Just a Dream (Nelly song)

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"Just a Dream"
Single by Nelly
from the album 5.0
Released August 16, 2010 (2010-08-16)
(see release history)
Format CD single, digital download
Recorded 2010;
Miami, Florida
(The Hit Factory Studios, Playland Playhouse)
Genre Pop, R&B


Label Universal Motown, Derrty Ent.
Writer(s) Cornell Haynes, Jr., James Scheffer, Richard Butler, Jr., Frank Romano
Producer(s) Jim Jonsin, Rico Love
Nelly singles chronology
"Stepped on My J'z"
"Just a Dream"
"Move That Body"

"Just a Dream" is a song performed by American recording artist Nelly, released as the lead single from his 2010 album 5.0. The song was written by Mitch J, Nelly, Rico Love, Jim Jonsin and Frank Romano with Jonsin and Love producing the song.[1] The song was released from August 16, 2010 to iTunes Stores around the world for digital download.[2] It was released alongside with the promotional single, "Tippin' In da Club".[3] On October 6, 2010 the song was certified triple platinum by the RIAA.[4]


According to Nelly, the string-heavy number almost didn't make it to him. He and Jim Jonsin were working on music together for 5.0, and when the producer played beats for the rapper. "Just a Dream" appeared to be just an afterthought, Nelly scored the hit when he stopped Jonsin and asked him to replay the beat that would become his first single from the album, "He was playing me a few of his beats and he played that beat, but he kind of moved on to the [next] beat pretty quick," Nelly explained, "I don't know if he thought I wouldn't like that one. [He laughs.] I was like, Wait a minute, what's that? 'Cause I love guitars, I'm a really big fan of guitars. When I heard it, I instantly was attracted to it. I got to listening and the more I listened to it, I got a vision and a feel for it."[5]


A sample of "Just a Dream" featuring the bridge and chorus, which Nelly sings.

Problems playing this file? See media help.

Nelly said, "I think that the way the whole song plays out, with the beat and the lyrics, I think it comes together in the sense of its almost a timeless song".[6]

Many are speculating "Just a Dream", which is becoming a very big radio hit, is actually about Ashanti, He responds in an interview for "That Grape Juice", "No it's not about Ashanti. It's just a song that I and my man [Rico] came up with. It's a song that just relatable on all levels – rich, poor, black, white, child, adult - whatever level it is. If [thinking it’s about Ashanti] is what helps people to go out and support it then so be it (giggles)".[7]

Chart performance[edit]

"Just a Dream" made its first chart appearance, debuting on the US Billboard Hot 100 at number twelve and peaking at number three in its eighth week. The song also debuted at number thirty-eight on Billboard's Pop Songs chart,[8] and debuted at number eight on the Billboard Digital Songs chart, selling 135,000 downloads in its first week.[9][10] "Just a Dream" is Nelly's highest charting song since his 2005 single "Grillz". and debuted at number twenty-two on the Billboard Rap Songs. As of November 2013, the song has sold over 4 million downloads in the United States.[11]

The song entered the Canadian Hot 100 on August 2010, at number thirty-two.[12] It debuted in Australia (ARIA Charts) on the singles chart at number twenty-four,[13] on the New Zealand Singles Chart at number twenty-nine, and in Switzerland (Media Control AG) at number fifty-two.

Live performances[edit]

Nelly performed "Just a Dream" during a free concert to help promote St. Louis' bid for the 2012 Democratic National Convention at Kiener Plaza on July 29, 2010.[14] He also performed the song during the 2010 MOBO Awards in Liverpool, England on October 20, 2010. Nelly performed live for the November 13th Margarito/Pacquiao bout at Cowboys Stadium, Arlington, Texas.


Nelly won "Top Streaming Song" for "Just a Dream" at the 2011 Billboard Music Awards. At the 2011 MuchMusic Video Awards, Nelly was Nominated for "MuchMusic.com Most Watched Video" for "Just a Dream" but lost to Taio Cruz's "Dynamite". The song is also covered in the 2012 musical comedy Pitch Perfect by Anna Kendrick.

Music video[edit]

Nelly shot the music video to "Just a Dream" on August 26, 2010 at Playa del Rey, Los Angeles.[15][16][17] The director of the video is Sanji.[18] Nelly goes sky high in a dramatic black-and-white video, sitting in his car while floating high above the ocean. Nelly looks down on his girl—Katerina Graham—as she runs along the shore. He later he comes down to ground to take a trip to the club. While searching for his love, he mistakes a girl walking on the street—actress Bianca Siavoshy—for his girlfriend. His dream home, a wedding ring, and his car, items that had been floating above the beach, burst into flames, their ashes falling to the shore below. There are several shots of one of Nelly's eyes shattering as if made of glass.

