Robert Palmer: I Didn’t Mean to Turn You On
Urban r&b darling Cherrelle started the fire, Robert Palmer poured on the gasoline.
Robert Palmer‘s take on the Jam & Lewis track was far too adventurous than the pop-rock panderings of “Addicted to Love” and “Simply Irresistible,” due to its unapologetic dancefloor charm and urban sweat. ’80’s archivists see it as the Brit singer fumbling with his blue-eyed soul turn-ons. Others tend to ignore it all together. But listen to Palmer’s need to whip out David Bowie eroticness on those low notes. Clearly, Palmer was blending dance-pop with contagious Prince-like funk riffs, creating the perfect atmosphere for an across-the-board crossover. And it worked: “I Didn’t Mean to Turn You On,” the second strongest single to leap off of Palmer’s double-platinum LP Riptide, went to number two in 1986.
J MATTHEW COBB