R&B duo Christión burst onto the scene in late 1996 with their debut single “Full of Smoke”, which led to the group earning the honor as the first R&B group signed to Roc-A-Fella records. In fact, most Hip-Hop heads know that Christión’s debut was the only Roc-A-Fella release between Jay-Z’s first two albums. While I enjoyed “Full of Smoke”, it was the group’s second single that made me a fan.
Christión followed up their lead single with a cover of the Rose Royce classic “I Wanna Get Next To You”. Written by musical guru, Norman Whitfield, and first appearing on the Car Wash: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack, the song talks about how a narrator pleads his love for a beautiful woman, except that the young woman is unkind, and does not understand his affection for her. As he continually wastes his own money calling her, yet she does not respond, he still wants to “get next” to her regardless.
Kenni Ski and Allen Anthony, who made up the group, brought a delicate nineties vibe while keeping the timeless message of the original. I am sure everyone could relate to the lyrics “Money is low, and I know I can’t take you to the fancy places, but still, I wanna get next to you.”
Unfortunately, Christión couldn’t find a place in the crowded nineties R&B field, but their debut is impressive and the group’s cover of “I Wanna Get Next To You” is one of the best covers from Norman Whitfield’s catalog.
Final Grade: A
Christion’s debut Ghetto Cyrano is available on all streaming platforms.