My man Bernard Wright passed away in a car accident here in Dallas, TX yesterday, and I am deeply saddened. Our prayers go out to his family and God bless his soul. Bernard Wright made an impression on me at a very young and impressionable age. In 1985 the song “Who Do You Love” was released, and I remember it being a hit and a song I truly liked, due to the ethereal harmonies and incessant hook. The song just took you to another place. That place was where you found the love you have always longed for, and when asked whether you are sure about it, you are emphatic with it, and you say yes I am and I’m ready to give it all up for this one. So for some reason this song has stuck with me, it has in essence haunted me – purely in a positive way though. And as someone obsessed with all things Neo Soul, including artists and cuts that I consider roots of Neo Soul, I definitely put this track on my Roots of Neo Soul family tree.
Then in 1996 my man LL Cool J came out with “Loungin” and of course he recruited Total to do the backgrounds and my song took on another meaning, and yes I enjoyed it, cause my man LL – a true GOAT- knows how to tell a love story in a hard rap like no one else. In his version of things, some dude who laces his honey with the finer things, but can’t really connect with her, is about to get got by Mr. Smith. Yes, I love “Loungin,” cause it’s just plain dope, but I have to stay true to the original “Who Do You Love” as my favorite use of the track and message.
Bernard Wright should be remembered for more than just “Who Do You Love,” since he was a precocious talent who over the decades influenced many in the R&B, Hip Hop, Jazz and Gospel genres. He has other songs that have been sampled by major artists (i.e., Skee-Lo’s “I Wish” from “Spinnin”) and he has albums that will live on. However, I will forever remember Bernard Wright for the song I literally cannot get out of my head. A song on my Top 10 list. Who Do You Love? I love this song. Are you for sure? Damn right I am!
Check out some articles on his passing:
And definitely check out the cut of life “Who Do You Love”
As well as the forever dope “Loungin”
And Skee-Lo’s “I Wish”
Also, a more recent performance from the legend: