Too $hort Breaks Down His 25 Most Essential Songs

17. Too $hort "The Ghetto" (1990)



Producer: Too $hort
Album: Short Dog's In The House
Label: Jive

Too $hort: “[That was] the first time we ever really did what you were supposed to do [for a music video]. Everything before that was like some ragtag, just throw the cameras on, just do these silly old videos.

 

I've had [Donnie Hathaway's] wife come back to me and thank me for making the song the way I made it. It was a good thing. Even his daughter, they all remember the song.

 

“If you look at videos like 'Short But Funky,' 'I Ain't Trippin'' and 'Life Is Too $hort,' all that stuff was like, 'Your first video!' But 'The Ghetto' was a real song that got a lot of radio play. I'm pretty sure the song was on the radio and was a certified hit long before we shot the video because that's how they used to do it back then. The song had to be a proven hit and then you got a video budget.

“I knew the history of the song by Donny Hathaway. It was another song Al Eaton brought me. I watched him sit there and record the guitar part in one take. He was playing the guitar the way Donny Hathaway sang it. He was doing the the singing part through the guitar. When he gave me the track. You can just hear a fucking hit when you hear it.

“The hook hadn't been put on there yet but I did the hook from Donny Hathaway, I went home, and I did the right fucking song. I've had [Hathaway's] wife come back to me and thank me for making the song the way I made it. It was a good thing. Even his daughter, they all remember the song. It was a special kind of thing.”

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