Smooth (song)

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"Smooth"
Single by Santana featuring Rob Thomas
from the album Supernatural
Released June 29, 1999
Format CD single
Recorded 1999
Genre Latin rock, pop rock
Length 4:58 (Album Version)
4:00 (Radio Edit)
Writer(s) Rob Thomas, Itaal Shur
Producer(s) Matt Serletic
Certification Platinum (US)
Santana singles chronology
"Say It Again"
(1985)
"Smooth"
(1999)
"Maria Maria"
(2000)
Rob Thomas singles chronology
"Smooth"
(1999)
"A New York Christmas"
(2003)
Sample from "Smooth" by Santana featuring Rob Thomas

Problems playing this file? See media help.

"Smooth" is a collaboration between Latin rock band Santana and Rob Thomas of the rock group Matchbox Twenty. The song was written by Thomas and Itaal Shur, sung by Thomas, produced by Matt Serletic and won three Grammy Awards, including Record of the Year, Song of the Year, and Best Pop Collaboration with Vocals. Not only was it the final number-one Hot 100 hit of the 1990s, it was also the number-two Hot 100 hit of the 20th century.

Concept and background[edit]

"Smooth" was originally conceived by Shur as a song called "Room 17". The lyrics were stripped off and the track was given to Thomas, who re-wrote the lyrics and melody and re-titled it "Smooth", then recorded the song as a demo to play for Santana. After hearing the song, Santana decided to have Thomas record the final version.[1] Matt Serletic (who produced Matchbox Twenty's debut album Yourself or Someone Like You) produced the song and it was released from Santana's album Supernatural.

Thomas wrote "Smooth" for his wife, Marisol Maldonado. He stated in interviews that the lyric "My Spanish Harlem Mona Lisa" was inspired by the 1972 Elton John song "Mona Lisas and Mad Hatters", which includes references to the 1961 Ben E. King song "Spanish Harlem".

Success[edit]

"Smooth" became a massive hit in 1999, spending 12 weeks at number one on the Billboard Hot 100 beginning with the October 23, 1999 issue. It was the first chart-topping song in Carlos Santana's long-running career (his previous biggest hit being "Black Magic Woman", which peaked at number four in 1971). The song stayed in the top ten of the Billboard Hot 100 for 30 weeks, a record only broken by "How Do I Live" by LeAnn Rimes.

In the United Kingdom, "Smooth" first charted at number 75 in the UK Singles Chart in October 1999. On a full release in March 2000 it peaked at number 3, spending eight weeks in the top 40.

"Smooth" also spent a record-breaking ten consecutive weeks at the top of the VSpot Top 20 Countdown, a record that held up until the Dixie Chicks broke it in 2006.

In popular culture[edit]

Legacy[edit]

On Billboard magazine's rankings of the top songs of the first 50 years of the Billboard Hot 100 singles chart, "Smooth" was ranked as the number-two song overall (behind only "The Twist)[3] and the number-one rock song in the history of the chart.[4]

Cover versions[edit]

A cover version of the song is included in the Nintendo Wii version of Samba de Amigo. Post-hardcore group Escape the Fate also recorded a cover version of the song for the compilation album Punk Goes Pop 2, released on March 10, 2009. Neil Cicierega covered "Smooth" under the title "Melt Everyone" on his album Mouth Sounds.

Remixes[edit]

  1. Chris Staropoli Remix 3:53
  2. Club Mix 7:29
  3. Club Mix [instrumental] 7:29

Track listing[edit]

  1. "Smooth" (Edit) - 3:55
  2. "El Farol" - 4:59

Extended credits[edit]

  • Producer - Matt Serletic
  • Engineer - Andy Grassi, Michael McCoy
  • Recorded and mixed by - David Thoener
  • Vocals and lyrics - Rob Thomas
  • Music by - Itaal Shur, Rob Thomas
  • Video director - Marcus Raboy
  • Video editing - Bruce Ashley

Charts[edit]


See also[edit]

References[edit]