90's Music
A visual collection of the biggest hits of the 90's.


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Home      90's TV Themes

TV Series
Beverly Hills, 90210

90's Music in TV


"Bad Boys"
Bad Boys
#8 1993 
Since 1989, FOX has been airing the reality TV series Cops. The series follows police in a series of pursuits and arrests. Through the show, Harry Newman provides narration as to where the scene is located, why the suspect is being pursued and what action the police are taking to resolve the issue. In addition to combating crime, the show went on to make International stars out of Inner Circle. The reggae group consists of brothers Roger and Ian Lewis. Formed in Jamaica in 1968, the group recorded several albums through the 70's and 80's. They did not achieve any commercial success until Cops implemented "Bad Boys" as the opening song to the show. "Bad Boys" was first released in 1987 on the album One Way, on the Ras label. Although Cops first aired in 1989, the single did not hit the radio market until 1993 when it rose to #8 on the Billboard Hot 100. Big Beat records released Inner Circle's Bad Boys album in 1993 with the inclusion of "Bad Bays" as well as "Sweat (A La La La La Long)." Since then, the song has remained the theme song and has also been included in the Bad Boys films starring Will Smith and Matin Lawrence.

The Simpsons

"Do The Bartman"
The Simpsons Sing The Blues
#11 1990
"Deep, Deep Trouble"
The Simpsons Sing The Blues
#69 1991
In 1990, The Simpsons were  the most controversial family on TV. A spinoff from The Tracey Ullman Show, The Simpsons brought animation back to prime time television. Instantly, FOX had one of the biggest shows on TV. The success of the show helped to put FOX in a position to compete with ABC, NBC and CBS. Merchandise poured into stores. Everything and anything was sold with the Simpson's on it. From bedding to cloths and board games to  trading cards. Even a CD was released.  The Simpsons Sing The Blues, from Geffen records, featured Homer, Marge, Maggie, Lisa and Bart. While at the time it was unusual, singles were not released for the album. Radio airplay, and rotation on MTV were the driving force behind the success of the albums hit single "Do The Bartman." The song, performed by Nancy Carteright as Bart Simpson was cowritten by Michael Jackson and Bryan Loren. It became a phenomenon on radio and from airplay alone, it sailed to #11 on the Billboard Hot 100 in early 1991. Shortly after the success of "Do The Bartman," "Deep, Deep Trouble" hit the airwaves. The second single, produced by DJ Jazzy Jeff, featured Yeardley Smith as Lisa Simpson. A moderate success, "Deep, Deep Trouble" peaked at #69 in 1991. Five more Simpsons albums followed The Simpsons Sing The Blues, but none charted any further singles.

The Heights

"How Do You Talk To An Angel"
The Heights
#1 1992
In 1991, The Commitments found success on the big screen in The Commitments. The following year, in 1992, FOX tried to implement similiar success with the story of a young American band in the television series, The Heights. In the series, a young fictional band was followed as they tried to break into the music industry. Jamie Walters led the cast, and ultimately ended up on Beverly Hills, 90210 in 1994. The Heights was not very successful as a series and only lasted one season. Musically, the band rockected to the top of the charts when "How You Do Talk To An Angel" reached #1 in November of 1992. That in itself was quite a feat as it knocked "End Of The Road" by Boyz II Men off the top spot, and was then replaced by Whitney Houston's "I Will Always Love You." Two of the biggest songs of the decade.
While The Heights garnished very little success as a series, the song "How Do You Talk To An Angel" was nominated for an Emmy for "Outstanding Individual Achievement in Music And Lyrics." Walters who sang the lead vocals went on to record his own album and had a moderate hit with "Hold On" in 1995. Walters went on to record a total of three solo albums. In 2009, he appeared on the VH1 reality program Confessions Of A Teen Idol.
                       "How Do You Talk To An Angel" The Heights

