Who are Lisa Lisa and Cult Jam? Lisa Lisa and Cult Jam were a popular ‘80s group credited with bringing “freestyle music”—a Latin-influenced blend of pop and R&B—to the mainstream. Lisa Lisa and Cult Jam are best known for such hits as “I Wonder If I Take You Home,” “Head to Toe,” “Lost In Emotion,” and “All Cried Out.” During their career, they scored five gold singles and twice topped the Billboard Hot 100 charts. Lisa Lisa and Cult Jam is a band everyone knows and loves, even if they don’t think they do.
Tonight, “Unsung” tells the story of Lisa Lisa and Cult Jam. Watch a sneak peek below, and tune in to the full episode tonight at 8pm EST on TV One.
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Lisa Lisa and Cult Jam were fronted by Lisa Velez, a New York City native born on Jan. 15, 1967, in the Hell’s Kitchen neighborhood of Manhattan. As a child, Velez dreamed of becoming a star. One night at the Fun House, a popular nightspot for breakdancers and rappers, the then-16-year-old hopeful met up with Mike Hughes, a percussionist and roadie for the group Full Force. At the time, Full Force was looking for a female singer, and with Velez on board, they came together as Lisa Lisa and Cult Jam. Their debut single, “I Wonder If I Take You Home,” dropped first in Europe, but when American DJs began playing the import, it took off at home, and in the summer of 1985, it reached no. 34 on the Billboard Hot 100.