Girl You Know It's True (song)

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"Girl You Know It's True"
Girl You Know Its True.jpg
Single by Milli Vanilli
from the album Girl You Know It's True
B-side "Magic Touch"
Released June 25, 1988
Format CD single, 7" single, 12" maxi
Recorded 1988
Genre Dance-pop, hip hop, new jack swing
Length 4:13
3:48 (7" version)
Label Arista
Writer(s) Bill Pettaway Jr, Sean Spencer, Kevin Lyles, Rodney Holloman, Ky Adeyemo
Producer(s) Frank Farian
Milli Vanilli singles chronology
"Girl You Know It's True"
"Baby Don't Forget My Number"

"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. This song is best known for exposing the lip-syncing of Rob Pilatus and Fab Morvan who were recruited after Frank Farian had completed production of the song.


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),[1][2][3][4] and Ky Adeyemo,[5] 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,[1] 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 in the mid-1980s, the group expanded to five. In 1987, with several singles under their belt, Numarx released the single, "Rhymes So Def," which received national airplay at the time.[1] The follow-up single to this minor hit was "Girl You Know It's True."

The idea for the song began when Marvin Ennis suggested that the group (Numarx) rap about something romantic in Bill Pettaway's basement in Annapolis, Maryland. Bill Pettaway, an Annapolis resident working as a gas station attendant at the time[5][6] also wrote songs and played guitar on the side.[7] Pettaway, along with Numarx members Spencer, Lyles, and Holloman continued to craft the tune. In addition, then-current Starpoint member Kayode "Ky" Adeyemo joined in, co-writing and co-producing the song with Pettaway.[3] However, the vocalist most prominent on this song is Charles "Ooh Oh Ooh" Christopher. Charles was friends with Pettaway, Adeyemo, Marvin Ennis, and George Philips (the latter three all associated with the former Elektra Records group Starpoint) and became the voice that everyone was singing along with. 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.[8] 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, whose title track was penned by former Starpoint and MARZ band member Marvin Ennis, released in 1988[9] before fading from public view. Marvin Ennis was also solely responsible for changing a bad contract which was in the form of a "work for hire," between Bill Pettaway and Steve Franco, into a contract where Bill Pettaway could earn royalties from his efforts related to the song. Bill Pettaway and Marvin Ennis (aka Marvenis) were both members of the Capitol/EMI/Liberty Records group MARZ (Make it Right). Marvin Ennis went on to discover R&B crooner Kenny Lattimore, when he auditioned for the Epic Records group Mainquin at Omega Studios in Rockville, Maryland,co-write and produce the #2 R&R/#4 Billboard hit "Taste of Your Love" for E.U. (Experience Unlimited) of #1 R&B/Hip Hop hit "Da Butt" fame. Marvin Ennis made television appearances on Soul Train, MTV, and BET as well as toured with the group as its newest band member. DJ Spen and Lyles have gone on to become world-renowned DJs and record executives, respectively, while Pettaway, by way of MARZ members Keith Rowel and leader Marvin Ennis, was later credited with discovering multi-platinum-selling singer Toni Braxton and has gone on to prominence as a session guitarist for Timbaland[10] and other artists.

Concert incident[edit]

The song skipped and kept repeating the partial line "girl, you know it's" during a Milli Vanilli concert at the Lake Compounce theme park in Bristol, Connecticut, revealing a case of lip synching during the performance and setting off a wave of controversy for the group.

In popular culture[edit]

Milli Vanilli made a cameo appearance performing the song in an episode of The Adventures of Super Mario Bros. 3, based on the actual video game as seen Saturday mornings on NBC. The episode, entitled "Kootie Pie Rocks", aired October 27, 1990. After the lip-syncing scandal broke out, the episode was edited to replace the Milli Vanilli songs featured in the episode ("Girl You Know It's True" and "Blame It On The Rain") with a generic pop instrumental, and specific references and jabs at these songs were removed. However, the group themselves are still mentioned by name.

