Naughty Girl (Beyoncé song)

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"Naughty Girl"
A woman lies on a floor with many rocks. She wears a long yellow dress, diamond earrings, an a bracalet on her left wrist. Below the image, a black frame appears. On it, the words "Beyoncé" and "Naughty Girl" are written.
Single by Beyoncé
from the album Dangerously in Love
B-side "Everything I Do" with Bilal
Released March 14, 2004
Format CD single, 12" single
Recorded 2002, South Beach Studios
(Miami, Florida)
Genre R&B, disco
Length 3:28
Label Columbia
Writer(s) Beyoncé Knowles, Scott Storch, Robert Waller, Angela Beyincé, Pete Bellotte, Giorgio Moroder, Donna Summer
Producer(s) Beyoncé Knowles, Scott Storch
Certification Gold (RIAA)
Gold (ARIA)
Beyoncé singles chronology
"Summertime"
(2003)
"Naughty Girl"
(2004)
"The Closer I Get to You"
(2004)

"Naughty Girl" is a song recorded by American singer Beyoncé for her debut studio album, Dangerously in Love (2003). It was written by Robert Waller, Angela Beyincé, Scott Storch and Knowles, and produced by the last two. The song was released by Columbia Records as the fourth and final single from the album to US radios on March 14, 2004, and was available as a physical release the next month. Musically, "Naughty Girl" is an R&B and disco song that interpolates from the Donna Summer's song, "Love to Love You Baby" (1975). Influenced by Arabic music, dancehall and reggae, the song contains lyrics that reference to a celebration of sexual lust and conquest, leading up to a desire for a one-night stand.

"Naughty Girl" was received with positive reviews by music critics, who praised Knowles' assertive vocals and the song's sensual vibe. However, opinions about how convincingly Knowles was able to portray a naughty girl were polarized. The song was nominated in the category Best R&B/Soul Single by a Female Artist at the 2005 Soul Train Music Awards. "Naughty Girl" reached number three on the US Billboard Hot 100, becoming Knowles' fourth consecutive release from the album to reach the top five on that chart. The single reached the top ten in New Zealand, Australia, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom. "Naughty Girl" was certified gold by the American, Australian and New Zealander trade associations of record producers.

The single's accompanying music video was directed by Jake Nava and was inspired by the dancing of Cyd Charisse and Fred Astaire in the 1953 musical comedy film, The Band Wagon. It features Knowles flirtatiously and seductively dancing with R&B singer Usher to portray a naughty girl. The video received four nominations at the 2004 MTV Video Music Awards and eventually won the Best Female Video accolade. The song was included on Knowles' set lists on her tours. The American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP) recognized "Naughty Girl" as one of the most performed songs of 2005 at the ASCAP Pop Music Awards. "Naughty Girl" has been covered by singer-songwriter Roesy and band Richard Cheese and Lounge Against the Machine.

Background and release[edit]

After the release of her former group Destiny's Child's 2001 album Survivor, Beyoncé Knowles began a solo career and recorded her debut solo album, Dangerously in Love (2003). Knowles stated that it is more personal than her previous records because she was writing for herself.[1] She contacted Scott Storch, Robert Waller and her cousin and personal assistant Angela Beyincé; together, they composed "Naughty Girl" among many other songs.[1] It was planned to be the lead single from the album but "Crazy in Love" was eventually chosen.[2] "Naughty Girl" was subsequently released as the fourth and final single by Columbia Records;[2] it was serviced for airplay in the United States on March 14, 2004 under formats that included rhythmic contemporary[3] and urban contemporary ones.[4] The single was added to contemporary hit radios playlists on an unknown date.

