First Hit #1: June 15, 1991
Paula Abdul also decided to do a ballad in 1991, which was a break from her normal singles. The difference between Paula Abdul and Extreme is that a Paula Abdul ballad isn’t actually a big break from her dance singles. In fact, Rush Rush just sounds like Paula Abdul slowed down. The vocal takes a bit longer to unfold, the song is a bit longer, but it’s still recognizably Abdul, and she’s not dramatically changing what she does. She’s still got a pretty good voice, she still has some pretty good instincts, but it’s also easy to see why her pop career stalled later – most of her defining style is very rooted in the era, and if she were to actually change she wouldn’t sound like Paula Abdul. It’s one of the cruel ironies of pop, those who push hardest with certain trends are the first to get left behind when the trends start to shift.
Also of note is the video, which features Keanu Reeves doing his best James Dean homage. Was it weird to just see Keanu Reeves in a music video in 1991, or is it just weird now?