Song Review: After 7 – “Ready Or Not”

“Ready Or Not” was released as the third single from After 7’s self-titled debut album from 1989. The single was released in 1990 and peaked at number seven on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. Two of After 7’s members are the brothers of R&B singer-songwriter-producer Kenneth “Babyface” Edmonds.

I was in the ninth grade and just about 15 years old when this single was released. It’s a song that’s got a rather simple sound and lyrics and that easily relatable to music audiences, whether they enjoy pop or R&B. It’s easy for me to hear why a song like this would have appealed to me as a teenager. And 25 years later, I still like this song quite a bit. In fact, I believe that “Ready Or Not” was the best song that After 7 has ever released.

At the time the single was being promoted, I never saw the music video in regular rotation on MTV. So I watched it right before working on this blog post. Early on, the video was lit in such a way that it was on the darker side. And since it looked darker, it was harder for me to see. As the video progresses, though, the lighting starts becoming brighter. From what I saw, it’s a rather bland video. It features the members of After 7 lip-syncing the song intercut with two couples slow dancing to the song. Honestly, it looks like I didn’t miss out on much by not seeing this video 25 years ago.


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