The car in the video is a custom-made Ford Mustang GT.

The house in the video is a dollhouse called The Emerson House, made by toymaker Brinca Dada (www.brincadada.com).

It premiered on September 24, 2010.[19] Shannon Brown of the Miami Heat makes a cameo appearance.

Track listing[edit]

Digital download[2]
  1. "Just a Dream" – 3:57

Credits and personnel[edit]

The credits for "Just a Dream" are adapted from 5.0 album liner notes.[1]

Recording information
  • Recorded in Florida at The Hit Factory Studios and Playland Playhouse, Miami.
  • Nellyvocals, songwriter
  • James Scheffer (Jim Jonsin) – producer, songwriter, keyboards
  • Richard Butler, Jr. (Rico Love) – producer, songwriter
  • Frank Romanoguitar, songwriter
  • Robert Marks – recording engineer, audio mixer
  • Ryan Evans – recording engineer
  • Jason Wilkie – recording assistant, mixing assistant
  • Matt Huber – recording assistant, mixing assistant
  • Thurston McCrea – recording assistant, additional engineering
  • Chad Jolley – mixing assistant
  • Brandon Jones – additional engineering

Charts and certifications[edit]

Radio and release history[edit]

Country Date Format
United States[54] August 10, 2010 Mainstream, rhythmic radio
Japan[55] August 16, 2010 Digital download
Canada[57] August 17, 2010
United States[58]
Italy[59] August 30, 2010 CD single
Brazil[60] September 24, 2010 Airplay
United Kingdom[61] October 15, 2010 Digital download
Germany[62] November 12, 2010 CD single


