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1993

Top Adult Contemporary Songs of 1993
by Alex Cosper

MARIAH CAREY - Hero
VANESSA WILLIAMS & BRIAN McKNIGHT - Love Is
STING - Fields of Gold
ROD STEWART - Have I Told You Lately
PEABO BRYSON & REGINA BELLE - A Whole New World (Aladdin's Theme)
SHANICE - Saving Forever For You
UGLY KID JOE - Cat's In The Cradle
BRYAN ADAMS - Please Forgive Me
BRIAN McKNIGHT - One Last Cry
RED HOT CHILI PEPPERS - Soul To Squeeze

1993 Top Pop Hits
1993 Top Albums
1993 Top Ballads/Adult Contemporary
1993 Top Country Hits
1993 Top Dance Hits
1993 Top Modern/Alternative Hits
1993 Top R&B Hits
1993 Top Rock Hits


By 1993 the modern rock revolution had fused into a format now known as "alternative" or "alternative rock," although Billboard continued to call it "modern rock" for many more years. Meanwhile, top 40 radio stations for the most part ignored the alternative explosion, even though the top selling alternative albums were outselling the top selling albums by pop artists.

The agenda of top 40 stations was primarily to serve the 18-34 female demographics, while accepting teens who came along for the ride. The radio industry had been carved up not by chance of audience demand, but by the dictation of national radio consultants. Their motive was not so much to decide what type of music certain demographic groups listened to, but to deliver specific audiences to advertisers.

The sounds of r&b-driven records like "Freak Me" by Silk, "Weak" by SWV and "Dreamlover" by Mariah Carey coinsided with music that was big in mainstream night clubs that targeted 18-34 females, who just happened to be big party spenders on weekends. It was a reflection of the continued dance crazes at discoteques since the late seventies. The sound of the CHR format became more and more like the sound of night clubs, which began promoting themselves with live remote broadcasts.

The dance scene was a mix of both upbeat party records and slow ballads that brought couples together on the dance floor. Love songs were the ultimate ice-breakers for meeting and dancing with someone at a club. By 1993 the music industry had figured out slick production formulas for keeping ballads standardized. It was no longer so much pretty melodies with sincere lyrics that had captured the hearts of lovers in previous decades. It was not a predictable template tailored for the club hook-up experience.

Not much of the alternative scene infiltrated the pop charts by this point, although a big crossover hit was UB40's cover of the Elvis classic "Can't Help Falling In Love." By this point, however, UB40 was being phased out of the modern rock genre and appeared to be more in the "pop sellout" category.








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