| April 2, 1982|
| 7", 12"|
| 3:38 (7")
7:13 (Extended version)|
"Forget Me Nots" is a song by American rhythm and blues and crossover jazz singer-songwriter Patrice Rushen. Co-written by Rushen, Freddie Washington, and Terri McFaddin, it appeared on Rushen's seventh studio album, Straight from the Heart. Making a radical shift in her music, Rushen would continue to harness the particular style of this record all through to her next album Now, released two years later in 1984. Originally deemed by record label executives as a "flop", Rushen released the song and the song became a Top 40 pop (#23), Top 5 R&B (#4), and Top 5 dance (#2) hit on the Billboard charts and is the hit she's most notable for. Rushen's performance received a Grammy nomination for Best Female R&B Vocal Performance. Rushen had a number of songs on the R&B and Dance charts, but "Forget Me Nots" was her only U.S. Top 40 pop hit and ranked #86 on VH1's 100 Greatest One Hit Wonders of the 1980s.
The bass line is particularly recognizable, and was performed on the record by session bass player Freddie Washington.
The classic tenor saxophone solo was played by Los Angeles session player and recording artist, Gerald Albright. Albright also appears in the music video of the song.
The lyrics are from the point of view of one professing her longing for a rekindling with an ex-lover. She ruminates on the romance's end, and sends the lover forget-me-nots, a flower that since medieval times has been given and worn to symbolize enduring love despite absence or separation.
Forget Me Nots Wikipedia
Along with being prominently featured in the Tom Hanks hit film, Big, the song has been frequently sampled. These include George Michael in "Fastlove" (which samples the song near the end); it is also copied by Will Smith's 1997 hit "Men in Black" from the film of the same name, it also plays at the end of episodes in Men in Black: The Series; French rapper MC Solaar on "Les Temps Changent" from his funk-inspired Paradisiaque album, and also by hip hop artists The Beatnuts in "Give Me Tha Ass" from the Stone Crazy LP. In addition, Australian satirist Pauline Pantsdown sampled it heavily in the song "Backdoor Man" in 1997.
The song has also been covered directly by several artists. In 1991, electronic band Tongue 'n' Cheek recorded a dance version of "Forget Me Nots", which reached #26 on the UK Singles Chart. In 1996, Eurodance/dance-pop duo La Bouche covered it on their remix album, All Mixed Up. In 2006, jazz guitarist Lee Ritenour collaborated with Patrice Rushen and South African singer Zamajobe on a cover version of the song for his album, Smoke 'n Mirrors. Zamajobe sang the lead vocal, with Rushen on background vocals, Rhodes piano and on an organ solo. The version featured a brief African rhythm interlude. In 2007, German dance project Vinylshakerz released their version of "Forget Me Nots".
The single had a respectable chart performance in the United States and in some countries around the world. In the United States, the song debuted on the Billboard Hot 100 at No. 90 on May 1, 1982. It peaked at No. 23 on July 3, 1982. In Ireland, the single charted on May 16, 1982 and peaked at No. 19. The song debuted on the United Kingdom chart at No. 72 on April 24, 1982 before peaking at No. 8 on May 29. In New Zealand, the song debuted at No. 45 on August 1, 1982 and peaked at No. 8 on September 26, 1982.