Beverly Hills, 90210

"Saving Forever For You"
Beverly Hills 90210: The Soundtrack
#4 1992
"The Right Kind Of Love"
Beverly Hills 90210: The Soundtrack
#14 1993
"Love Is"
Beverly Hills 90210: The Soundtrack
Vanessa Williams & Brian McKnight
#3 1993
Debuting on October 4, 1990, Beverly Hills, 90210 ran on FOX until 2000. The show brought forth a drama aimed at teens revolving around the lives of Brenda and Brandon Walsh as they adapted to life in Beverly Hills after moving there from Minnesota. Through the ten years the show aired, stars Jason Priestly, Shannon Doherty and Luke Perry became household names. Brian Austin Green, who played David, currently stars in Terminator: Sarah Connor Chronicles, and Jennie Garth stars in What I Like About You. Garth, along with Ian Ziering, has appeared on Dancing With The Stars. Tori Spelling currently stays busy with her reality show Tori and Dean: Home Sweet Hollywood. Doherty, Garth and Spelling also appear on the current spinoff, titled simply 90210. The shows bad boy Dylan McKay was played by Luke Perry. Perry appears in several films due for release in 2009. Among them The Storm, Swedish Midsummer Comedy and Angel and the Badman.
In addition to creating a star powered cast, the show also incorporated the talents of many popular music acts. Paula Abdul, Color Me Badd and Tara Kemp were some of the chart topping stars who contrinuted to the 1992 release of Beverly Hills, 90210: The Soundtrack. While the theme song to the show by John Davis was included on the album, it was not released as a commercial single, nor did it receive airplay. But, with three top 40 hits, the television soundtrack proved that there was a place for music in television, and started off a popular trend in the 90's which turned music from television series into bankable hits. Two more soundtracks followed from the show. The second Beverly Hills 90210: The College Years, also featured relevant stars at the time. Lisa Stansfield and Cathy Dennis appeared on the album, but ultimately the only artists to chart would be Jade, M People and US3. The final album in the series, Beverly Hills 90210: Songs From The Peach Pit, featured classic songs from the 60's that would have played in Nat's jukebox in the Peach Pit.
A total of three albums were released in conjunction with the hit show.
Beverly Hills 90210: The Soundtrack Giant Records 1992
Beverly Hills 90210:The College Years Giant Records 1994
Beverly Hills 90210: Songs From The Peach Pit Giant Records 1996
"Cantaloop (Flip Fantasia)"
Beverly Hills 90210:The College Years 
#9 1994 
"Moving On Up"
Beverly Hills 90210:The College Years 
#34 1994 
"Every Day Of The Week"
Beverly Hills 90210:The College Years 
#20 1994 
                                "Saving Forever For You" Shanice 

Party Of Five

"Closer To Free" 
Closer To Free
#16 1996
With The Heights behind them and Beverly Hills, 90210 pulling in stong ratings, FOX brought a new drama to television that also made an impact in the music world. Party Of Five rose to achieve critical success and commercial success. The series, which focused on a family of five children who had lost their parents to a drunk driving accident, won a Golden Globe in 1996 for Best Drama.
The five talented stars of the series, which ran from 1994 to 2000, all went on to achieve success after the show. Neve Campbell starred in Scream. Jennifer Love Hewitt starred in I Know What You Did Last Summer, and went on to pursue a recording career of her own. Her biggest hit to date is "How Do I Deal." She also appeared in the short lived Time Of Your Life, which chronicled Party Of Five's Sarah. The character moved to New York. Ultimately, that series only lasted one season. She has found greater success in her series The Ghost Whisperer. Matthew Fox found success on NBC's series Lost. Scott Wolf starred in the film Go! in 1999. The youngest of the group was Lacey Chabert. Chabert found success in the film Mean Girls, and also contributed the voice of Eliza in The Wild Thornberrys. She is still active in film and her most recent acting endeavor is 2009's The Ghosts Of Girlfriends Past.
"Closer To Free" by the BoDeans played over the shows opening credits. The BoDeans, a Milwaukee band, consisting of Kurt Neumann and Sammy BoDean, had been recording albums since the late 80's, but had never found commercial success on the pop charts until "Closer To Free" found its way to radio.  "Fadeaway" and "Good Things" were two early BoDeans hits which achieved a great deal of underground success as well rave critical review. In 1995 the song was also used in the film Heavyweights, starring Ben Stiller. With exposure on television and in film, "Closer To Free" climbed to #16 in 1996. Although they have not charted any singles since then, the BoDeans continue to release albums. Still was their most recent recording which debuted in 2008.
              "Closer To Free" The BoDeans         Party Of Five Opening Credits


