legend Lulu seemed an odd choice for guest vocalist, but since the "To Sir With Love" singer was relaunching her own music career, it's easy to see why she jumped at the chance to work with the hottest young pop group around.
1993 was also the year Take That started to gain some traction in Australia, with "Could It Be Magic" reaching the top 30 and "Relight My Fire" peaking at number 33. "Pray" originally missed the top 50 but would become the group's first top 10 hit locally when it was re-released in 1994.




Number 19 "The Key: The Secret" by Urban Cookie Collective
Fronted by vocalist Diane Charlemagne, British dance group UCC scored two big hits in 1993 - this track, which reached number 2 in the UK and spent five weeks at number 4 in Australia, and "Feels Like Heaven" (number 32 on this list), which also made the top 10 in both countries. More singles would follow, but none were as successful as these initial two. Likewise, subsequent remixes of "The Key: The Secret" in 1996 and 2004 didn't hit their mark. 




Number 18 "When I'm Good And Ready" by Sybil
American-born singer Sybil had had an interesting career up until 1993. Signed to PWL in the UK, she landed a couple of hits in 1989/1990 with remakes of Dionne Warwick songs, but an original Stock Aitken Waterman composition, "Make It Easy On Me", flopped completely. So, it was back to the covers for her 1993 single, "The Love I Lost" (number 108 on this list), which was credited to West End featuring Sybil, presumably to fit in with the prevailing trend of dance acts cluttering up the British chart.
Embolded by the top 5 success of "The Love I Lost", Sybil got to release this track under her own steam - and it became another top 5 hit in the UK as well as one of the final big singles produced by Stock and Waterman. Two follow-ups, "Beyond Your Wildest Dreams" (number 142 on this list) and "Stronger Together" (number 35) didn't perform as well - and both stalled just outside the UK top 40 at number 41.




Number 17 "Don't Be A Stranger" by Dina Carroll
After mining her So Close album for singles throughout 1992 and 1993, Dina finally scored her long-awaited first top 5 hit in the UK with this big ballad, which was remixed slightly from the album version. Since this was the sixth single taken from So Close, there weren't really any album tracks worthy enough to issue as a follow-up, and so instead a brand new track was released just in time for the Christmas market (and included on a So Close repackage). Taken from the Andrew Lloyd Webber musical Sunset Boulevard, "The Perfect Year" (number 39 on this list) became Dina's second song to hit the UK top 5 and receives an airing in my house on every New Year's Eve.




Number 16 "Tribal Dance" by 2 Unlimited
Mentioned below

Number 15 "Ain't No Love (Ain't No Use)" by Sub Sub featuring Melanie Williams
Before they went all indie rock as The Doves, Jimi Goodwin and brothers Andy and Jez Williams went by the name of Sub Sub and released some of the best dance tracks of the mid-'90s, including this breakthough single - a number 3 hit in the UK and a number 11 in Australia. I'll always associate this track with that year's UNSW Law Revue, in which I was involved. We used this song for one of the musical numbers, but the lyrics were changed to "if there ain't no guava, there ain't no juice". It wasn't my idea!




Number 14 "World (The Price Of Love)" by New Order
It had been five years since there'd been a new New Order album and three years since anything had been heard from the group at all, so it was somewhat of a relief when the band returned sounding better than ever in 1993. "World..." was the third single lifted from Republic and received a Perfecto remix for the occasion. Meanwhile, the album's first single, "Regret" (number 41 on this list), was the group's last top 30 appearance in Australia (it reached number 26) and their highest charting single ever in the US (it reached number 28).




Number 13 "Stay" by Eternal
Previously featured here

Number 12 "If I Can't Have You" by Kim Wilde
I love Kim Wilde (what, you hadn't noticed?), but she'd been struggling the last few years, with her albums, Love Moves and Love Is, failing to register much chart action. So, to coincide with a greatest hits collection which spanned her career to date, she turned to a tried and true method to land a hit: the cover version. Kim's remake of the Bee Gees/Yvonne Elliman track (which had been featured in the soundtrack to Saturday Night Fever) did the business - giving her her biggest single in the UK since 1988 and, by spending four weeks at number 3 in Australia, becoming her best performance in Australia since "You Keep Me Hangin' On" in 1986/87. Sadly, it would be her final notable hit in either country... but don't go thinking that I'd given up on Kim. Not by a long shot.




