Chillin (Wale song)

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Single by Wale featuring Lady Gaga
from the album Attention Deficit
Released April 14, 2009
Recorded 2009
Genre Hip hop
Length 3:24
Label Allido
Producer(s) Cool & Dre
Wale singles chronology
"World Tour"
Lady Gaga singles chronology

"Chillin" is a 2009 song by American rapper Wale. The song features singer Lady Gaga and serves as the lead single from his debut album, Attention Deficit. It was officially released on June 12, 2009. A remix of the song is present on Wale's Back to the Feature mixtape, under the name "Chillin (Catch vs 9th)".[2]

The song received mixed reviews from contemporary critics. "Chillin" reached the lower regions of the official charts of some of the nations. Its highest peak was twelve at United Kingdom. In the U.S. it peaked at ninety-nine on the Billboard Hot 100. The accompanying music video for the single features both Wale and Gaga in various locations in or near Washington D.C. and Boston, Massachusetts. Wale performed the song live on "Late Night with Jimmy Fallon" on July 14 and at a number of shows leading up to the album's release date.[3]


Wale wanted Gaga to collaborate with him on the track since January 2009, because he believed that she embodied the party-record feel of the song. He said of the collaboration: "If music was a high school, I feel like I'll be the dude on the football team, and it would be like, 'OK, Gaga's having a party!' And you know all the bad girls are going to be out there." Upon hearing that some were surprised by the collaboration, Wale went on to say, "If Jay-Z can work with Coldplay, then Wale should be able to work with Gaga."[4] Wale's mentor, Mark Ronson, sent the track to Gaga. She commented that her portion of the song, which includes lyrics such as "Lookin' at, lookin' at, lookin' at me/ Eyes all stickin' like honey on bees", is narcissistic, but in a positive way. On incorporating this hook in the song, Gaga said:

"I really wanted to sit down with Wale before I wrote the hook, because to me, it's really lame when people send you tracks, and they're like, 'All right, Gaga, throw your vocals on it.' This is Wale's record. It's not my record. It's one of those songs, one of those tracks and one of those videos that you can't stop listening to."[4]

The lyrics capture the life and image of Wale's home areas Maryland and District of Columbia. It has reference to go-go with influence of 90s style rapping.[5]

Critical reception[edit]

Critical reception of the song has been mixed. Steve Roberts from MTV praised Gaga's verse as employing a similar singing style to M.I.A..[4] New York Post critic Ryan Brockington felt that, while liking the song, M.I.A. was "one thing Lady Gaga is not" and questioned why Gaga chose to emulate her.[6] In 2010, M.I.A. herself criticized Lady Gaga, without mentioning "Chillin" in particular, as a "mimic" who "sounds more like me than I fucking do!"[7]

The Greyhound gave the song a negative review and said, "...with a lackluster hook and the repetition of the name 'Wale,' the airplay and sales of this single will depend greatly upon the vocals of Lady Gaga."[5] Jason Lipshutz from Billboard praised the "club-ready single" for its "bouncy hook and slick verses" and called the song "the perfect precursor to Wale's long-awaited debut."[3]

Chart performance[edit]

The song performed moderately on the charts. In the United States, the song debuted for one week on the Billboard Hot 100 at position ninety-nine but fell off the next week.[8] It also reached a peak of number twenty-six on the Rhythmic Top 40 chart.[9] According to Nielsen SoundScan, "Chillin" has sold 354,000 units in the US as of December 2010.[10] In Canada the song reached a peak of seventy-three.[11] "Chillin" charted for one week in Australia where it reached twenty-nine.[12] The song performed moderately in the United Kingdom and Ireland where it reached number twelve and nineteen respectively.[13][14] It also charted on Billboard '​s European Hot 100 Singles, peaking at forty-two.[15]

Music video[edit]

