Young and Beautiful (Lana Del Rey song)

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"Young and Beautiful"
Single by Lana Del Rey
from the album The Great Gatsby: Music from Baz Luhrmann's Film
Released April 23, 2013 (2013-04-23)
Format Digital download
Genre Baroque pop
Length 3:56
Label
Writer(s) Lana Del Rey, Rick Nowels
Producer(s)
Lana Del Rey singles chronology
  • "Young and Beautiful"
  • (2013)

"Young and Beautiful" is a song by American recording artist Lana Del Rey for the soundtrack to the drama film The Great Gatsby (2013). It was released on April 23, 2013 by Interscope Records as the lead single from the record. A baroque pop ballad, "Young & Beautiful" was co-written by Del Rey and the track's producer, Rick Nowels (with an uncredited assist from director Baz Luhrmann).[1] Contemporary music critics lauded the single, calling it "haunting" and "somber". Lyrically, "Young & Beautiful" follows a young lover's apprehension about whether love can last. A music video, directed by Chris Sweeney and filmed by Sophie Muller, was released on May 10, 2013. The song was used in commercials to promote the new season of the MTV reality show Catfish.

A moderate chart success, "Young & Beautiful" reached the top ten in Australia where it was later certified platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA). It was also top 10 hit on Serbian airplay chart, peaking at number 9.[2] In May 2013, the song broke into the Billboard Hot 100; it peaked at 22 on the chart, making it Del Rey's highest peak since "Video Games" peaked at 91 in 2012. Shortly after, the song also peaked at 3 on the Hot Rock Songs chart. Del Rey and Nowels received accolades for their songwriting from various music and film awards, including nominations for Best Song Written for Visual Media at the 56th Annual Grammy Awards, and Best Song at the 19th Critics' Choice Awards. They eventually won the Best Original Song at the 18th Satellite Awards. On January 26, 2014, "Young and Beautiful" was announced as number 7 on the annual Triple J's Hottest 100 in Australia.[3]

Background[edit]

Working with the film's director, co-writer, and co-producer Baz Luhrmann, Del Rey penned the original song "Young & Beautiful" for the soundtrack of the 2013 rendition of the novel The Great Gatsby, written from the perspective of Daisy Buchanan.[4]

In an interview with Catalunya Ràdio; Del Rey said she had three new songs for her third extended play, Paradise: "I Sing the Body Electric", "In the Land of Gods and Monsters" and "Will You Still Love Me When I'm No Longer Young and Beautiful". Del Rey sang the chorus of "Young and Beautiful" during the Catalunya Ràdio broadcast.[5]

Baz Luhrmann later gave an interview which contained a Skype chat with Del Rey, where Luhrmann said "we are very lucky that the song found a film",[6] implying the song had already been penned prior to the film.

Luhrmann changed some of the lyrics in the beginning of the second verse from the demo version of "Will You Still Love Me" to fit with the film.[7] It clearly was always intended for Paradise, which did get picked up by various media. [8]

The song was released to contemporary hit radio as a single and was used as the film's kickoff single.[9] A snippet of the track appeared in the official trailer for the film and played during the scene where the characters portrayed by Leonardo DiCaprio and Carey Mulligan express their romantic feelings for one another.[10]

Composition[edit]

In this 30 second sample of the ballad, "Young and Beautiful", the lyrics, "Will you still love me when I'm no longer young and beautiful?" that embody the refrain can be heard.

Problems playing this file? See media help.

"Young and Beautiful" is a baroque pop ballad. With the lyrics, "Will you still love me when I'm no longer young and beautiful?" Del Rey adds a hint of desperation which parallels the idiosyncrasies faced by the characters in F. Scott Fitzgerald's classic novel.[11] Del Rey's dreamy vocals are draped over sedated strings and canned percussion.[11] The soft and dreary vocals, falling in line with Del Rey's retro affectation, fits the atmosphere of the 1920s when the novel is set.[12] The lyrics rotate around the themes of pleasing a lover, nostalgia, and the gloom of aging.[13] The Cedric Gervais remix of the song was released on October 11, 2013.

