Word Up! (song)
|Single by Cameo|
|from the album Word Up!|
|Released||May 27, 1986|
|Format||7" single, 12" single, CD single|
|Genre||Funk, hip hop, R&B|
|Cameo singles chronology|
"Word Up!" is a funk/hip hop song written and originally recorded by Cameo in 1986. Due to its heavy play on American dance and R&B radio, as well as music video play on MTV (which has LeVar Burton as a police detective trying to arrest the band), the single became the band's most well-known hit.
From the album Word Up!, "Word Up!" was Cameo's first US Top 40 hit, peaking at number six on the Billboard Hot 100 and also spent three weeks at number one on the US Hot Black Singles chart and one week at number one on the US Hot Dance Singles chart. In the UK it spent thirteen weeks in the top 40, peaking at number 3 in September 1986. The song was written by Lawrence Ernest Blackmon & Thomas Michael Jenkins.
Gun Version 
|Single by Gun|
|from the album Swagger|
|Released||July 1, 1994|
|Format||12" single, CD single|
|Genre||Hard rock, heavy metal, glam metal|
|Gun singles chronology|
In the 1990s, "Word Up!" was first covered by Scottish rock band Gun, whose version carried a harder, more rock-oriented sound, including a guitar solo. Taken from their album Swagger, it was released on July 1, 1994 and reached #8 in the UK singles chart. Two versions of the CD single were released in the UK, each carrying different cover art and different tracks.
Gun's version of the song was featured on the soundtrack to 1996 film Barb Wire, and was also used in the CSI: Crime Scene Investigation season one episode "Who Are You?". The Gun version was also featured on the 2011 series of British television show Dancing on Ice, when Vanilla Ice used it as background music for his dance in the first episode.
|UK Singles Chart||8|
Melanie B version 
|Single by Melanie B|
|Released||28 June 1999|
|Format||12" single, CD single|
|Genre||R&B, funk, hip hop|
|Length||3:25 (Radio edit)
5:23 (CD single version)
|Melanie B singles chronology|
"Word Up!" was later covered by Melanie B (known as Melanie G at that time). It was released on June 28, 1999. It peaked at #14 at UK Singles Chart. The single was also on the Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me soundtrack. "Word Up!" sold about 77,996 copies in the UK, which was the lowest selling solo Spice Girls-related single of the 1990s.
|UK Singles Chart||14|
Uk Sales: 77,996
Korn version 
|Single by Korn|
|from the album Greatest Hits, Vol. 1|
|Released||16 November 2004|
|Format||7" single, 12" single, CD single|
|Producer||Jonathan Davis, Korn, and Toby Wright|
|Korn singles chronology|
"Word Up!" by American nu metal band Korn is a cover of the song by R&B group, Cameo. Its musical arrangements are similar to that of the cover version by Gun, except it is played in a lower sounding 7 string guitar tuning instead of the standard E. "Word Up!" was the first track featured on Korn's 2004 retrospective album, Greatest Hits, Volume 1, and was one of three new tracks along with Pink Floyd's "Another Brick in the Wall" that was exclusive to the album (the "Word Up!" CD single also featured a live performance of the latter).
It was released as the album's first single in July 2004, and received heavy airplay on alternative radio at its time of release, peaking in the top twenty of both Billboard charts, whilst making a respectable impression on the mainstream charts of other countries, including Australia (where it debuted at number 28), and Germany (number 46). It is the only Korn single to be sent out to Top 40 radio stations, notably receiving airplay on New York City's Z-100, the largest Top 40 station in the US. Lead singer Jonathan Davis has said of the band's decision to include the song on their greatest hits, "We've been doing 'Word Up!' for years as a sound-check song - not the full version, just messing around with the riff".
The music video for the song, directed by Antti Jokinen, featured the band-member's faces digitally edited onto dogs in a club scene with women dancing topless the parody of Basement Jaxx - "Where's Your Head At" music video. The track is featured in the video game Lego Rock Band.
|US Billboard Bubbling Under Hot 100||23|
|US Billboard Alternative Songs||17|
|US Billboard Mainstream Rock Songs||16|
|German Singles Chart||46|
|Australian Singles Chart||28|
|Swiss Singles Chart||47|
|Norwegian Singles Chart||15|
|Austrian Singles Chart||58|
Other cover versions 
- Covered by the jazz-funk project "Members Only" in 1987 for the album Members Only.
- Country-soul singer Willis covered the song on her 2004 EP "Take You High". Her version was featured on the CSI: Crime Scene Investigation seventh season episode "Post Mortem".
- Covered by the band The BossHoss in 2005 on the album Internashville Urban Hymns
- Finnish humppa band Eläkeläiset recorded a cover in 2006 for their album Humppasirkus.
