80’S TUESDAY: Just a Friend by Biz Markie - Some artists are simply made to be the proverbial one-hit wonders. This NJ-native rapper was a regular of the mid-80’s NYC hip-hop scene. While he had some underground hits before hitting it big time, he made an appearance on the game show Hollywood Squares, pretty much sealing his one-hit wonder status forever. It may not have been his fault entirely though as he was distracted by the infamous lawsuit that declared all samples must be cleared by the original artist before usage.
Listening to Just a Friend many years later can, depending on your musical proclivities, be a nostalgic joy or an ear-grating aural journey through off-tune singing hell. I like to think of it as a bit of good times during an era when hip-hop was fun and cavalier and had an anything goes spirit much in the vein of the Fat Boys. I do not think that could exist today without getting labelled corny.