Music, Pop Culture

#ThatsSo90s: Jade – Don’t Walk Away

While perusing this list on Buzzfeed entitled, “14 Forgotten R&B Girl Groups” I decided to listen to one of my favorite songs of the 90’s, Jade’s “Don’t Walk Away” via YouTube. This video is hilarious on many levels, which we’ll get to, but it’s also EXTREMELY 90’s. What do I mean by that? I mean that nearly every random idea we associate with the 90s, and early 90s in particular, is in this video.

And yes, a “Most 90s Music Videos” list is coming soon.

Before we get into Jade’s video, let me address this forgotten girl groups list. I need a defintion of forgotten that includes demographic information. Because this list includes: Total (arguable), Zhan√© (their two singles anybody knows still jam, but I’ll concede this one), 702 (again arguable), MoKenStef (definitely forgotten), Allure (another¬†definite), Blaque (yep…”808″ didn’t quite have the legs it should have. RIP Natina), Kut Klose (Keith Sweat got a little arrogant with all the K’s, no? And yes, forgotten), Changing Faces (eh…yeah, forgotten), SWV (total bullox, they lost me on this one…nobody will ever forget SWV), Jade (mostly forgotten but hey, they gave us great music), Nuttin’ Nyce (gonna go ahead and say this one is dead on accurate; just last week I was listening to a Hi-Five song featuring Nuttin’ Nyce and was like who the fuck is that? Turns out its a group I don’t remember. Point sustained), Jomanda (this group is so forgotten, I don’t even remember them existing in the 90s; I legit had to look up their hit and was like THAT was them??), Brownstone (same level as Jade in my opinion), and Xscape (leaning towards a few levels below SWV, but definitely not forgotten, but I could argue you down that they are). Again, I need a definition of forgotten because no list with that identifier should include SWV and to a lesser extent Xscape. They might as well have put En Vogue on there, hell.

Back to the lecture at hand (90s Snoop was straight murder…get it…because he went on trial for…never mind), while watching Jade’s video for “Don’t Walk Away” I was immediately transported to 1992 with the clothing, the style, the total non-sensical shit that happened in music videos back than and said to my self, “hey self, you haven’t really done a video review in forever. Perhaps you should do that today.”

So today, creep with me as we stroll through the #ThatsSo90s world of Jade’s “Don’t Walk Away” video.

0:00 – 0:20: This video opens with a staple of 90s group videos…some trashy section of town with lots of graffiti and chain link fencing. I once tried to hurdle one of those fences and got my shoe lace caught. I went face first into the concrete. We will call that experience “My First Concussion”. And yes, it happened in the 90s. See what I did there? Also, why do rebels hang out in places like this. And this opening montage is full of people who look like rebels. Unemployed rebels because its clearly mid-day. But we have low-riders and motorcycles. Low-riders were huge in the 90s. Now they’re pants.

Also a staple of 90s videos is the phone call-to-answering machine segment. That’s a post in and of itself, “The Best Videos that Featured A Phone Call Being Sent To An Answering Machine”. Where’s Jozen at when you need him?

Now here’s where this shit goes WAY 90s. And we’re only like 20 seconds in.

You’ve got the harmonized greeting which…let me tell you something…EVERYBODY wanted their own line in high school JUST so you could create some type of dope greeting with singing and shit. It ain’t like anybody but McDonald’s or friends were calling anyway.

0:25: Why did they hi-five each other at having to leave a message? I have watched this video 6 times now and I’m still lost here. Like these two 90s fade hair cut dudes gave themselves congratulatory hi-fives as if they were afraid they got the wrong number but they didn’t so even though they ain’t get through, they’re just glad they didn’t get FUBAR’d. And no, that acronym doesn’t work here. And yes, I’m leaving it. Point is, why were they hi-fiving? Somebody call Sway.

0:26: Why is there a cat in this video? How it happen? Why it happen? But this just proves my point about random non-sense thrown into videos. No ideas were ever turned down. “Hey, I have a great idea. Let’s bring in Sasquatch wearing a tu-tu for a dance sequence.” “GREAT IDEA! It’s 1991…NOBODY ELSE IS DOING THAT!”

0:27-0:35: Another significant 90s staple – college apparrel and Troop boots (they weren’t wearing Troops but they did have on combat style boots which were very popular). Considering how popular college was in the 90s amongst Black people, its amazing we all know so many people who didn’t graduate. Then again, niggas were hype to go just to get the apparel and or pledge Omega Psi Phi. Once they got there and niggas handed them books they were like hell to the nah…they kept the sweatshirts though. By the way, the coolest people always got to wear the Georgetown stuff in videos. This is indisputable.

