Single Review: Lisa Lisa & the Cult Jam “Lost In Emotion”

Lost In Emotion
Album: Spainsh Fly
Year: 1987

Lisa Lisa hopes a close friendship develops into something more in the rosy “Lost In Emotion.”

A guitar opens the single and followed by some sunny drums. Lisa Lisa tells the band to start the main beat (“Hit the beat now.”) The beat includes upbeat synthesizers and understated keyboards as the male members of the band sing the song’s title. (“Lost in emotion.”)

Lisa Lisa says she could find a guy who would want to settle down. But she wouldn’t love him. She’s not going to commit herself to the first guy who asks. There’s a guy she’s had her eye on and it’s possible he may want to date her. She’s anticipating their relationship. (“Some guys will promise you a marriage made in heaven/But I’m gonna stick to my guns/Like waitin’ for their love that I might be gettin’/My dreams have yet begun, oh, baby.”)

The male members “aahhh” in the background while the keyboards and synths pick up again. She wonders if she’s deluding herself. She hasn’t discussed her feelings for him with him at all. But it’s has become difficult for her to hide her emotions around him. (“Am I a fool/Cause I don’t know just how you feel/And this new love for you/Oh, I can’t conceal, oh.”)

She’s in love with him but not revealing her feelings for him. She tells him secrets and other personal stories about herself. Her friends are encouraging her to talk him. Lisa Lisa is considering taking the risk and wants to find out. (“I’m lost in emotion/Telling you things you really should know, oh, baby/I’m lost in emotion/Am I fool, at least my friends think so/Que sera, que sera/Baby, whatever will be/Que sera, que sera/Between you and me/Oh, ho.”)

In the second verse, she gathers up her courage and talks to him. Her friends have been saying that he likes her. But she doubts it. Whenever she’s with him, he doesn’t give her any signals. However, she chalks it up to her insecurity and decides to trust her friends. (“Just how true are the rumors I am hearing/About this crush you have on me/Maybe I’m blind cause I just don’t see it/But I wanna believe what they see.”)

Lisa Lisa tells her guy friend her fears and dreams, topics she doesn’t even discuss with her best friend. But she can’t continue to hide her feelings any longer. She needs to know if they are “talking” or just friends. She’s curious if he thinks of her as a possible girlfriend. She’s afraid he might not live up to her expectations and be a terrible choice for a boyfriend.(“I find myself tellin’ you things/I don’t even tell my best friend/I can’t keep showin’, emotions not knowin’/Just where it all stands for us/From time to time I wonder if I am in your heart/And even though I don’t live there yet/I’m afraid it will be cold and dark.”)

After the chorus and a frothy saxophone solo, Lisa Lisa repeats some of the pre-chorus (“baby, am I fool….oh, I can’t conceal.”) But at the end, tells them to start the song’s beat up again (“hit the beat now.”) The Cult Jam happily obliges.

The percussion and the Cult Jam accompany Lisa Lisa in the bridge. She’s giddy but finds her keeping her emotions from him troubling. She’s wants to date him but is uncertain if it’s going to work out. She could lose a best friend in the process. With a terrific pun, she says she can feel the pounding of the chorus’ beat in her heart. (“With my feelings, I hit the ceilin’/With big emotions I can’t be dealin’/I wanna be with you, but I don’t know/In my heart, babe, I can feel the beat now.”)

The chorus beat begins again but with some changes. The Cult Jam members only say “lost in emotion” with an added “well” after one of them. Then, it’s sung acapella. (“Lost in emotion/ Lost in emotion (Well)/Lost in emotion/Lost.”) The guitar returns while Lisa Lisa’s vocals become muffled as she says “my baby.” One of the members says “you know that I’m lost.” Both Cult Jam members join in to say “lost.” Lisa Lisa’s vocals are manipulated for her to repeat “my” (“Lost in emotion/My-my-my-my-my baby.”)

The chorus beat returns again. (“Lost in emotion/Lost in emotion/Lost in emotion/lost.”)

The vibrant percussion and keyboards linger a couple seconds longer for a satsifying finale.

“Lost In Emotion” is classic 80s freestyle.


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