‘I’m just sippin’ on chamomile,
Watching boys and girls and their sex appeal!’
Thus sang the fashionably FLAWLESS and iconic Gwen Stefani, when No Doubt (a band I consider a part of my religion) released their 5th studio album ‘Rock Steady‘ back in 2001. It’s Throwback Tuesday again y’all, and it’s time we gave the impossibly amazing band a shout-out!
Earlier this week, No Doubt fans literally commenced mass hysteria worldwide, as the band officially announced the release date for their new as-yet-untitled 6th studio album (September 25th), their first in over a decade since 2001’s ‘Rock Steady‘. Of course I reacted in a very mature way to this piece of celebratory news – I played the entire discography of the band, including Gwen’s solo albums (‘Love. Angel. Music. Baby‘ is one of my fave-est albums of ALL time), twice, hyper-ventilating to the lyrics all the time #NoDoubt4Life.
Hence it only made sense that today’s post be dedicated to an iconic woman and her equally iconic band, a band that defined and re-defined Pop culture as a whole through their music and videos. Contrary to popular belief , I feel our esteemed Mother Monster Lady Gargoyle and our resident potty-mouth extraordinaire Harajuku Barbie Nicki Minaj are both more Gwen Stefani than Madonna. Minaj practically ripped the ‘Harajuku Barbie‘ concept from Gwen’s genre bending 2004 solo début ‘Love. Angel. Music. Baby‘, an album that was created around Gwen’s fashion line based on fashion trends of the youth in Harajuku, Tokyo. And in case you didn’t know, Gwen turned 42 this year. And this is how she looks (see you at your nearest botox clinic). It’s true, the woman really ages backwards y’all.
‘Hey Baby‘ was one of those impossibly addictive stuck-in-your head kinda tracks that you kept humming unknowingly. Taken from the album ‘Rock Steady‘ (one of the band’s best and most cohesive efforts till date), the song was a cleverly crafted, flirty and Reggae-influenced dancehall track with an undeniably infectious chorus, featuring Bounty Killer. While purists might have been a tad offended with the entire album and the general musical direction of the band after the classic ‘Tragic Kingdom‘ (1995) and ‘Return Of Saturn‘ (2000), No Doubt never really abandoned their roots, bringing forth a new sound incorporating Ska-pop, New-age, Reggae, Synth-pop and Rock, without sounding contrived or artificial. The band fit in with the new sound that they created, and kept it fun!
And of course, critics, fans and non-fans alike thoroughly embraced the new sound of the band! ‘Hey Baby‘ went on to win the band their first Grammy, for Best Pop Vocal Performance By A Duo Or Group, along with 2 MTV VMA’s, and peaked at # 5 on the Billboard Hot 100 Singles Chart, and at # 2 on the UK Top 40 Singles Chart, while ‘Rock Steady‘ went on to sell over 5 million copies worldwide!
Till date one of my fave songs by one of my fave bands, ever! Watch the video right here :