Don't Be Cruel (album)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Don't Be Cruel
Cruelalbum.jpg
Studio album by Bobby Brown
Released June 20, 1988
Recorded 1987 – 1988
Genre
Length 47:08
Label MCA
Producer
Bobby Brown chronology
King of Stage
(1986)King of Stage1986
Don't Be Cruel
(1988)
Dance!...Ya Know It!
(1989)Dance!...Ya Know It!1989
Singles from Don't Be Cruel
  1. "Don't Be Cruel"
    Released: May 17, 1988
  2. "My Prerogative"
    Released: August 23, 1988
  3. "Roni"
    Released: December 27, 1988
  4. "Every Little Step"
    Released: January 31, 1989
  5. "Rock Wit'cha"
    Released: August 15, 1989
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 5/5 stars[2]
The Village Voice B+[3]

Don't Be Cruel is the second studio album by American singer Bobby Brown. It was released in the United States on June 20, 1988 by MCA Records.

The album was far more successful than Brown's debut, peaking at number one on the Billboard 200 album chart and spawning five top 10 Billboard Hot 100 singles, including Brown's only number one, "My Prerogative". It spent a total of six weeks on top of the Billboard 200 and was the best-selling album of 1989 in the United States, the album also reached the top five in the United Kingdom and Australia.

Don't Be Cruel received extremely positive reviews from music critics.[1] Brown also won his first Grammy Award for Best Male R&B Vocal Performance at the 1990 Grammy Awards for "Every Little Step".

The album has been certified 7× Platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) for shipments of over seven million units in the United States.[4]

Development[edit]

Brown changed producers for this album, and worked extensively with hit-making songwriting and production duo Babyface and L.A. Reid. Alex Henderson of Allmusic writes

Singles[edit]

All five singles released from the album reached the top 10 of the Billboard Hot 100. "Don't Be Cruel" was released as the lead single. The second single, "My Prerogative" earned Brown his first number one on the Billboard Hot 100. "My Prerogative" was also the second-biggest single of 1989, finishing at number two on the Year-End Billboard Hot 100 Singles of 1989. Three of the singles also reached number one on Billboard's Hot R&B Songs chart.

All singles have been certified gold by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA).[4]

Commercial performance[edit]

Don't Be Cruel debuted at number 74 on the Billboard 200 on July 23, 1988. It wasn't until six months later that the album reached number one, starting a six-week non-consecutive run at number one, from January 21, 1989 – February 4, 1989 and February 18, 1989 – March 4, 1989, its reign at number one was interrupted for one week by Guns N' Roses' Appetite for Destruction.

The album also spent a total of 11 non-consecutive weeks atop the Billboard R&B/Hip-Hop Albums chart over the course of 1988 and 1989. It spent an eight-week non-consecutive run at number one from September–November 1988, and then remarkably returned to number one four months later in March 1989.

Don't Be Cruel was the best-selling album of 1989 in the United States, and finished number one on the Billboard Year-End album chart.[6]

Track listing[edit]

No. Title Writer(s) Producer(s) Length
1. "Cruel Prelude"
  • Babyface
  • L.A. Reid
  • Babyface
  • L.A. Reid
0:37
2. "Don't Be Cruel"
  • Babyface
  • L.A. Reid
6:48
3. "My Prerogative"
  • Bobby Brown
  • Gene Griffin
  • Gene Griffin
  • Bobby Brown (co.)
4:51
4. "Roni" Babyface
  • Babyface
  • L.A. Reid
5:58
5. "Rock Wit'cha"
  • Babyface
  • L.A. Reid
  • Babyface
  • L.A. Reid
4:49
6. "Every Little Step"
  • Babyface
  • L.A. Reid
  • Babyface
  • L.A. Reid
3:57
7. "I'll Be Good to You"
  • Bobby Brown
  • Gene Griffin
  • Gene Griffin
  • Bobby Brown (co.)
4:25
8. "Take It Slow"
  • Jay Logan
  • Lee Peters
  • Larry White
Larry White 5:23
9. "All Day All Night"
  • Dennis Wadington
  • DeWayne Sweet
  • Larry White
  • Lee Peters
Larry White 4:40
10. "I Really Love You Girl"
  • Bobby Brown
  • Gordon Jones
  • Gene Griffin
  • Bobby Brown (co.)
5:10
11. "Cruel Reprise"
  • Babyface
  • L.A. Reid
  • Babyface
  • L.A. Reid
0:19
Total length: 47:08

