Forgotten Treasure: Next “Wifey” (2000)
Post-christmas Boxing week is going strong, which for me means crate digging at one of Montreal’s best record shops, DeathOfVinyl. It’s very rare that I ever come out of there feeling like at least one of my purchases supports the notion of destiny, and this was no exception as I stumbled upon an unnamed 2-step remix of Wifey by Next.
As much as I love the subgenre, this particular mix was simply ordinary, prompting me to decide to hold off for the original. However, I did come out of the shop with a sweet bag of vinyl and the excitement from this treasure that had been long forgotten.
What followed were overwhelming memories of listening to Wifey and other r&b/hip-hop songs in secret, almost 12 years ago in a home where “praise” was quite literally the only style of music allowed. Locking myself in my room I’d use a walkman to tune into K103.7 Kahnawake, a radio station that broadcasts shows in both English and Kanien’keha (Mohawk language), in anticipation for my daily dose of beats.
Don’t get me wrong, nostalgia isn’t responsible for my “pressing of the replay button for the 23rd time since yesterday”. This single is just that damn good! Dare I say pop perfection? Classic slow-jam-sexiness is what should be expected from the band that brought another favorite of mine called Too Close, and they deliver, only trading in the clever double-entendres for blatant blandishments.
Perhaps the most impressive element is the amusing-and-somewhat confusing rhyme scheme of the chorus. I strongly urge you to follow along with the lyrics provided on the Youtube link below for a refreshing example of atypical verse structure. Also, it wouldn’t hurt to check out their album Welcome II Nextasy which rivals R.Kelly for his down-right ridiculous and witty wordplay. If you’re at all like me, this is going to be one of those songs to memorize in full and sing out loudly on the streets. Enjoy