"Naughty Girl" was first released in the United Kingdom as a maxi single, which contained four tracks as well as a multimedia one, on April 5, 2004,[5] and later as a CD single on May 18, 2004.[6] In the US, it was later released as a 12" single[7] and a CD single on April 20, 2004.[8] A different CD single was released in Australia on April 23, 2004;[9] it included the album version and two remixes of the song, and Destiny's Child's song "I Know" from The Fighting Temptations soundtrack. "Naughty Girl" was also made available as a digital download in the same country on June 1, 2004.[10] On April 26, 2004, it was released in Germany as a maxi single[11] and different CD singles were additionally made available in its iTunes Store[12] and on Amazon.com.[13] The song was released as a digital EP in several European countries, including Austria,[14] Belgium,[15] Denmark,[16] Ireland,[17] the Netherlands,[18] Norway,[19] Switzerland,[20] and Sweden in early May 2004.[21] The same EP was also serviced in Canada[22] and was exclusively released as a CD single in Switzerland on May 31, 2004.[23] "Naughty Girl" was released as a download-only single in New Zealand on June 1, 2004.[24]

Music and lyrics[edit]

A sample of "Naughty Girl", a seductive track[25] which displays the Arabian music influences and part of the first verse lyrics which demonstrate sexual lust.

Problems playing this file? See media help.

According to the sheet music published at Musicnotes.com by Alfred Music Publishing, "Naughty Girl" is an R&B song based on the A-sharp Phrygian dominant scale. It is written in common time and moves at a moderate 102 beats per minute. Knowles' vocal range spans around one and a half octaves in the song, from B3 to F5.[26] Storch and Knowles interpolated the refrain of the 1975 song "Love to Love You Baby", originally performed by Donna Summer and written by Summer, Pete Bellotte and Giorgio Moroder.[27] Musically, "Naughty Girl" is influenced by Middle Eastern and Arabic music, resulting to an uptempo and disco-oriented sound.[28] The song also displays dancehall as well as reggae influences,[29][30] and is built on squiggling synth grooves weave.[31]

According to Spence D. of IGN Music, Knowles' vocals on the song are layered, making them sound like "a harem of Beyoncé's warbling for the affections of some sultan of swing."[31] According to James Poletti of Yahoo! Music, the female protagonist in the song sings about her "potential to turn on the filth."[32] Lyrically, the song is a celebration of sexual lust and conquest, culminating in a desire for a one-night stand.[32][33] This "lustful sexual confidence" is further demonstrated in the lyrics of the first verse: "I'm feeling sexy / Wa[nt to] hear you say my name, boy/ If you can reach me, you can feel my burning flame / Feeling kind of N A S T Y / I might just take you home with me"[34] and the chorus lines: " Tonight I'll be your naughty girl / I'm callin' all my girls / We're gonna turn this party out / I know you want my body."[34] Throughout the song, Knowles sings the lines "I'd love to love you, baby" almost whispering as stated by Ed Masley of The Arizona Republic.[35]

Critical reception[edit]

Reviews[edit]

"Naughty Girl" was critically lauded for its sensual vibe. Sal Cinquemani of Slant Magazine wrote that Knowles delivers a "convincing impression of Donna Summer".[28] Los Angeles Times' Natalie Nichols wrote that "the deliberately Donna Summer-esque 'Naughty Girl' [...] successfully meld [Knowles] breathy cooing with hip, interesting production."[36] Lewis Dene of BBC commented that Knowles sings "lustfully and sexually confident",[34] and Spence D. of IGN stated that she creates "a brief aura of aural hypnotism", an effect made during the line "I'm feeling sexy".[31] He also added that the song was guaranteed to have even "the most staid of folks slithering across the dance floor."[31] James Poletti of Yahoo! Music wrote that "Naughty Girl" mingles "Holly Valance Moorish exoticism with a typically tight R&B groove."[32] Rob Fitzpatrick of NME characterized Knowles' breathing heavily while grabbing the "imaginary" bedsheets but remained a "devout young Christian woman singing what the public wants her to sing."[37] Describing "Naughty Girl" as an uptempo party track, Lisa Verrico of The Times commented that the song features "an unusually high-pitched Beyoncé singing lines such as 'The rhythm’s got me going crazy'".[38] Neil Drumming of Entertainment Weekly found Knowles' singing "not quite convincingly a naughty girl".[29] This was echoed by Kelefa Sanneh of The New York Times who said it was fun to hear Knowles mimicking "the pizzicato line" in "Naughty Girl", and that it was not much fun to hear her try to sing "like a naughty girl".[39] Ed Masley of The Arizona Republic commented that "Storch does his most convincing imitation of the Neptunes writing their own Kashmir in a Middle Eastern restaurant".[35]

