Complex Simplicity

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Complex Simplicity
Studio album by Teedra Moses
Released July 20, 2004 (2004-07-20)
(see release history)
Recorded 2003–2004
Genre R&B, soul, neo soul
Length 62:02
Label TVT
Producer Paul Poli, Raphael Saadiq, Lil Jon
Teedra Moses chronology
The Young Hustla Compilation Volume 1
(2004)
Complex Simplicity
(2004)
The Lioness
(2012)
Alternative covers
Asian cover
UK cover

Complex Simplicity is the debut album by American R&B-soul singer Teedra Moses, released in the United States on July 20, 2004 by TVT Records. All tracks are produced by Paul Poli, except "Take Me", produced by Raphael Saadiq, and "You Better Tell Her", produced by Lil Jon.

Critical reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 5/5 stars[1]
Rolling Stone 3.5/5 stars[2]

Complex Simplicity has been embraced by many fans, bloggers, and music critics. The album is said to be "awe-inspiring and cool and touching and kind of avant-garde in a weird homegrown way."[3] Vibe called the album "a great entry into the R&B game."[4] Further, Allmusic's review stated boldly that Complex Simplicity "is the best R&B album of 2004—if not the best pop-oriented R&B album since CrazySexyCool."[5] The album compelled many critics to compare her to superstars and legends of R&B, including Mary J. Blige,[5] Deniece Williams,[6] Teena Marie, and Cherrelle.

Track listing[edit]

  • All songs written by Teedra Moses and Paul Poli, except as noted
  1. "Be Your Girl" – 4:09
  2. "You'll Never Find (A Better Woman)" (featuring Jadakiss) (Teedra Moses, Paul Poli, Jason Phillips) – 4:13
  3. "Caution" – 4:37
  4. "Backstroke" – 3:37
  5. "No More Tears" – 4:11
  6. "Rescue Me" – 4:06
  7. "Take Me" (featuring Raphael Saadiq) (Teedra Moses, Raphael Saadiq) – 4:44
  8. "You Better Tell Her" (Teedra Moses, Jonathan Smith) – 6:15
  9. "Outta My Head" – 3:39
  10. "Complex Simplicity" – 4:16
  11. "For a Lifetime" – 4:15
  12. "Caught Up" – 4:14
  13. "Last Day" – 3:41
  14. "I Think of You (Shirley's Song)" – 6:06

UK edition[edit]

  1. "Be Your Girl" – 4:09
  2. "You'll Never Find (A Better Woman)" (featuring Jadakiss) (Teedra Moses, Paul Poli, Jason Phillips) – 4:13
  3. "Caution" – 4:37
  4. "Backstroke" – 3:37
  5. "No More Tears" – 4:11
  6. "Rescue Me" – 4:06
  7. "Take Me" (featuring Raphael Saadiq) (Teedra Moses, Raphael Saadiq) – 4:44
  8. "You Better Tell Her" (featuring Lil' Scrappy) (Teedra Moses, Jonathan Smith, Daryl Richardson II) – 4:29
  9. "Outta My Head" – 3:39
  10. "Doin' You" – 3:58
  11. "Complex Simplicity" – 4:16
  12. "For a Lifetime" – 4:15
  13. "Caught Up" – 4:14
  14. "Last Day" – 3:41
  15. "I Think of You (Shirley's Song)" – 6:06
  16. "Still Your Girl" (featuring Raphael Saadiq, Truth Hurts and Scipio) – 4:15

European edition[edit]

  1. "Be Your Girl" (Video)

The European and Asian releases of Complex Simplicity had the same track listing as the North American edition. The Asian release had an alternate artwork but was otherwise identical to the North American release. The European release was enhanced to include the video for "Be Your Girl", but was otherwise identical to the North American release. No video was included on the UK edition.

Unreleased/non-album tracks[edit]

  • "Still Got Love" — featured as a B-side to the 12" single for "Be Your Girl". Originally listed on the Complex Simplicity track listing.
  • "Cut Buddy" (featuring Kwamé "K1 Mill") — this track was originally intended for Christina Milian, and now has been recorded by Natasha. The demo version appeared on a Trackmasters mixtape hosted by Milian.

