In the fast-paced world of social media, where trends come and go, 2023 has been an extraordinary year for our Instagram family. With over 300,000 followers strong, our community has not only weathered the ever-changing landscape of the digital realm but thrived within it.

But this year has been about more than numbers; it’s been about connections forged, experiences shared, and stories told. And now, as the year draws to a close, we’re excited to take a walk down memory lane and revisit the 10 best-performing posts that had our community talkin’ and strolling down memory lane.

So, whether you’ve been following us since day one or just joined our community this year, this article is a heartfelt thank you and a warm welcome. We’re about to embark on a journey through the highlights of 2023, a year that has been an incredible chapter in our collective story.

Let’s celebrate our community’s top 10 moments, the moments that have defined 2023 for us, one post at a time. 

#1 Heatwave’s performance of “Always and Forever”

Coming in with over 2 million views, this post for ‘Always and Forever’ by Heatwave exploded in the Soul Music Society community. Check it out. It’s crazy to me that this romantic ballad was not the highest-charting of Heatwave’s songs (that would be “Boogie Nights“), but it was the most long-lasting of ‘em. The part in this clip happens to be my favorite part of the song. What’s y’alls favorite part of “Always & Forever” – the beginning, middle, or ending?

#2 Soul Train dancers cuttin’ a rug to “Ballero” by War

This post of Soul Train dancers in 1974 dancing to “Ballero” by War racked up over 1.8 million views! The caption read, “Y’all ready for the weekend?” It’s safe to say that the Soul Music Society community was absolutely ready.

#3 Rose Royce performance of “Love Don’t Live Here Anymore”

It’s a well-known fact that everyone and their mamas love “Love Don’t Live Here Anymore” by Rose Royce. It’s also a well-known fact (now) that the Soul Music Society community adores this beautiful 70s classic. This post went crazy with over 1.7 million views.

#4 Kool and the Gang performance of “Summer Madness”

Kool and the Gang knew what they were doin’ with “Summer Madness.” Am I right? It reached number 35 on the Billboard Hot 100 and number 36 on the Hot Soul Singles charts. It has subsequently become one of the most sampled R&B compositions of all time. As of 2018, over 145 recordings had sampled it. Ain’t no telling how many have sampled it to date. The Soul Music Society watched this post over 1.2 million times.

#5 Soul Train dancers gettin’ down to “Superstition”

Superstition” by Stevie Wonder had these Soul Train dancers doing more than a little bitty two step on the dance floor. Can you imagine being there with them? This post racked up over 975k views. One thing about us: we gon’ catch a beat, baby!! Every dancer I see in this clip jammin’ to Superstition by the musical giant Stevie Wonder is leanin’ or dippin’ on the 2 and 4 – not the 1 and 3. It makes a difference. But even if there were 1 or 2 people on the 1 and 3, we still made it work and look effortless doing so. What beat would y’all catch to Superstition? For me it’s the 2 and 4.

The thing about rhythm is that some people have a better natural ability to recognize and synchronize movements with musical rhythms. That’s scientifically proven, y’all! And this might get under some people’s skin, but I would go as far to say that melanated folks have a higher understanding of the relationship in the function of the brain that allows an individual to discern the beat and to move in time to that beat. It is what it is. 🥳 And we make it look so smooth, too. 💃🏽

Now, about this song. Did y’all know that “Superstition” was intended for Jeff Beck, who was brought in to play some guitar parts on the album in exchange for a song – his work can be heard on the track “Lookin’ For Another Pure Love.” At one of the sessions, Stevie Wonder came up with the riff and wrote some lyrics, and they recorded a rough version of the song that day for Beck. It took Beck a while to record the song, and by the time he released it, Mr. Wonder’s version had been out for a month and was a huge hit. Some things are just meant to be.

And another thing is that this song incorporates many elements of rock music, which helped him extend his appeal to a different audience. So before Talking Book was released, Stevie Wonder went on tour with The Rolling Stones, which boosted his credibility in the world of rock. When “Superstition” was released, it was welcomed on the same radio stations that played The Stones. This earning Stevie Wonder a whole lotta new fans! Some folks may call it crossover appeal.

Anyway, do yourself a favor and pop on Superstition as ya get ready for the day. It will definitely put some pep in y’alls steps.

#6 Muhammad Ali on the Lola Falana Show

Muhammad Ali’s playing on the piano on the Lola Falana Show was a shocker. Y’all watched this video about 884,000 times! And wait til the end…it just gets better and better. Notice I wrote ‘playing on the piano’ earlier. It’s his inspired face as he plays for me.

#7 Afro Sheen commercial

Afro Sheen commercials were so cool back in the day!! You all watched this post over 856,000 times. One thing is for sure: she got that fro right and tight. Am I lyin’? Love to see the hair high up to the sky! Y’all, I was lookin’ for an afro emoji and couldn’t find one. We need an afro emoji!! We got curly, straight, ginger headed, and other types of hairstyles. 🤦🏽‍♀️ Anyway, y’all remember commercials like this? Well…

Afro Sheen was founded in the 1960s by George E. Johnson with his wife Joan to introduce high-quality hair care products into the African American market. His entrepreneurial spirit revolutionized the industry with hair products for African-American men and women.

#8 Tavares performance of “Heaven Must Be Missing An Angel”

What y’all know about “Heaven Must Be Missing An Angel” by Tavares? It’s a favorite cult classic because this post was watched over 694,000 times. “Heaven Must Be Missing an Angel” reached number 15 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart in 1976. It peaked at number three on the Hot Soul Singles chart. It was also an international chart hit, reaching number one in the Netherlands, and charting in Australia, Canada, the UK, and South Africa.

#9 Aretha Franklin performance of “Something He Can Feel”

The way Aretha Franklin shimmies and captivates as she performs “Something He Can Feel” in this video is worthy of several conversations. It was viewed over 650,000 times. One of the main topics from this post wasn’t even her legendary voice. It was, in fact, her crochet outfit which we love! All natural bodies for the win!

#10 Rerun dancing compilation

Still growing in views, this post has over 611,000 of them. A throwback for err’body. This post highlighted some clips of Fred Berry, aka Rerun, doin’ the doggone thang! It’s the high kicks and knee falls for me. I don’t know if that’s what they are called when he falls on his knees but it looks like it hurt. ‘Cause the way my knees are set up…and if you’re over 30 like me then you already know.

Fun fact: He began dancing on the television dance show “Soul Train” as a teenager and, in the early ‘70s, joined the Lockers, who performed in Las Vegas and opened for Dean Martin and other entertainers. He skyrocketed to fame in ‘76 as the happy-go-lucky Freddie “Rerun” Stubbs on “What’s Happening.” I remember watching that show in the 80s.

Y’all, there is so much more to his story. I encourage y’all to read all about his life story. Once you read about his journey, you may be encouraged to keep going in life if you’re facing challenges right now. Hope these clips make y’all smile today.

As we conclude our journey through the best of 2023, we want to express our deepest gratitude to each and every one of you, the heartbeat of Soul Music Society. Your unwavering support, your shared passion, and your energy have made this year unforgettable.

But, don’t think for a moment that our journey ends here. We can’t help but feel the electric excitement in the air. 2024 is right around the corner, and we’ve got some big surprises, epic collaborations, and unforgettable moments in store for you. So, stay tuned, keep the faith, and let’s continue to make history together, one two step at a time.

From the depths of our vinyl hearts, thank you for an incredible 2023, and here’s to the promise of an even greater 2024.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *