"Sweet Honey" by Slightly Stoopid
Looking for a quick Slightly Stoopid to jam to on youtube I ended up clicking on a music video for their song "Sweet Honey" off their third album "Everything You Need" released in 2003. I decided to write about this song because it is a perfect representation of the Cali reggae rock sound. It has 1/16th note high hats, kicks and snares on the ones and twos, reggae skank guitar chords, Jamaican reggae inspired vocals mixed with American hip hop lyrical flows. It also has a radio pop structure with guitar riffs, percussion and sound effects in all the right places. Again this is a continuation of the formula solidified into California music history by Bradley Nowell of Sublime. Also this song is from my favorite Slightly Stoopid album. While the best Slightly Stoopid album is something that fans could debate for all eternity, and I think strong cases could be made for the following albums:
Slightly Stoopid 1996
Longest Barrel Ride Ever 1998
Closer to the Sun 2005
And I'd listen to arguments that their other albums were the best as well, especially "Meanwhile... Back in the Lab" 2015.
However for me "Everything You Need" will always be the best because it is the first Stoopid album to have real professional quality production and craftsmanship and also has the best blend of the reggae, rock, and hip hop styles as well as having a good balance of pop songs and songs that are more for the reggae rock enthusiast.
Watching this "Sweet Honey" video, it looks like things are almost there, but unfortunately in the terms of mainstream success that is where Slightly Stoopid has aways been. Slightly Stoopid is by no means unsuccessful, just go to their shows and you will see them packed with loyal followers who will travel miles and see this band over and over. However I feel that Slightly Stoopid had the best shot of any reggae band since Sublime to really break into the mainstream, and it did not happen. If this band had made it the way bands like The Red Hot Chili Peppers made it, then there would be many more reggae bands out there, and being played on the radio, and there would be more of the genre that I enjoy. And I don't think comparing Slightly Stoopid to Red Hot Chili Peppers is a stretch, they are every bit as talented, just maybe not as lucky. Their song with the most mainstream visibility was 2 am from the Chronchitis album. But I think this song was too little too late. There were several songs in Stoopid's catalog that are much better than 2am that would have been better showings if they had released them at the time Stoopid was achieving their highest mainstream success, "Closer to the sun" being the strongest. For that reason I think they dwindled in the eyes of the wider public. However that hasn't slowed them down from booking packed tours and still cranking out albums and hits. My favorite of their recent releases is "If you want it" from "Everyday Life, Everyday People." In closing, I'd like to say thank you to Slightly Stoopid and everyone involved for all the great music, and all the great live shows.