A Public Affair

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This article is about the album. For the song, see A Public Affair (song).
A Public Affair
Studio album by Jessica Simpson
Released August 26, 2006
(See release history)
Recorded 2005–2006
Genre Pop, dance-pop, R&B, disco
Length 54:26
Label Epic
Producer Jessica Simpson, Lester Mendez, Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis, Cory Rooney, Dan Shea, Scott Storch, Stargate, Sam Watters, Louis Biancaniello
Jessica Simpson chronology
Rejoyce: The Christmas Album
(2004)
A Public Affair
(2006)
Do You Know
(2008)
Singles from A Public Affair
  1. "A Public Affair"
    Released: June 29, 2006
  2. "I Belong to Me"
    Released: September 26, 2006
  3. "You Spin Me Round (Like a Record)"
    Released: February 2007

A Public Affair is the fifth studio album by American pop singer Jessica Simpson. The album was released on August 26, 2006 in the United States by Epic Records. The album is Simpson's first effort following her divorce from Nick Lachey in early 2006.[1][2]

The album was produced by Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis, Cory Rooney, Scott Storch, Stargate and Lester Mendez. Simpson appears as a co-writer of nine of the thirteen songs on the album. A Public Affair received generally favorable reviews from music critics, who complimented its musical diversity from Simpson's previous albums, while also criticizing its length. The album debuted at #5 on the US Billboard 200 with first-week sales of 101,000 copies. A Public Affair has sold 400,000 units in the US and over 1.5 million copies worldwide to date.[3][4] It is the last pop album Simpson released before switching to country music.

Three singles were released from the record, the lead single, "A Public Affair" was the album's most successful single, became Simpson's sixth top-twenty single in the US and her third song to reach number 14 tied with "With You" (2004) and "These Boots Are Made for Walkin'" (2005).[5] The next single, "I Belong to Me", failed to chart on the Billboard Hot 100.[6] The third single "You Spin Me Round (Like a Record)" was released as a promo single. Her version of the song barely made the Pop 100, and failed to make the Billboard Hot 100 chart, however, it charted to no. 20 on the Bubbling Under Hot 100, which is equivalent to no. 120. Simpson's version has new lyrics and only preserves the chorus of the song.[7]

The UK version was released on February 12, 2007 and included the video for "A Public Affair" and the audio for "These Boots Are Made for Walkin'" as UK bonus tracks.

Production[edit]

Simpson in August 2006

MTV first reported that Simpson's first album after her divorce would be released in late 2005.[8] It was also reported that Simpson had parted ways with Columbia, and would release future albums through Epic Records.

Simpson was inspired by Janet Jackson for the album, saying "I do love singing ballads, but I took a different approach. I didn't do a big string-session type of ballad I'm used to." "I took more of a Janet Jackson approach. More of an 'Earth Angel' type of approach."[9] Simpson contacted Jackson's main producers Jam and Lewis to produce several songs on the album.[10]

Album cover[edit]

With only a month to go until the release of A Public Affair, Simpson switched the cover photo of the album. The first cover art for the album surfaced showing a sultry Simpson with her hair down, sporting a dress with the straps pulled down. Ultimately, Simpson's representative Rob Shuter told TMZ the final decision on a cover had not been made by the time one had to be provided to Simpson's record label, so the first cover option (of three choices they had) was given. The original cover was ultimately not chosen, and Simpson went with the cover eventually released. The chosen album cover has a casual-looking Simpson "with nothing but a T-shirt on", her hair pulled back and wearing a ring on her right index finger.[11]

Composition[edit]

Simpson said in an interview to a magazine, "A Public Affair" was an album that is a "fun night" with friends and not her failed marriage to Nick Lachey, although the first single was inspired by the rupture of the couple. The album opens with the first single "A Public Affair" musically, it is a moderate dance-pop groove song with disco influences. It also exhibits elements of pop rock and teen pop genres. The next song "You Spin Me Round (Like a Record)" is an updated version of Dead or Alive 1980s hit of the same name in the way Rihanna's "S.O.S." is a remake of Soft Cell's "Tainted Love.", written by Pete Burns, Wayne Hussey, Mike Percy, Tim Lever & Steve Coy.[12][13]

A sample of "A Public Affair" '​ chorus.

Problems playing this file? See media help.

