Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Lisa Lisa & Cult Jam with Full Force - "All Cried Out"

All Cried Out - Lisa Lisa & Cult Jam With Full Force

(Debuted July 26, 1986, Peaked #8, 25 Weeks on the Chart)

In 1985, Lisa Lisa & Cult Jam with Full Force appeared in the lower reaches of the Top 40 with "I Wonder if I Take You Home," a dance-fueled song that was presented to us (I say that as I was a teen at the time and was part of a church group that had modern music presented to us as a way of connecting with us on certain subjects) as a warning against "giving it up." Actually, I was the one who keyed in on the fact that she wasn't saying "no" in the song as much as "not yet, I want you to respect me," which was then avoided by those who asked me to consider the words in the first place. That said, they meant well. Now, I'm a father of a girl who is now the same age as I was then and I'm realizing that she's going to start having that inner dialogue herself.

But this entry isn't about "I Wonder if I Take You Home." (See? I'm dropping it too, right when it's become uncomfortable). It's about the song that followed it up...almost a year later.

"All Cried Out" is a ballad that has aged really well over the years. In a way, it can be seen as a logical corollary to the message of "I Wonder if I Take You Home," where she gave in to temptation and took it hard when he left anyway. On the other hand, it is a great song about dealing with the aftermath of infidelity and a breakup that resulted from it. The fact that Lisa Lisa was 19 years old when the song was released and was able to put in a convincing performance says a lot. It points to a vocal range that she hasn't really been able to show with her more dance-oriented material.

Sang as a duet with Full Force members Paul Anthony and Bow-Legged Lou, the song offers both sides of the affected couple. The male side eventually comes back to apologize (as we sometimes do once we realize we've just made a mistake and really don't want to lose the good thing we once had), but she's not having any of it. Even if it means she knows it's going to hurt.

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