- The song was covered by German artist Jan Delay in 2007 on his album Mercedes-Dance Live.
- Covered by the UCLA Bruin Marching Band in 2009 on the album True Blue.
- The song was covered by the singer Bentley Jones in 2011 on the album TRANS//LATION 2.
- Covered by Romanian band Voltaj as "Hai sus."
- The Hungarian duo Voga-Turnovszky used the music of this song as the basics of their number 'Schulz Gizi III' on their 1989 album 'Pop + Paródia'. The lyrics was altered. The Hungarian version is about AIDS.
Live cover performances 
- American artist Keller Williams included the song in a medley following his infamous "Freaker by the Speaker."
- Covered by Australian group Taxiride for the "Musical Challenge" segment of the Andrew Denton Breakfast Show on Australian radio station Triple M in the early 2000s.
- That 1 Guy performs the song as part of his encore at almost every show since the mid 90's, averaging 200 shows per year.
Appearances in other media 
- The song is featured on (Mr.D on CBC) Episode 106 - 'The Dance' http://www.cbc.ca/mrd/episodes/#episode-106
- The song is featured in Cold Case in the episode "The Lost Soul of Herman Lester."
- The song is featured in 10 Things I Hate About You at Bogey Lowenstein's party.
- The song is featured in the Euromix version of the arcade game Dance Dance Revolution.
- The song is featured in a mix with Bell Biv Devoe's song "Poison", and in a mix with Indeep's song "Last Night a DJ Saved My Life" in the game DJ Hero.
- The Korn version is featured in the video game Lego Rock Band.
- The Korn version is featured in the background in a scene in the House episode Daddy's Boy.
- The Korn version features in two episodes of Monk. First it appears in the season 3 episode Mr. Monk Gets Stuck in Traffic (which also guest stars the members of Korn as themselves) as the song that is playing during a tailgate party during the traffic stop on U.S. Highway 101. It is also the song that is played in the background in the season 5 episode Mr. Monk Goes to a Rock Concert when Adrian Monk, Natalie Teeger and Captain Stottlemeyer first arrive at the San Francisco Band Jam.
- Steve Carell is shown briefly singing the song in The 40-Year-Old Virgin.
- The song is featured in The Simpsons episode "Homer and Lisa Exchange Cross Words."
- The song's title is the catchphrase that WordGirl uses in the American television cartoon of the same name when she changes costumes by touching her symbol on the suit.
- The song is played by HBCU marching bands like Southern University's Human Jukebox and Central State University's Invincible Marching Marauders.
- Often used by ABC to promote the Scripps National Spelling Bee.
- The song is played in a scene in Johnny English Reborn where Johnny is under the influence of a mind-control drug and dances along to the words of the song (which, conveniently, include phrases like "do your dance" etc.).
- The song is used in a commercial for Mars candy bars.
- The The BossHoss version is used in a commercial for VO5 hair gel.
- Target uses a parody of this song in one of the TV commercials for their "Back to School" TV ad campaign.
- The song is performed by "Android" in the Nickelodeon Movie "Rags."
- Whitburn, Joel (2004). Top R&B/Hip-Hop Singles: 1942-2004. Record Research. p. 98.
- "Gun - Database entry covering all released versions with tracklists and credits". Discogs. Retrieved 2012-11-16.
- "Gun - Top 75 Releases". The Official UK Charts Company. Retrieved 2011-02-01.
- "Gun CD Singles". Matt's CD Singles. Retrieved 2011-02-01.
- "Melanie B - Master release containing all published versions with tracklists". Discogs. Retrieved 2012-11-16.
- "Korn - Master release containing all published versions with tracklists". Discogs. Retrieved 2012-11-16.
- "Artist Chart History". Billboard. Retrieved 2008-05-03.
- "Australian Charts Archive". Retrieved 2008-05-03.
- "German Charts Archive". Retrieved 2008-04-22.
- "Members Only". Discogs. Retrieved 2012-11-16.
- "Take You High EP". Discogs. Retrieved 2012-11-16.
- ."Internashville Urban Hymns". Discogs. Retrieved 2012-11-16.
- "Hummpasirkus". Discogs. Retrieved 2012-11-16.
- "Mercedes-Dance Live". Discogs. Retrieved 2012-11-16.
- "True Blue". CD Baby. Retrieved 2012-11-16.
- "Trans//Lation 2". Discogs. Retrieved 2012-11-16.
"The Rain" by Oran "Juice" Jones
|Billboard's Hot R&B Songs number one single
October 4, 1986 - October 18, 1986
"Shake You Down" by Gregory Abbott
"Human" by The Human League
|Billboard Hot Dance Club Play number-one single
November 15, 1986
"Don't Leave Me This Way" by The Communards with Sarah Jane Morris