The third track of the album, "B.O.Y." is an electro and disco song which features distorted synthesizers emulating sonar pulses, was written by Driscoll, Gagel, Ocasek. The fourth song "If You Were Mine" was tailored for the clubs and recalls Janet Jackson's "When I Think of You."[14] "Walkin' 'Round in a Circle", the album's fifth track, is another song co-written by Simpson for the album. The song has a touch of Euro disco love song with new wave influences. The sixth track, "The Lover in Me" it is a mid-tempo pop song, contains instruments such as piano and guitar. The seventh track, "Swing with Me" a new rendition of Benny Goodman's 1938 classic "Sing, Sing, Sing". "Push Your Tush" the eighth track is a Euro disco song with disco influences.[15] It relies heavily on a sample of the Ohio Players 1976 hit "Who'd She Coo?"[16] "Back to You" track number nine, is a pop song with an urban influence, the song is one of the ballads on the album. "Between You & I" is the solecismic title of longest song on the album. "I Don't Want to Care" is another ballad about love, this time utilizing a piano. "Fired Up", the song title came from something one of Simpson's best friends, CaCee Cobb, always says: "Let's get fired up!". "Let Him Fly" is a cover of Patty Griffin's song of the same name. It is the final track on the album's original pressing. "I Belong to Me" was not included in the original pressing of the album, however, released as a Walmart bonus track. In September 2006, Simpson's label decided to release future pressings with "I Belong To Me" as a regular track. It was released as the album's second and final single.

Singles[edit]

"A Public Affair" was released as the album's lead single on June 29, 2006.[17] The song received mixed reviews from critics, with many criticizing its close similarity with "Holiday". The song also channeled Janet Jackson with its "breathy vocals, cheery, almost sickeningly sweet melody," and "mid-song giggle."[18] The music video was shot on June 23, 2006 and the late evening of June 24, 2006 at the Moonlight Rollerway in Glendale, California.[19] It features appearances by Christina Applegate, Christina Milian, Eva Longoria, Maria Menounos, Andy Dick and Ryan Seacrest. On July 19, Simpson visited Total Request Live to world premiere the video.[20] In the chart Billboard Hot Videoclip Tracks peaked at the number 5.[21] The single debuted at number thirty-nine on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 chart,[22] Simpson's second highest debut after "These Boots Are Made for Walkin'". It had previously debuted at number twenty on Billboard's Bubbling Under Hot 100 Singles chart, which represents the twenty-five singles below the Hot 100's number 100 position that have not yet appeared on the Hot 100. Digital download sales were moderate until the release of the single's music video. In late July "A Public Affair" joined Ashlee Simpson's song "Invisible" in the top ten on the U.S. iTunes Store's list of most popular songs, the first time in iTunes history that two siblings had different songs in the top ten. The song peaked in its fifth week on the Hot 100.

When the first official single was released, fans expected the official follow-up single to be club track "Fired Up". Weeks later, in an MTV interview, Simpson stated that "You Spin Me Round (Like a Record)" might be the second single from the album and that she would like to tour after three or four songs had been released from the record. However, on August 9, 2006, Simpson stated on her official website that she wanted her fans to choose the second single from the album; she provided five choices, which were: "If You Were Mine", "The Lover in Me", "I Belong to Me", "B.O.Y." and "I Don't Want to Care".

Simpson stated in a radio interview on August 23, 2006 that the second official single from the album would be "I Belong to Me". The album originally did not include the track "I Belong to Me"; Simpson stated that the track would only be included on a special version of the album sold exclusively in Wal-Mart. The track is also included on the iTunes version of the album. However, less than two weeks after the album's release, Simpson's record company decided to start shipping copies with "I Belong to Me" included; today, the album can be purchased anywhere with the bonus track included. Simpson mentioned that the album would feature a special code with which fans could download the song for free.[23] Many fans wondered why "Fired Up" was not released as a single, as the song had a strong popularity and many plays on YouTube.

Jessica Simpson's version of the "You Spin Me Round (Like a Record)" was released as a promo single in 2006. Her version of the song barely made the Pop 100, and failed to make the Billboard Hot 100 chart, however, it charted to no. 20 on the Bubbling Under Hot 100, which is equivalent to no. 120. Simpson's version has new lyrics and only preserves the chorus of the song.[7]

Critical reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 3.5/5 stars[24]
BBC mixed[25]
Entertainment Weekly C[26]
Rolling Stone 2/5 stars[27]
Slant Magazine 2.5/5 stars[18]
Music Server 8/10 stars[28]

A Public Affair received mixed reviews in the press, including a two-star rating from Rolling Stone. The album was criticized for lack of originality, particularly its similarities to previous Top 40 pop and disco hits from the '70s and '80s, with few contemporary elements. The lead single "A Public Affair" was especially criticized for its similarities to Madonna's "Holiday", Diana Ross' "Ain't No Mountain High Enough", and Earth, Wind & Fire's "Let's Groove", but was favorably likened to Janet Jackson for its "breathy vocals" and "sweet melody."[18] Bill Lamb from About.com stated: "The final 5 songs of A Public Affair are worth hearing for Jessica Simpson fans. I just hope fans can maintain their interest long enough to get there."[29] Several songs on the album were considered "Janet Jackson-like," with "If You Were Mine" described as combining "the lyrics of "If" with the backing track from "When I Think of You."[14][30] Sal Cinqueman of Slant Magazine regarded Simpson's work with Jackson's producers as unexpected, saying "Ironically, though, the tracks on A Public Affair produced by Janet's longtime collaborators, Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis, aren't dance-pop at all; the duo's three contributions are, surprisingly, country-inspired."[18]

