Gettin' Jiggy wit It

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"Gettin' Jiggy wit It"
Single by Will Smith
from the album Big Willie Style
B-side "Big Willie Style"
Released January 27, 1998
Format CD single, Cassette
Recorded 1997
Genre Hip hop, funk
Length 3:48
Label Columbia Records
Writer(s) Samuel Barnes, Bernard Edwards, Joe Robinson, Nile Rodgers, Will Smith
Producer(s) Poke & Tone, L.E.S. (co-prod.)
Certification Gold (RIAA)
Will Smith singles chronology
"Just Cruisin'"
"Gettin' Jiggy wit It"
"Just the Two of Us"
Greatest Hits track listing
"Men in Black"
"Gettin' Jiggy wit It"

"Gettin' Jiggy wit It" is a single by American actor and rapper Will Smith, released as the third cut from his debut solo album Big Willie Style. Released in January 1998, the song was Smith's second hit produced by Poke & Tone, who replaced his long-time partner Jazzy Jeff, though the record-scratching techniques of Jazzy Jeff can be heard in the song.[1] The record spent three weeks at the top of the Billboard Hot 100 chart from March 14, 1998. The song also won a Grammy Award in 1999 for the Best Rap Solo Performance. It was ranked the 68th greatest song of the 1990s by VH1. "Gettin' Jiggy wit It" Hit Number 1 on March 11, 1998. However, it was ranked at #19 on the list of AOL Radio's 100 Worst Songs Ever in 2010.[2]


The song samples the Sister Sledge song "He's the Greatest Dancer" and "Movin' On Up" by Ja'net Dubois. The "mama-uh, mama-uh, mama come closer" line is a reference to the song Soul Makossa by Manu Dibango, specifically the version adapted by Michael Jackson in Wanna Be Startin' Somethin''s final bridge. The connotations associated with the expression getting jiggy were heavily influenced by this single. The term went from being used to acclaim one's fashion or style towards being synonymous with dancing, and eventually back to the original association with sexual connotations.[3] Will Smith has attested in an interview[4] that his inspiration to alter the meaning for the purpose of the song came from his association of the term "jiggy" with "jigaboo", a derogatory term for African-Americans, which made the literal meaning of the title "getting African-American with it" and which was meant to reference the popular folk-myth of an innate sense of rhythm in black folks. The co-opting of a once offensive word also was racially empowering.[4]

The song was also sampled by a Russian pop group Hi-Fi in their 1999 song "Pro Leto" (translated as "About Summer").

Music video[edit]

The music video was directed by Hype Williams[5][6][7] and was filmed at various hotels on the Las Vegas Strip, including the New York-New York Hotel & Casino, The Mirage, and the foyer of the Luxor Hotel. Gettin' Jiggy Wit It won the 1998 MTV Video Music Award for Best Rap Video. The song was also nominated for four additional awards, including Best Choreography, Viewer's Choice, Best Dance Video, and Video of the Year, but these further nominations to were lost to Madonna for her song "Ray of Light".

References in popular culture[edit]

The song as well as the phrase "Gettin' Jiggy Wit It" has been used and parodied in popular culture ever since its release. In the animated MTV series Daria, characters can be seen dancing to the song, in an episode released mere weeks after the song's release. In the 1999 film Superstar, lead character Mary Catherine Gallagher gets advice from Jesus Christ, played by Will Ferrell, telling her to "Get jiggy wit it, Na na na na na na". In the Seinfeld episode The Reverse Peephole, Jerry is disappointed at not being selected as DJ for a house party, stating "I was ready to get jiggy with it."[dubious ] The song is also featured in the video game Backyard Football '08.

The song has also been spoofed in radio shows, including The Chris Moyles Show and The Monsters in the Morning,[citation needed] where the song was renamed "Chicken Weenie With It". In the Xbox Live Arcade version of Banjo-Kazooie, there is an achievement you earn by earning a jiggy named "Getting Jiggy With It". The song has become somewhat of a theme-song for JS Giguere, goaltender for the Colorado Avalanche. "Gettin Jiggy Wit It" plays at Pepsi Center whenever Giguere stops play after making a spectacular save. Giguere's nickname throughout his NHL career has been in fact, "Jiggy". DJ Screw created a "Chopped and Screwed" version of the song. Jam band Phish covered the song on their 1999 album Hampton Comes Alive. King Crimson referred to the song in "The World's My Oyster Soup Kitchen Floor Wax Museum" on 2000's The ConstruKction of Light album. The song was also included in ESPN's compilation album Jock Jams, Volume 4.

Track listing[edit]

  • CD1
  1. "Gettin' Jiggy wit It" – 3:46
  2. "Men in Black" (New Video Mix) – 3:41
  3. "Big Willie Style" (Snippets) – 2:56
  • CD2
  1. "Gettin' Jiggy wit It" – 3:46
  2. "Gettin' Jiggy wit It" (Jay Scratch Mix) – 3:41
  3. "Big Willie Style" (featuring Lisa Lopes) – 3:35
  • Cassette
  1. "Gettin' Jiggy wit It" – 3:46
  2. "Men in Black" (New Video Mix) – 3:41
  • Single CD
  1. "Gettin' Jiggy wit It" – 3:46
  2. "Gettin' Jiggy wit It" (DJ Scratch Remix) – 3:20
  • Maxi-CD
  1. "Gettin' Jiggy wit It" – 3:46
  2. "Gettin' Jiggy wit It" (DJ Scratch remix) – 3:20
  3. "Gettin' Jiggy wit It" (So So Def remix) – 3:36
  4. "Gettin' Jiggy wit It" (DJ Scratch remix instrumental) – 3:19
  1. "Gettin' Jiggy wit It" – 3:46
  2. "Men in Black" (DJ Scratch Remix) – 3:45
Digital download
  1. "Gettin' Jiggy wit It" (So So Def remix version 2; featuring Jermaine Dupri, Big Pun, R.O.C. & Cam'ron) – 4:17


Charts Position
U.S. Billboard Hot 100[8] 1

Year-end charts[edit]

Chart (1998) Position
US Billboard Hot 100[9] 14


  1. ^ Arnott, Jack (August 5, 2008). "Is hip-hop haunted by ghostwriters?". London: Guardian News & Media Limited. Retrieved 2008-09-08. 
  2. ^ Wilkening, Matthew (September 11, 2010). "100 Worst Songs Ever -- Part Five of Five". AOL Radio. Retrieved December 24, 2010. 
  3. ^ "jiggy. (n.d.)". Unabridged (v 1.1). Retrieved 2007-04-26. 
  4. ^ a b Joyner, Michael (1998). "Gettin' Jiggy Wit Will Smith". Feature 4 (9): 7. 
  5. ^
  6. ^ "Hype Williams". videography. Retrieved 2/8/2014. 
  7. ^ "Hype Williams". technician videography. Retrieved 2/8/2014. 
  8. ^ "Billboard Top 100 - 1998". Retrieved 2010-08-28. 
  9. ^ "Billboard Top 100 – 1998". Retrieved 2010-08-28. 
Preceded by
"Angel" by Joée
Canadian RPM Dance number-one single
February 2, 1998 (1 week)
Succeeded by
"Broken Bones" by Love Inc.
Preceded by
"Together Again" by Janet Jackson
Canadian RPM Dance number-one single
March 2, 1998 (1 week)
Succeeded by
"Broken Bones" by Love Inc.
Preceded by
"My Heart Will Go On" by Celine Dion
Billboard Hot 100 number-one single
March 14–28, 1998
Succeeded by
"All My Life" by K-Ci & JoJo

External links[edit]