By Chris Le
It’s impossible not to sexy dance to Sade. It really is. I think that’s the Fourth Law of Thermodynamics or something. I try to stay still, I swear. I just can’t.
When the smooth saxophone1 of “War of the Hearts” hits my ear, no matter what I’m doing or where I am — in the car, at dinner, lying in bed — I stop, eyes suddenly closed, lower lip bitten, and my body begins to roll like a wave. It’s some Pavlovian switch in my head. But there’s no conditioning, no additional provocation; it’s instinctive.
I wasn’t even aware of this reflex until recently. A few weeks ago I was sitting in my car, at a red light, gyrating to “Is it a crime?” doing the whole eyes-closed, licking-lips bit. The song ends. I return to reality and I’m back into normal, conservative-Chris mode. I glance up at the adjacent car, and see two faces: one of pure horror, and another of blatant ridicule. I shrink meekly into my seat and accelerate away.
It was utterly humiliating, and yet I can’t stop. Sade just does it that to me.
Side one of her record Promise, at once sensual and somehow free from indecency, is possibly the greatest string of sexy dance/lovemaking songs of all-time. But that’s the magic of Sade. She could sing the text of Plato’s Dialogues and it would still breed spontaneous orgies.
Contemporary R&B, however, is a little different. It teeters the line that separates the publicly acceptable love song and its freakier, more ghetto cousin — the genre of “music you fuck to,”2 which, when carefully listened to, unfortunately has/should have the tag of “bedroom only.”
But whether it’s Sade or R. Kelly (he had to make an appearance in here somewhere), more people need to sexy dance. If only so I’m not the only one looking like a fool.
Here are some tracks to help you along.
“Freek’n You” – Jodeci
“Bump ‘N Grind” – R. Kelly
“Fucking You Tonight” – Notorious B.I.G feat. R. Kelly (making his second appearance on the list), in which Biggie utters his immortal decree of “No lovemaking, strictly backbreaking.”
“I Wanna Sex You Up” – Color Me Badd
And for you freaks out there:
“Ain’t No Fun” – Snoop Dogg
“Put It In Your Mouth” – Akinyele
1.) Can the saxophone please make a comeback? When used correctly there’s no cheesier instrument (except perhaps the keytar). To hear the greatest example of corny/truly moving/heartbreaking saxophone use, click here.
2.) This might give the impression that I frequent the pink taco. I don’t, unfortunately. I just know booty smashing music when I hear it.
Chris Le is the editor of SportsCouch as well as a habitual lip biter.