Number 11 "I Wouldn't Normally Do This Kind Of Thing" by Pet Shop Boys
Previously featured here

Number 10 "It's Alright" by East 17
Previously featured here

Number 9 "U Got 2 Know" by Cappella
Italian dance act Cappella had been around since 1987, scoring a big club hit in 1989 with "Helyom Halib", but 1993 was the year that the brainchild of Media Records head honcho Gianfranco Bortolotti became a real chart force. Taking a leaf out of 2 Unlimited's book, a male rapper (Rodney Bishop) and female singer (Kelly Overett) were recruited to provide faces for the group and the hits came thick and fast over the next couple of years. Both "U Got 2 Know" and the similarly titled "U Got 2 Let The Music" (number 34 on this list) were UK top 10 hits and both sampled synthpop tunes from the '80s for their catchy hooks.




Number 8 "I Feel You" by Depeche Mode
Previously featured here

Number 7 "Never Let Go" by Hyper Go Go
This UK dance act comprised of Jamie Diplock and Alex Bell tried their luck on a series of cool record labels. Their debut single, "High" (number 44 on this list), came out on Deconstruction, while this track was issued on the Positiva label and was one I got very excited about whenever I heard it out clubbing in 1993. Hyper Go Go would also release tracks on Distinctive in the coming years - but despite many of their singles being big club records, the highest they ever got on the UK chart was, funnily enough, with "High", which reached number 30.




Number 6 "Sing Hallelujah" by Dr Alban
Getting his name from the fact that he'd studied to become a dentist, Alban Nwapa already had a UK number 2 single under his belt thanks to 1992's "It's My Life" but, unlike that song, this 1993 single was an Australian hit, reaching number 5 and going platinum. The Nigerian-born performer emerged from Sweden, where he was discovered by producer and hitmaker Denniz Pop, who'd be responsible for some of the decade's biggest songs before tragically passing away at just 35 years of age in 1998. Dr Alban continues to record to this day and charted well throughout continental Europe into the late '90s, but this was where his success in Australia began and ended.




Number 5 "Things Can Only Get Better" by D:Ream
It took them a few goes to get there, but this song finally turned D:Ream into chart stars when it was re-released at the start of 1994. In 1993, the dance act fronted by singer/songwriter Peter Cunnah saw each of their four singles - this track, the original version of "U R The Best Thing" (number 141 on this list), "Star/I Like It" (number 132) and "Unforgiven" (number 49) - fall short of the UK top 20. The persistence paid off and 1994 would be a much better year for them, but I was hooked as soon as I heard their music in 1993.




Number 4 "One Night In Heaven" by M-People
Manchester dance act M-People also benefitted from a timely re-release when a 1993 remix of debut single "How Can I Love You More" (number 84 on this list) took them into the UK top 10 for the first of many times. Moving swiftly on to their second album, Elegant Slumming, the group kept the momentum going with this track, "Movin' On Up" (number 21 on this list) and a cover of Dennis Edwards' "Don't Look Any Further" (number 99), all of which landed in the upper reaches of the UK chart. In Australia, "Movin' On Up" was far and away the group's biggest hit, reaching number 4 and going platinum.




Number 3 "Go West" by Pet Shop Boys
Previously featured here

Number 2 "Labour Of Love (remix)" by Hue And Cry
Some fans of the original version of this 1987 single by sibling duo Pat and Greg Kane were horrified by this more dance-friendly remix, but I wasn't familiar with the song until hearing this 1993 update - and this version was fine by me. As was the practice at the time, the remix was for Hue And Cry's greatest hits collection - and although some '80s groups like Talk Talk, Erasure and Heaven 17 had seen their early singles turn into hits all over again (or, occasionally, for the first time) in the early '90s, it wasn't to be for Hue And Cry. The original version of "Labour Of Love" had given them their sole UK top 10 hit, while this remix tanked at number 25.