  1. ^ a b 5.0 (booklet). Nelly. Universal Republic, Universal Motown (Universal Music). 2010. 
  2. ^ a b "Just a Dream - Single". iTunes Store. Apple Inc. 2010. Retrieved 2010-08-16. 
  3. ^ "Tippin' In da Club - Single by Nelly". iTunes Store. Apple Inc. Retrieved 2010-08-17. 
  4. ^ RIAA - Gold & Platinum - December 22, 2010
  5. ^ Nelly 'Feels Good' About 'Just A Dream' Making The Charts - Music, Celebrity, Artist News | MTV
  6. ^ Nelly Discusses “Just A Dream” Video And Working With Dr. Luke On ‘5.0′ | Music News, Reviews, and Gossip on Idolator.com
  7. ^ That Grape Juice Interviews Nelly | ..::That Grape Juice // ThatGrapeJuice.net::..|| Thirsty?
  8. ^ "Chart Highlights: Country, Dance/Club Play Songs & More ". Billboard.com. 2010-08-16.
  9. ^ Digital Songs | Billboard.com
  10. ^ Nelly's Just a Dream Makes Debut on Charts. Rap-Up. Retrieved 2010-08-27.
  11. ^ a b Grein, Paul (November 27, 2013). "Chart Watch: Lorde Wins A Squeaker". Chart Watch. Retrieved November 28, 2013. 
  12. ^ "Nelly Artist History". Billboard. Billboard charts. 2010-08-27. Retrieved 2010-05-26. 
  13. ^ australian-charts.com - Nelly - Just A Dream
  14. ^ Nelly Performs Just A Dream (Video) | Advent Outpost
  15. ^ Rap-Up.com || Video: On Set of Nelly’s ‘Just a Dream’
  16. ^ Nelly On The Set Of "Just A Dream" Music Video & Single Makes Chart Debut!
  17. ^ Behind The Scenes: Nelly’s ‘Just A Dream’ Video | ..::That Grape Juice // ThatGrapeJuice.net::..|| Thirsty?
  18. ^ Rap-Up.com || Nelly Gears Up for ’5.0’ with Promo Photos
  19. ^ Rap-Up.com || Video: Nelly – ‘Just a Dream’
  20. ^ "Australian-charts.com – Nelly – Just a Dream". ARIA Top 50 Singles.
  21. ^ "Austriancharts.at – Nelly – Just a Dream" (in German). Ö3 Austria Top 40.
  22. ^ "Ultratop.be – Nelly – Just a Dream" (in French). Ultratop 50. Retrieved 2010-11-26.
  23. ^ "Ultratop.be – Nelly – Just a Dream" (in Dutch). Ultratop 50. Retrieved 2010-11-26.
  24. ^ "Nelly Album & Song Chart History" Canadian Hot 100 for Nelly.
  25. ^ "ČNS IFPI" (in Czech). Hitparáda – Radio Top 100 Oficiální. IFPI Czech Republic. Note: insert 201044 into search.
  26. ^ "Danishcharts.com – Nelly – Just a Dream". Tracklisten.
  27. ^ "Nelly: Just a Dream" (in Finnish). Musiikkituottajat – IFPI Finland.
  28. ^ "Lescharts.com – Nelly – Just a Dream" (in French). Les classement single. Retrieved 2011-02-08.
  29. ^ "Chartverfulgong > Nelly > Just a Dream – musicline.de" (in German). Media Control Charts. PhonoNet GmbH.
  30. ^ "Chart Track: Week 42, 2010". Irish Singles Chart.
  31. ^ "Nelly – Just a Dream Media Forest". Israeli Airplay Chart. Media Forest.
  32. ^ "Nederlandse Top 40 – Nelly search results" (in Dutch) Dutch Top 40.
  33. ^ "Charts.org.nz – Nelly – Just a Dream". Top 40 Singles.
  34. ^ "Norwegiancharts.com – Nelly – Just a Dream". VG-lista.
  35. ^ "Listy bestsellerów, wyróżnienia :: Związek Producentów Audio-Video". Polish Airplay Top 20. Retrieved 2011-12-05.
  36. ^ "SNS IFPI" (in Slovak). Hitparáda – Radio Top 100 Oficiálna. IFPI Czech Republic. Note: insert 201103 into search. Retrieved 2011-10-06.
  37. ^ "Swedishcharts.com – Nelly – Just a Dream". Singles Top 60.
  38. ^ "Swisscharts.com – Nelly – Just a Dream". Swiss Singles Chart.
  39. ^ "Archive Chart: 2010-10-30" UK Singles Chart.
  40. ^ "Nelly Album & Song Chart History" Billboard Hot 100 for Nelly.
  41. ^ "Nelly Album & Song Chart History" Billboard Adult Pop Songs for Nelly.
  42. ^ "Nelly Album & Song Chart History" Billboard Hot Rap Songs for Nelly.
  43. ^ "Nelly Album & Song Chart History" Billboard Pop Songs for Nelly.
  44. ^ "Nelly Album & Song Chart History" Billboard Rhythmic Songs for Nelly.
  45. ^ "ARIA Charts – Accreditations – 2011 Singles". Australian Recording Industry Association. 
  47. ^ "Guld- och Platinacertifikat − År 2011" (PDF) (in Swedish). IFPI Sweden. 
  48. ^ "The Official Swiss Charts and Music Community: Awards (Nelly; 'Just a Dream')". Hung Medien. 
  49. ^ "American single certifications – Nelly – Just a Dream". Recording Industry Association of America.  If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Single, then click SEARCH
  50. ^ "ARIA Charts - End Of Year Charts - Top 100 Singles 2010". ARIA. Retrieved 9 December 2014. 
  51. ^ http://www.billboard.com/charts/year-end/2010/hot-100-songs?begin=31&order=position
  52. ^ http://oe3.orf.at/charts/stories/singleyear/
  53. ^ "Best of 2011: Hot 100 Songs". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. 2011. Retrieved 2011-12-09. 
  54. ^ "Available For Airplay". FMQB. Friday Morning Quarterback Album Report. Retrieved 2010-08-12.
  55. ^ "Just a Dream - Single - Japan". Itunes. Apple Inc. Retrieved 2010-09-16. 
  56. ^ "Just a Dream - Single - Switzerland". Itunes. Apple Inc. Retrieved 2010-09-16. 
  57. ^ "Just a Dream - Single - Canada". Itunes. Apple Inc. Retrieved 2010-09-16. 
  58. ^ "Just a Dream - Single - United States". Itunes. Apple Inc. Retrieved 2010-08-17. 
  59. ^ italiancharts.com - Nelly - Just A Dream
  60. ^ Hit Parade - Jovem Pan FM
  61. ^ Just A Dream: Nelly: Amazon.co.uk: MP3 Downloads
  62. ^ Just a Dream (2-Track): Nelly: Amazon.de: Musik

External links[edit]