Giving You the Best That I Got (song)

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"Giving You the Best That I Got"
Single by Anita Baker
from the album Giving You the Best That I Got
B-side"Good Enough"
ReleasedSeptember 27, 1988
Length4:18 (Album Version)
3:54 (Single Version)
Songwriter(s)Anita Baker, Skip Scarborough, Randy Holland
Producer(s)Michael J. Powell
Anita Baker singles chronology
""Ain't No Need to Worry" (with The Winans)"
"Giving You the Best That I Got"
"Body and Soul"

"Giving You the Best That I Got" is a 1988 song by American R&B recording artist Anita Baker. The song appears on Baker's album of the same name, which was released in the fall of that year. The song was written by Baker, Skip Scarborough and Randy Holland.

Chart performance[edit]

The song was Baker's highest charting hit on the Billboard Hot 100, where it peaked at number three in December 1988.[1] It also spent two weeks at number one on the Billboard R&B chart in November 1988, Baker's first number one on this tally.[1] In addition, the song spent one week atop the Billboard adult contemporary chart in December 1988.[2]


The song "Giving You the Best That I Got" was released prior to the Grammy Awards eligibility cutoff date of September 30, allowing it to be nominated for four awards at the Grammy Awards of 1989. The song won in the categories Best R&B Vocal Performance, Female and Best R&B Song; it was also nominated for both Record of the Year and Song of the Year.[3] The album Giving You the Best That I Got was released in October 1988, meaning that it would not be eligible for Grammy consideration until the 1990 ceremony. There, Baker's album won in the category Best Female R&B Vocal Performance, earning her the same award two years running for a song and album of the same title.

Songwriter Skip Scarborough had offered the song to various singers, including Howard Hewett, without success. Prior to recording the song, Baker made some changes to the original, including improvising a scat opening and requesting that the tempo of the song be increased.[2]

In popular culture[edit]

The song was featured in a season 10 episode of Knots Landing. The song was also used in a late 1988 episode of the US daytime soap opera All My Children as well as a 1989 episode of Guiding Light. In 2019, the song appeared in the second episode of season 2 of Pose.

Michael Jordan would often sing this song to his opponents as a way of trash talking them.[4]


  • Anita Baker – lead vocals
  • Vernon D. Fails – keyboards
  • Dean "Sir" Gant – acoustic piano
  • Nathan East – bass
  • Omar Hakim – drums
  • Paulinho da Costa – percussion
  • Alex Brown – backing vocals
  • Angel Edwards – backing vocals
  • Valerie Pinkston Mayo – backing vocals, BGV arrangements


See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Whitburn, Joel (1996). The Billboard Book of Top 40 Hits, 6th Edition (Billboard Publications)
  2. ^ a b Hyatt, Wesley (1999). The Billboard Book of #1 Adult Contemporary Hits (Billboard Publications)
  3. ^ "Best R&B Vocal Performance, Female - The 31st Annual Grammy Awards (1988)". The Recording Academy. Retrieved August 5, 2018.
  4. ^ Mack, Carson (June 7, 2020). "Michael Jordan Was Inspired By Singer Anita Baker!". Retrieved September 10, 2020.
  5. ^ "Anita Baker – Giving You the Best That I Got". Top 40 Singles. Retrieved August 2, 2021.
  6. ^ "Anita Baker: Artist Chart History". Official Charts Company. Retrieved August 2, 2021.
  7. ^ "Anita Baker Chart History (Hot 100)". Billboard. Retrieved August 2, 2021.
  8. ^ "Anita Baker Chart History (Adult Contemporary)". Billboard. Retrieved August 2, 2021.
  9. ^ "Anita Baker Chart History (Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs)". Billboard.
  10. ^ "1989 The Year in Music: Top Pop Singles". Billboard. 101 (51): Y-22. December 23, 1989.
  11. ^ "Billboard Top 100 – 1989".
  12. ^ "Adult Contemporary Songs – Year-End 1989". Billboard. Retrieved August 2, 2021.

External links[edit]