For his part, Stephen Thomas Erlewine of Allmusic website said A Public Affair achievement achieve excellent sound, than any previous studio album of the singer. He noted that A Public Affair album is a party atmosphere, pure and simple. In eight of the thirteen songs of album you can enjoy a good adrenaline at the time of hearing, either on a dance floor or a carefree sunny afternoons. Additionally, the musical editor Lizzie Ennever of BBC website said that A Public Affair sounds like something you can put in a children's party I was having a disco-dancing competition. The album seems to be engraved on a roller coaster. In sum, the editor said that the only salvageable song disc was "BOY", since he could reach the height of Britney Spears. Chris Willman of Entertainment Weekly described the album as a compilation of songs from the 80s, played by Simpson, dantoles one C as final grade.

Commercial performance[edit]

Simpson in August 2006

The album debuted at #5 on the Billboard 200,[31] selling over 101,000 copies in its first week. Although Simpson first marked highest sales week of her career, the total sales of the album ended up being disappointing, and the album itself being a commercial flop. A Public Affair shipped 500,000 units in the U.S. but has sold just 300,000 to date (according to Nielsen SoundScan) and was certified Gold by the RIAA.

In Canada the album debuted at #6, marking Simpson's highest position on the albums chart in Canada and was later certified Gold for 50,000 copies sold. A Public Affair also made the Top 40 in Japan, Ireland and Australia, in the latter country peaking lower than In This Skin which reached number 13 and was certified Platinum. Despite the title track becoming an international hit, the album has sold just 750,000 copies to date, and is considered by and large a commercial failure compared to Simpson's previous work.

Track listing[edit]

No. Title Writer(s) Producer(s) Length
1. "A Public Affair"   Lester Mendez 3:21
2. "You Spin Me Round (Like a Record)"   Cory Rooney 3:49
3. "B.O.Y."  
3:22
4. "If You Were Mine"  
  • Watters
  • Biancaniello
  • Kurstin
  • Tamyra Gray
  • Janet Sewell
  • Watters
  • Biancaniello
  • Kurstin
3:17
5. "Walkin' 'Round in a Circle"   Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis 4:40
6. "The Lover in Me"  
  • J. Simpson
  • Austin
  • Watters
  • Biancaniello
  • Gray
  • Candice Childress
Mendez 3:41
7. "Swing with Me"  
  • Rooney
  • Shea
3:25
8. "Push Your Tush"   Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis 4:48
9. "Back to You"  
  • J. Simpson
  • Harris III
  • Lewis
Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis 4:11
10. "Between You & I"  
  • J. Simpson
  • Rooney
  • Rooney
  • Shea
4:58
11. "I Don't Want to Care"   StarGate 3:57
12. "Fired Up"  
Storch 3:58
13. "Let Him Fly"   Patty Griffin Mendez 3:11
Total length:
50:38

Charts and certifications[edit]

Chart (2006–2007) Peak
position
Australian ARIA Albums Chart[32] 33
Canadian Albums Chart[33] 6
Irish Albums Chart 67
Japan International Albums Chart 71
Russian Albums Chart 4
Taiwanese Albums Chart 3
UK Albums Chart 76
US Billboard 200[34] 5
US Top Internet Albums[35] 5
US Digital Albums[36] 7

Certifications[edit]

Personnel[edit]

Credits for A Public Affair adapted from Allmusic.[40]

Release history[edit]

Region Date
Australia August 26, 2006
United States[41] August 29, 2006
Japan[42] September 27, 2006
United Kingdom[43][44] February 12, 2007
Germany[45] March 2, 2007

References[edit]

