Song: “Say It Right” by Nelly Furtado
Reached #1: February 24, 2007 (her second, 1 week)
Nelly Furtado did this song on a lark – at 4 in the morning after a long night in the studio.
It was basically a jam session with her producer, Timbaland, and a few other musicians. While what I’ve read isn’t totally clear, it seems that at least the first take was done live in that jam session. Furtado later said the song was about her breakup with her child’s father, and was inspired in part by the Eurythmics (foreshadowing alert).
What I find interesting is that this is so stylistically different from her first #1, “Promiscuous”, and yet the always-fickle American audience accepted both songs and pushed both to #1. That’s rare – usually, your first big hit typecasts you and it takes a long time to dig out. Then again, she’s kept changing up – she was more of a folk singer when she started in Canada in the early ‘00s, but gradually moved more toward the R&B/hip-hop style she’s known for.
I think what’s also interesting is that she’s not nearly as visible as the Canadian songstress I compared her to yesterday. Perhaps that’s because Furtado is relatively sane. Who knows?
I do know I’m looking forward to what she does next – her new album is due out this summer.
Tomorrow, I may wind up delving into a question that is as divisive as any in rock… or I may chicken out and just write about the song I chose. We’ll see…
Other songs that reached #1 on February 24:
1958 – “Get A Job” by the Silhouettes (their first, 2 weeks, Top 100 chart)
1973 – “Killing Me Softly With His Song” by Roberta Flack (her second, 5 weeks)
2001 – “Stutter” by Joe feat. Mystikal (Joe’s first, 4 weeks)