We all know the classic hit “Play That Funky Music” by Wild Cherry, but do you know who sang it first? Turns out, it was originally recorded by a white boy! Here’s the story behind the song.
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The history of the song
“Play That Funky Music” is a song written by Rob Parissi and recorded by the band Wild Cherry. The single was the group’s first and only song to reach number one on the Billboard Hot 100 chart, on September 18, 1976, holding that position for two weeks. The song has been certified platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA).
According to bandleader Rob Parissi, he was inspired to write the lyrics after listening to disco music one night in a Pittsburgh bar in early 1976. He said he originally wrote the lyrics for disco but changed some of the words to make it fit better with the rock sound of Wild Cherry. He has also said that he wrote the song as an ode to his mixed-race heritage; his mother was white and his father was black.
The opening line of the song, “Play that funky music white boy”, is often cited as an example of racial tolerance and multiculturalism. Parissi has said that the line was not meant to be racist but was simply a way of getting people’s attention.
The artist who popularized the song
The song was popularized by the artist, Wild Cherry
The meaning of the lyrics
The song is about a white DJ who plays black music and is scorned by the black community for doing so, but he doesn’t care because he loves the music. He eventually becomes successful and wins over the black community.
The influence of the song
The influence of the song
The song “Play That Funky Music White Boy” was released in 1976 by the American band Wild Cherry. The song was written by band members Rob Parissi and Ronald Beitle, and it became an instant hit. It peaked at number one on the Billboard Hot 100 chart, making it the first disco song to do so. The song has been credited with helping to launch the disco craze of the 1970s and is often considered one of the greatest disco songs of all time.
The popularity of the song
“Play That Funky Music” is a 1976 song written by Rob Parissi and recorded by the band Wild Cherry. The single was the first release by the Cleveland-based Sweet City record label. The song was released in April 1976 and peaked at number one on both the Billboard Hot 100 and Hot Soul Singles charts in October 1976. The song remained at number one for two weeks on the Hot 100 and four weeks on the Hot Soul Singles chart. It was certified platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) for sales of over two million copies in the United States.
The awards the song has won
Play That Funky Music by Wild Cherry was released in March of 1976. It is a mix of funk and disco. The song talks about a man who wants to hear some funky music.
The song was very popular in the clubs and went on to become a number one hits on both the pop and R&B charts. It also won a Grammy Award for Best R&B Performance By A Duo Or Group in 1977.
The controversies surrounding the song
“Play That Funky Music” is a 1976 song written by Rob Parissi and recorded by the group Wild Cherry. The single was the group’s most successful release, reaching number one on both the Billboard Hot 100 chart and the Cash Box Top 100. The song remained at number one for two weeks on the Hot 100, and for four weeks on Cash Box’s chart. It was certified platinum for sales of two million copies by the Recording Industry Association of America.
The song has been the subject of multiple controversies surrounding its alleged racist and homophobic lyrics. In particular, the line “Play that funky music white boy” has been accused of being racist and homophobic.
In an interview with Songfacts, Parissi addressed the controversy, saying:
I wrote ‘Play That Funky Music’ in about 10 minutes. It was just one of those songs that came out of nowhere. I was trying to write a disco song because that’s what was popular at the time. I don’t remember exactly how I came up with the lyric ‘Play that funky music white boy,’ but it was just something that popped into my head. I certainly wasn’t trying to be racist or offensive with the lyric – it was just a play on words. Unfortunately, some people interpreted it that way, and it caused some controversy.
The cover versions of the song
The most famous version of the song is the one by Wild Cherry, which was a hit in 1976. Since then, the song has been covered by many other artists, including Red Hot Chili Peppers, Vanilla Ice, and Weezer.
The samples used in the song
The samples used in the song
“Play That Funky Music” is a 1976 single by Wild Cherry. The song was written by band members Rob Parissi and Ron Beitle. It was released in April 1976 as the lead single from the album of the same name, Wild Cherry.
The song peaked at number one on both the Billboard Hot 100 and Cash Box Top 100 charts in September 1976, becoming their only hit single. In October 2010, it was ranked number one on VH1’s Top 100 One-Hit Wonders of the 1970s.
The sample “Play that funky music white boy” is from the 1971 Parliament song “Do It ‘Til You’re Satisfied”.
The legacy of the song
Play That Funky Music was released in 1976 by the group Wild Cherry. The song was a huge success, reaching number one on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. The song has been widely recognized as a classic of the disco era, and has been covered by numerous artists over the years.
While the song is primarily associated with disco music, it actually has its roots in funk. The phrase “play that funky music” was popularized by the song Funky Music (Pt. 1) by R&B artist Maurice Williams & The Zodiacs, which was released in 1960. Wild Cherry’s version of the song brought the phrase back into the mainstream in the 1970s.
The lyrics of Play That Funky Music are often seen as being racially charged, with the phrase “white boy” being seen as a reference to white people appropriating black music. However, there is no clear evidence that this was the intent of the song’s writers. In fact, lead singer Rob Parissi has said that the lyric was simply meant to be a playful way of getting people on the dance floor.