Break Anotha

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"Break Anotha"
Single by Blake Lewis
from the album A.D.D. (Audio Day Dream)
Released October 30, 2007 (2007-10-30) (U.S. radio)
November 13, 2007 (2007-11-13) (U.S. digital)
Format Radio single
Digital download
Recorded 2007
Genre Pop rock, funk, electronic, hip hop
Length 3:09
Label Arista
Writer(s) Blake Lewis, Louis Biancaniello, Ryan Tedder, Sam Watters
Producer(s) Blake Lewis, Ryan Tedder
Blake Lewis singles chronology
- "Break Anotha"
(2007)
"How Many Words"
(2008)

"Break Anotha" is the official debut single of Blake Lewis, the runner-up on the sixth season of American Idol. Being the leadoff single from A.D.D. (Audio Day Dream), it was first leaked on October 29, 2007 via phone to fans who had signed up at BlakeLewisComingSoon.com.[1] The single began to impact the radio on October 30 and was premiered on 106.1 KISS FM in Seattle.[2] It was released on iTunes Store on November 13 and officially went for adds on November 20.[1][3]

Background[edit]

The song was co-written by Lewis, Louis Biancaniello, Ryan Tedder (OneRepublic), Sam Watters and produced by Lewis and Tedder.[2]

Lewis described the song as "funk/soul-inspired" and is influenced by certain musicians:[2]

It’s an explosion channeling my Michael Jackson, James Brown, and Curtis Mayfield. It’s a real live track with a kind of sinister message that you have to watch yourself. It’s about staying away from the evil side in all of us.[4]

His friends have also involved in the production of the song:

The bridge goes into breakbeat funk, featuring my drummer, KJ (Quantize) Sawka. My two really good friends, T.J. Berry and Chris Poage of The Panda Conspiracy on Alto and Barry Sax and my guitarist Ryan Lava. It's so amazing to have my friends be a part of something so special.[2]

Music video[edit]

The video of "Break Anotha", which was directed by Sanji, premiered on December 6 on Yahoo! Music.[5] Nonetheless, during an interview of Lewis with Jared Cotter on The Sauce of Fuse TV on December 5, a sneak peek of the video has been aired on the show. It was shot against a green screen and "has an interesting concept behind it", which in Lewis' words, "when you open Rorschach inkblot tests, how they have two different sides" and like "ink and water, and different effects behind me that come in".[6]

Responses[edit]

The single received generally favorable reviews from fans and critics:

  • Chuck Taylor of Billboard Magazine depicted "Break Anotha", which has drawn 76,000 streams on the day it premiered on "AOL First Listen", as "a lightning rod of rock'n'funk, meshing busy, skittish production and enough tempo stops and starts to build one clever three-minute jam", as well as channeling Justin Timberlake "with fluffed harmonic layers and falsetto as he sings a rapid-fire lyric about a playa". He felt that "this runner-up is poised to win the big prize: song is a bull's-eye, the stylish 26-year-old has the looks of a teen idol, and clearly, AI [American Idol] fever has never been more prominent" and "the future looks mighty bright for full-length Audio Day Dream".[7]
  • Ken Barnes of USA Today commented that the song "sounds like a clever maximizing of Blake's musical inclinations in a contemporary pop context" and "seems to be aimed straight at the Justin Timberlake market, and - with a properly warm radio reception - it could hit the jackpot".[8]
  • Michael Slezak of Entertainment Weekly gave the single rave review, thought that it "sounds like it could easily hold its own on Billboard Hot 100", "not just a 'good for an Idol graduate' kind of single, but instead the kind of track I'd spend money to download" and predicted that it will be a "big hit".[9]
  • Blender Magazine believed that the single "lives up to the singer's daring reality TV persona" and "is semi-ridiculous, hyperactive and totally different from your typical Idol fare", giving a rating of 3/5.[10]
  • Bill Lamb from About.com thought that while "beatboxing is part of the mix", "Blake's vocals are front and center in the instantly funky mix" and he has "really enjoyed listening to 'Break Anotha'", although he was disappointed by the Audio Day Dream cover design.[11][12]

"Break Anotha" has garnered reviews from Seattle Post-Intelligencer, The Detroit News and Boston Herald as well. While the reviewers got a vibe of Justin Timberlake from it, they all predicted that "Break Anotha" will be a successful single.[13][14][15] The Detroit News even went further, writing that Lewis, with "one of the most exciting singles of the year", "will blow Sparks [Jordin Sparks, winner on the sixth season of American Idol] out of the water, if not in first week sales then in three months' time".[14] However this prediction proved highly incorrect, since as of February 2008 (a full three months after the song's release) "Break Anotha" failed to enter the Hot 100, and failed to reach 100,000 in digital sales, while Sparks' first single "Tattoo" reached the top ten of the Hot 100 and has sold over 1,900,000 in digital sales to date.

