Budapest (George Ezra song)

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"Budapest"
Single by George Ezra
from the album Wanted on Voyage
B-side "Angry Hill"
Released 13 December 2013
Format
Recorded 2013
Genre Folk rock
Length 3:21
Label
Writer(s)
Producer(s) Cam Blackwood
George Ezra singles chronology
"Did You Hear the Rain?"
(2013)
"Budapest"
(2013)
"Cassy O'"
(2014)
Alternate cover

"Budapest" is a song by British singer-songwriter George Ezra, from his debut studio album, Wanted on Voyage (2014). It was released as the album's second single on 13 December 2013 in Italy, and on 13 June 2014 in the United Kingdom. The song was co-written by Ezra with Joel Pott and produced by Cam Blackwood.

The single was released on Columbia Records, and distributed by Sony Music, and peaked at number three on the UK Singles Chart. "Budapest" has also been a major hit for Ezra in Austria and New Zealand, topping the charts in both countries, while reaching the top ten in Australia, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Netherlands and Switzerland. It was the 13th-best-selling single of 2014 in the UK.[1] The song was released in the U.S. in 2015 and has peaked at number 32.[2]

Background[edit]

Ezra told The Daily Telegraph that "Budapest" was "[his] first attempt to write a love song, and it uses the first three guitar chords [he] ever learned. There's a lot to be said for that simplicity."[3] Ezra has also insisted that, despite its title, the lyrics of "Budapest" do not have anything to do with the city in Hungary and that he had never even been there before. He said, "I was in Malmö in Sweden and the Eurovision Song Contest was being held in Malmö on that night, and I didn't have a clue about it but everyone there seemed to be really excited about it and having parties. But I didn't know you couldn't buy alcohol after 10 o'clock at night. So I ended up buying a bottle of like, rum, or something like that from a guy in a park so I could have something to drink at this party. Anyway, I was meant to be getting a train to Budapest the next day, and I never got it because I was too hungover and didn't fancy it. So I wrote the song about being miles from Budapest."[4]

"Budapest" was originally released as part of Ezra's EP Did You Hear the Rain?, which contains the song of the same name. When asked about how the song became popular, Ezra revealed, "At first we gave it away as a free track off the my EP for like a month, and then in Italy it just kicked off for some reason. I've never even been over there, but [the song] was just huge on the radio. It kind of happened overnight. Then it went over [to] Germany and when we released it in the UK, it took off there as well."[5]

Composition[edit]

With a tempo of 128 bpm, the song "Budapest" is composed in the key of F major. [6]

Music video[edit]

An official music video for "Budapest" was first released onto YouTube on 21 April 2014. The deceptively simple video demonstrates the link between inaction and inactivity. It consists of a large crowd of people all with different styles and accessories all standing motionless together in a tight-knit crowd, occasionally being intercut with footage of one of them doing something minor like shifting slightly where they stand, one of them sneezing gaining the attention of everyone around and George playing his guitar and singing to the camera with a smile. As the video goes on, the people start to move and interact by passing their accessories around, a group of three young men having one of them bite into a very spicy chilli pepper, a hen party attendee in a sash and tiara talking on the phone to someone, the crowd looking up together and putting on 3-D glasses, all intercut with George crowd-surfing them and playing and singing to the camera again.

As the video starts to come to an end, George begins to crowd-surf standing up instead, taking off his guitar and passing it down to join all the other accessories being passed around, this time with people interacting more and dancing together. The video ending with George singing with his guitar standing in the crowd which is now motionless again, when the song ends he simply stops and becomes motionless too. In a small epilogue, some members of the crowd are all on the floor silently cheering, laughing and clapping together.[7]

Critical reception[edit]

Chris Willman of Billboard called it an "acoustically inclined, eminently hummable single".[8]

Track listings[edit]

Digital download (United Kingdom)[9]
  1. "Budapest" – 3:20
CD single (Germany)[10]
  1. "Budapest" – 3:23
  2. "Angry Hill" – 4:11

Charts[edit]

Certifications[edit]

Region Certification Certified units/Sales
Australia (ARIA)[53] 3× Platinum 210,000^
Austria (IFPI Austria)[54] Gold 15,000*
Belgium (BEA)[55] Platinum 30,000*
Canada (Music Canada)[56] Platinum 80,000^
Germany (BVMI)[57] Platinum 0^
Italy (FIMI)[58] 3× Platinum 90,000double-dagger
New Zealand (RMNZ)[59] 2× Platinum 30,000*
Norway (IFPI Norway)[60] Platinum 10,000*
Sweden (GLF)[61] Platinum 40,000^
Switzerland (IFPI Switzerland)[62] Platinum 30,000^
United Kingdom (BPI)[63] 2× Platinum 1,200,000double-dagger
United States (RIAA)[64] Platinum 1,000,000[2]
Streaming
Denmark (IFPI Denmark)[65] Platinum 2,600,000^

*sales figures based on certification alone
^shipments figures based on certification alone
double-daggersales+streaming figures based on certification alone

Release history[edit]

Region Date Format Label
Italy[66] 13 December 2013 Contemporary hit radio Sony
Germany[10] 18 April 2014 CD single
United Kingdom[9] 13 June 2014 Digital download
United States[67][68][69] 25 August 2014 Adult album alternative radio Columbia
23 September 2014 Modern rock radio
27 October 2014 Hot adult contemporary radio

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Copsey, Rob (31 December 2014). "The Official Top 40 Biggest Selling Singles of 2014". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 31 December 2014. 
  2. ^ a b Chris Martins (April 24, 2015). "George Ezra on 'SNL' Ignorance, Why Relationships Are a 'Distraction,' and Being an Old Soul at 21". Billboard. (Prometheus Global Media). Retrieved April 26, 2015. 
  3. ^ McCormick, Neil (23 December 2014). "George Ezra: Old, new, borrowed and blue". The Daily Telegraph (Telegraph Media Group). Retrieved 18 June 2015. 
  4. ^ Pritchard, Jon (16 June 2014). "Interview: George Ezra". Brum Notes. Retrieved 18 June 2015. 
  5. ^ LeDonne, Rob (1 October 2014). "Q&A: George Ezra on his hit song "Budapest" and burgeoning fame". American Songwriter. ForASong Media. Retrieved 20 June 2015. 
  6. ^ George Ezra "Budapest" Sheet Music musicnotes.com
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  63. ^ "British single certifications – George Ezra – Budapest". British Phonographic Industry. Retrieved 10 October 2014.  Enter Budapest in the field Keywords. Select Title in the field Search by. Select single in the field By Format. Select Platinum in the field By Award. Click Search
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External links[edit]