Paula Julie Abdul (born June 19, 1962) is an American singer, choreographer, songwriter, dancer, actress and television personality. She began her career as a cheerleader for the Los Angeles Lakers before rising to prominence in the 1980s as a highly sought-after choreographer at the height of the music video era. Abdul later scored a string of pop music hits in the late 1980s and early 1990s. Her six number one singles on the Billboard Hot 100 tie her with Diana Ross for sixth among the female solo performers who have topped the chart.
“Knocked Out” is the first song Paula Abdul recorded and the first single, released in 1988 from the album Forever Your Girl. It was written by Babyface, L.A. Reid and Daryl Simmons and produced in 1987 by the former two.
The song was originally included on a Virgin Records sampler for the launch of Virgin Records America. In the spring of 1988 it was released as a single to test Abdul’s commercial appeal. “Knocked Out” proved to be very successful for a low budget single: it became a Top 10 R&B hit.
In the UK, “Knocked Out” was released three times. It was originally Abdul’s first single, and charted on September 24, 1988, peaking at a lowly #98. Following the success of “Straight Up” and its follow-up “Forever Your Girl”, “Knocked Out” was reissued and peaked at #45 on 19 August 1989, just missing out on the all-important Top 40. Finally, after the huge success of “Opposites Attract” in 1990, the single was extensively reworked by Shep Pettibone and it finally cracked the UK Top 30, peaking at #21 on the 28th July 1990.
The remixed version of “Knocked Out” which was released in the UK as well as Germany was from the Shut Up and Dance remix album. While this version was not issued as a single in the United States, it did receive significant airplay and just missed the American Top 40, peaking at #41.
Knocked Out (House 12″) 7:28
Knocked Out (12″ Mix) 6:12
Knocked Out (Bassey Thang) 5:53