Back Stabbers (song)

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"Back Stabbers"
Single by The O'Jays
from the album Back Stabbers
B-side "Sunshine"
Released 1972
Genre R&B, Philly soul
Length 3:06
Label Philadelphia International
Writer(s) Leon Huff, Gene McFadden, John Whitehead
Producer(s) Kenny Gamble, Leon Huff
The O'Jays singles chronology
"Looky Looky (Look at Me Girl)"
(1970)
"Back Stabbers"
(1972)
"992 Arguments"
(1972)

"Back Stabbers" is a 1972 song by The O'Jays. Released from the hit album of the same name, the song spent one week at #1 on the Hot Soul Singles chart. It was also successful on the pop charts, peaking at #3 on the Billboard Hot 100 singles chart in October 1972.[1] The narrator in "Back Stabbers" warns men about their male "friends" who smile to their faces, but are secretly planning to steal their wives or girlfriends.[2] It was also inspired by an earlier hit in the same theme vein, The Undisputed Truth's "Smiling Faces Sometimes" (the chorus of which is incorporated into the end of the song).

Cover versions[edit]

"Back Stabbers"
Single by Tina Turner
from the album Love Explosion
Released 1979
Genre R&B, pop
Length 3:34
Label United Artists Records, EMI.
Writer(s) Leon Huff, Gene McFadden, John Whitehead
Producer(s) Alec R. Costandinos
Tina Turner singles chronology
"Love Explosion"
(1979)
"Back Stabbers"
(1979)
"Music Keeps Me Dancin'"
(1979)

"Back Stabbers" is the second single from the 1979 album Love Explosion by Tina Turner.

The song, along with the other two singles released from Love Explosion, was largely disco-oriented and was overlooked by audiences both in Europe and the United States due to the so-called "anti-disco backlash" at the time.

"Back Stabbers" was also covered by Stephen Cummings in 1983.

MFSB's 1973 debut album featured an extended instrumental cover of "Back Stabbers".

"Wish I Didn't Miss You" by Angie Stone features an interpolated composition of the song as well as samples.

R&B group TLC sampled the song on the track, "Case of the Fake People" from their 1994 album CrazySexyCool.

"Backstabbers" by Project Pat featuring Crucial Conflict have completely redone the instrumental and the chorus; released on the album Ghetty Green in 1999, produced by DJ Paul & Juicy J of Three 6 Mafia.

B.o.B aka Bobby Ray sampled "Back Stabbers" for his own song of the same name from his mixtape Who the F#*k is B.o.B? (2008).

In 1987, jazz fusion/contemporary jazz group The Rippingtons covered the song on their 1987 album "Kilimanjaro."[3]

Rock group Barkmarket covered "Back Stabbers" on their 1991 album Vegas Throat, employing spoken-word vocals and samples from the original O'Jays cut.

In 2008, Russell Watson covered the song on his album 'People Get Ready'.

In 2011, British soul and R&B singer-songwriter Seal included the song in his second cover album Soul 2.

In 2014, the song was featured on the Simpsons episode, "Pay Pal".

Chart positions[edit]

Charts Peak
position
U.S. Billboard Hot 100 3
U.S. Billboard Hot Soul Singles 1
U.K 'Official UK Charts Company' UK #14
Preceded by
"Power of Love" by Joe Simon
Billboard's Best Selling Soul Singles number one single
September 9, 1972
Succeeded by
"Get on the Good Foot" by James Brown

References[edit]

  1. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2004). Joel Whitburn presents top R & B/hip-hop singles, 1942-2004. Menomonee Falls, WI: Record Research. p. 438. ISBN 978-0-89820-160-4. 
  2. ^ Ankeny, Jason. "Back Stabbers" at AllMusic. Retrieved 14 October 2011.
  3. ^ Kohler, Paul. "Kilimanjaro - The Rippingtons" at AllMusic. Retrieved 14 October 2011.