Music video[edit]

The music video for "Young and Beautiful" was set to be released on April 22, 2013,[14] but was officially released on 10 May 2013.[15] Directed by Chris Sweeney, the video's production was helmed by Adam Smith and Jacob Swan-Hyam, with Sophie Muller shooting the footage.[16] Flanked by a full-string orchestra, Del Rey sings Dan Heath's Orchestral version of her song in 1920s art deco fashion.[15] She is shown singing the song in a dark room with glittery diamond-tears on her cheek which look like tattoos.[17][18] Jason Lipshutz of Billboard magazine described the video as "somber" and the singer's look as "especially demure". Lipshutz concluded that "the clip ends without ever reaching any kind of conclusion -- much like the rhetorical question, 'Will you still love me when I'm no longer young and beautiful?' at the heart of the song."[17] Spin's Marc Hogan described it as "elegantly conceived, but succeed[s] only as much as the music does".[18]

An edit of the video set to the Cedric Gervais remix was published on 27 September 2013.[19]

Critical reception[edit]

The song was met with widespread acclaim from critics. Hip hop magazine Rap-Up called the single "haunting",[9] while MTV called it "somber-sounding".[10] Jason Lipshutz of Billboard called the ballad, "typically lush", paralleling the single with Del Rey's previous hits, "Video Games" and "Born to Die".[11] Canadian journal National Post said "Young and Beautiful" picks up where "Video Games" left off, stating the song was relevant to the book because of "...its obsession with decay and the fleeting nature of the good life certainly resonate."[20] The journal continued to call it an "artifact" of Del Rey's consistently dark tone, adding that by the second play-through "its bald directness becomes its appeal."[20] MTV commented that the track "falls very much in-line with what Lana Del Rey's fans have come to expect" from Del Rey.[12] Jeff Benjamin of Fuse said the track featured "a big, sweeping ballad with piano, violins and Lana's warbly delivery." He added that "if the single takes off, perhaps the songbird can finally scrub her image clean of that 'Girl that totally f-cked [sic] up her Saturday Night Live debut' tag."[21] Rolling Stone's Jody Rosen recognized "Young and Beautiful" as the album's centerpiece, calling it "inert" and "a drag" despite its symmetry with the album's entire theme.[22] Finding the track restrained in comparison to her earlier work, August Brown, writing for The Los Angeles Times, called the single "clean" and "classy".[23] "Young and Beautiful" was given a positive review by Stereogum's Tom Breihan, although he disapproved of the vapidity of the line: "make me wanna party".[24]

The song was nominated for Best Song Written for Visual Media at the 56th Annual Grammy Awards.

Commercial performance[edit]

Debuting at number 89 on the United States' Billboard Hot 100, "Young and Beautiful" became Del Rey's second highest mark on that chart since her breakthrough single "Video Games" charted at 91 in 2012.[25] With 48,000 units in first-week sales, the song also entered the Hot Digital Songs chart at 36.[25] In its third week on the chart, the song rose to number 19. In June, "Young And Beautiful" peaked at number 3 with 121,000 units sold, becoming her first top ten on that chart.[citation needed] Since its release, the song has sold over a million copies in the United States.[26]

The single was sampled by Flo Rida's artist iRome on his Radio hit "Homicide" where Del Rey's vocals are heard throughout the song.[27] "Young And Beautiful" became one of her best-selling singles in the United States, nearly on par with "Video Games", which is certified for 500,000 download and streaming units.[28][29] Later that year, "Young and Beautiful" was nominated for Best Original Song at the World Soundtrack Awards 2013.[30] It won the Best Original Song at the 18th Satellite Awards.[31]

Cedric Gervais remix[edit]

"Young and Beautiful (Remix)"
Single by Lana Del Rey vs. Cedric Gervais
Released October 29, 2013 (2013-10-29)
Format Digital download
Recorded 2013
Genre House
Length 3:47
Label Spinnin'
Ministry of Sound Australia
Writer(s)
Producer(s) Cedric Gervais
Lana Del Rey singles chronology
  • "Young and Beautiful (Remix)"
  • (2013)
Cedric Gervais singles chronology
  • "Young and Beautiful (Remix)"
  • (2013)

In October 2013, a remix by Cedric Gervais was commissioned for the record label Universal Germany.

