Fresh

Album: Emergency (1984)
Charted: 11 9

Songfacts®:

  • This R&B chart-topper may have been a fresh hit for Kool & the Gang, but it had been sitting on the shelf for a while. The group's lead singer, James "J.T." Taylor, borrowed the tune from the band he was in before joining the Gang. "But it was a totally different groove. When I played it for [drummer] George Brown, he changed it," Taylor told Billboard.
  • The album's producer, Jim Bonnefond, brought in songwriter Sandy Linzer to help with the lyrics. Linzer recalled: "They had a title, and they wanted a lyric about all the fresh things that were going on in the world. I just changed it to 'She's fresh,' wrote the lyrics to the verses, and submitted it."
  • Many consider this the origin of the slang term "fresh," meaning remarkably cool (or is that Kool?) and original. While the term started showing up in hip-hop songs a few years before - the earliest being Grandmaster Flash & The Furious Five's "It's Nasty (Genius of Love)" in 1981 ('m a man that's fresh, huh, a woman's pet) - this song existed prior to 1978 when Taylor first joined Kool & the Gang.

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