“Set Adrift on Memory Bliss” is a song by American hip-hop group P.M. Dawn. It was released in October 1991 as the second single from their debut album Of the Heart, of the Soul and of the Cross: The Utopian Experience. Writing credit is given to Attrell Cordes (Prince Be of P.M. Dawn) and Gary Kemp of Spandau Ballet, as the song is built around samples of their 1983 hit “True,” as well as samples from The Soul Searchers’ “Ashley’s Roachclip.” The main drumbeat also samples from Eric B. & Rakim’s “Paid in Full”.
This song was the group’s first (and only) number-one hit on the US Billboard Hot 100, and also reached number 3 in the United Kingdom. It ranks number 81 on VH1’s 100 Greatest Songs of Hip Hop. The song was the first number one song after the debut of the Nielsen SoundScan system, which monitored airplay and sales more closely than before, when Billboard had to rely on manual sales reports and airplay data. According to the test charts of the SoundScan system, “Set Adrift on Memory Bliss” was at number one for at least three weeks, but officially has a one-week reign at number one.
A slower, ballad version of the song was remade by the Backstreet Boys, and recorded on their second international album Backstreet’s Back, and released on their U.S. debut album