Song Review: Calloway – “I Wanna Be Rich”

“I Wanna Be Rich” was released as the third and final single from their 1989 debut album, All The Way. The single peaked at number two on the Billboard Hot 100 chart.

I was 14 years old and in the ninth grade when this single was released. It’s such a catchy and upbeat song that it’s no wonder that I, as well as a lot of the pop audience at the time, liked it as much as we did. The lyrics see the speaker talking about their money woes, yet trying to be optimistic about finding ways to turn their situation around. While most of the song talks about wanting to be rich in terms of money, the last line of the chorus sees the speaker wanting to be “full of love, peace and happiness.” Even though this song did well for the duo, they never had another pop hit on the charts, which makes them another one of the “one-hit wonders” from the 1990s. From doing some research, I learned that the Calloway brothers were songwriters before recording All The Way, and after their own recording career dried up they went on to become producers. So they’re still active in the music industry, just not as performers.

The music video intercuts footage of the brothers being regular “Joe Schmoes” at home (either dealing with bill collector or just hanging around their house) with performance footage. Admittedly, the video isn’t anything terribly special and is rather simple, but it works for a song like “I Wanna Be Rich.”

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