There are songs that help you find your soul, get in touch with your spirit, and get all zen–and stuff. And, there are songs that make you access a whole other side of your personality, because you have got to have an out-of-body experience on the dance floor.
Juvenile’s Back That Azz Up is the fire that brings balance for about four minutes of your life. The party anthem that has defined a generation is 20 years old today. Whether you prefer the lyrics to the clean/radio version Back That Thang Up or the original, what cannot be denied is the brilliance of the musical production of this track that includes verses from Mannie Fresh and Lil Wayne.
I’d go into how the mix of classical instrumentation fused with 808 and marching drum beats and horns make this song so infectious and has solidified it’s staying power. But, this isn’t that kind of post.
For those of you who were around and old enough to be in the clubs when this song came on, you knew what time it was when you heard:
“Cash Money Records taking over for the nine-nine and the two-thousands…”
Those words are not a brag. This is a countdown. From the moment you heard the violins to the end of that statement, you had 17 seconds to be on that dance floor to twerk your life away.
I was quite the good Catholic in my younger days, so needless to say, I tried to resist Lil Wayne’s call to “Drop it like it’s hot.” I was in the club on Saturday night to socialize with my girls and dutty wine when the Dancehall came on. I would be at church on Sunday morning, and didn’t need anything extra on the “Sh!t I Did Wrong This Week” list.
Besides, I was a proper lady, and as such was scandalized by the lyrics. The ones I could make out made me clutch my pearls, and I was not…
This was me by the time the DJ hit rewind. I heard nothing after “You a fine looking woman. Won’t you back that ass up.” There are few times in my life that I have just lived in the moment. Every time this song comes on is that moment.
I regret nothing.
And if you were blessed enough to receive or witness all this twerking–hands off!– at a club or house party in Tallahassee, you got your whole life. You regret nothing. You’re welcome!