Number 1 "No Limit" by 2 Unlimited
Speaking of songs that horrified people, there was possibly no pop act more polarising than 2 Unlimited, who were inescapable during 1993. Although "Get Ready For This" is likely the biggest global hit of their career, in the UK, "No Limit" spent five weeks at number 1 at the start of the year. Subsequent singles "Tribal Dance" (number 16 on this list), "Faces" and "Maximum Overdrive" repeated the formula - and the duo inspired a flurry of imitators who'd define Eurodance for the next few years. For me, "No Limit" is still a fantastic dance song, and although my tastes quickly moved away from Eurodance over the next few years, it remains a firm favourite from the era. And yes, the video below does play despite its "screen grab".




My top 200 for 1993 in full:

1        NO LIMIT 2 Unlimited
2        LABOUR OF LOVE (REMIX) Hue And Cry
3        GO WEST Pet Shop Boys
4        ONE NIGHT IN HEAVEN M-People
5        THINGS CAN ONLY GET BETTER D:Ream
6        SING HALLELUJAH Dr Alban
7        NEVER LET GO Hyper Go Go
8        I FEEL YOU Depeche Mode
9        U GOT 2 KNOW Cappella
10      IT'S ALRIGHT East 17
11      I WOULDN'T NORMALLY DO THIS KIND OF THING Pet Shop Boys
12      IF I CAN'T HAVE YOU Kim Wilde
13      STAY Eternal
14      WORLD (THE PRICE OF LOVE) New Order
15      AIN'T NO LOVE (AIN'T NO USE) Sub Sub featuring Melanie Williams
16      TRIBAL DANCE 2 Unlimited
17      DON'T BE A STRANGER Dina Carroll
18      WHEN I'M GOOD AND READY Sybil
19      THE KEY:THE SECRET Urban Cookie Collective
20      RELIGHT MY FIRE Take That featuring Lulu
21      MOVIN' ON UP M-People
22      PRAY Take That
23      LET ME SHOW YOU K-klass
24      CAN YOU FORGIVE HER? Pet Shop Boys
25      LOVE ME THE RIGHT WAY Rapination featuring Kym Mazelle
26      THIS IS IT Dannii Minogue
27      MR VAIN Culture Beat
28      DREAMS Gabrielle
29      WHAT IS LOVE Haddaway
30      I'LL NEVER GET OVER YOU (GETTING OVER ME) Expose
31      FREE TO LOVE AGAIN Suzette Charles
32      FEELS LIKE HEAVEN Urban Cookie Collective
33      BELIEVE IN ME Utah Saints
34      U GOT 2 LET THE MUSIC Cappella
35      STRONGER TOGETHER Sybil
36      LIGHT OF THE WORLD Kim Appleby
37      IF Janet Jackson
38      LOOKING UP Michelle Gayle
39      THE PERFECT YEAR / HERE Dina Carroll
40      LIFE Haddaway
41      REGRET New Order
42      A WHOLE NEW WORLD (ALADDIN'S THEME) Peabo Bryson / Regina Belle
43      GOOD TIMES WITH BAD BOYS Boy Krazy
44      HIGH Hyper Go Go
45      GOT TO GET IT Culture Beat
46      BETTER THAN YOU Lisa Keith
47      OPEN YOUR MIND U.S.U.R.A.
48      WALKING IN MY SHOES Depeche Mode
49      UNFORGIVEN D:Ream
50      REAL LOVE '93 The Time Frequency
51      LOOKING THROUGH PATIENT EYES PM Dawn
52      WILL YOU BE THERE Michael Jackson
53      SOMEBODY DANCE WITH ME DJ Bobo
54      QUEEN OF THE NIGHT Whitney Houston