The following tracks were also originally intended for Complex Simplicity, but were replaced by newer tracks:

  • "Blow Me Out"
  • "Winter '96"
  • "Cabaret"

Singles[edit]

"Be Your Girl" was Teedra Moses' first ever released song, and introduced her debut album Complex Simplicity. The track, produced by Paul Poli, is a teaser of her style, being a '90s soul-inspired track, laced by a mellow synth that takes back to the '80s funk music. It contains replayed elements from "One On One" (N. Jones, R. Santiago, C. Jones), as well as a sample from "Ahmad Jamal" – "The Awakening." The video for the song was directed by Hype Williams. Promo singles were issued in the U.S. and the UK, however retail singles were only available in Germany. The UK had several different version of the promo CD single, produced by TVT UK.

"You'll Never Find (A Better Woman)" was the first single from Complex Simplicity, but was only a radio single. It features rapper Jadakiss and contains a sample from Alicia Myers' "Better Woman or Bigger Fool" (V. Allen, A. Hudson, J. Hall), from her I Fooled You This Time LP.

"You Better Tell Her" was the third U.S. single from the album, and 12" copies were available for promotional use, with a small number of CD singles produced by Black Moses Music in circulation. It features rappers Pitbull and Lil' Scrappy, and it's the third version of the song, after the no-rap version featured on the U.S. edition of the album and the only Lil' Scrappy-featured version featured on the UK release. All three cuts were produced by Lil Jon.

Song Date Peak chart positions
United States R&B
"Be Your Girl" June 1, 2004 (U.S.)
May 31, 2004 (UK)
87
"You'll Never Find (A Better Woman)" October 18, 2004 (UK) -
"You Better Tell Her" 2005 -

Personnel[edit]

  • Rich Balmer – Engineer
  • Gerry "The Gov" Brown – Engineer
  • Gerald Clayton – Keyboards
  • Kevin "KD" Davis – Mixing
  • Clare Fischer – String Arrangements
  • Ryan Freeland – Engineer, Mixing
  • John Frye – Mixing
  • Tony Gillis – Mastering
  • Mark Gray – Assistant
  • Amy Johnson – A&R
  • Bryan Leach – Executive Producer, A&R
  • Anthony Mandler – Photography
  • Nonja McKenzie – Stylist
  • Teedra Moses – Executive Producer, Vocal Arrangement
  • Poli Paul – Keyboards, Producer, Engineer, Executive Producer, Vocal Arrangement
  • Paul Poli – Producer, Executive Producer
  • Malachy Robinson – Bass, Guitar, Percussion, Keyboards
  • Daniel Romero – Engineer, Mixing
  • Raphael Saadiq – Bass, Guitar, Producer, Vocal Arrangement
  • Greg "Frosty" Smith – Engineer
  • Jonathan Smith – Producer
  • Shaffer Smith – Vocal Arrangement
  • Benjamin Wheelock – Design
  • Kelvin Wooten – Guitar, Drums, Keyboards

Samples[edit]

  • "Be Your Girl" contains a sample of "One on One", as performed by Nas
  • "You'll Never Find (A Better Woman)" contains a sample of "Better Woman or Bigger Fool", as performed by Alicia Meyers
  • "No More Tears" contains a sample of "SpottieOttieDopalicious", as performed by OutKast
  • "Complex Simplicity" contains a sample of "Raspberry Beret", as performed by Prince

Charts[edit]

Chart (2004) Peak
position
U.S. Billboard 200 168
U.S. Billboard Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums 20
U.S. Billboard Top Independent Albums 11
U.S. Billboard Top Heatseekers 10

Release history[edit]

Region Date Label
United States July 20, 2004 TVT
Canada EMI
Australia September 8, 2004 TVT
Japan February 2, 2005 Victor
United Kingdom June 20, 2005 TVT
Europe (except the UK) January 20, 2006

References[edit]