Why Wasn't This a Huge Hit?: Res' 'They Say Vision'

I got an unexpected treat during my Friday afternoon lunch at PopWatch’s favorite lunch spot, Faces & Names — and I’m not talking about Annie Barrett’s shocking last-minute switch from quesadilla to chicken Caesar. (Whoa!) Rather, I was delighted to hear Res’ "They Say Vision" pop up on the restaurant’s sound system.

Those of you who spent a lot of quality time with VH1 back in 2001 might remember the eye-catching video clip for Res’ restless, shuffling ode to nonconformity (see below). I know I was hooked on the track right from its nifty opening line — "I wanna try that pill that people take/Make you believe all the things that people say" — and haven’t grown tired after six years in regular rotation on my stereo. The weird thing is, though, that despite all the video play "They Say Vision" received, it never broke through to become the massive radio hit I expected it to be; neither did the singer’s equally catchy "Golden Boy" (check that one out after the jump). Maybe Res’ music just didn’t fit comfortably enough into any pre-approved radio format?

The good news is, a trip to Res’ MySpace page finds her musically alive and well, sampling Corey Hart’s "Sunglasses at Night" to intriguing effect on a new track called "Steady." Be sure to click here and ch-ch-check it out, but not before you explain to me: Why wasn’t "They-Say Vision" a huge hit?

Comments (40 total) Add your comment
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  • Phil

    Haha Michael, I went to elementary school with Res, which is short for Sherrise (I know I did NOT spell that right) at Waldron Mercy Academy!! She was a year ahead of me, & was also in the same class at Rob McElheney from ITS ALWAYS SUNNY IN PHILADELPHIA. (Theres a Wiki fact I doubt anyone else has ever mentioned!!) I haven’t seen her in the last couple years, but the last time i did see her was right after her album dropped, and I had to tell her some unfortunate news about a friend of ours that we went to school with had passed away a month prior. She was out touring & promoting the album & had to hear about it through e-mails but could never get all the pieces to the story, since it was very tragic. I had hoped that “They Say Vision” would have become a bigger hit, especially with all the great club mixes they released for it, but I also think MCA released the song in 2002, NOT 2001. And shortly there-after MCA disolved into another Universal owned label.

  • Saph

    I totally agree with you! She is such a talent. She’s playing in NYC at SOB’s on the 15th and I can’t wait to see her live.

  • Katie

    I can’t believe someone else knows this song!! I, too, discovered it on TV back in the day, although it was on MTV – so yeah, if it was getting such heavy rotation on two networks I don’t understand why it wasn’t a hit. I instantly fell in love with it, and still listen to it on a regular basis; I just don’t know why no one else followed suit! But I think the fact that there is someone else out there who feels the same about this song could be considered success enough for Res, who sadly is virtually unknown to…well, everyone. Thanks for giving this a shout out!

  • Court

    I LOVE her! A friend of mine and I are totally obsessed with her and we don’t understand why nobody else knows about her. She’s great!

  • Gringo

    this has been a favourite of mine for years. i have always wondered the same thing. the remixes are hot, especially Robbie Rivera’s Vocal Mix Part Two.

  • Matthew

    I was expecting this to be either a song I’d never heard of or a song that came out years ago and one that I absolutely hated. But “They Say Vision” is an amazing song. I can see maybe why “Golden Boy” wasnt such a huge hit, but ‘Vision’ definitely had the potential to be something big. Hearing this song reminded me about the early-2000 vh1, where things involving “fit clubs” and people like “flava flav” were non-existant on that channel.

  • shonuff

    you can add they say vision to a host of other amazing r&b songs that just didn’t take off as radio transitioned into a children’s club in the earlier part of the decade. there was jaguar wright’s ain’t nobody playin, deborah cox’s absolutely not (though that became a now-legendary club hit), the entire anastacia experience, kelis & puffy’s lets get ill, kina’s girl from the gutter, both of lina’s albums (which we’ve seen here before)and a slew of others. a shame really, since the creativity and general pop sensibility they’ve all shown was ignored for more generic pap.

  • saybo

    I had forgotten this song, but I totally remember the heavy rotation it got on TV. Do you think this is a case where her beauty made people want to watch the video, but the song on it’s own didn’t stand up for radio-listeners?

  • Ted

    Res is one of my faves! I saw the Golden Boys vid on MTV and went out and bought How I Do. It’s a fantastic album and I’m surprised she didnt garner more of a following. She had a lot of label problems but its good to know she’s been keeping busy (touring with Gnarls Barkley, putting up MySpace songs). Hope more people check her out cuz of this!

  • Fatima

    Lina AND Res? Slezak, did you still my iPod? Cause I want it back.

  • Fatima

    I should add that another fantastic Res song that wasn’t a single is “I’ve Known The Garden” Everyone should track that down!

  • Stef327

    Thanks so much for helping me find her. I could not remember her name or the name of these songs I absolutely loved. She sort of suffered the same fate of my other favorite , Dionne Farris, by not getting enough airplay on black radio because they did not know how to classify her. Thank goodness for MySpace and iTunes so I no longer have to wait for the Kiss’s and Power-FMs to tell me if she is OK to play.

  • Anonymous

    They Say Vision & Golden Boy were two of my faves back in 2001/2002. Res was definitely slept on. To my personal enjoyment, she’s popped up on a couple Talib Kweli tracks over the past few years so she hasn’t been ENTIRELY off the map.

  • Goldeneyez

    Slezak, you never cease to impress! I have been praying that she will make another album someday, because her voice and music are wonderful. I’ve always loved these two songs, and “Ice King”, “Tsunami”, “700 Mile Situation”, and “Let Love” from her first album are also stand-out tracks. I hope someone gives her a chance to make another album – she’s just the right blend of rock, soul, and pop that we need to revive the generally sorry state of music these days…

  • cheriekeane

    I saw Reese at the Key Club in L.A. in 2003. She was a great performer. Her music is definitely not typical of what Black Females are ‘expected’ to produce. She reminds me of Nona Hendryx from back in the 1970s — sort of rock-flavored soul.
    Her label must have had a nightmare trying to get airplay on Black Radio: “She’s not Mary J., Mariah, or Whitney, so how can I sell her to the Black audience?”
    It’s sad but true (and I’m a Black Female myself). NONE of my friends listen to or purchase rock music. They only listen to soul, jazz and R&B (my over 35 friends don’t even like rap music).
    Res also didn’t get any airplay on rock radio stations probably because programmers felt they couldn’t sell Res to their listeners either.
    Res opened for John Mayer in late 2002, but I don’t think they complment eachother on tour.
    She and Kenna should hook up and tour small clubs because their musical styles are similar.

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