Almost SoS: 2004 – Amerie’s “1 Thing”

Posted: July 24, 2010 by RA in Music
Tags: ,


Song of the Summer: “Confessions, Part II” by Usher
Usher’s Confessions album ruled the charts in 2004. With lead single “Yeah” just beginning to slow down after having ruled the airwaves for the first half of the year, “Confessions II” began to titilate audiences with the thought of the then squeaky clean Pop star being involved in an ¡escandalo! of the “secret love-child” variety. While midtempo SoSes are not all that common, the (erroneous but intended) belief that this was a glimpse into the breakup of one of R&B’s best-loved couples was too much for fans to resist.

Almost SoS: “1 Thing” by Amerie
If the first bars of most songs are like a knock on the door, “1 Thing” kicks it off the hinges and busts into the room, demanding to be noticed. And loved. Produced by Rich Harrison (believed by many to be Amerie’s raison d’etre), “1 Thing” picks up where his 2003 monster single “Crazy in Love” left off, again dipping into the go-go well. But if “Crazy” evoked the giddy turmoil afflicting the mind of the lovesick protagonist, the drum-driven “1 Thing” was determined to be a stethoscope pressed close to her hyper-stimulated heart.

Why it Could’ve Been:
Amerie had seen modest success with her first single, and Harrison was riding high of his Beyoncé triumphs. But the song was bigger than both of them. From its indelible percussion section to Amerie’s range-busting vocals — now a coquettish squeal, now a frantic roar — it was made for Pop radio. Plus, it had enough hooks for five lesser songs.

Why it Wasn’t:
Label Fuckup. Columbia/Sony were an obstacle from every step of the way. From fighting Amerie and Harrison on the song’s percussive sound to refusing to release it when they wouldn’t change it. Amerie and Harrison eventually leaked it to radio, and it began heating up. Sony, proving they had less sense than money, tried to get the growing hit pulled from radio playlists, as Jennifer Lopez (the label’s biggest star at the time) wanted the song for her next album.

Sony eventually accepted that Amerie’s version couldn’t be killed, shooting a lackluster video for the single and including it on a crappy movie soundtrack. But by then, the song’s long-simmering buzz had begun to fade, and it rose no higher than #8 on the Billboard Hot 100.

The Video:

NEXT: 2005

  1. Queen of Swords says:

    I still love this song..It’s definitely a much better SOS than confessions..who wants to be driving down the street, windows down, sun on skin jamming to “my chick on the side said she got one on the way”??.. “my car keys jingling in my high heels clicking towards your door”, has me daydreaming while driving about the person that has the 1 thing that makes me want to do stupid shit as long as its still hot outside…

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