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"I Wanna Sex You Up" is a song recorded by American group Color Me Badd. The song was released in March 1991 as the lead single from their debut album C.M.B. (1991). The song was produced by Dr. Freeze and was also featured on the soundtrack to the 1991 film New Jack City.

"I Wanna Sex You Up"
Single by Color Me Badd
from the album C.M.B. and New Jack City (soundtrack)
ReleasedMarch 2, 1991
Songwriter(s)Elliot Straite
Producer(s)Dr. Freeze[2]
Color Me Badd singles chronology
"I Wanna Sex You Up"
"I Adore Mi Amor"
Music video
"I Wanna Sex You Up" on YouTube

The single achieved commercial success in the United States, United Kingdom and New Zealand, where it reached number one on the charts. It spent four weeks at position number two on the US Billboard Hot 100, but topped both the Billboard Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs and maxi-singles sales charts.


Charts and rankingsEdit

The song spent three weeks at number one on the UK Singles Chart and reached number two on the Billboard Hot 100, behind both "More Than Words" by Extreme and "Rush Rush" by Paula Abdul. It was the 10th best-selling single of 1991 in the UK and the Number 2 song of the year in the US, and in 1992 the song won the group a Soul Train Music Award for Best R&B/Soul Single, Group, Band or Duo and Soul Train Music Award for Best R&B/Soul Song of the Year. It was ranked #40 on Blender's list of the "50 Worst Songs Ever"[3] and VH1's "100 Greatest Songs of the 90s".


The "to the tick tock ya don't stop" soundbite is sampled from Doug E. Fresh's "La Di Da Di." The bassline, chord structure and the "I know you not gonna sing that song!" soundbite are sampled from Betty Wright's "Tonight is the Night." The chorus melody is from the Shuggie Otis song "Strawberry Letter 23".

A sample of "I Wanna Sex You Up" has been used in the Kardinal Beats remix of "Tick Tock" by Lemar.[4]

Appearances in other mediaEdit


The song has been used in The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, Two Guys, a Girl and a Pizza Place, and a 1991 episode of the daytime soap opera Days of Our Lives.

The music video played on an episode of Beavis & Butt-Head, in which Beavis calls Color Me Badd a "Super Suck Group", referring to group members Sam Watters, Mark Calderon, and Bryan Abrams as Kenny G, George Michael, and Snow respectively. Butt-Head also commented that if he "sang like a wuss" that he would get chicks.

It was performed by members of the Glee cast in the episode "Acafellas", and subsequently released as a bonus track on Glee: The Music, Volume 1, which was sold at Target.

Jimmy Fallon's The Ragtime Gals did a barbershop quarter rendition of the song for Late Night (NBC).

Gabriel "Fluffy" Iglesias did the song during an episode of Lip Sync Battle.


The alternate hit version also appeared on the New Jack City soundtrack.[citation needed]

Track listingsEdit

7" single
  1. "I Wanna Sex You Up" (master mix) — 4:05
  2. "I Wanna Sex You Up" (smoothed out mix) — 3:38
12" maxi
  1. "I Wanna Sex You Up" (smoothed out mix) — 3:38
  2. "I Wanna Sex You Up" (smoothed out - long version) — 5:13
  3. "I Wanna Sex You Up" (instrumental) — 4:04
  4. "I Wanna Sex You Up" (master mix) — 4:05
  5. "I Wanna Sex You Up" (freeze mix) — 4:06
CD maxi
  1. "I Wanna Sex You Up" (smoothed out mix) — 3:39
  2. "I Wanna Sex You Up" (smoothed out mix - long version) — 5:14
  3. "I Wanna Sex You Up" (Instrumental) — 4:04
  4. "I Wanna Sex You Up" (master mix) — 4:05
  5. "I Wanna Sex You Up" (freeze mix) — 4:07
  1. "I Wanna Sex You Up" (master mix)
  2. "I Wanna Sex You Up" (smoothed out mix)
  3. "I Wanna Sex You Up" (master mix)
  4. "I Wanna Sex You Up" (smoothed out mix)

Official VersionsEdit

  • "I Wanna Sex You Up" (album version) — 4:06
  • "I Wanna Sex You Up" (freeze mix) — 4:07
  • "I Wanna Sex You Up" (Instrumental) — 4:04
  • "I Wanna Sex You Up" (master mix) — 4:05
  • "I Wanna Sex You Up" (smoothed out mix) — 3:39
  • "I Wanna Sex You Up" (smoothed out mix - long version) — 5:14


  • Co-producer : Howie Tee, Spyderman
  • Engineer : Angela Piva, Warren Woods
  • Mastered by Eddy Schreyer
  • Mixed by Dr. Freeze, Howie Tee
  • Producer : Dr. Freeze

Cover versionsEdit

  • Glee Cast (Glee: The Music, Season 1, Volume 1) - Columbia 88697 60687 2 US
  • Bruno Mars has done live covers on several tour dates and on his New Year's Eve performance (2013/2014) at The Chelsea in Las Vegas.
  • Jimmy Fallon and his barbershop quartet, the "Ragtime Gals" covered the song on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon in 2013.


See alsoEdit


  1. ^ Josephs, Brian (July 20, 2012). "The 25 Best New Jack Swing Songs". Complex. Retrieved July 26, 2016.
  2. ^ C.M.B. (liner notes). Color Me Badd. Giant Records. 1991. Retrieved April 17, 2016.CS1 maint: others (link)
  3. ^ The 50 Worst Songs Ever! Watch, Listen and Cringe! Archived 2010-12-26 at the Wayback Machine from
  4. ^ RCA. "Lemar – Tick Tock". Archived from the original on 2007-09-27. Retrieved 2007-07-01.
  5. ^ a b c d e f g h "I Wanna Sex You Up", in various singles charts (Retrieved April 7, 2008)
  6. ^ Lwin, Nanda. Top 40 Hits: The Essential Chart Guide (2000). Mississauga, Ont.: Music Data Canada
  7. ^ "Top 10 Denmark" (PDF). Music & Media. Retrieved 2018-03-22.
  8. ^ a b "Single top 100 over 1991" (pdf) (in Dutch). Top40. Retrieved 13 April 2010.
  9. ^ Pennanen, Timo (2006). Sisältää hitin - levyt ja esittäjät Suomen musiikkilistoilla vuodesta 1972 (in Finnish) (1st ed.). Helsinki: Kustannusosakeyhtiö Otava. p. 263. ISBN 978-951-1-21053-5.
  10. ^ German Singles Chart Archived 2009-01-08 at the Wayback Machine (Retrieved April 7, 2008)
  11. ^ Irish Single Chart Archived 2009-06-03 at WebCite (Retrieved April 7, 2008)
  12. ^ UK Singles Chart (Retrieved April 7, 2008)
  13. ^ a b c Billboard (Retrieved August 10, 2008)
  14. ^ 1991 Australian Singles Chart (Retrieved August 10, 2008)
  15. ^ "End of Year Charts 1991". Recorded Music NZ. Retrieved December 3, 2017.
  16. ^ "Billboard Top 100 - 1991". Archived from the original on 2009-07-07. Retrieved 2009-09-15.
  17. ^ Australia certifications [1] (Retrieved May 8, 2012)
  18. ^ UK certifications (Retrieved August 10, 2008)
  19. ^ US certifications (Retrieved August 10, 2008)

External linksEdit