Chart performance[edit]

"Break Anotha" was released to radio stations on October 30, 2007 and debuted at number 197 on the Mediabase Top 40 chart, reaching an audience of approximately 150,000. Two days after the release, it entered the top 100, reaching an audience of nearly 266,000. The song was not added to radio playlists officially until November 20, 2007 and it reached number 40 as of December 19.[16][17]

"Break Anotha" scored 11,000 downloads its first week, and has to date sold 85,000 in total.[18] It debuted and peaked on Billboard Pop 100 at number 85 and Hot Digital Songs chart at number 97 in the issue of the charts on December 1, 2007.[19] It also debuted and peaked on the Billboard Bubbling Under Hot 100 at number ten for chart week December 22, 2007.[20] "Break Anotha" failed to reach the Hot 100.

Chart (2007) Peak
position
U.S. Billboard Bubbling Under Hot 100[19] 10

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Pure Tone Music". Retrieved 2007-10-28. 
  2. ^ a b c d "Blake Lewis' profile". MySpace. Retrieved 2007-06-22. 
  3. ^ "AllAccess". Retrieved 2007-11-01. 
  4. ^ "Blake Lewis Blog:"Break Anotha"". Blake Lewis official website. November 27, 2007. Retrieved 2007-11-29. [dead link]
  5. ^ "Booked: Blake Lewis - Sanji, director". Video Static. November 15, 2007. Retrieved 2007-11-15. 
  6. ^ Harris, Chris (November 19, 2007). "American Idol' Runner-Up Blake Lewis Creates Own Genre On A.D.D. Debut". MTV.com. Retrieved 2007-11-20. 
  7. ^ Taylor, Chuck. ""Break Anotha" review". Billboard Magazine. Archived from the original on 2007-11-11. Retrieved 2007-11-09. 
  8. ^ Barnes, Ken (October 29, 2007). "Blake Sets Album Date, Readies First Single". USA Today. Retrieved 2007-10-29. 
  9. ^ Slezak, Michael (October 31, 2007). "Snap Judgment: Blake Lewis' 'Break Anotha'". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved 2007-10-30. 
  10. ^ "American Idol Loser Blake Lewis Breaks Hearts". Blender Magazine. Retrieved 2007-10-31. 
  11. ^ Lamb, Bill (October 30, 2007). "Blake Lewis Breaks Out With 'Break Anotha'". About.com. Retrieved 2007-11-10. 
  12. ^ Lamb, Bill (November 8, 2007). "Blake Lewis' 'Audio Day Dream' Album Cover". About.com. Retrieved 2007-11-10. 
  13. ^ Hay, Travis (November 1, 2007). "Hear It Here: Blake Lewis' Debut Single 'Break Anotha'". Seattle Post-Intelligencer. Retrieved 2007-11-10. 
  14. ^ a b Graham, Adam (November 9, 2007). "Blake Lewis Is Awesome". The Detroit News. Retrieved 2007-11-10. 
  15. ^ Treacy, Christopher John (November 5, 2007). "Download of the Week: Blake Lewis' 'Break Anotha'". Boston Herald. Retrieved 2007-11-18. 
  16. ^ "Mediabase Top 40 chart". Mediabase. Retrieved 2007-11-03. 
  17. ^ "Blake Lewis' "Break Anotha" (Quick cut information)". Mediabase. Retrieved 2007-11-03. 
  18. ^ Idol Chatter 11-26-2008
  19. ^ a b "Blake Lewis' "Break Anotha" on Billboard Pop 100 chart". Billboard Magazine. Archived from the original on 2007-12-13. Retrieved 2007-11-24. 
  20. ^ "Blake Lewis' "Break Anotha" on Billboard Bubbling Under Hot 100 Singles chart". Billboard Magazine. Archived from the original on 2007-12-20. Retrieved 2007-12-15. 

External links[edit]