55      FEEL THE RHYTHM Jinny
56      TO LOVE Fits Of Gloom
57      TEARS OF A CLOWN Caligula
58      TRIPPIN' ON YOUR LOVE Kenny Thomas
59      CAN'T GET ENOUGH OF YOUR LOVE Taylor Dayne
60      GOING NOWHERE Gabrielle
61      I NEVER FELT LIKE THIS BEFORE Mica Paris
62      HOBART PAVING / WHO DO YOU THINK YOU ARE Saint Etienne
63      (I CAN'T HELP) FALLING IN LOVE WITH YOU UB40
64      I FEEL IT Moby
65      AGAIN Janet Jackson
66      THE RIGHT KIND OF LOVE Jeremy Jordan
67      RIGHT HERE (HUMAN NATURE) SWV
68      SWEET HARMONY The Beloved
69      ORDINARY WORLD Duran Duran
70      TOO MUCH INFORMATION Duran Duran
71      BACK AGAIN General Base
72      HAT 2 DA BACK TLC
73      GOTTA GET IT RIGHT Lena Fiagbe
74      OOH CHILD Dino
75      I HAVE NOTHING Whitney Houston
76      IN THE MORNING Boom Crash Opera
77      THE MUSIC IS MOVIN' Fargetta
78      LITTLE BIRD Annie Lennox
79      IF I EVER LOSE MY FAITH IN YOU Sting
80      HOW CAN I LOVE YOU MORE (REMIX) M-People
81      TOO YOUNG TO DIE Jamiroquai
82      I'M EVERY WOMAN Whitney Houston
83      CREATION Stereo MCs
84      GIVE IN TO ME Michael Jackson
85      THAT'S THE WAY LOVE GOES Janet Jackson
86      LOVE IS Vanessa Williams / Brian McKnight
87      AND SO I WILL WAIT FOR YOU Dee Fredrix
88      IN ALL THE RIGHT PLACES Lisa Stansfield
89      WHISPER A PRAYER Mica Paris
90      HERO Mariah Carey
91      SAVING FOREVER FOR YOU Shanice
92      ALL THAT SHE WANTS Ace Of Base
93      SO IN LOVE (THE REAL DEAL) Judy Cheeks
94      THE FLOOR Johnny Gill
95      ELATED Euphoria
96      ROCKIN' FOR MYSELF Motiv8 featuring Angie Brown
97      COMIN' ON The Shamen
98      CALLING OUT Curt Smith
99      BUDDY X Neneh Cherry
100    DON'T LOOK ANY FURTHER M-People
101    CAN WE TALK Tevin Campbell
102    I WANT YOU Toni Pearen
103    IN MY LIFE Kim Wilde
104    GANGSTA Bell Biv Devoe
105    JOY Staxx
106    PHOTOGRAPH OF MARY Trey Lorenz
107    THIS I SWEAR Richard Darbyshire
108    RAIN Madonna
109    THE LOVE I LOST Westend featuring Sybil
110    FREE LOVE Juliet Roberts
111    WIND IT UP (REWOUND) The Prodigy
112    LET'S GET TOGETHER (SO GROOVY NOW) Krush
113    START A BRAND NEW LIFE (SAVE ME) Bassheads
114    GIVIN’ IT UP Incognito
115    LITTLE BIT OF HEAVEN Lisa Stansfield
116    LOST The Badloves
117    THE ONES YOU LOVE Rick Astley
118    COME UNDONE Duran Duran
119    BELIEVE Lenny Kravitz
120    DEEP East 17
121    STAY Kenny Thomas
122    DISTANT SUN Crowded House
123    SHED A TEAR Wet Wet Wet
124    RUN TO YOU Whitney Houston
125    WE ARE FAMILY ('93 REMIX) Sister Sledge
126    THE ULTIMATE HIGH The Time Frequency
127    IT'S GONNA BE A LOVELY DAY The S.O.U.L. S.Y.S.T.E.M.
128    ROCKIN' TO THE MUSIC Blackbox
129    LOVE THING Evolution
130    STAR / I LIKE IT D:Ream
131    LOST IN MUSIC (SURE IS PURE REMIX) Sister Sledge
132    SWEAT U.S.U.R.A.
