Escapade (song)

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"Escapade"
Single by Janet Jackson
from the album Janet Jackson's Rhythm Nation 1814
B-side "Escapade" (Instrumental)
Released January 8, 1990 (U.S.)
March 3, 1990 (UK)
Format 7" single, 12" single
Recorded 1988, 1989;[1]
Flyte Tyme Studios
(Minneapolis, Minnesota)
Genre Pop, dance-pop
Length 4:44 (album version)
Label A&M
Writer(s) Janet Jackson, James Harris III, Terry Lewis
Producer(s) Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis
Certification Gold (RIAA)
Janet Jackson singles chronology
"Rhythm Nation"
(1989)
"Escapade"
(1989)
"Alright"
(1990)

"Escapade" is a song by American pop entertainer Janet Jackson, released as the third single from her fourth studio album Rhythm Nation 1814.

The song was released following Jackson's iconic "Rhythm Nation" single and became the third of the historic seven top five singles released from the Rhythm Nation 1814 album. The song's music video takes place at an exotic carnival setting, also featuring Jackson's trademark intense choreography. The song and its video has influenced other songs and music videos from several artists, who have cited influence from its upbeat tempo and joyous feel.

"Escapade" won a BMI Pop Award for "Most Played Song" due to its frequent airplay and popularity among the general public, and was also performed by Jackson in her Japanese commercials for Japan Airlines.

Song information[edit]

"Escapade" is an upbeat pop song written and produced by Jackson and Jam & Lewis for Jackson's fourth album Rhythm Nation 1814, and served as the follow-up to Jackson's prior iconic single "Rhythm Nation".[2] Jackson and Jam & Lewis came up with the song's theme after hearing the word used in a conversation, deciding it would make an interesting song title due to the word being uncommon. "We usually come up with the music first, then we try to think of a title that fits the way the music sounds", Jam said. "And 'Escapade' we thought was a cool word. It is kind of old fashioned — people don't really say 'Let's go on an escapade' anymore, but it really worked with that track."[3]

The song was partially inspired by Martha & the Vandellas's 1965 single "Nowhere to Run", which Jackson originally considered covering for the album, but instead chose to record a new song after a suggestion from producer Jimmy Jam. After the proposal, Jackson and her producers developed the song's initial idea, which was based on having an anthem-like feel, and "Escapade" became one of the first songs to be recorded for the album.[4] Jam also described the song's production and recording process, saying "While she was sitting in one room coming up with the lyrics, I put it on the 24-track. We hooked the drum machine up. On my left hand I played the bass, on the right hand I played the chord. And it was just enough for her to sing to, which we do a lot. Because we like to let her sing to as minimum of a track as we can do, then fill in the track around her so that her part is the main part of the song. With 'Escapade,' she sang it and we kept saying we'll go back and redo the track...we never redid the track. There's a keyboard bass and another thing, and that was it. All we added were the overdubs, little bells ... because we'd gotten so used to the feel of the track, the mistakes and all, we ended up leaving it the way it was."[3]

The song won a BMI Pop Award for "Most Played Song" due to its frequent airplay and was also performed by Jackson in her Japanese commercials for Japan Airlines. Several artists have been influenced by the upbeat tempo and joyous feel of "Escapade". Britney Spears said she was inspired by the song and Jackson's Rhythm Nation 1814 album for her eighth studio album Britney Jean, explaining "I wanted to kind of recreate some of Janet's greatest moments that she's had, "Escapade" and that whole era. That's what I wanted to do, just have a lot of uptempos that were just high energy and a lot of fun."[5] Aubrey O'Day also included the song in a playlist of her favorite songs for Idolator.[6]

Jackson has performed the song on all of her tours, including the Rhythm Nation 1814 Tour, janet. Tour, The Velvet Rope Tour, All for You Tour, Rock Witchu Tour and Number Ones: Up Close and Personal.

