For this week’s Second Listen Sunday, I decided to visit the Buckeye State and pay homage to The Rude Boys. The Cleveland-based quartet consisted of Larry Marcus, Melvin Sephus, Edward Lee “Buddy” Banks, and Joe Little III. Initially breaking onto the scene in 1990 with the hits “Written All Over Your Face” and “Are You Lonely For Me” from their debut, they wasted no time returning to the studio.
Slow Jam Saturday: Whitney Houston, Far Enough
While the Whitney Houston biopic I Wanna Dance with Somebody continues to divide audiences (I enjoyed it), I wanted to highlight the “Voice” for this week’s Slow Jam Saturday. During the film, there’s a scene where Bobby Brown is preparing to propose to Whitney, and a mellow R&B track plays in the background.
My musical knowledge couldn’t pinpoint the song, and there was no time to Shazam. Thus as soon as I got home, I skimmed through the soundtrack on Apple Music until I found the song. “Far Enough” is the song’s title and hails from Ms. Houston’s vault.
Houston reunited with her frequent collaborator Michael Masser for this track, set to a mellow, midtempo groove. From a vocal standpoint, the track sounds like it was recorded during the I’m Your Baby Tonight sessions. As super Nippy fans will attest, though, in her prime, the legendary Narada Michael Walden was the yin to her yang.
It only made sense that the film studio would reach out to Walden for his input. Walden’s approach to the song was to modernize it while keeping sight of who Whitney was vocally. A lush ballad, “Far Enough,” speaks of a relationship between two people questioning if they are willing to travel to make it work.
The chorus asks if they are “going far enough,” “going deep enough,” and “feeling enough for love.” The lyrics also suggest that the couple should be willing to push past the boundaries of their relationship and open up.
Whitney reveals her commitment to love in the pre-chorus, while in the verses, she expresses the two people’s inability, to be honest with one another. In the bridge and outro, she assures the other person that she will take them to a place they’ve never been before if they let her.
Hearing the song and where it appears in the movie, it seemed like Whitney was letting Bobby know she would leave him wanting more. Vibrantly, Nippy conveys the song’s overall message: true love requires open communication, commitment, and trust. As soon as two people reach that level, they can love each other deeply.
If “Far Enough” speaks of the quality of Whitney’s vault, I can’t wait to hear the rest.
Final Grade: A
“Far Enough” from the soundtrack I Wanna Dance with Somebody (The Movie: Whitney New, Classic and Reimagined) is available on all streaming platforms.
More reviews to explorer
Valentine’s Day 2024 may have come and gone, but I still plan to use highlight songs with the V-word for February’s Slow Jam Saturday. The artist I chose is a southern gentleman by the name of Lloyd. Initially breaking onto the scene as a member of the preteen-boy band N-Toon, Lloyd’s solo career kicked off in 2004 with the hit “Southside.”
As we continue to celebrate the month of love, I chose “Valentine by Ryan Leslie as the second song with the word valentine for February’s Slow Jam Saturday. Leslie broke into the music industry in 2003, writing hits for Beyoncé and New Edition. Leslie released the singles “The Way That U Move Girl” and “Used 2 Be” featuring Fabolous. However, his debut album was never officially released due to creative differences with his record label. In late 2007, Leslie finally broke through with the bop “Diamond Girl,” and his self-titled album would finally hit record stores on February 10, 2009. Leslie also succeeded with the follow-up singles “Addiction” and “How It Was Supposed to Be.” Surprisingly, though, Leslie didn’t drop “Valentine” as the fourth single, which would have timed perfectly with the album release date.