"This House Is Not A Home" b/w
"I'll Be There For You"
Friends Soundtrack
#17 1995 
"Good Intentions"
Friends Soundtrack
#23 1995
"I Go Blind"
Friends Soundtrack
#13 1996
Perhaps the most recognizable television sitcom ever is NBC's Friends. Starting in 1994, the show ran for ten years until 2004 when it finally came to an end. Jennifer Aniston, Courtney Cox, Lisa Kudrow, Matt LeBlanc, Matthew Perry and David Schwimmer created the ensemble cast of a small circle of friends in New York City. The show impacted American culture in every way possible. From hair cuts to coffee shops, Friends made a huge impact. Through the course of its ten year run, the show has been nominated for a total of 63 Emmy Awards. Of those 63 nominations, the show won 6. Year after year, the show ended up in the top ten of the most viewed shows. In the 2001 - 2002 season , the show actually  ranked as the #1 show for the season. In 1995, the early success of the show inspired the Reprise label, a division of Warner Brothers, to release a soundtrack to the series.
The biggest and most obvious hit was "I'll Be There For You" by The Rembrandts. Initially, the song was penned by Michael Skloff and  Allee Williams with the hopes that They Might Be Giants or R.E.M. would perform the title track. The Rembrandts  had previously hit the charts in 1990 with "Just The Way It Is, Baby" and were for the most part, moderately unknown to the general public. They recorded "I'll Be There For You" for the show, and created a longer version suitable for radio and the soundtrack. Once completed, they also included the song on their 1995 album, LP. The lead single from the album was "This House Is Not A Home." "I'll Be There For You" was included as the flip side to the single. While the song sailed to #1 on the airplay charts, it was stalled on the Hot 100 as there was not an actual retail single available. This was a common practice for the songs released from the Friends Soundtrack to drive actual album sales. As a result, "I'll Be There For You" is only credited as reaching #17 on the Hot 100 as the flip side to "This House Is Not A Home." Had the single been sold as "I'll Be There For You," it would have easily captured the #1 spot.
Other acts followed with successful hits from the soundtrack. Hootie & The Blowfish and Toad The Wet Sprocket landed top 40 hits with their contributions. The Barenaked Ladies and k.d. Lang also received exposure from the CD with their songs "Shoe Box" and "Sexuality."
A second album entitled Friends Again was released in 1999, but could not attain the initial success of the first album.
                               "I'll Be There For You" The Rembrandts

Dawson's Creek

"I Don't Want To Wait"
Songs From Dawson's Creek
This Fire
#11 1998 
1998 brought a new type of teen drama to the WB. Dawson's Creek ran until 2003 with James Van Der Beek and Katie Homes as the stars. Like 90210, the show followed a group of teenagers through highschool and beyond. Set in the East Coast, the characters came across as more grounded and down to Earth then those in the glitzy settings out West. The show was often quite controversial as real topics were addressed.
Music played a key role in the series and two albums were released in conjunction with the program. Songs From Dawson's Creek features the theme song to the show as performed by Paula Cole. "I Don't Want To Wait" was Cole's second single to score on the charts. Released in 1997, the song finally peaked at #11 in 1998. Cole had also featured the song on her album, This Fire. It was that album that contributed to her nomination and win for The Best New Artist Grammy in 1998.
                              "I Don't Want To Wait" Paula Cole
 2009 Ralio
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