Song: “Nice and Slow” by Usher
Reached #1: February 14, 1998 (his first, 2 weeks)
Of course, I had to find a song about love (OK, in this case it’s about sex, but it’s almost the same thing) for Valentine’s Day.
This was the first #1 for Usher Raymond (not that he generally uses his last name, he does spell it out in the lyrics of this single). For many listeners, it was an introduction – he had released four singles off two albums before “Nice and Slow”, and hadn’t really made much of an impact. This one, that hit the charts two weeks before Valentine’s Day, struck a nerve and marched straight to #1 on the Billboard Hot 100.
It turned out to be the launchpad for Usher’s career. If this single hadn’t hit big, you have to wonder if his label would have kept trying – meaning we wouldn’t have heard the “Confessions” epic, the 7 subsequent #1 singles, Raymond v. Raymond, “OMG”… or Justin Bieber, who got his mainstream start when Usher took him under his wing.
OK, so not everything from Usher’s career has been positive. I kid, I kid.
Happy Valentine’s Day… tomorrow, we look back a truly eccentric band, and lead singer…
Other songs that reached #1 on February 14:
1970 – “Thank You (Falettinme Be Mice Elf Again)/Everybody Is A Star” by Sly & The Family Stone (their second, 2 weeks)
1987 – “Livin’ On A Prayer” by Bon Jovi (their second, 4 weeks)
2004 – “The Way You Move” by Outkast feat. Sleepy Brown (Outkast’s third, 1 week)