Tha Crossroads

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"Tha Crossroads"
Tha Crossroads.jpg
Single by Bone Thugs-n-Harmony
from the album E. 1999 Eternal
ReleasedApril 30, 1996
Recorded1995
Genre
Length3:44
LabelRuthless
Songwriter(s)
Producer(s)Tim Middleton
Bone Thugs-n-Harmony singles chronology
"East 1999"
(1995)
"Tha Crossroads"
(1996)
"Days of Our Livez"
(1996)

"Tha Crossroads" is a song written and performed by hip hop group Bone Thugs-n-Harmony released in 1996. The song is dedicated to the group's mentor, the late gangsta rap icon Eazy-E, and other family members. The song was the highest-debuting rap single when it debuted at number two on the US Billboard Hot 100, reaching number one the following week and staying there for eight consecutive weeks.[1] It also reached number one in New Zealand, where it was the most successful single of 1996. In 1997, the song won a Grammy for Best Rap Performance by a Duo or Group.[2]

Background[edit]

"Crossroad" originally debuted in 1995 on the E. 1999 Eternal album. It was dedicated to Bone's dead friend Wallace (Wally) Laird III, but after the death of Eazy-E they decided to remake it as "Tha Crossroads". The original song appears on the edited version of the album, though the European release has the original as track number 8 and the remix as track 18. The song is performed by four of the group's members, (Krayzie Bone, Layzie Bone, Bizzy Bone and Wish Bone). After receiving high praise for their song the group decided to make it their third single for their already released album, E. 1999 Eternal.

In 2019, a version including other group member Flesh-n-Bone was released with the Bone Thugs-n-Harmony compilation album Lost Archives Vol 1. (After receiving their publishing rights from Ruthless Records.)

Reception[edit]

The song was a hit worldwide and reached the top of the US Billboard Hot 100 and the New Zealand Singles Chart;[3][4] on the latter chart, it was the most successful song of 1996.[5] It has been certified double platinum in the United States and platinum in New Zealand.[6][7] In 2008, "Tha Crossroads" was ranked number 33 on VH1's 100 Greatest Songs of Hip Hop.[8]

Music video[edit]

The music video was filmed on February 27–28, 1996. It opens with the female vocal group Tre' (Kimberly Cromartie, Rebecca Forsha and Maniko Williams) singing the traditional spiritual "Mary Don't You Weep" in a church funeral setting, followed by the members of Bone Thugs-n-Harmony singing the main song in several settings, such as a church and a mountain top.

The main focus of the video is an imposing man with sunglasses and a trench coat, akin to a Reaper. Bone are among the few who can see the man, and watch him as he gathers souls of various individuals who are marked for death, such as a young man who leaves his distraught mother behind (presumably have died after entering life as a gang member), Bone's friend Wally, Wish Bone's Uncle Charles, Eazy-E, and a newborn baby (possibly to have died from a childbirth complication).

The Reaper then leads the souls, with the baby in his arms, up a mountain where he reveals himself to be an angel, then takes the dead to Heaven.

"Tha Crossroads" was nominated for the Best Rap Video at the MTV Video Music Awards in 1996, although it lost to Coolio's "Gangsta's Paradise".

Track listings[edit]

Australian CD single

  1. "Tha Crossroads" (D.J. U-Neek's Mo Thug remix) – 3:50
  2. "Tha Crossroads" (D.J. U-Neek's remix instrumental) – 3:48
  3. "Crossroad" (LP version – radio edit) – 3:33
  4. "1st of tha Month" (The Kruder and Dorfmeister remix) – 6:15
  5. "Thuggish Ruggish Bone" – 4:42

Charts[edit]

Certifications[edit]

Region Certification Certified units/sales
Australia (ARIA)[31] Gold 35,000^
New Zealand (RMNZ)[7] Platinum 10,000*
United Kingdom (BPI)[40] Silver 200,000double-dagger
United States (RIAA)[6] 2× Platinum 2,000,000^

* Sales figures based on certification alone.
^ Shipments figures based on certification alone.
double-dagger Sales+streaming figures based on certification alone.

