19 (Adele album)

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19
Studio album by Adele
Released 28 January 2008
Recorded September 2006 – October 2007;
Angel Studios, Bimbos, Highline Ballroom, Konk, Metropolis Studios, Olympic Studios, Rak Studios, Roxy, The Townhouse, World Cafe
Genre
Length 43:41
Label
Producer
Adele chronology
19
(2008)
iTunes Live from SoHo (2009)
Singles from 19
  1. "Hometown Glory"
    Released: 22 October 2007
  2. "Chasing Pavements"
    Released: 21 January 2008
  3. "Cold Shoulder"
    Released: 20 April 2008
  4. "Make You Feel My Love"
    Released: 22 October 2008

19 is the debut album by English singer-songwriter Adele. It was released on 28 January 2008, the week after the lead single, "Chasing Pavements", was physically released. It debuted at number one on the UK charts on its first week.[1]

19 was nominated for the 2008 Mercury Prize. At the 51st Grammy Awards, Adele won the Grammy Award for Best New Artist.[2] "Chasing Pavements" was also nominated for three awards, of which it won the Grammy Award for Best Female Pop Vocal Performance.[2] The final track on the album, "Hometown Glory", was written by Adele in 10 minutes after her mother tried to persuade her to leave her home town of West Norwood in London for university. In 2010, the song received a Grammy Award nomination for Best Female Pop Vocal Performance.[3]

19 received generally positive reviews from critics, with Billboard stating; "Adele truly has potential to become among the most respected and inspiring international artists of her generation."[4] The album is certified seven times platinum in the UK, and double platinum in the US.[5][6] Worldwide sales for the album are at an estimated 7 million copies.[7]

Background[edit]

Adele recorded a cover of Bob Dylan's "Make You Feel My Love" on the recommendation of her manager Jonathan Dickins, who loved the song.[8] The song "Hometown Glory" has been featured in the British and American television shows Skins, Grey's Anatomy, One Tree Hill, Hollyoaks, Secret Diary of a Call Girl, and most recently danced by Katee Shean and eventual winner, Joshua Allen on So You Think You Can Dance. In July 2008 Adele informed noted UK soul writer Pete Lewis of the award-winning Blues & Soul that the reason for naming her debut album '19' was to reflect her age while she was writing it: "I just kinda remember becoming a bit of a woman during that time. And I think that is definitely documented in the songs."[9] The Taiwanese edition was released on 5 March. As well as the standard tracklist, the album features three bonus tracks: "That's It I Quit I'm Movin' On" ("Chasing Pavements" B-side), "Now and Then" ("Cold Shoulder" B-side) and "Painting Pictures" ("Make You Feel My Love" B-side).[10] The Indonesian special edition was released on 3 March. As well as the standard tracklist, the album features a bonus video for "Chasing Pavements".[11]

Reception[edit]

Critical reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Aggregate scores
Source Rating
Metacritic 68/100[12]
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 4/5 stars[13]
Digital Spy 3/5 stars[14]
The Guardian 2/5 stars[15]
The Independent 3/5 stars[16]
Robert Christgau (1-star Honorable Mention)[17]
NME 5/10[18]
PopMatters 8/10[19]
The Observer 5/5 stars[20]
The Sun 4.5/5 stars[21]
The Times 4/5 stars[22]

19 received generally positive reviews from critics. The album holds a 68 out of 100 rating based on 19 critical reviews indicating "generally favourable reviews" from Metacritic.[12] The album was nominated for the 2008 Mercury Prize in the category of Best Album.[23] On 3 December 2008, the album spawned four Grammy Award nominations: Best New Artist, and Record of the Year, Song of the Year, and Best Female Pop Vocal Performance for "Chasing Pavements".[24] The following year, she received a second consecutive nomination for Best Female Pop Vocal Performance, for "Hometown Glory", but lost to "Halo" by Beyoncé. The Observer gave the album a great review saying, "The way she stretched the vowels, her wonderful soulful phrasing, the sheer unadulterated pleasure of her voice, stood out all the more; little doubt that she's a rare singer, which another track first available on her MySpace site, 'Daydreamer', confirmed" they gave the album a five-star response.[25] BBC Music gave the album a great review, saying "Pitching up somewhere between blues, folk and jazz, she's included something for everyone without ever pandering to a particular trend. Her melodies exude warmth, her singing is occasionally stunning and, in the dramatic Hometown Glory, the spiky cool of Cold Shoulder (which is unexpectedly reminiscent of Shara Nelson-era Massive Attack) and the piano epic Make You Feel My Love, she has tracks that make Lily Allen and Kate Nash sound every bit as ordinary as they are."[26] However, the album also received generally mixed responses. Uncut said "Allowed this gnarled rock-scribe veteran a measure of scepticism. Adele can certainly sing, but '19' reeks of some A&R trendhound making it his/her biz to sign The New Amy and not resting till s/he's found the right chick from South London to fit the bill".[27] NME gave the album a mixed review saying "Indeed, as ‘19’ reveals itself, it’s clear that the Amy associations are little more than empty mediaspeak without any real weight. Despite the early indicators, there’s precious little on the album that prevents it from collapsing under the weight of its own expectation".[28] People magazine gave the album all four stars, saying "With a knockout voice that's rich and supple, robust and sultry, it's hard to believe that this singer-songwriter is barely out of her teens."[29] Giving the album a B-, Entertainment Weekly remarked that "Adele's songs aren't as sharp as Duffy's...Still, her singing throughout is a thing to behold."[30] Chuck Taylor, in a positive review from Billboard magazine, said that "Adele truly has potential to become among the most respected and inspiring international artists of her generation."[4]

