"Girl You Know It's True" is a song that became the first big hit for Milli Vanilli. Released as the lead single from Milli Vanilli's European debut album All or Nothing, and the duo's American debut album, Girl You Know It's True, the song peaked at number one on the German Singles Chart, number two in the United States and number three in the United Kingdom, becoming one of Milli Vanilli's most successful singles.
The song was written by Bill Pettaway Jr., Sean "DJ Spen" Spencer, Kevin Lyles, Rodney "Kool Rod" Holloman (often misspelled "Hollaman" on single/album credits), and Ky Adeyemo, most of whom were members of the Baltimore, Maryland-based group, Numarx, who first recorded the tune.
Started by DJ Spen and featuring Kool Rod as MC, Numarx was a collective of local DJs who formed a "crew" in the early 1980s, originally consisting of four members. With the addition of Lyles, the group expanded to five, going on to release the single, "Buss It" in 1984. Three years later, Numarx released the single, "Rhymes So Def," which received national airplay at the time. The follow-up single to this minor hit was "Girl You Know It's True."
The idea for the song began with Pettaway, an Annapolis resident working as a gas station attendant at the time while writing songs and playing guitar on the side. Pettaway, along with Numarx members Spencer, Lyles, and Holloman continued to craft the tune. Then-current Starpoint member Kayode "Ky" Adeyemo also joined in, co-writing and co-producing the song with Pettaway. Although the song did not match the success of "Rhymes So Def" in America, "Girl You Know It's True" did connect with audiences on the other side of the Atlantic, becoming a popular hit in the German clubs. It was here that Milli Vanilli producer Frank Farian likely first heard the tune.
Meanwhile, Numarx would later include their version of "Girl You Know It's True" on their lone album, Our Time Has Come, released in 1988 before fading from public view. DJ Spen and Lyles have gone on to become world-renowned DJs and record executives, respectively, while Pettaway was later credited with discovering multi-platinum-selling singer Toni Braxton and has gone on to prominence as a session guitarist for Timbaland and other artists.
"Girl You Know It's True" was a massive success in the United States, and peaked at No. 2 on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 for the week ending April 1, 1989, kept from the top spot by The Bangles' "Eternal Flame". It became the first of five Top 5 singles for Milli Vanilli and spent a total of 26 weeks on the chart.