Personnel[edit]

Credits adapted from Allmusic.[7]

  • Richard Aguon – drum fills, drums, background vocals
  • Babyface – mixing, producer, background vocals
  • Bernard Belle – background vocals
  • Ollie Bolds – background vocals
  • Bobby Brown – primary artist, producer, background vocals
  • Tommy Brown – finger snaps, production coordination
  • Emilio Conesa – guitar
  • Kirk Crumpler – bass, synthesizer, synthesizer bass
  • Michael Denten – drum technician, engineer, mixing, background vocals
  • Lee Drakeford – background vocals
  • Don Emerson – assistant engineer
  • Jon Gass – engineer, mixing, special edits
  • Mitch Gibson – engineer
  • Todd Gray – photography
  • Toni Greene – assistant engineer
  • Gene Griffin – producer
  • Portia Griffin – background vocals
  • John Guggenheim – assistant engineer
  • Aaron Hall – background vocals
  • Steve Hall – mastering
  • Fred Howard – assistant engineer
  • Ja – art direction
  • Howard Johnston – engineer
  • Gordon Jones – multi instruments, producer, background vocals
  • K2 – assistant engineer
  • Kayo – guest artist, background vocals
  • Ruben Laxamana – engineer, special effects
  • Jay Logan –
  • Melecio Magdaluyo – soprano saxophone
  • Dennis Mitchell – engineer, mixing
  • Julie Moss – design
  • Lee Peters – background vocals
  • Ben Rayes – keyboards
  • L.A. Reid – producer
  • Markell Riley – drum programming
  • Teddy Riley – keyboards, mixing, background vocals
  • Percy Scott – keyboards
  • Louil Silas, Jr. – executive producer, remixing
  • Daryl Simmons – background vocals
  • Mark Slagle – assistant engineer
  • Dewayne Sweet – drums, keyboards, synthesizer, synthesizer bass
  • Ralph Tresvant – background vocals
  • Dennis Wadington –
  • Ronnie Watkins – background vocals
  • Karyn White – guest artist, background vocals
  • Larry White – assistant engineer, bass, drums, guitar, keyboards, mixing, producer, background vocals

Chart positions[edit]

Certifications[edit]

Region Certification Certified units/Sales
United Kingdom (BPI)[16] 2× Platinum 600,000^
United States (RIAA)[17] 7× Platinum 7,000,000^

*sales figures based on certification alone
^shipments figures based on certification alone

References[edit]

See also[edit]

Preceded by
Giving You the Best That I Got by Anita Baker
Appetite for Destruction by Guns N' Roses
U.S. Billboard 200 number-one album
January 21, 1989 – February 4, 1989
February 18, 1989 – March 4, 1989
Succeeded by
Appetite for Destruction by Guns N' Roses
Electric Youth by Debbie Gibson
Preceded by
Strictly Business by EPMD
It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back by Public Enemy
Don't Let Love Slip Away by Freddie Jackson
Karyn White by Karyn White
U.S. Billboard R&B/Hip-Hop Albums number-one album
September 10, 1988 – September 17, 1988
October 1, 1988 – October 8, 1988
October 22, 1988 – November 12, 1988
March 18, 1989 – April 1, 1989
Succeeded by
It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back by Public Enemy
Don't Let Love Slip Away by Freddie Jackson
Giving You the Best That I Got by Anita Baker
Let's Get It Started by MC Hammer