Credits and personnel[edit]

Performance

Charts[edit]

Weekly charts[edit]

Original version[edit]

Chart (2013-14) Peak
position
Australia (ARIA)[32] 8
Austria (Ö3 Austria Top 40)[33] 57
Belgium (Ultratop 50 Flanders)[34] 34
Belgium (Ultratop 50 Wallonia)[35] 33
Canada (Canadian Hot 100)[36] 45
France (SNEP)[37] 31
Germany (Media Control Charts)[38] 50
Greece Digital Songs (Billboard)[39] 2
Hungary (Single Top 20)[40] 9
Ireland (IRMA)[41] 16
Israel (Media Forest)[42] 7
Italy (FIMI)[43] 8
Netherlands (Single Top 100)[44] 79
New Zealand (Recorded Music NZ)[45] 23
Poland (Polish Airplay Top 20)[46] 12
Scotland (Official Charts Company)[47] 21
Slovakia (Rádio Top 100)[48] 53
Spain (PROMUSICAE)[49] 24
Sweden (Sverigetopplistan)[50] 39
Switzerland (Schweizer Hitparade)[51] 31
UK Singles (Official Charts Company)[52] 23
US Billboard Hot 100[53] 22
US Rock Songs (Billboard)[54] 3
US Hot Dance Club Songs (Billboard)[55] 46

Cedric Gervais Remix[edit]

Chart (2014) Peak
position
New Zealand (Recorded Music NZ)[56] 38

Certifications[edit]

Region Certification Sales/shipments
Australia (ARIA)[57] 4× Platinum 280,000^
Canada (Music Canada)[58] Gold 40,000^
Italy (FIMI)[59] Platinum 30,000*
New Zealand (RMNZ)[60] Gold 7,500*
United States (RIAA)[61] Platinum 1,000,000[26]

*sales figures based on certification alone
^shipments figures based on certification alone
xunspecified figures based on certification alone

Release history[edit]

Region Date Format Label
United States April 23, 2013[62] Digital download Interscope Records
Italy April 26, 2013 [63] Contemporary hit radio Universal
United States May 21, 2013 Mainstream radio[64] Interscope Records
Italy January 10, 2014[65] Contemporary hit radio (Cedric Gervais Remix) Polydor Records

