Unless you are reading these blog entries in numerical order, then you know that I’ve remarked on the prevalence of black and white music videos. To be fair, there’s nothing wrong with that trend and it continues to this day, but it just seems that the early and mid-90’s have more than a fair share of the style.
#61 “You Gotta Be” by Des’ree. It’s unfair to call Des’ree a one hit wonder since this popular ’94 hit led to her contributing a single to the revisioned “Romeo + Juliet” (and just for your information Romeo + Juliet = Tragic Love). “You Gotta Be” is like the little sister to the oh-so-feel-good “Hold On” by Wilson Phillips. Once those first few piano notes play, you know you’re in for 4 minutes of clean fun and affirmations.
Adult Contemporary in the 90’s gained a cult-like status, by which I mean most of it was meant to indoctrinate you into some flash in the pan cult. Perhaps that’s taking it too far, but this song definitely fits that bill. The lyrics remind me of chants I had to sing in church and the repetition is meant to drown out your daily woes and troubles with a mish mash of musical motivation. Yay repression…
The video supports this theory. Filmed in black and white (curse you 90’s!), the white background juxtaposes against your high priestess. Garbed in new-age tunic and trousers, she begins by accompanying her lyrics with some faux-sign language, which makes sense since the 90’s were full of other things like faux-fur, faux-French, faux-leather, and a proliferation of faux-breasts. Soon she reveals herself to be one of five aspects (eat that Jesus!). If you think that’s scary, just wait until later in the video when she inverts her colors and goes crazy like Galadriel from Lord of the Rings, beautiful and terrible as the dawn.
All will love Des’ree and despair.