sos band

COVER vs ORIGINAL: ‘Just Be Good To Me’

The song, “Just Be Good To Me”, was originally recorded by The SOS Band in 1983

James ‘Jimmy Jam’ Harris (b.1959) and Terry Lewis (b.1956) wrote and produced the song, “Just Be Good To Me”, for American Funk/R&B group The SOS Band. It was recorded for their fourth studio album, “On The Rise”, in 1983 and releasesd as the first single in March. The song reached No.13 in the UK (their highest ever peak in that territory) and No.55 in the US, their first to chart commercially since “Take Your Time (Do It Right)” in 1980. The track also made No.2 on the R&B chart there.

“Just Be Good To Me” has been covered a number of times. American singer Deborah Cox took her version to No.8 on the US Club chart in 1996, while even Mariah Carey performed the track live on her 1993 and 1996 world tours. The best known, however, comes from British group, Beats International, who retitled it “Dub Be Good To Me” and added a rapping section about taking flight and being ‘jam nitty gritty’! The group was formed by former Housemartin Norman Cook and hired the vocals of Lindy Layton for this version and it seemed to work as the revamp topped the UK singles chart for four weeks in February and March 1990. Jam hot!

But which version is the best? THE SOS BAND’s original or BEATS INTERNATIONAL’s rework?