Friday, November 27, 2020

"I Want to Be Your Man" by Roger

Top 10 Alert!
Song#:  3331
Date:  11/14/1987
Debut:  88
Peak:  3
Weeks:  21
Genre:  R&B

Pop Bits:  The last time Roger (Troutman) was on the Pop chart was way back in 1981 when his debut solo album, The Many Facets of Roger, spawned the #79 (#1 R&B) remake of "I Heard It Through the Grapevine." A second solo effort would follow in 1984 along with works by his band Zapp. When '87 came rolling around, Roger decided it was time to work on a third solo album. He assembled Unlimited! and then pushed out this first single. It became a hit at R&B becoming his second song to top that chart. It then crossed over to Pop and after slowly catching on, it got near the top of the chart. The hit would send the album to #4 at R&B and #35 Pop. Unfortunately, the single would be Roger's last solo Top 10 at R&B and his final one to make the Pop chart. He would release one more solo album in 1991, but it failed to replicate the success of Unlimited!

ReduxReview:  Here's a big #3 hit and I don't remember it at all. I'm guessing that it wasn't popular in my little town and the only place I heard it was the Top 40 countdown. It must have not made an impression on me as it doesn't sound familiar at all. You'd think I'd at least remember Roger's obsession with the talk box. While that tool can be overused, it was fairly effective here because it was used in the chorus. Troutman's then-current production has definitely kept the song grounded in the 80s. It's actually a nice jam, but I think a sleeker production without all the effects and synths would have made the song much better.

ReduxRating:  6/10

Trivia:  Although this was Troutman's final solo R&B #1 and last solo Pop chart single, he did later reach #1 on both charts as a featured artist. In the fall of '95, rapper 2Pac recorded the song "California Love." Roger was featured singing on the chorus with his talk box effect. Dr. Dre contributed a rap. The song was 2Pac's first release after a stint in prison. It was a big double-platinum hit in 1996 reaching #1 at both Pop and R&B. The associated album, All Eyez on Me, would also reach #1 on both charts and sell over 5 million copies. A little less than a year after he recorded the song, 2Pac would be shot to death in Las Vegas.


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