Blazin' Squad version[edit]

"Crossroads"
Blazin-Squad-Crossroads-304876.jpg
Single by Blazin' Squad
from the album In the Beginning
B-side
  • "Offering"
  • "Uproar"
ReleasedAugust 19, 2002
Recorded2002
GenreHip hop
Length3:10
LabelEast West Records
Songwriter(s)
Producer(s)Cutfather & Joe
Blazin' Squad singles chronology
"Crossroads"
(2002)
"Love on the Line"
(2002)

"Crossroads", a retitled and reworked version of "Tha Crossroads", was released by British ten-piece hip-hop group Blazin' Squad as their first single in August 2002. It topped the UK Singles Chart on the week of August 25, 2002.

Background[edit]

The group's cover version of "Crossroads" was recorded for inclusion on their first studio album, In the Beginning. The decision to record and release "Crossroads" came about during the final stages of the album production: until June 2002, the song "Standard Flow" was planned for release as the group's first single, with a promotional version of the "Standard Flow" even made available on August 5. Despite being labelled as a cover version, only the chorus from the original version remains, with the verses replaced by new lyrics written by the band. Despite being the only 'cover version' the group ever recorded, it became the band's only number one single, staying at the top of the UK Singles Chart for one week in August 2002.[42] Two versions of the song exist: the main version, which features in the music video and on In the Beginning, and the full version, which contains two extra verses, which appears on the second physical release of the single.

Music video[edit]

The music video for "Crossroads" directed by Vaughan Arnell was premiered in July 2002. The video runs for a total length of three minutes and forty-eight seconds[43] and shows the band performing the song on top of an unfinished flyover in the centre of Cape Town. The video also shows scenes of an underpass where a number of homeless people are living, and individual shots of each band member. The video was filmed with the phantom effect, which provides a 'shadow' type movement for each member of the band.

Track listing[edit]

  1. "Crossroads" (radio edit) – 3:10
  2. "Uproar" – 3:25
  • UK CD 1
  1. "Crossroads" (radio edit) – 3:10
  2. "Uproar" – 3:25
  3. "Crossroads" (CD-ROM video) – 3:45
  • UK CD 2
  1. "Crossroads" (full version) – 3:50
  2. "Offering" – 3:20
  3. "Crossroads" (T.N.T Remix) – 3:50
  • Cassette
  1. "Crossroads" (radio edit) – 3:10
  2. "Crossroads" (full version) – 3:50

Charts[edit]

Certifications[edit]

Region Certification Certified units/sales
United Kingdom (BPI)[49] Silver 200,000double-dagger