0:37 : They walked RIGHT into a dope dance move that I still perform when ever I get the chance. The stomp-and-arm thing. It’s still applicable. I’ll bet they still do that at family reunions.

0:37-0:47: We get an upclose view of a lot of styles of the 90s. Mainly the most ubiquitous – the plaid too big button up shirt with the too big jeans and boots combo. There’s definitely a skully in here somewhere. And of course, the women had on the crisphy white wifebeaters with the box braids. Nostalgia is a bitch because I’m tearing up right now.

0:50-1:05: This 10 second stretch is important because it features a lot of dance moves that were CENTRAL to the 90s and crescendos into the verse and the most ubiqutous dance of the 90s, the world famous, infamous, grand daddy of the two-step, the Gangster Walk.

1:22: We get a good view of what men were wearing in the 90s here as well. Basically, the same shit women were wearing. Oh, those Karl Kani outfits with the denim vest/pant combos…wow those are atrocious. But you put your Troops on with them joints and you automatically became as cool as Jodeci. This is also indisputable. I did like the overalls with the hoodie though. I never owned these things mind you.

1:50: I just realized they’re wearing Doc Martens. An expensive ass 90s staple that has had a bit of a resurgence amongst the fashionable set. I know they never went out of style and were mostly worn by the goth kids, but it seems like more teens are rocking them nowadays…again. A lot.

Also…there was A LOT of dancing in crouched positions in the early 90s and a lot of knee centric dances. I’ll bet a lot of folks who were in their 20s in the 90s are having substantial knee problems now. I have no proof of this, but I’m going to go ahead and assume it to be true.

2:00-2:12: Honestly, if I lived in areas like this – clearly LA – as a youth watching these videos that look like they just came about at random, I’d always think that if I got my friends together and we went to a decrepit warehouse like area with proper lighting, plaid shirts, and at least one lowrider, that a music video would break out. I’d always be disappointed if it never happened. Too many videos looked just like this.

2:32: This dude dancing with the maroon on is giving SO much work to his shoulders. Why he never started a dance-workout video is beyond me. He shows back up later in this video doing a different rendition of the same dance and its just as awesome as the first time. We are all better becaue this guy existed.

Pretty much the rest of this video is the exact same as the beginning. People dancing in place in an abandoned area with lots of plaid and bit hats or braids. There’s some pretty fancy and seductive rail dancing happening around the 4 minute mark as well.

Mostly because this got long I’m stopping. But this is one 90s ass video.

And we’re all better for it.

Panama Jackson

Panama Jackson is pretty fly (and gorgeous) for a light guy. He used to ship his frito to Tito in the District, but shipping prices increased so he moved there to save money. He refuses to eat cocaine chicken. When he's not saving humanity with his words or making music with his mouth, you can find him at your mama's mama's house drinking her fine liquors. Most importantly, he believes the children are our future. You can hit him on his hitter at panamadjackson@gmail.com.

  • miss t-lee

    Jade had me with them braids, and trying to take scissors to my sweatshirts.
    ahhh 10th grade memories.
    I remember wanting a pair of Doc Martens and my Pops being like, “um–you better get a job.”

    • panamajackson

      Doc Marten’s are SO expensive

      • miss t-lee

        STILL.

    • The sad part is that the box braid and Doc Marten look is making a comeback. *smh*

  • Aly

    Wow Peej, you just took me allll the way back lol. ‘Don’t Walk Away’ was my ish. And yes, I just watched the video and sung all the lyrics. I agree with your list about forgettable groups. MoKenStef?? Nope, don’t remember them.

    Somewhere around here is a pic of me wearing a Spelman t-shirt (loved that shirt!) and I ain’t eem go to Spelman haha.

    • miss t-lee

      We all rocked them HBCU sweats/tees something serious.

      • Aly

        Girl yes. Ah, the 90s.

      • panamajackson

        Yeah, I loved the AACA clothes. Them joints are mad expensive now.

        • miss t-lee

          Oh wow…didn’t even know they were around.

    • Val

      Lol. I don’t remember MoKenStef either. I also don’t remember Kut Klose.

      • Aly

        Mmhmm. Kut Klose… Nuttin’ Nyce – which is a terrible name for a group btw lol.

      • miss t-lee

        Kut Klose- they sung on Keith Sweat’s “Nobody”

        • OSHH

          And “Twisted” one of the few Keith Sweat songs I can still get into.

        • I’m trying to forget that group now. I might sure you for damages now. DAMN YOU! lol
          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_ebz8WNcVmI

          • miss t-lee

            bye…you liked them…lol

    • panamajackson

      Man, “Don’t Walk Away” still goes so hard in the paint. That beat is crazy.

