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Dear Future Husband

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"Dear Future Husband"
The name Meghan Trainor is written in bold print at top left, the title "Dear Future Husband" stands beside it. A woman with blue eyes and blonde hair wearing a coat looks towards the camera below the text.
Single by Meghan Trainor
from the album Title (EP) and Title
Released March 17, 2015 (2015-03-17)
Format
Recorded 2014; The Carriage House (Nolensville, Tennessee)
Genre
Length 3:04
Label Epic
Songwriter(s)
Producer(s) Kevin Kadish
Meghan Trainor singles chronology
"Marvin Gaye"
(2015)
"Dear Future Husband"
(2015)
"Like I'm Gonna Lose You"
(2015)

"Marvin Gaye"
(2015)
"Dear Future Husband"
(2015)
"Like I'm Gonna Lose You"
(2015)

"Dear Future Husband" is a song recorded by American singer and songwriter Meghan Trainor for her debut studio album Title (2015), which first appeared on Trainor's EP of the same name (2014). The song was co-written with and produced by Kevin Kadish. Released by Epic Records on March 17, 2015, as Trainor's third single from the album, it is a pop, doo-wop and R&B song. Lyrically, it consists themes of chivalry and marriage, and lists qualities that Trainor requires in a romantic suitor.

The song's accompanying music video was directed by Fatima Robinson, who previously directed Trainor's music video for "All About That Bass". It depicts Trainor testing potential suitors, and features a guest appearance by Charlie Puth. The video premiered on March 16, 2015, and attracted 2.2 million views on YouTube in one day. Trainor promoted "Dear Future Husband" in a number of appearances, including live performances at the 2nd iHeartRadio Music Awards and on the American version of The Voice. It was also performed at Trainor's That Bass Tour (2015) and MTrain Tour (2015).

The song peaked in the top ten of the record charts in Australia and South Africa. In the United States, the song peaked at number 14 on the Billboard Hot 100, while in the United Kingdom it peaked at number 20. The song is also featured in the film Mr. Right.

Background[edit]

A man holds a guitar
American record producer and frequent collaborator Kevin Kadish (pictured) co-wrote "Dear Future Husband" with Trainor.

"Dear Future Husband" was inspired by Trainor's love for harmonies[1] and a joke she made with her father, where she would say "that her future husband is out there somewhere, 'chilling'".[2] Trainor reminisced on her past romantic relationships, where she was mishandled, and with the track, she wanted to make a statement that women should be treated better by their boyfriends.[3] In an interview with Seventeen, Trainor said, "It's like, I'm awesome, why would you not want to marry me and date me?"[4] Trainor considers "Dear Future Husband" to be one of the strongest tracks on her studio album Title (2015).[5]

On August 10, 2014, Trainor premiered "Dear Future Husband" at a promotional gig in Kansas City.[6] In August 2014, Trainor announced that "Dear Future Husband" would be released as the second single;[7] the full studio version of "Dear Future Husband" premiered online on September 4, 2014. It was first featured on Trainor's debut extended play (EP), Title, which was released on September 9, 2014. It was then featured as a B-side to "All About That Bass" in Austria,[8] Germany and Switzerland on October 3, 2014.[9][10] "Dear Future Husband" later served as an "instant grat" download from the pre-order of her studio album Title after October 20, 2014.[11] However, the song's single release was cancelled in favor of "Lips Are Movin" which was released on October 21, 2014,[12] as Trainor's second single from the full-length replacement of Title.[13] "Dear Future Husband" was later chosen as the third single off the full-length Title and was released on April 26, 2015 in the United Kingdom,[14] and the artwork for the song was unveiled on March 13, 2015.[15] It was released to mainstream radio in the United States on March 17, 2015.[16] The song was criticized back when it was released for what some claimed was a striking similarity to Olly Murs' single "Dance With Me Tonight," which was released in 2011.[17]

Composition[edit]

