Hey Mr DJ – Zhané: THROWBACK THURSDAYS

“Hey Mr DJ” by Zhané is this week’s Throwback Thursday song of choice – a 90s party anthem. I dedicate this week’s track to the illustrious Nicky Jai from BoiRevolution.

 

To quote a great friend of mine Vicki: ‘oh you WON’T  move and groove to this Zhané classic! ( for my international readers putting ‘oh you won’t’ in front of a phrase is an Australian-ism which aims to encourage you to do the exact opposite) 

“Hey Mr DJ” was released in 1994 by the female duo Zhané (pronounced Jah-nay) and peaked at #6 on the US charts. It has since been a must-play track on party playlists around the world almost two decades on.

 

Track Significance

When I heard this song recently the first person I thought of was Nicky Jai – who I was fortunate enough to meet up with in Atlanta this month. (If you haven’t heard the radio show he co-hosts BoiRevolution I encourage you to listen to it for all the latest in entertainment news, relationship advice, music and foolery. Shout out to Kid Cort and Tee Tee too!) 

Nicky came to mind when I heard this song because I could visualise him grooving to this track at a block or house party growing up – it really seems to be his style of song. We have similar taste in music and the track represents a sentiment that I am sure that Nicky and most twenty-something year olds share at the end of the work week – party and groove out to some tunes with friends. 

The 90’s was an era of music that I cherish because it represents a time in my life (all of my primary and secondary schooling years) where I was carefree and I had no responsibilities, obligations, bills to pay. I played with my friends, played sport, shared family time and listened to music. 

I grew up in a household where music was played all the time be that on the old turntable cranking out Michael Jackson, the long car trips back to the country with Garth Brooks and Patsy Cline blaring (to my utter disgust), to the six disc CD player which played anything from Backstreet Boys, Credence Clearwater Revival to Whitney Houston and Tupac. 

Although “Hey Mr DJ” was released when I was ten years old, it was a song I recognised and knew in my teen years when it was played at parties.

 

Who is Zhané?

Jean Norris and Renee Neufville met while both were studying music at Philadelphia’s Temple University (Norris is originally from Rhode Island, Neufville from Jamaica).

After meeting Naughty by Nature member Kay Gee, Zhané impressed the producer enough to go right into the studio to record for Roll Wit Tha Flava.

Their debut album, Pronounced Jah-Nay, produced two further Top 40 hits (“Groove Thang,” “Sending My Love”) and went Gold by the end of the year; it achieved Platinum status 2 years later.

 

Image: Bvonmoney.com

 

Since the group split post 1997, Jean Baylor released the independent solo album Testimony: My Life. Renee Neufville became involved in Roy Hargrove’s RH Factor project.

 

Music Video

“Hey Mr DJ” starts with a telephone conversation between the girls about heading to a block party after work. They are at the spot and start serenading the DJ and grooving on the dance floor.

The thing I first noticed was that the girls had natural hair! No lacefronts or weaves, how refreshing. I also saw the shell necklace and earrings, raise your hand if you owned shell jewellery in the 90s? *raises hand* 

The girls were wearing those oversized baseball shirts which I remember, along with NFL jerseys.

The “Hey Mr DJ” video is very simple and in my opinion accurately captures the party atmosphere and encourages those who are holding up the wall to shake their tailfeather.

 

Lyrics

 

“Hey Mr DJ”

 Zhané

Everybody move your body
Now do it
Here is something that’s gonna make you move & groove
Hey DJ keep playing that song, all night
On and on and on

Everybody move your body
Now do it
Here is something that’s gonna make you move & grove
Hey DJ keep playing that song, all night
On and on and on

It’s Friday night and the weekend’s here
I need to unwind, where’s the party, Mr DJ
I am ready to call my friends
So we could all get down
Where’s the party, hey Mr DJ

Hey Mr DJ
(You can get this started)
Everybody’s ready to party
(All night, all night)
All the girls are ready
(So we can all get to it)
So we can party ’till the break of dawn, oh

Everybody move your body
Now do it
Here is something that’s gonna make you move & groove
Hey D.J. keep playing that song, all night
On and on and on

It’s Friday night and the weekend’s here
I need to unwind, where’s the party, Mr DJ
I am ready to call my friends
So we could all get down
Where’s the party, hey Mr DJ

Hey Mr DJ
(You can get this started)
Everybody’s ready to party
(All night, all night)
All the girls are ready
(So we can all get to it)
So we can party ’till the break of dawn, oh

Once again, it’s on, yo Zhane blow the horn
Let the DJ know to keep playing your song
Maybe I’ll browse, snatch up the blouse
Rip the foul, ho
And get rub-a-dub style
Cuz your body won’t move
If it can’t feel the groove
So can’t boogie, have to show and prove
Hey, now I’m feeling the vibe
Rolling wit the flava
Feeling alright
Ho, yo, there’s a party over here
Yo, oh no, the party’s over there
Call up your friends, let ’em know
Fam’s tagging along
Hey DJ keep playing that song

Everybody move your body
Now do it

Everybody move your body
Now do it
Here is something that’s gonna make you move & groove
Hey DJ keep playing that song, all night
On and on and on

Source: Mp3Lyrics

 

 

Do you remember “Hey Mr DJ” by Zhané? Comment below!

 

Miss Fancye

xo

 

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