      • Aly

        Yup. Thanks for taking us down memory lane :-)

      • b sweet

        Pretty much every R&B song is put to a bounce beat. Some are major fails (irreplaceable by Beyonce) and some are the best thing that could’ve happened to the song (Rolling in the Deep by Adele). Don’t Walk Away was one of those songs that was put to a bounce beat and became the sh!t!! To this day, I’m looking for the bounce version. If anybody has it, I will be forever in your favor!

        • miss t-lee

          Fantasia’s “Aint Gone Beg You” comes to mind.

          • b sweet

            As a hit or miss?

            • miss t-lee

              oh it’s a hit.

              • b sweet

                Send a link, if you have it.

                • miss t-lee

                  girl…there used to be a vid of it on youtube, but it’s been taken down. I can’t find it unfortunately. :(

      • Brother Mouzone

        That hard down beat is a sample from an old KOOL AND THE GANG cut. I liked this song too, thanks for taking me back to my days as a youngin”.

        • panamajackson

          Yeah, I have used that sample many times myself.

      • OSHH

        It cranks.

    • miss t-lee

      I was trying to think of other MoKenStef songs other than “He’s Mine” and they were all Changing Faces songs…lol

      • Aly

        See, I do remember Changing Faces. I was probably too young to be singing ‘Stroke You Up’ lol

        • cakes_and_pies

          I was 14 when that song came out. We were all too young (or maybe appropriately aged?) to sing anything produced by R. Kelly.

          • miss t-lee

            Exactly… lol

          • Aly

            *throws up in my mouth a little*

          • miss t-lee

            The Devante Swing Remix to “Keep it RIght There” #doe?!
            wooooooo.

            • cakes_and_pies

              I still have the maxi single. I miss 90s R&B, it was all about innuendo, brightly colored baggy clothes, and harmonizing.

              • miss t-lee

                the maxi-singles!!!!! YES
                8 versions of the same song…always appreciated!

                • panamajackson

                  I still have a gang of maxi-singles.

                  • miss t-lee

                    Also. I still have all my cassettes in two milk crates in the back of my closet.

                    • Hey, I found my surviving cassette stash during a recent move. Nice!

                    • miss t-lee

                      Score!!!

        • kidvideo

          I dont mineeeee….

        • IcePrincess

          Girl I remember being in 6th grade when “freak me” by Silk was big. Talkin bout “lemme lick you up & dooooown ” We ain’t know nun about it, sitting there singing every word lmfaoooo!!

          • BeautifullyHuman

            Same thing with SWV’s “Downtown.” I still recall asking my mom “why do they want their boyfriends to go downtown?” Lol. My mom replied, “You’ll understand one day.” hahaha

            A young BH grew into a big BH and learned soon enough. ;-)

            • Um….context clues in videos are your friends. LOL

              • BeautifullyHuman

                Brother Todd…I was only seven at the time…hahaha. I thought they were literally singing about downtown, as in the city.

                I wasn’t one of those precocious kids.

        • Come on! That was a classic good bad song. LOL

    • IcePrincess

      I think I remember them (mokenstef). Did they sing “he’s mine, you may’ve had him once but I got him all the time”?

      • Aly

        Oh yeah! I do remember that song, guess I just didn’t remember the name of the group.

      • Rachmo

        Thank you I was struggling to remember.

      • BeautifullyHuman

        That’s them. The pinnacle ratchet song of the 90s…before ratchet even came into existence.

        • panamajackson

          I remember when my mother heard this song on the radio, she got SO pissed at this song. First time I realized at one point, my mom was a girl and some dbag probably screwed her over.

          • BeautifullyHuman

            When I was younger, I never fully grasped the true meaning of the song, but as I got older and really listened to the lyrics, I was like this sh*t is ratchet as all h*ll. They calling folks tricks and talking about never falling for a man that don’t love you. It’s brutal.

            • IcePrincess

              Monica has her own version of that song also. It’s called “sideline hoe.” Seriously.

              • miss t-lee

                Sure does.

              • like, Monica from the A? but whyyyyyyyyy?

                • IcePrincess

                  Yup, our Monica. It goes something like, ” if u don’t cook his breakfast, you a sideline hoooooe”

                • BeautifullyHuman

                  You do know that at one point, Monica was a self-proclaimed “hood chick?” She wasn’t one to shy away from hood dealings.

                  She really cleaned up her act when she stepped away from Rocko Da Don’s a** and found a decent man. I’m more than sure Monica has had her fair shair of “side h*e” drama.

