This is a rap about LL searching for a girl who is streetwise to form a relationship with. The entire song describes the exact features of what he is looking for in this particular girl. For example, he constantly repeats the line "I need an around the way girl" throughout the entire rap.
"Around the Way Girl" peaked at #9 on the Billboard Hot 100, becoming LL Cool J's first top 10 single. It was also a hit on the R&B and dance music charts, where it peaked at #5 and #7, respectively. The RIAA certified "Around the Way Girl" Gold on January 15, 1991 for sales of over 500,000 copies.