133    SPOOKY New Order
134    STEAM Peter Gabriel
135    NORWEGIAN WOOD PM Dawn
136    BABY I'M YOURS Shai
137    I WISH Gabrielle
138    PIECE BY PIECE Kenny Thomas
139    I WANNA LOVE YOU Jade
140    HOPELESSLY Rick Astley
141    U R THE BEST THING D:Ream
142    BEYOND YOUR WILDEST DREAMS Sybil
143    ANOTHER SAD LOVE SONG Toni Braxton
144    BREAKAWAY Kim Appleby
145    WHERE ARE YOU NOW Janet Jackson
146    SLAVE TO THE VIBE Aftershock
147    LIVING ON MY OWN Freddie Mercury
148    STILL A FRIEND OF MINE Incognito
149    CONDEMNATION Depeche Mode
150    WHY CAN'T I WAKE UP WITH YOU Take That
151    THE WAYS OF THE WIND PM Dawn
152    BYE BYE BABY Madonna
153    FREAK ME Silk
154    MAXIMUM OVERDRIVE 2 Unlimited
155    ENERGIZE Slamm
156    THE HITMAN A.B. Logic
157    BIGSCARYANIMAL Belinda Carlisle
158    EVERYBODY DANCE Evolution
159    WE GOT THE LOVE Lindy Layton
160    EMERGENCY ON PLANET EARTH Jamiroquai
161    SHOW ME LOVE Robin S
162    OUTERSPACE GIRL The Beloved
163    EXPRESS Dina Carroll
164    I’M SO INTO YOU SWV
165    LOVE DON’T LOVE YOU En Vogue
166    FEELS LIKE HEAVEN Peter Cetera with Chaka Khan
167    ALMOST UNREAL Roxette
168    POWER OF AMERICAN NATIVES Dance 2 Trance
169    UNIVERSAL HYMN Boxcar
170    SELFISH The Other Two
171    WHEEL OF FORTUNE Ace Of Base
172    YOU'RE THE LOVE OF MY LIFE Sybil
173    DO YOU SEE THE LIGHT (LOOKING FOR) Snap
174    SOMETHING IN YOUR EYES Bell Biv Devoe
175    WEST END GIRLS East 17
176    I WILL SURVIVE (PHIL KELSEY MIX) Gloria Gaynor
177    LOVE'S ON MY MIND Girlfriend
178    WEAK SWV
179    TRACKS OF MY TEARS Go West
180    NEVER GONNA GIVE YOU UP FKW
181    DON'T TALK ABOUT LOVE Bad Boys Inc
182    THIS IS THE WAY Dannii Minogue
183    TRUE LOVE Elton John & Kiki Dee
184    FORM ONE PLANET The Rockmelons
185    DIRTY MONEY Dee Fredrix
186    BLOW YOUR MIND Jamiroquai
187    SHE KISSED ME Terence Trent D’Arby
188    FOR THE COOL IN YOU Babyface
189    RUINED IN A DAY New Order
190    HEAVEN HELP Lenny Kravitz
191    LOOKS LIKE I’M IN LOVE AGAIN Key West featuring Erik
192    LOSIN' MYSELF Debbie Gibson
193    TWO IN A MILLION Mica Paris
194    WISH Soul II Soul
195    NOT ENOUGH TIME INXS
196    THE CRYING GAME Boy George
197    I MISS YOU Haddaway
198    EVERLASTING LOVE Worlds Apart
199    I'M RAVING LA Style
200    IF I HAD NO LOOT Tony! Toni! Tone!


On Wednesday, it's back to 1988 for my weekly look at the ARIA chart from 25 years ago. I'll move on to my favourite songs from 1994 in late June.


MY YEAR-END CHARTS
1979 II 1980 II 1981 II 1982 II 1983 II 1984 II 1985 II 1986 II 1987 II 1988 II 1989
1990 II 1991 II 1992 II 1993 II 1994 II 1995 II 1996 II 1997 II 1998 II 1999
2000 II 2001 II 2002 II 2003 II 2004 II 2005 II 2006 II 2007 II 2008 II 2009
2010 II 2011 II 2012 II 2013 II 2014 II 2015 II 2016 II 2017

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