Yah Mo B There

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
"Yah Mo B There"
Yah Mo B There Ingram.jpg
Single by James Ingram and Michael McDonald
from the album It's Your Night
Released December 9, 1983
Recorded 1983
Genre R&B, synthpop
Length 4:40
4:02 (7-inch)
Label Qwest, Warner Bros.
Songwriter(s) James Ingram, Michael McDonald, Rod Temperton, Quincy Jones
Producer(s) Quincy Jones
James Ingram singles chronology
"Party Animal"
"Yah Mo B There"
"There's No Easy Way"

"Party Animal"
"Yah Mo B There"
"There's No Easy Way"
Michael McDonald singles chronology
"I Gotta Try"
(1982) I Gotta Try1982
"Yah Mo B There"
(1984) Yah Mo B There1984
"No Lookin' Back"
(1985) No Lookin' Back1985

"Yah Mo B There" is an R&B song by American singers James Ingram and Michael McDonald. It was written by Ingram, McDonald, Rod Temperton, and producer Quincy Jones. The song originally appeared on Ingram's 1983 album It's Your Night, released on Jones's Qwest Records label. It was released as a single in late 1983, peaking at No. 19 on the U.S. charts in 1984, and No. 44 on the UK charts also in 1984, (the remixed version by John Jellybean Benitez hit No. 12 in the Spring of 1985 in the UK), and has subsequently appeared on several of Ingram and McDonald's greatest hits albums as well as various 1980s compilation albums.

The performance earned the duo a 1985 Grammy Award for Best R&B Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocals. It was one of a series of very successful duets involving Ingram. It also received a nomination for Best R&B Song, losing to "I Feel for You" (Prince).

The song is in reference to God and the power faith can have over difficult times, “Yah” being the shortened Yahweh – the Hebrew name for God.


In popular culture[edit]

The song was referred to in the 2005 film The 40-Year-Old Virgin. The main characters work in an electronics store in which a Michael McDonald concert DVD has constantly been playing on the TVs for two years. A salesman, David (played by Paul Rudd), has developed an intense hatred of the DVD and tells the manager, "Nothing against him [Michael McDonald], but if I hear 'Yah Mo B There' one more time, I'm gonna 'yah mo' burn this place to the ground!"[1][2][3]

The song was featured in the background of a 1984 episode of the daytime soap opera The Young and The Restless.

In the web comedy series Yacht Rock, Ingram and McDonald write "Yah Mo" after mishearing Kenny Loggins say "Yeah, I'll be there" while eating an apple and talking on a cordless phone.

In the animated TV series American Dad!, the song was used in episode "Home Wrecker" as a favorite of Principal Lewis and sung by Steve and his friends.

Many people[who?] also wonder if the song meant "God will be there." It is possible as "Yah" is the shortened form of the proper name of the god of the Bible, "Yahweh." This shortened form can be found in the King James version of the Bible Psalms 68:4.


Chart (1983/84) Peak
UK Singles Chart[4] 44
U.S. Billboard Hot 100[5] 19
U.S. Billboard Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs[6] 5
Chart (1985) Peak
UK Singles Chart[4] 12

Cover versions[edit]

In 1988, R&B singer Jon Gibson covered "Yah Mo B There" on his Change of Heart album (released by Frontline Records). The pop record featured the emerging rap artist MC Hammer.

"Yah Mo B There" was covered by Louise Seville and released in the UK in 1996. British singer Steve Brookstein covered a slightly re-written version of the song with BeBe Winans for the 2005 album, Heart and Soul.


  1. ^ Schorn, Peter (December 13, 2005). "40 Year-Old Virgin: Unrated Edition". IGN. Retrieved January 8, 2017. 
  2. ^ Steward, Steve (June 19, 2014). "Michael McDonald's Yacht Rock Ship Sails in for "Night of the Proms" at Verizon Theatre". Dallas Observer. Retrieved January 8, 2017. 
  3. ^ Niccum, Jon (July 10, 2015). "Watch Paul Rudd in the 5 roles that made his career". kansascity. Retrieved January 8, 2017. 
  4. ^ a b "Chart Stats - James Ingram and Michael McDonald". Chart Stats. Archived from the original on 2012-07-22. Retrieved 2011-05-11. 
  5. ^ "James Ingram Album & Song Chart History". Billboard. Nielsen Business Media, Inc. Retrieved 2011-05-21. 
  6. ^ "James Ingram Album & Song Chart History". Billboard. Nielsen Business Media, Inc. Retrieved 2011-05-21.