Chart performance[edit]

In the UK, the album debuted at number one.[31] In the U.S 19 debuted at #56 and remained in the lower ends of the Billboard 200 for many proceeding weeks. After a performance on the U.S. show Saturday Night Live it rose to #46 and a week later to #11 with sales of 25,000+ copies sold. In 2009, after winning 2 Grammy Awards, the album rose to #10 on the Billboard 200 and total sales reached 843,880. In February 2012, 19 reached a new peak of #4 on the Billboard 200, and the album is now certified double platinum in the US.[32][33] As of the week ending 24 April 2011, 19 was No. 1 on the Top Pop Catalog Albums for nine weeks, making it only the third album by a female artist to top that chart at least that long in the past 20 years.[34] The following week it stayed at No. 1 on that chart, making it the first studio album doing so since Michael Jackson's Thriller 25 was at number one for 11 weeks in 2008.[35] Two months later, it moved up from number 27 to number 16 on Billboard 200, topping the Top Pop Catalog Albums for a 16th week.[36] In the same week as 21 was released, 19 re-entered the UK album chart at number 4 with sales of 25,419.[37] The following week on 6 February 2011 the album remained on the chart at number 4 with strengthening sales of 27,660. It was the second best selling album of 2011 in the UK just behind 21 as it tripled its 2008 seven non-consecutive week long top 10-visit with 21 straight weeks. As of February 2012, 19 has surpassed 2 million copies in the UK.[38] In Ireland, due to the success of 21, the album returned to its peak position of number three on the week ending 18 March 2011, three years after it originally peaked, just to set a new high at number two the following week and to stay there for six non-consecutive weeks, just behind 21. The album debuted at number 16 on the New Zealand Albums Chart, due to the success of 21 and has peaked at number 3.[39]

Midway through 2012, 19 was the tenth best-selling album in the United States giving Adele two albums in the top ten (21 being number-one).[40] Adele is also one of only five artists to have two albums that have each sold over 500,000 digital copies in the United States.[41]

Promotion[edit]

Adele started promotion of 19 on 7 December 2007, when she performed "Chasing Pavements" at Friday Night with Jonathan Ross. She performed on numerous television and radio programs around the world, including Richard & Judy, Lily Allen and Friends, The View, Late Night with Conan O'Brien, Saturday Night Live, The Xtra Factor, Loose Women, The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, The Ellen DeGeneres Show, 51st Grammy Awards, Ugly Betty, Top of the Pops, Dancing with the Stars, and several others.

She also embarked on a world tour, An Evening with Adele, that began in January 2008 and ended on 12 July 2009.

Track listing[edit]

No. Title Writer(s) Producer(s) Length
1. "Daydreamer"   Adele Adkins Jim Abbiss 3:41
2. "Best for Last"   Adkins Abbiss 4:19
3. "Chasing Pavements"  
Eg White 3:31
4. "Cold Shoulder"  
Mark Ronson 3:12
5. "Crazy for You"   Adkins Abbiss 3:28
6. "Melt My Heart to Stone"  
  • Adkins
  • White
White 3:24
7. "First Love"   Adkins Abbiss 3:10
8. "Right as Rain"  
  • Adkins
  • Leon Michels
  • Jeff Silverman
  • Nick Movshon
  • Clay Holley
Abbiss 3:17
9. "Make You Feel My Love"   Bob Dylan Abbiss 3:32
10. "My Same"   Adkins Abbiss 3:16
11. "Tired"  
  • Adkins
  • White
White 4:19
12. "Hometown Glory"   Adkins Abbiss 4:31