  1. ^ http://www.monstersandcritics.com/people/Jessica-Simpson/biography/
  2. ^ http://www.rollingstone.com/music/artists/jessica-simpson/biography
  3. ^ http://www.jessicasimpsonmusic.net/biography.php
  4. ^ http://poponthepop.com/2008/09/18/jessica-simpsons-do-you-know-country-album-tops-billboard-country-chart/
  5. ^ "Jessica Simpson - The Hot 100 Chart". Billboard. 2006-08-12. Retrieved 2013-04-25. 
  6. ^ "Jessica Simpson - Artist Chart History - Singles". Billboard.com. Nielsen Business Media, Inc. Retrieved 2008-06-23. 
  7. ^ a b "A Public Affair – Awards". AllMusic. All Media Network. Retrieved 20 January 2014. 
  8. ^ "For The Record: Quick News On Jessica Simpson, Ashlee Simpson, Paris Hilton, Biggie And Serj Tankian, AFI & More – News Story | Music, Celebrity, Artist News | MTV News". Mtv.com. 2005-10-12. Retrieved 2010-08-31. 
  9. ^ "Jessica Simpson Covers Song That Convinced Her To Let Nick Go - Music, Celebrity, Artist News - MTV.com". MTV News. Moss, Corey. 02-04-06. Retrieved 07-02-14.  Check date values in: |date=, |accessdate= (help)
  10. ^ "Laughing, Acting Or Singing, Jessica Simpson Aims To Entertain And Inspire". MTV News. 28-06-06. Retrieved 07-02-14.  Check date values in: |date=, |accessdate= (help)
  11. ^ http://www.amazon.com/Public-Affair-Jessica-Simpson/dp/B000GIXIAK
  12. ^ http://www.mtv.com/news/articles/1537645/jessica-covers-song-that-helped-her-let-nick-go.jhtml
  13. ^ http://www.ew.com/ew/article/0,,1516034,00.html
  14. ^ a b "A Public Affair - Album Reviews - Rolling Stone". Rolling Stone. Sheffield, Rob. 07-09-06. Retrieved 07-02-14.  Check date values in: |date=, |accessdate= (help)
  15. ^ http://www.findance.com/arvostelut.php?id=3685
  16. ^ http://www.ign.com/articles/2006/09/01/jessica-simpson-a-public-affair
  17. ^ http://top40.about.com/od/bestandworstof2006/ss/top100songs2006_5.htm
  18. ^ a b c d Slant Magazine review
  19. ^ "The Boots of Hazzard", The Sun, June 28, 2006.
  20. ^ "Nervous Simpson Debuts Video on Minnillo's Show", Contactmusic.com, July 20, 2006.
  21. ^ [1][dead link]
  22. ^ Clover Hope, "Furtado Remains No. 1 With 'Promiscuous'", July 6, 2006].
  23. ^ 2nd Single Poll
  24. ^ A Public Affair at AllMusic
  25. ^ BBC review
  26. ^ Entertainment Weekly review
  27. ^ Rolling Stone review
  28. ^ [2] Musicserver.cz
  29. ^ "Jessica Simpson – A Public Affair: Review of Jessica Simpson's album 'A Public Affair' – About.com". Top40.about.com. 2009-11-03. Retrieved 2010-04-07. 
  30. ^ "Jessica Simpson - A Public Affair". Channel 24. Kakora, Megan. 16-04-07. Retrieved 07-02-14.  Check date values in: |date=, |accessdate= (help)
  31. ^ [3]
  32. ^ Steffen Hung. "Jessica Simpson - A Public Affair". australian-charts.com. Retrieved 2012-03-06. 
  33. ^ http://www.billboard.com/artist/304557/jessica-simpson/chart?f=309
  34. ^ http://www.billboard.com/artist/304557/jessica-simpson/chart?f=305
  35. ^ http://www.allmusic.com/album/a-public-affair-mw0000779334/awards
  36. ^ http://www.billboard.com/artist/304557/jessica-simpson/chart?f=400
  37. ^ http://2m-online.ru/news/detail.php?ID=5634
  38. ^ (Chinese) "自九十七年十一月一日起更名為財團法人台灣唱片出版事業基金會" Recording Industry Foundation in Taiwan. 1 November 2008. Retrieved 2011-03-16
  39. ^ http://www.riaa.com/goldandplatinumdata.php?content_selector=gold-platinum-searchable-database
  40. ^ http://www.allmusic.com/album/a-public-affair-mw0000779334/credits
  41. ^ http://www.amazon.com/Public-Affair-Jessica-Simpson/dp/B000GIXIAK/ref=sr_1_6?s=music&ie=UTF8&qid=1380510289&sr=1-6&keywords=jessica+simpson
  42. ^ http://www.amazon.co.jp/Public-Affair-Jessica-Simpson/dp/B000GIXIAK/ref=sr_1_9?ie=UTF8&qid=1380510500&sr=8-9&keywords=jessica+simpson
  43. ^ http://www.amazon.co.uk/Public-Affair-Jessica-Simpson/dp/B000MMMUIG/ref=sr_1_5?s=music&ie=UTF8&qid=1380510618&sr=1-5&keywords=jessica+simpson
  44. ^ http://www.amazon.co.uk/A-Public-Affair/dp/B001GT86WI/ref=ntt_mus_dp_dpt_7
  45. ^ http://www.amazon.de/Public-Affair-Simpson-Jessica/dp/B000MMMUIG/ref=sr_1_6?s=music&ie=UTF8&qid=1380510387&sr=1-6&keywords=jessica+simpson

External links[edit]