Recognition and accolades[edit]

Bill Lamb writing for About.com ranked the song at number three on his list of the Top 100 Pop Songs 2004,[40] and at number forty-two on his list of the Top 100 Pop Songs of the 2000s, writing: "Beyonce borrowed a portion of Donna Summer's naughty classic "Love to Love You Baby" to create this celebration of sensual naughtiness."[27] On the occasion of Knowles' thirtieth birthday, Erika Ramirez and Jason Lipshutz of Billboard magazine placed "Naughty Girl" at number 12 on their list of Beyoncé's 30 Biggest Billboard Hits.[30] The staff members of Pitchfork Media placed it at number ten on their list of The Top 50 Tracks of 2004 praising its minimal production which "absolutely burns" and further describing the song as "delicious and practically perfect".[41] In 2013, John Boone and Jennifer Cady of E! Online placed the song at number eight on their list of ten best Knowles' songs, writing "Every now and then Bey likes to get a little funky, like on this reggae-infused dancehall tune that finds our naughty girl cooing Donna Summer-style... Sexiest. Disco. Ever."[42] "Naughty Girl" was nominated in the category Best R&B/Soul Single by a Female Artist at the 2005 Soul Train Music Awards.[43] Knowles was awarded the "Songwriter of the Year"—shared with Scott Storch, Robert Walker, Angela Beyoncé, and Donna Summer—at the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers' 2005 Pop Music Awards.[44] It also won the "Most Performed Songs" award, along with "Baby Boy" and "Me, Myself and I".[45]

Chart performance[edit]

"Naughty Girl" did not achieve the chart success of "Crazy in Love" and "Baby Boy". However, like the latter and "Me, Myself and I", "Naughty Girl" attained more immediate and commercial success than its predecessors, propelling the album onto the charts and helping it be certified as multi-platinum.[46] "Naughty Girl" debuted at number 68 on the US Billboard Hot 100 issue dated March 27, 2004.[47] After eleven weeks on the chart, "Naughty Girl" received the digital gainer title and peaked at number three on the Billboard Hot 100 issue dated June 5, 2004.[48] It remained at number three for another week and became Knowles' fourth consecutive top-five release from Dangerously in Love and Knowles' fifth consecutive top-five hit.[49] The single performed equally well on most of Billboard component charts, including Rhythmic Top 40 and Top 40 Tracks.[50] It reached number one on the US Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Singles Sales and the US Hot Dance Music/Club Play charts.[51] The single remained on the chart for twenty-two weeks.[50] "Naughty Girl" single was certified gold by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) on October 22, 2004.[52]

In Oceania, the single peaked at number six in New Zealand on May 31, 2004[53] while it debuted and peaked at number nine in Australia on May 9, 2004.[54] After tumbling down some places, it returned to its high point of number nine for four non-consecutive weeks[55] and was certified gold by the Australian Recording Industry Association (ARIA) for selling over 35,000 units.[56] "Naughty Girl" debuted and peaked at number 10 in the United Kingdom on April 17, 2004,[57] making it Knowles' third UK top ten single.[58] It charted for eight consecutive weeks in 2004.[59] In Europe, the single reached number ten in the Netherlands,[60] and the top twenty in the Belgian territories of Flanders and Wallonia, Denmark, Germany, France, Norway, Sweden and Switzerland.[61]

Music video[edit]

Three girls are dancing in a room. From left to right, the first woman wears a black bra, a short skirt and stockings. The second woman wears a short pink négligée. The third one wears a short silver dress. Behind them, many mirrors are visible.
Knowles performing a simple dance routine surrounded by a wall of mirrors in the music video for "Naughty Girl".

