97 Words: “Terms and Conditions” by Mahalia

Vincent Anthony
2 Min Read

This song is part of our “THE SUMMER 97 (1998 x 2023)” playlist. Check out the full list.

Reading is fundamental. Online, we often skip reading the “terms and conditions” before using apps and websites. However, IRL they’re a must, just like on the lead single from Mahalia’s sophomore album “IRL.” On the aptly-titled anthem, “Terms and Conditions,” she serves up a manifesto on how she expects to be treated by any potential man. Like her duet with JoJo, it harkens back to early aughts R&B, managing to sound invitingly familiar yet not reductive. On this mid-tempo groove, Mahalia channels the era both lyrically and sonically, delivering an empowering message with an authentic, soulful sound.

Watch the “Terms and Conditions” video, stream it, or order the “IRL” vinyl.

In celebration of summer, the staff at THE 97 has compiled a playlist containing some of our favorite summer songs, from then and now. Each day we will reveal one song, rotating daily between past and present with pairings from 1998 and 2023, for a total of 97 days/songs. Since we love nostalgia, we’re celebrating summer songs from 1998 as they turn 25, alongside new songs that we feel deserve some shine. Pairings could be thematic, sonic, or based connections between the artists.

Check out our full “THE SUMMER 97 (1998 x 2023)” playlist here

Share this Article
Vincent is the founder of the magazine and has had a strong passion for popular music since, well, 1997! If it's not obvious, his favorite artists include Destiny's Child, Mariah Carey, Janet Jackson, Michael Jackson, P!nk, and many more. Vincent lives in New York, where he is a high school English teacher, and currently he is pursuing a Master's in Journalism at the Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism at CUNY.