double-dagger Sales+streaming figures based on certification alone.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Cuda, Heidi Siegmund (June 15, 1996). "Seeking a Path After 'Tha Crossroads'". Los Angeles Times. ISSN 0458-3035. Retrieved October 20, 2015.
  2. ^ "Bone Thugs-N-Harmony | Biography & History | AllMusic". AllMusic. Retrieved October 20, 2015.
  3. ^ a b "Bone Thugs-n-Harmony Chart History (Hot 100)". Billboard.
  4. ^ a b "Charts.nz – Bone Thugs-n-Harmony – Tha Crossroads". Top 40 Singles.
  5. ^ a b "End of Year Charts 1996". Recorded Music NZ. Retrieved August 17, 2020.
  6. ^ a b "American single certifications – Bone Thugs 'N Harmony – Tha Crossroads". Recording Industry Association of America. If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Single, then click SEARCH. 
  7. ^ a b "New Zealand single certifications – Bone Thugs N Harmony – Tha Crossroads". Recorded Music NZ.
  8. ^ "VH1's 100 Greatest Hip-Hop Songs".
  9. ^ "Australian-charts.com – Bone Thugs-n-Harmony – Tha Crossroads". ARIA Top 50 Singles.
  10. ^ "Austriancharts.at – Bone Thugs-n-Harmony – Tha Crossroads" (in German). Ö3 Austria Top 40.
  11. ^ "Ultratop.be – Bone Thugs-n-Harmony – Tha Crossroads" (in Dutch). Ultratop 50.
  12. ^ "Ultratop.be – Bone Thugs-n-Harmony – Tha Crossroads" (in French). Ultratop 50.
  13. ^ "Top RPM Singles: Issue 9685." RPM. Library and Archives Canada. Retrieved August 17, 2020.
  14. ^ "Eurochart Hot 100 Singles" (PDF). Music & Media. Vol. 13 no. 35. August 31, 1996. p. 13. Retrieved August 17, 2020.
  15. ^ "Lescharts.com – Bone Thugs-n-Harmony – Tha Crossroads" (in French). Les classement single.
  16. ^ "Offiziellecharts.de – Bone Thugs-n-Harmony – Tha Crossroads" (in German). GfK Entertainment Charts. Retrieved March 2, 2020.
  17. ^ "Íslenski Listinn Topp 40 (22.6. – 28.6. '96)". Dagblaðið Vísir (in Icelandic). June 22, 1996. p. 26. Retrieved August 17, 2020.
  18. ^ a b "The Irish Charts – Search Results – Crossroads". Irish Singles Chart. Retrieved August 17, 2020.
  19. ^ "Nederlandse Top 40 – week 32, 1996" (in Dutch). Dutch Top 40
  20. ^ "Dutchcharts.nl – Bone Thugs-n-Harmony – Tha Crossroads" (in Dutch). Single Top 100.
  21. ^ "Official Scottish Singles Sales Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company. Retrieved August 17, 2020.
  22. ^ "Swedishcharts.com – Bone Thugs-n-Harmony – Tha Crossroads". Singles Top 100.
  23. ^ "Swisscharts.com – Bone Thugs-n-Harmony – Tha Crossroads". Swiss Singles Chart.
  24. ^ "Official Singles Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company.
  25. ^ "Official Dance Singles Chart Top 40". Official Charts Company. Retrieved August 17, 2020.
  26. ^ "Official R&B Singles Chart Top 40". Official Charts Company. Retrieved August 17, 2020.
  27. ^ "Bone Thugs-n-Harmony Chart History (Dance Singles Sales)". Billboard. Retrieved August 17, 2020.
  28. ^ "Bone Thugs-n-Harmony Chart History (Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs)". Billboard.
  29. ^ "Bone Thugs-n-Harmony Chart History (Hot Rap Songs)". Billboard.
  30. ^ "Bone Thugs-n-Harmony Chart History (Pop Songs)". Billboard.
  31. ^ a b "1996 ARIA Singles Chart". ARIA. Retrieved August 17, 2020.
  32. ^ "Year End Sales Charts – Eurochart Hot 100 Singles 1996" (PDF). Music & Media. Vol. 13 no. 51/52. December 21, 1996. p. 12. Retrieved August 17, 2020.
  33. ^ "Top 100 Single–Jahrescharts 1996" (in German). GfK Entertainment. Retrieved August 7, 2015.
  34. ^ "Top 100–Jaaroverzicht van 1996". Dutch Top 40. Retrieved February 29, 2020.
  35. ^ "Jaaroverzichten – Single 1996" (in Dutch). MegaCharts. Retrieved February 29, 2020.
  36. ^ "Årslista Singlar, 1996" (in Swedish). Sverigetopplistan. Retrieved February 29, 2020.
  37. ^ "Billboard Top 100 – 1996". Billboardtop100of.com. Retrieved August 17, 2020.
  38. ^ "Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs – Year-End 1996". Billboard. Retrieved March 14, 2021.
  39. ^ Geoff Mayfield (December 25, 1999). 1999 The Year in Music Totally '90s: Diary of a Decade – The listing of Top Pop Albums of the '90s & Hot 100 Singles of the '90s. Billboard. Retrieved October 15, 2010.
  40. ^ "British single certifications – Bone Thugs-N-Harmony – Tha Crossroads". British Phonographic Industry. Retrieved April 12, 2021.
  41. ^ "Australian-charts.com – Blazin' Squad – Crossroads". ARIA Top 50 Singles. Retrieved August 17, 2020.
  42. ^ Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 676. ISBN 1-904994-10-5.
  43. ^ Video on YouTube
  44. ^ "iTunes – Music – Crossroads – Single by Blazin' Squad". Itunes.apple.com. Retrieved April 2, 2014.
  45. ^ "Eurochart Hot 100 Singles" (PDF). Music & Media. Vol. 20 no. 37. September 7, 2002. p. 11. Retrieved August 17, 2020.
  46. ^ "Official Scottish Singles Sales Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company. Retrieved August 17, 2020.
  47. ^ "Official Singles Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company. Retrieved August 17, 2020.
  48. ^ "The Official UK Singles Chart 2002" (PDF). UKChartsPlus. Retrieved August 17, 2020.
  49. ^ "British single certifications – Blazin' Squad – Crossroads". British Phonographic Industry. Retrieved March 19, 2021.

External links[edit]