            • Rachmo

              I just made the mistake of looking up the lyrics. Jesus

        • Yep. An example that historians will look at in 100 years as an example of late 20th century folk culture in African-American communities. LOL

  • Man, voicemails and answering machines were such a staple of 90s hip-hop and R&B. They made for the best sketches. Case in point:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mB-l-VmlQ-Q

    • miss t-lee

      You took me back putting the music/sketches on the answering machine…lol

    • panamajackson

      I really need to do a post that features the best voicemails on record. lol. And of course, this is one of them.

    • TheOtherJerome

      The best voicemail skits were on AMG’s first album. Hilarious!!!!

  • 909girl601world

    Look. You have said a word. My knees? Them joints (see what I did there) are giving me grief right this minute!

  • Talie

    Literally was watching this video Monday night…so many memories.

  • Val

    I remember Jomanda. I don’t remember what song(s) they sang. I’m pretty sure they only had one hit though. There is no way Zhane and Brownstone are forgotten. I still rock both occasionally. “Don’t walk Away” has a great beat. I love that song!

    What group was Khandi Burris in?

    Who remembers The Good Girls. Lol

    Yikes. Sorry to hear about that concussion, PJ. It sounds painful as heck.

    • miss t-lee

      Kandi was in Xscape.
      and I remember The Good Girls…lol

      Brownstone will never be forgotten, I do a mean car karaoke of “5 Miles To Empty”.

      • CrayolaGirl

        No matter how hard I try, I will never forget the words to Brownstone’s Heard it through the Grapevine. I don’t remember listening to this song at all. And I didn’t watch their videos because one member always found a way to show all 32 while she sang.

        • miss t-lee

          Grapevyne was my fave by them. It also makes me think of my first little HS boyfriend.

          • OSHH

            Mine too.. love music posts/threads!

        • I will belt this song to the heavens every time it came on the radio.

      • Rachmo

        ‘If You Love Me” is one of my favorite songs. Present day.

        • miss t-lee

          Still such a great song! ????????

        • b sweet

          ‘ i don’t want to rain on this parade…..’
          yaaasssss

        • I actually dumped someone to the lyrics of the song, and over the phone no less. The girl asked if I thought she still loved me. On one beat, I said “Prove It!”, then dropped the phone and walked away while she cried. Don’t cheat on me, you female dog, or you will pay the price.

      • YO! Brownstone will forever be the isht for “Every Day of the Week” and “If You Love Me”

    • b sweet

      Zhane is SO underrated.

      • kidvideo

        2nd album was underrated.

      • BeautifullyHuman

        Very. They both had beautiful voices and rocked those low cuts fabulously.

    • panamajackson

      That concussion was SO painful that I still vividly remember it.

      • Val

        I jumped head-first into a pool when I was about 8 and hit my head on the bottom and I can still remember not only the pain but the sound it made in my head when I hit bottom.

        • IcePrincess

          Ouch :(

    • kidvideo

      I liked tha Good Girl’s private school steez.

      • Val

        Yep, I still remember that album cover.

    • PiaMia

      I remember the good girls as I was going to a catholic all girls school in LA and one of them (or two can’t remember) went to another. It’s a very small community so whenever a catholic school person earned some degree of success be that a song, athletic career or just being in a video) it was big deal and spread through the catholic HS community like wildfire.. Oh so so ais doing this and she s goes to St. Bernard etc.

    • Your sweetness is my weakness! I remember the Good Girls. I thought I was the only one.

    • Precious

      Khandi was in Xscape

  • IcePrincess

    “All cried out” by allure is one of my favorite songs to this day! The version with dude from 112. I still listen to it all the time.

    • miss t-lee

      I preferred the original.

      • Aly

        Me too.

        • miss t-lee

          *daps*

      • OSHH

        I was bout to say wasn’t that Lisa Lisa and the Cult Jam joint?!?

        • miss t-lee

          Sure was!!! :)

    • Lea Thrace

      That 112 version gets in my feelings EVRYTIM!

      • IcePrincess

        Gurrrl what?! I’m tryna tell these chicks on here. They all talkin bout the original version, pfffffft

        • miss t-lee

          Meh…dude from 112’s voice sounds like a dying peacock.

    • Slim was crying all over that record…..I’m joining Teesh in the meh camp

  • Amethyst

    *singing* “Nuttin’ Nice is down for whatever”

  • cakes_and_pies

    I spent a good part of the 90s doing the butterfly, tootsie roll, and scrubbing the ground and now my knees sounds like someone’s playing dice on a marble floor.

    • miss t-lee

      LOL!!!! Girl…

    • BeautifullyHuman

      Lmao…man…I got knees like Kobe, too.

    • JM2C

      One of the funniest comments I have ever read on VSB. And so true for me too.

  • Rachmo

    *hits a gangster walk around her office*

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