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Song Stories

“Too Close”

Next | 1998

Next was formed in Minneapolis when the uncle of Terry "T-Low" and Raphael "Tweety" Brown, who was a gospel choir director, introduced the brothers to Robert Lavelle "R.L." Huggar. Sounds of Blackness singer Ann Nesby groomed the R&B group before handing them over to Naughty by Nature's KayGee, who wrote and produced "Too Close." The idea for the song was sparked "from a conversation we had with several girls at a nightclub," explained T-Low. "It's talking about the club scene, with guys getting out of hand and the female telling him to back up, asking, 'What are you doing?'" 

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Song Stories

“Nightshift”

The Commodores | 1984

The year after soul legends Marvin Gaye and Jackie Wilson died, songwriter Dennis Lambert asked members of the Commodores to give him a tape of ideas. "And the one from Walter Orange has this wonderful bass line," said co-writer Franne Golde. "Plus the lyric, 'Marvin, he was a friend of mine' ... Within 10 minutes, we had decided it should be something like a modern R&B version of 'Rock 'n' Roll Heaven,' and I just said, 'Nightshift.'" This tribute to the recently deceased musicians was the band's only hit without Lionel Richie, who had left for a solo career.

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