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Music from Baz Luhrmann's Film The Great Gatsby (liner notes).
  2. ^ POP TOP LISTA - TOP 50 SRBIJA
  3. ^ The Countdown | Hottest 100 - 2013 | triple j
  4. ^ Brown, August (4 April 2013). "'Gatsby' soundtrack to feature Jay-Z, Lana del Rey, The xx and more". Los Angeles Times. Eddy Hartenstein. Retrieved 6 April 2013.  (Note: This article asserts Baz Luhrmann co-wrote the song, but he is not credited as such in either the soundtrack's liner notes or the film's credits.)
  5. ^ "Lana del Rey, una de les estrelles del Sónar 2012, entrevistada a 'El matí'". 16 June 2012. 
  6. ^ "Baz Luhrmann talks about working with Lana Del Rey for The Great Gatsby". YouTube. June 2013. 
  7. ^ Brown, August (4 April 2013). "'Gatsby' soundtrack to feature Jay-Z, Lana del Rey, The xx and more". Los Angeles Times. Eddy Hartenstein. Retrieved 6 April 2013. 
  8. ^ {{cite url=http://www.theguardian.com/music/2013/dec/19/lana-del-rey-oscars-sabotage=oscars-sabotagdate= 19 Dec 2013}}[dead link]
  9. ^ a b "Jay-Z Calls on Beyoncé, André 3000, Fergie, & Lana Del Rey for ‘Great Gatsby’ Soundtrack". Rap-Up. Devin Lazerine. Retrieved 6 April 2013. 
  10. ^ a b Markman, Rob (4 April 2013). "'Great Gatsby' Soundtrack Boasts Big Names Jay-Z, Beyonce And Lana Del Rey: Fourteen-song soundtrack also includes the likes of Florence and the Machine, will.i.am and Gotye.". MTV. Viacom. Retrieved 6 April 2013. 
  11. ^ a b c Lipshutz, Jason (22 April 2013). "Lana Del Rey's 'Great Gatsby' Track 'Young & Beautiful' Hits The Web". Billboard. New York: Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved 29 April 2013. 
  12. ^ a b Sullivan, Kevin P. (22 April 2013). "Lana Del Rey's 'Young And Beautiful' From 'Great Gatsby' Soundtrack Online". MTV. Viacom. Retrieved 7 May 2013. 
  13. ^ Orr, Gillian (22 April 2013). "Lana del Ray does doom, gloom and va-va voom for The Great Gatsby with new song 'Young and Beautiful'". The Independent. Retrieved 7 May 2013. 
  14. ^ Makarechi, Kia (4 April 2013). "'Great Gatsby' Soundtrack Tracklist Includes Jay-Z, Beyonce, Andre 3000, Florence, The XX & More". The Huffington Post. AOL. Retrieved 7 April 2013. 
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  18. ^ a b Hogan, Marc (10 May 2013). "Lana Del Rey Serenades an Orchestra in 'Young and Beautiful' Video". SPIN. Spin Media. Retrieved 11 May 2013. 
  19. ^ Lana Del Rey, Chris Sweeney (27 September 2013). Lana Del Rey vs Cedric Gervais - Young & Beautiful (Remix) [Official Music Video] (Music video) (in English). 
  20. ^ a b Berry, David (22 April 2013). "First Impressions: Lana Del Rey’s Young & Beautiful picks up where Video Games left off". National Post. Postmedia Network. Retrieved 7 May 2013. 
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  23. ^ Brown, August (10 May 2013). "Lana Del Rey cuts video for 'Gatsby's' single 'Young and Beautiful'". Los Angeles Times. Tribune Company. Retrieved 21 July 2013. 
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  26. ^ a b Grein, Paul (November 27, 2013). "Chart Watch: Lorde Wins A Squeaker". Chart Watch. Retrieved November 28, 2013. 
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  29. ^ "RIAA Adds Digital Streams To Historic Gold & Platinum Awards". Recording Industry Association of America. May 9, 2013. Retrieved May 9, 2013. 
  30. ^ "BMI Congratulates the Nominees of the 2013 World Soundtrack Awards". BMI. 20 August 2013. Retrieved 20 August 2013. 
  31. ^ 2013 Nominations | Categories | International Press Academy
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  33. ^ "Lana Del Rey – Young and Beautiful – Austriancharts.at" (in German). Ö3 Austria Top 40. Retrieved 29 May 2013.
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  40. ^ "Archívum – Slágerlisták – MAHASZ – Magyar Hanglemezkiadók Szövetsége" (in Hungarian). Single (track) Top 10 lista. Magyar Hanglemezkiadók Szövetsége.
  41. ^ "Chart Track". Irish Singles Chart.
  42. ^ "Lana Del Rey – Young and Beautiful Media Forest". Israeli Airplay Chart. Media Forest.
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  45. ^ "Charts.org.nz – Lana Del Rey – Young and Beautiful". Top 40 Singles.
  46. ^ "Listy bestsellerów, wyróżnienia :: Związek Producentów Audio-Video". Polish Airplay Top 20. Retrieved October 8, 2013.
  47. ^ "Archive Chart". Scottish Singles Top 40.
  48. ^ "SNS IFPI" (in Slovak). Hitparáda – Radio Top 100 Oficiálna. IFPI Czech Republic. Note: insert 201324 into search.
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  50. ^ "Swedishcharts.com – Lana Del Rey – Young and Beautiful". Singles Top 60.
  51. ^ "Lana Del Rey – Young and Beautiful – swisscharts.com". Swiss Singles Chart.
  52. ^ "Archive Chart" UK Singles Chart.
  53. ^ "Lana Del Rey Album & Song Chart History" Billboard Hot 100 for Lana Del Rey. Retrieved 23 May 2013.
  54. ^ "Young and Beautiful - Lana Del Rey - Song Information - Rock Songs". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved 24 November 2012. 
  55. ^ "Lana Del Rey Album & Song Chart History" Billboard Hot Dance Club Songs for Lana Del Rey. Retrieved 4 November 2013.
  56. ^ "Discography: Lana Del Rey". dutcharts.nl (in English). NZ: RIANZ. 2014. Retrieved June 19, 2014. 
  57. ^ "ARIA Charts – Accreditations – 2013 Singles". Australian Recording Industry Association. 
  58. ^ "Canadian single certifications – Lana Del Rey – Young and Beautiful". Music Canada. 
  59. ^ "Italian single certifications – Lana Del Rey – Young and Beautiful" (in Italian). Federation of the Italian Music Industry.  Select Online in the field Scegli la sezione. Select Week -- and Year ----. Enter Lana Del Rey in the field Artista. Click Avvia la ricerca
  60. ^ "NZ Top 40 Singles Chart - 24 February 2014". Recorded Music NZ. Archived from the original on February 21, 2014. Retrieved February 21, 2014. 
  61. ^ "American single certifications – Lana Del Ray – Young and Beautiful". Recording Industry Association of America.  If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Single, then click SEARCH
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  63. ^ LANA DEL REY - Young & Beautiful (Universal) | Radio Date 26/04/2013
  64. ^ "Future Songs: May 21, 2013: Impacting Songs". All Access Music Group. 21 May 2013. Retrieved 21 July 2013. 
  65. ^ LANA DEL REY - Young and Beautiful (Cedric Gervais Remix) (Polydor) | Radio Date 10/01/2014