The music video for the song was directed by Chris Robinson. The full video was posted on Interscope's YouTube channel on the June 12, 2009. Young Chris, Tre, Pusha T, Anwan Glover and Bun B. all appear in the music video. It features Wale and Gaga at the District of Columbia's Cardozo Senior High School[4] and Wale in various venues and streets in the District. This includes one scene in the famous hidden clothing store Bodega in Boston where Wale tries on various clothes.[16] One of Gaga's trademark Great Danes also appears in the video in Beats by Dr. Dre headphones. Several posters of Barack Obama appear in the video. The music video was added to BET's TV rotation.[3]


Chart (2009) Peak
Australia (ARIA)[12] 29
Belgium (Ultratip Flanders)[17] 20
Canada (Canadian Hot 100)[11] 73
Europe (European Hot 100 Singles)[15] 42
Ireland (IRMA)[14] 19
UK Singles (Official Charts Company)[13] 12
US Billboard Hot 100[18] 99
US Bubbling Under R&B/Hip-Hop Singles[19] 25
US Rhythmic (Billboard)[9] 26


  1. ^ "Chillin (Legal Title): BMI Work #10766393". Broadcast Music Incorporated. Retrieved June 4, 2010. 
  2. ^ "Back to the Feature mixtape". Wale official website. Retrieved November 5, 2009. 
  3. ^ a b c Lipshutz, Jason (July 17, 2009). "Rapper Wale 'Chillin' Out On The Charts". Billboard (Nielsen Business Media, Inc). Archived from the original on 2009-07-18. Retrieved November 5, 2009. 
  4. ^ a b c d Roberts, Steve (June 3, 2009). "Wale Says Lady Gaga Brings 'Bad Girl' Vibe To 'Chillin'". MTV News. Viacom. Retrieved July 21, 2009. 
  5. ^ a b Vincent, Donald (April 28, 2009). "Hip-Hop Block reviews Wale's 'Chillin' feat. Lady Gaga". Loyola College in Maryland. Archived from the original on 2011-08-16. 
  6. ^ Brockington, Ryan (July 13, 2009). "M.I.A. – One thing Lady Gaga is Not". New York Post. Archived from the original on 2012-10-18. 
  7. ^ "MIA: 'Lady Gaga is a Mimic' – NME's 10 Covers Special". NME. UK. April 9, 2010. 
  8. ^ Trust, Gary (June 25, 2010). "Ask Billboard: Katy Perry, Christina Aguilera, Lady Gaga". Billboard. Nielsen Business Media, Inc. p. 2. Retrieved July 1, 2010. 
  9. ^ a b "Wale Album & Song Chart History" Billboard Rhythmic Songs for Wale. Retrieved July 8, 2011.
  10. ^ Grein, Paul (December 8, 2010). "Week Ending Dec. 5, 2010: The "Gift" That Keeps On Giving". Yahoo! Music. Yahoo! Inc. Retrieved December 9, 2010. 
  11. ^ a b "Wale Album & Song Chart History" Canadian Hot 100 for Wale. Retrieved July 8, 2011.
  12. ^ a b " – Wale feat. Lady Gaga – Chillin". ARIA Top 50 Singles. Retrieved May 14, 2011.
  13. ^ a b "Archive Chart: 2009-09-12" UK Singles Chart. Retrieved July 8, 2011.
  14. ^ a b "Chart Track: Week 36, 2009". Irish Singles Chart. Retrieved July 8, 2011.
  15. ^ a b "Eurochart Hot 100 Singles". Billboard. Nielsen Business Media, Inc. September 12, 2009. Retrieved September 11, 2009. 
  16. ^ "Wale 'Chillin' music video". MTV. Viacom. Retrieved July 21, 2009. 
  17. ^ " – Wale feat. Lady Gaga – Chillin" (in Dutch). Ultratip. Retrieved May 14, 2011.
  18. ^ "Wale Album & Song Chart History" Billboard Hot 100 for Wale. Retrieved July 8, 2011.
  19. ^ "Bubbling Under Hot 100 Singles – Issue Date: 2009-07-18". Billboard. Nielsen Business Media, Inc. Archived from the original on July 8, 2011. Retrieved July 8, 2011. 

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