Other cover versions[edit]

Track listings[edit]

12" maxi - Australia, New Zealand, UK
  1. "Girl You Know It's True" (NY subway mix)
  2. "Girl You Know It's True" (balearic mix)
  3. "Magic Touch"
12" maxi - Canada, U.S.
  1. "Girl You Know It's True" (super club mix) — 8:33
  2. "Girl You Know It's True" (G spot remix beats) — 6:22
  3. "Girl You Know It's True" (single version) — 3:48
  4. "Girl You Know It's True" (NYC subway mix) — 8:07
  5. "Magic Touch" — 3:47
12" maxi - Germany, UK
  1. "Girl You Know It's True" (super club mix) — 7:35
  2. "Girl You Know It's True" (radio mix) — 3:58
  3. "Magic Touch" — 3:22
7" single
  1. "Girl You Know It's True" — 3:58
  2. "Magic Touch" — 3:22

Charts and sales[edit]

"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".[13] It became the first of five Top 5 singles for Milli Vanilli and spent a total of 26 weeks on the chart.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c Numarx biography Retrieved 8-16-2015.
  2. ^ Rod Holloman@Twitter (spelled "Holloman" here) Retrieved 8-16-2015.
  3. ^ a b Numarx- "Girl You Know It's True" (1987) single credits. Accessed 8-16-2015.
  4. ^ Rodney Hollaman (sic) Retrieved 8-16-2015.
  5. ^ a b Milli Vanilli: Baby Don't Forget My Number
  6. ^ Corey, Mary (1990). "Bill Pettaway: A gas station attendant hanging out with..." The Baltimore Sun December 16, 1990. Retrieved 8-16-2015.
  7. ^ Bill Pettaway Retrieved 8-16-2015.
  8. ^ "Girl You Know It's True" by Milli Vanilli Retrieved 8-16-2015.
  9. ^ Numarx - Our Time Has Come Retrieved 8-16-2015.
  10. ^ "Timbalands (sic) Secret Weapon: Bill Pettaway" Retrieved 8-16-2015
  11. ^ German Charts - Centory
  12. ^ DanishCharts: "Jeg Vil Ha' Dig For Mig Selv" Page
  13. ^ "Billboard Hot 100 Archives". Retrieved 2011-06-25.  External link in |work= (help)
  14. ^ " – Milli Vanilli – Girl You Know It's True" (in German). Ö3 Austria Top 40.
  15. ^ " – Milli Vanilli – Girl You Know It's True" (in Dutch). Ultratop 50.
  16. ^ Pennanen, Timo (2006). Sisältää hitin - levyt ja esittäjät Suomen musiikkilistoilla vuodesta 1972 (in Finnish) (1st ed.). Helsinki: Tammi. ISBN 978-951-1-21053-5. 
  17. ^ " – Milli Vanilli – Girl You Know It's True" (in French). Les classement single.
  18. ^ " – Milli Vanilli – Girl You Know It's True". GfK Entertainment Charts.
  19. ^ Irish Single Chart Archived 2009-06-03 at WebCite (Retrieved February 26, 2008)
  20. ^ "Nederlandse Top 40 – Milli Vanilli search results" (in Dutch) Dutch Top 40.
  21. ^ " – Milli Vanilli – Girl You Know It's True". VG-lista.
  22. ^ Salaverri, Fernando (September 2005). Sólo éxitos: año a año, 1959–2002 (1st ed.). Spain: Fundación Autor-SGAE. ISBN 84-8048-639-2. 
  23. ^ " – Milli Vanilli – Girl You Know It's True". Singles Top 100.
  24. ^ " – Milli Vanilli – Girl You Know It's True". Swiss Singles Chart.
  25. ^ UK Singles Chart (Retrieved August 5, 2008)
  26. ^ a b c d e Billboard (Retrieved February 26, 2008)
  27. ^ "Response from ARIA re: chart inquiry, received 2014-06-17". Imgur. Archived from the original on 2014-11-29. Retrieved 2015-10-10. 
  28. ^ " – Milli Vanilli – Girl You Know It's True". Top 40 Singles.
  29. ^ 1988 Austrian Singles Chart Archived May 22, 2011, at the Wayback Machine. (Retrieved August 5, 2008)
  30. ^ "1988 Belgian Flanders Singles Chart" (in Dutch). Archived from the original on 8 April 2014. Retrieved 7 March 2014. 
  31. ^ 1988 Swiss Singles Chart Archived August 7, 2011, at the Wayback Machine. (Retrieved August 5, 2008)
  32. ^ Canada certifications Archived April 12, 2009, at the Wayback Machine. (Retrieved August 5, 2008)
  33. ^ Elia Habib, Muz hit. tubes, p. 145 (ISBN 2-9518832-0-X)
  34. ^ "Gold-/Platin-Datenbank ('Girl+You+Know+It%27s+True')" (in German). Bundesverband Musikindustrie. Retrieved August 5, 2008. 
  35. ^ Swedish certifications (Retrieved September 11, 2008)
  36. ^ UK certifications (Retrieved August 5, 2008)
  37. ^ U.S. certifications Archived June 26, 2007, at the Wayback Machine. (Retrieved August 5, 2008)