Composition[edit]

"Escapade" is set in common time with a key of A major. Jackson's vocal chords ranges between the tonal nodes of high-tone A3 to low-tone E5. The song is in a medium dance groove tempo of 115 beats per minute with the chord progression being set like Am–E–Gb.[7]

Music video[edit]

The music video for the song was directed by Peter Smillie and takes place at a Mardi Gras-like carnival. Jackson and her dancers perform choreography in the exotic environment, with several subsequent pop videos using similar themes drawing influence from the clip.

Chart performance[edit]

The song peaked at number 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 for three weeks in early March, becoming Jackson's third number-one single. It also topped the R&B Songs and Hot Dance Club Play charts, and was certified gold by the Recording Industry Association of America. The song was notably her sixth consecutive number one single on the R&B Songs chart, tying a record previously held by singer Louis Jordan over forty years prior.[8] The song also reached number 1 in Canada and Japan, as well as the top fifteen of Belgium, Netherlands, Ireland, and New Zealand, as well as the top twenty in the United Kingdom and Germany, also reaching the top twenty-five in Australia and France. However, the song did not have a physical single released in many territories which effected its chart positions despite strong airplay. Jackson's popularity on music channels such as MTV worldwide also secured her high album sales, with her Rhythm Nation 1814 album more than doubling its domestic sales internationally.

Official versions/remixes[edit]

Track listings[edit]

Charts[edit]

Preceded by
"Opposites Attract" by Paula Abdul and MC Skat Kat
Billboard Hot 100 number-one single
March 3, 1990 - March 17, 1990 (3 weeks)
Succeeded by
"Black Velvet" by Alannah Myles

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ The Billboard Book of Number 1 Hits - Fred Bronson - Google Boeken. Books.google.com. Retrieved 2012-07-11. 
  2. ^ "High-Gloss Pop With Spectacle to Spare". New York Times. Pareles, Jon. 02-11-08. Retrieved 04-01-14. 
  3. ^ a b The Billboard Book of Number One Hits. Bronson, Fred. 2003. Retrieved 04-01-14. 
  4. ^ Bronson, Fred (2003), Billboard's Hottest Hot 100 Hits: Top Songs and Song Makers, 1955 to 2000, Watson-Guptill, p. 365, ISBN 0-8230-7738-1 
  5. ^ Britney Jean iHeartRadio Album Preview http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZNTJQAw0RlY&feature=youtu.be&t=9m30s
  6. ^ "Break A Sweat With Aubrey O’Day’s Pump-Up Playlist". Idolator. 2003. Retrieved 28-02-11. 
  7. ^ "Janet Jackson – Escapade Sheet Music (Digital Download)". MusicNotes. Alfred Publishing. Retrieved December 24, 2009. 
  8. ^ Jackson's Number Ones. Halstead, Craig. 2003. Retrieved 04-01-14. 
  9. ^ a b c "Janet Jackson – Escapade – swisscharts.com". swisscharts.com. Retrieved April 4, 2009. 
  10. ^ "Janet in Belgium". MJJ Charts. Retrieved April 4, 2009. 
  11. ^ "RPM weekly magazine charts". RPM. Retrieved April 4, 2009. 
  12. ^ "Nederlandse Top 40 – week 12 – 1990". Radio 538 (in Dutch). Top 40. Retrieved April 4, 2009. 
  13. ^ "Musicline.de – Chartverfolgung – Janet Jackson – Escapade". Media Control (in German). Musicline.de. Retrieved April 4, 2009. 
  14. ^ "The Irish Charts". Irish Recorded Music Association. irishcharts.ie. Retrieved April 4, 2009. 
  15. ^ "Chart Stats – Janet Jackson – Escapade". The Official Charts Company. Chart Stats. Retrieved April 4, 2009. 
  16. ^ a b c d "Rhythm Nation 1814 > Charts & Awards > Billboard Singles". Allmusic. Retrieved April 4, 2009. 
  17. ^ "Top 100 Songs AMR 1990". AMR. Retrieved April 4, 2009. 
  18. ^ "RPM Top Singles of 1990". 
  19. ^ "Billboard Top 100 - 1990". Retrieved 2009-09-15. 

External links[edit]