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what's the catch?

What's the 411?

What's the 411? is the debut album by hip hop soul singer Mary J. Blige, released July 28, 1992 (see 1992 in music). The album's then-nearly unique blend of hip hop and soul have made it a pivotal album in the development, and perhaps the very first example of, hip hop soul. The album was an unexpected crossover success at a time when soul albums were unpopular as hip hop and grunge music dominated the charts; its success was buoyed by early chart success for "You Remind Me" and "Real Love".

What's the 411? peaked at #6 on the Billboard 200 albums chart, and topped the Top Hip Hop/R&B Albums chart. "You Remind Me" and What's the 411? were certified gold by the RIAA in August and September of 1992, respectively. One month later, What's the 411? was certified platinum and a month after that, "Real Love" was certified gold. In February of 1993, What's the 411? was certified double platinum but sales would soon reach that of triple platinum status.

According to the back of the CD-5 maxi single for "You Remind Me," the original title planned for the album was Reminisce and a number was even assigned to that title--the tray card for the single says "Original version will appear on the album 'Reminisce' UTP-10654."

Track listing

# Title Length Featured Artists Producer(s)
1 "Leave A Message" 3:38 Sean "Puffy" Combs for The Hitmen
2 "Reminisce" 5:24 Dave "Jam" Hall (and Sean "Puffy" Combs)
3 "Real Love" 4:32 The Notorious B.I.G. Mark C. Rooney & Mark Morales
4 "You Remind Me" 4:19 Dave "Jam" Hall
5 "Intro Talk" 2:17 Busta Rhymes Sean "Puffy" Combs for The Hitmen
6 "Sweet Thing" 3:46 Mark C. Rooney & Mark Morales
7 "Love No Limit" 5:01 Dave "Jam" Hall
8 "I Don't Want To Do Anything" 5:52 K-Ci of Jodeci Devante Swing
9 "Slow Down" 4:33 Mark C. Rooney & Mark Morales
10 "My Love" 4:14 Dave "Jam" Hall
11 "Changes I've Been Going Through" 5:15 Sean "Puffy" Combs for The Hitmen, Mark C. Rooney & Mark Morales
12 "What's the 411?" 4:13 Grand Puba Sean "Puffy" Combs for The Hitmen

Personnel

Charting singles

1992 You Remind Me                   The Billboard Hot 100           No. 29
1992    Real Love                 The Billboard Hot 100           No. 7
1992 Reminisce                 The Billboard Hot 100           No. 57
1993 Love No Limit                 The Billboard Hot 100           No. 44

1992 Real Love                 Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Singles & Tracks  No. 1
1992 You Remind Me                   Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Singles & Tracks  No. 1
1993 Reminisce                 Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Singles & Tracks  No. 6
1993 I Don't Want to Do Anything Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Singles & Tracks  No. 86
1994 My Love                         Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Singles & Tracks  No. 23

1992 You Remind Me                   Rhythmic Top 40                   No. 23
1993 Reminisce                 Rhythmic Top 40                   No. 34
1993 Love No Limit                 Rhythmic Top 40                   No. 15

1992 Real Love                 Top 40 Mainstream           No. 8

1992 Real Love                 Hot Dance Music/Club Play   No. 36
1992 You Remind Me                 Hot Dance Music/Maxi-Singles SalesNo. 7
1993 Love No Limit                 Hot Dance Music/Maxi-Singles SalesNo. 7
1993 Reminisce                 Hot Dance Music/Maxi-Singles SalesNo. 5

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