The music video for "Naughty Girl" was directed by Jake Nava,[62] who directed Knowles' videos, "Crazy in Love" and "Baby Boy".[63] The video is inspired by the dancing of Cyd Charisse and Fred Astaire in the 1953 musical comedy film, The Band Wagon and has a Studio 54 style.[9][62] Paired with Usher, Knowles dances seductively and flirts with him to portray a naughty girl.[9][62] She felt that they were a "perfect match" for the dancing scenes in the video.[62] According to Usher, the video is a homage to classic "ultimate entertainers"; including dancers, singers and actors.[9] He further talked about the collaboration on the video, saying, "Beyoncé and me have been talking about doing a record together. She reached out to me and said she had an idea and really wanted me to be the lead in her video... I was like, 'Well let me hear the idea.' It sounded like something totally different than what had been on TV."[64]

The video begins with Knowles performing a simple dance routine surrounded by a wall of mirrors and then undressing until she is naked behind a white curtain, revealing only her silhouette. Knowles enters the club with a different outfit and hairstyle and some friends. Male patrons seated at the tables look on. She and Usher notice each other. They meet on the dance floor and dance intimately. Knowles performs an elaborate dance scene with female backing dancers. She swirls around in a champagne glass filled with bubbles.[65] In the final scene, Knowles sits atop a piano and after being lifted down by a gentleman, she dances and poses as confetti falls everywhere.[64]

Joseph Patel of MTV News described Knowles' and Usher's moves in the video as "graceful".[64] Gordon Smart of The Sun praised Knowles' figure with her "famous" and "real" curves. He further highlighted the scene where she takes off her dress in the video, saying that it was a "naked ambition" which outstripped Britney Spears.[66] Philadelphia's Patrick DeMarco described the video as "sexy".[67] A reviewer from Vibe compared Knowles' "booty dance" in the music video to those by Christina Aguilera in the music video for "Dirrty" (2002).[68] On MTV's Total Request Live, "Naughty Girl" debuted at number ten on March 22, 2004 and peaked at number one.[69][70] It retired to TRL's "Hall of Fame" at number seven and after being on the countdown for fifty days.[71] The video won Best Female Video at the 2004 MTV Video Music Awards and was nominated in the categories Best Choreography, Best Dance Video and Best Cinematography.[72] At the 2005 MTV Australia Video Music Awards, the video received two nominations for Best R&B Video and Sexiest Video.[73]

Live performances[edit]

A group of people is performing on stage. They are playing many instruments, which include guitars, drums, a saxophone and keyboards.
Knowles performing "Naughty Girl" on The Beyoncé Experience, with her all-female tour band, Suga Mama.

During the Verizon Ladies First Tour which also featured Alicia Keys, Missy Elliott and Tamia, Knowles performed "Naughty Girl" as part of the concert's set list.[74] Before starting to sing, she asked the audience: "Do I have any naughty girls in the house tonight? Her DJ yelled: "Do the A-Town stomp!" Knowles then walked onto the stage with some female dancers.[74] As she sang, more dancers appeared on smaller, circular platforms while fire shot from the floor and a long, rectangular screen merged video of flames with images of the performers.[74] Knowles then performed portions of Vanity 6's song "Nasty Girl" (1982) as a small dance break.[74] The song was included on the set list of Knowles' Dangerously in Love World Tour that began in late 2003. During the tour, she appeared suspended from the ceiling of the arena and was lowered into a red lounger.[75]

