Booty Ballads: A Trip Down Memory Lane
Every couple of years, the heavens above bless us with a gift. No, not the gift of a newborn child, nor peace in our lives or even with the health of our loved ones — those things must come from Man himself. But what the gods of Valhalla, or whatever you believe in, have given us this year is another song about butts.
Jason Derülo’s “Wiggle” is the most profound song we’ve heard all year, begging the question, “Whatchu gonna do with that big, fat butt?” and then offering the simple solution to wiggle said butt, but just a “widdle bittle.”
Okay, the song is a fucking joke, but this is the music that’s most important. Most pop songs are about sex, but the ones that are bold enough to unabashedly and explicitly be exclusively about butts are the ones we remember and sing along to the most.
No, “Wiggle” is by no means technically good or lyrically clever, but ya know what, it’s a song about butts.
Below is a brief history of songs about butts, from disco to Diplo. It’s a walk down memory lane or a non-comprehensive handbook to the evolving ass music subsubsubgenre.
“(Shake Shake Shake) Shake Your Booty” – KC and the Sunshine Band (1976)
As far as my highly extensive research has shown, this is the first song about a butt that explicitly refers to the booty. The title contains basically all the lyrics, but this groundbreaking song opened the floodgates to the explicit mention of the tuches in American pop music. Although it’s a command that really could be told to both men and women, you know KC and the Sunshine Band were talking exclusively to the fly chicks at Studio 54.
“Fat Bottomed Girls” – Queen (1978)
Only two years after “Shake Your Booty,” the iconic band Queen (yes they have other songs than “Bohemian Rhapsody”) released their ode to big-bottomed ladies. The song tells the story of a scrawny rockstar who falls for a fat bottomed girl and can’t get his pleasure from any other body type. It’s a story about love for and addiction to the bootay, and the force with which they “make the rockin’ world go ‘round.”
“Baby Got Back” – Sir Mix-A-Lot (1992)
The ultra-conservative 1980s saw a lot of insider trading, cocaine and movies about teen angst, but very, very few songs about the culo. There were a few efforts, most notably from LL Cool J, but they sucked. It wasn’t until we heard those few words more famous than the Pledge of Allegiance, “Oh. My. God. Becky, look at her butt…,” that America was pulled out of its booty-less funk. Sir Mix-A-Lot also helps reassure women with body-image issues with the affirmation, “A word to thick soul sistahs, I wanna get witcha.”
“Bootylicious” – Destiny’s Child (2001)
Before Beyoncé was reffing elevator fights and riding surfbordts, she was making waves in the world of booty songs. Although the market for songs about butts had been dominated by men objectifying women, Destiny’s Child flipped the script to exclaim that their booties are what give women their power over men. I just want to know when I’ll be ready for that jelly, though.
“My Humps” – The Black Eyed Peas (2005)
With the second Bush administration comes the second feminist booty song. The song that made will.i.am and Fergie household names, the duo gave us the new euphemism “mix your milk with my Cocoa Puffs” and warned us that if a strange man in a bar touched it, girls are gonna “start some drama,” which is true 100 percent of the time. Don’t be creepy, fellas.
“Honky Tonk Badonkadonk” – Trace Adkins (2009)
In a world dominated by black artists, country music finally got its say about behinds. While not at clever as other songs about butts, Adkins showed how butts really do transcend race and genre.
“Dance (A$$) [Remix]” – Jay Sean ft. Nicki Minaj (2011)
My personal favorite butt song of all time, Jay Sean and Nicki Minaj say “ass” more times than I’d care to count, and since the song came out in 2011, I’ve stood by my opinion that Minaj’s verse is the best verse in music history. This is by far the most explicit of all the butt songs, but that’s just part of it.One line had me asking more questions than any other song ever did. Minaj says, in a diss to all the haterz, “Couldn’t get Michael Kors if you was fucking Michael Kors.” Does that mean you couldn’t get Michael Kors products if you were a) doing the freak nasty with him, or b) were the man himself? The world may never know.
“Bubble Butt” – Major Lazer ft. Bruno Mars, Tyga and Mystic
“Bubble Butt” calls on all women (maybe men, too?) to “turn around, stick it out and show the world you got” a bubble butt. I don’t know where that leaves those lacking a butt of the bubble variety, but that’s not my problem. This song is marks EDM’s hop onto the butt bandwagon, and having Bruno Mars on the track showed us that butt melodies are not beneath Grammy-winning artists.
“Wiggle” – Jason Derülo ft. Snoop Dogg (2014)
Finally, we arrive at “Wiggle.” Snoop Dogg is no longer Snoop Lion, and he’s teaming up with Jason Derülo to deliver another song to shout to in Midtown along with “Talk Dirty to Me.” I predict we’ll be wiggling for quite some time.
In our twerk-obsessed culture, more songs about butts are definitely on their way, and you already know what to do with that big, fat butt. But remember, ladies, if the butt is round and you want a triple-X throw down, dial 1-900-MIX-A-LOT and kick them nasty thoughts.
Featured photo courtesy of: roadforks.com