Singles chronology[edit]

United Kingdom
Europe, Australia and Japan
  • "Chasing Pavements"
  • "Cold Shoulder"
Canada and USA
  • "Hometown Glory"
  • "Chasing Pavements"
Spain
  • "Chasing Pavements"
Germany
  • "Chasing Pavements"
Netherlands
  • "Chasing Pavements"
  • "Cold Shoulder"
  • "Make You Feel My Love"
  • "Hometown Glory"

Charts and certifications[edit]

Certifications and sales[edit]

Region Certification Sales/shipments
Australia (ARIA)[89] 2× Platinum 140,000^
Belgium (BEA)[90] 2× Platinum 60,000*
Canada (Music Canada)[91] 3× Platinum 300,000^
Denmark (IFPI Denmark)[92] Gold 15,000^
Finland (Musiikkituottajat)[93] Gold 10,888[93]
Germany (BVMI)[94] Platinum 200,000^
Italy (FIMI)[95] Gold 35,000*
Netherlands (NVPI)[96][97] 5× Platinum 300,000^
New Zealand (RMNZ)[98] Platinum 15,000^
Spain (PROMUSICAE)[99] Platinum 80,000^
United Kingdom (BPI)[100] 7× Platinum 2,100,000^
United States (RIAA)[101] 2× Platinum 2,000,000^
Summaries
Europe (IFPI)[102] 3× Platinum 3,000,000*

*sales figures based on certification alone
^shipments figures based on certification alone
xunspecified figures based on certification alone

Credits[edit]

  • Adele Adkins – lead vocals, guitar (on "Daydreamer", "Crazy for You" and "My Same"), bass guitar (on "Best for Last" and "Make You Feel My Love"), celesta (on "First Love"), cowbell (on "Right as Rain")
  • Jim Abbiss – glockenspiel, producer, mixing
  • Matt Allchin – guitar
  • Helen Atkinson – assistant engineer
  • Pete Biggins - drums, percussion ("on Cold Shoulder")
  • Neil Cowley – piano, Hammond organ, Wurlitzer
  • Rosie Danvers – string arrangements
  • Tom Elmhirst – mixing
  • Simon Hayes – mixing assistant
  • Liam Howe – programming
  • Sam Koppelman – glockenspiel
  • Geoff Metcalfe – piano
  • Serge Krebs – assistant engineer, mixing assistant
  • Matt Lawrence – engineer
  • Phil Lee – art direction, design, photography
  • Archibald Alexander MacKenzie – assistant engineer, mixing assistant
  • Will Malone – string arrangements, string conductor, string writing
  • Perry Mason – strings
  • Dom Morley – engineer
  • Dan Parry – mixing assistant
  • Matt Paul – assistant
  • Jack Peñate – backing vocals
  • Fergus Peterkin – mixing assistant
  • Seb Rochford - drums (on "My Same")
  • Mark Ronson – producer
  • Louis "Kayel" Sharpe – drums (on "Right As Rain")
  • Jason Silver – keyboards
  • Michael Tighe – guitar
  • Eg White – arranger, producer, performer
  • Richard Wilkinson – engineer, mixing
  • Stuart Zender – bass
  • Clay Wells Holley – engineer

Release history[edit]

Region Date Format Label
Europe 25 January 2008
  • CD
  • digital download
XL Recordings
Australia 26 January 2008
United Kingdom 28 January 2008
United States 10 June 2008 Columbia Records
Poland[103] 24 November 2008 XL Recordings
Brazil[104] 6 June 2011 Sony Music
China[105] 13 March 2013 CD 星外星唱片 (Starsing Records)

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Preceded by
Scouting for Girls by Scouting for Girls
UK Albums Chart number-one album
3 February 2008 – 9 February 2008
Succeeded by
Sleep Through the Static by Jack Johnson
Preceded by
Wit Licht by Marco Borsato
Working on a Dream by Bruce Springsteen
Wit Licht – Live by Marco Borsato
April by Bløf
Dutch Albums Chart number-one album
10–31 January 2009
14–21 February 2009
4–11 April 2009
25 April – 16 May 2009
Succeeded by
Working on a Dream by Bruce Springsteen
Luister by Nick & Simon
April by Bløf
NW8 by Guus Meeuwis