The song was included on Knowles' set list on her concert tours The Beyoncé Experience (2007) and I Am... Tour (2009-2010).[76][77] It was featured on the live albums The Beyoncé Experience Live (2007), and the deluxe edition of I Am... World Tour (2010) which contained performances from the tour.[78][79] On August 5, 2007, Knowles performed the song at the Madison Square Garden in Manhattan.[80][81] Before starting to sing, she asked loudly for "all the naughty girls present" at the concert to respond, which they did "with enthusiasm". While singing, Knowles was accompanied by her all-female band[80] and she incorporated Donna Summer's "Love to Love You Baby" into "Naughty Girl". Jon Pareles of The New York Times complimented the performance, stating: "Beyoncé needs no distractions from her singing, which can be airy or brassy, tearful or vicious, rapid-fire with staccato syllables or sustained in curlicued melismas. But she was in constant motion, strutting in costumes".[81] Shaheem Reid of MTV News also praised the performance, writing: "For all the dancing she did, Beyoncé got an equally big — if not more resounding — response for displaying her undeniable vocal ability".[80] Frank Scheck of The Hollywood Reporter wrote: "The largely uptempo show featured some surprising arrangements that gave the material freshness, such [...] an injection of 'Love to Love You Baby' into 'Naughty Girl'."[82]

In Los Angeles, Knowles gave a full-length performance of the song, dressed in a green belly dancing costume. She performed with several female backup dancers and live instrumentation.[83] When Knowles performed the song in Sunrise, Florida on June 29, 2009, she was wearing a glittery gold leotard. As she sang, animated graphics of turntables, faders and other club equipment were projected behind the dancers and musicians.[84] Knowles was accompanied by two drummers, two keyboardists, a percussionist, a horn section, three imposing backup vocalists called the Mamas and a lead guitarist, Bibi McGill.[85] Knowles performed the song at the Wynn Theatre in Las Vegas, Nevada on August 2, 2009 as part of her show revue I Am... Yours.[86][87] The performance was recorded and distributed in a DVD/CD package titled I Am... Yours: An Intimate Performance at Wynn Las Vegas.[88]

Knowles performed "Naughty Girl" live at the 2011 Glastonbury Festival on June 26, 2011.[89] In May, 2012, Knowles performed "Naughty Girl" during her Revel Presents: Beyoncé Live revue in Atlantic City, New Jersey, United States' entertainment resort, hotel, casino and spa, Revel.[90][91] Before the performance of the song, one of the in-between films was shown, where of Knowles said, "Harnessing the power of your body requires responsibility".[92] Then, she appeared dressed in a feathered headdress.[93][94] During the performance of the song, Knowles performed it as a tribute to Donna Summer, singing her song "Love to Love You Baby".[91][92] Maura Johnston of The Village Voice wrote that "the sinuous 'Naughty Girl' had its source material laid bare at the outset when a sample of the groans and coos from 'Love To Love You Baby' was laid over it".[91] According to Spin '​s Caryn Ganz, she was "breaking out fluffy feathered fans" during the performance of the song.[95]

Cover versions and usage in media[edit]

"Naughty Girl" has been covered by several artists. Irish singer-songwriter Roesy produced a version of the song which appeared on the 2004 charity album Even Better Than the Real Thing Vol. 2.[96] Richard Cheese and Lounge Against the Machine covered the song on their 2006 album Silent Nightclub.[97]

In January 2011, "Naughty Girl" was used in a commercial for L’Oreal Paris Féria hair color in which Knowles bleached her hair blonde. Knowles wears body-conforming outfits and whips her hair back and forth as she shows off "her luscious locks."[98] "Naughty Girl" was also used in the trailer for the 2004 Paramount Pictures film "Mean Girls".

Formats and track listings[edit]

Charts and certifications[edit]

Chart precession and succession[edit]

Order of precedence
Preceded by
"Dip It Low" by Christina Milian
Billboard Hot Dance Club Play number-one single
June 5, 2004
Succeeded by
"Strict Machine" by Goldfrapp
Preceded by
"Deju Vu (It's Hard to Believe)" by The Roc Project featuring Tina Novak
Billboard Hot Dance Airplay number-one single
May 30, 2004
June 13–20, 2004
Succeeded by
"Deju Vu (It's Hard to Believe)" by The Roc Project featuring Tina Novak
"Amazing" by George Michael

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