Whitney Houston, UB40, And Janet Jackson Had The Top Hits Of 1993

The year 1993 was certainly a transitional year in America. Bill Clinton became president and helped the gay rights movement start to take off. Islamic terrorists bombed the World Trade Center and previewed what would happen eight years later. In terms of pop culture, it was the year R&B took over the world.

Let’s take a look at the top five hits of 1993 according to Billboard‘s charts.

5. Silk, “Freak Me”

Perhaps what is considered one of the sexiest songs of all time, “Freak Me” ruled the top of Billboard‘s Hot 100 for two weeks in the spring of 1993. The song, taken from the group’s debut album, Lose Control, in 1992, was a very descriptive song about what a guy wanted to do with his girlfriend. To date, it’s Silk’s only huge hit.

4. Janet Jackson, “That’s The Way Love Goes”


Janet Jackson’s first single from her album Janet featured Michael’s sister doing her best Madonna “Justify My Love” imitation, but scoring a bigger hit than Madonna’s No. 1 hit ever could dream to be. It spent eight weeks at No. 1 beginning in May of 1993 and is Janet Jackson’s biggest hit to date.

“That’s The Way Love Goes” doesn’t really have any meaning to it, but is all about seduction. It was universally praised when released and Janet Jackson was now seen as a sexual, but sensual adult. It’s important to note that Jennifer Lopez appeared in the video just a couple years before her career took off.

3. UB40, “Can’t Help Falling In Love”

“Can’t Help Falling In Love” was originally recorded by Elvis Presley for his 1961 film Blue Hawaii. UB40 put a reggae spin on it, and UB40 hit No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 in the Summer of 1993 and stayed there for seven weeks. “Can’t Help Falling In Love” was from UB40’s album Promises and Lies, but prominently featured in the Sharon Stone film Sliver.

It’s quite interesting that UB40’s only other No. 1 song, “Red Red Wine, was also a remake. This hit was originally recorded by Neil Diamond in 1968. However, it’s UB40’s 1993 hit “Can’t Help Falling In Love” that still receives repeated airplay on adult contemporary stations until this day.

2. Tag Team, “Whoomp! (There It Is)”

Tag Team’s Summer of 1993 hit is the only one on this list that never hit No. 1, but it had widespread airplay at sports events, different television shows, various movies, and — of course — radio stations.

According to Songfacts, the music video for this song became the subject of controversy in 2010 when several fans spotted a man in the video that looked just like a younger Barack Obama. However, that myth was soon debunked. And it’s doubtful that Obama would be ashamed to have appeared in such a classic video.

1. Whitney Houston, “I Will Always Love You”

Whitney’s signature hit instantly became one of the biggest events in music history when first released in November of 1992. The song came out of nowhere and instantly became a No. 1 hit, staying there for 14 weeks. It was from the hit movie The Bodyguard and the soundtrack to the movie instantly became one of the biggest selling soundtracks in music history.

“I Will Always Love You” came out at a time when most thought Houston had already peaked. Her I’m Your Baby Tonight album did well, but it certainly wasn’t a match for Whitney’s albums in the 1980s. It was originally recorded as a country song by Dolly Parton, and Whitney’s version became a hit again in 2012, right after her untimely death.

The song is a staple at weddings and other “love” events, even though the song is actually about breaking up, even though the singer will always have a place in her heart for her lover. According to Songfacts, the record-breaking 14 weeks the song spent at No. 1 was eventually broken by “One Sweet Day” by Mariah Carey and Boys II Men, which spent 16 weeks at No. 1 beginning in 1995. Still, Whitney’s hit song has remained more popular.

[Photo by Douglas Pizac/AP Images]

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