"Dear Future Husband" is a pop, doo-wop and R&B song which runs for a duration of three minutes and four seconds.[18][19][20] It opens with the sound of a stylus on a damaged vinyl before transcending into an old-fashioned ukulele melody.[21] Musically, the track contains "slick" production and a rock-inspired drum beat, a "zippy" piano melody and "ebullient" brass instrumentation.[22] In an interview with Popjustice's Peter Robinson, Trainor said: "It's my lil' list of things he should probably be aware of if he wants to marry me. You need to take me on a date, bring me flowers every anniversary. Tell me I'm beautiful sometimes, if you wanna get that "special loving".[7]

Lyrically, "Dear Future Husband" deals with subjects of chivalry and marriage.[2][23] It is based on a list of qualities a man should have if he wants to marry Trainor, or call her his girlfriend.[4] Christina Lee of Idolator opined that the lyrics, "You got that 9-to-5, but baby, so do I / so don't be thinking I'll be home making apple pies" and Trainor's "slight twang" on the song recalled the works of American singer Wanda Jackson.[24] Rolling Stone writer Jon Dolan opined that the song's lyrical content describes "marriage as a contract between equals who work and don't cook," and deemed it a "YA dream that's no pastel-colored fantasy".[23] The track's melody was likened to those of 1961 songs "Runaround Sue" by Dion and "Quarter to Three" by Gary U.S. Bonds.[1][23] "Dear Future Husband" is set in the time signature of common time, with a tempo of 159 beats per minute.

It is composed in the key of D♭ major, with a key change to D major, with Trainor's vocals spanning the tonal nodes of A3 to A5. The song follows a basic sequence of D–Bm–G–A as its chord progression.[25] "Dear Future Husband" was recorded at The Carriage House in Nolensville, Tennessee. Trainor's vocals were recorded by Kadish, who was also responsible for the track's mixing, programming and engineering. The song's instrumentation includes electric guitar, bass, synthesizer and acoustic guitar by Kadish; and piano and organ by David Baron; and baritone and tenor saxophone by Jim Hoke. The song was mastered by David Kutch at The Mastering Palace, New York City, New York.[26]

Critical reception[edit]

Adam Markovitz of Entertainment Weekly awarded "Dear Future Husband" an "A−" rating in a review of the Title EP, and deemed it an "irresistible" sock hop throwback.[19] Chris DeVille of Stereogum wrote that "Dear Future Husband" was interchangeable in its lyrical content in comparison with the EP's title track.[22] Lindsey Weber of New York Magazine opined that the track "reads like 'All About That Bass' Pt. II".[27] Time journalist Nolan Feeney wrote that the song's rallying against "hookup culture" was "rare" in pop music.[28] Piet Levy of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel gave "Dear Future Husband" a positive review, writing that it is as "cute" as a "clever rom-com". He added that Trainor tossed in a "funny double entendre fake-out" and thought that she spoke out against gender norms: "smashing old-fashioned spousal expectations".[29]

Anna Silman of Salon named "Dear Future Husband" the worst song of 2015, criticizing its "aggressively heteronormative message" and Trainor's vocal performance.[30] Mic's Kate Beaudoin heavily criticized the song's lyrics, writing, "This song teaches kids that men are born to be husbands and women are born to be wives. But that kind of rationale wears away at a woman's right to be anything she wants."[31] Nolan Feeney of TIME was critical of the song, writing, "What she’s describing is not a relationship—it’s a Meghtatorship."[32] The Los Angeles Times' Mikael Wood had a mixed opinion on the song, stating that Trainor seems to be sketching "a union of equals". But, added that she later expressed more conventional ideas about the female character in a marriage.[33]

Chart performance[edit]

Before its release as a single, "Dear Future Husband" peaked at number 64 on the Billboard Hot 100,[34] and number 27 in New Zealand.[35] After being released as the third single from Title, "Dear Future Husband" re-entered the Billboard Hot 100 at number 47.[36] It peaked at number 14 on the chart issue dated June 6, 2015, passing the one million downloads mark in the same week.[37] It became her third top-20 hit in the United States,[38] and was certified platinum there on May 11, 2015 for sales of 1,000,000 copies. It later reached a certification of 3× Platinum, reaching excess of 3,000,000 sales.[39] In Australia, the song debuted at number twenty-seven for the chart dated January 25, 2015.[40] Four weeks later, it entered the top ten of the chart, peaking at number nine. It remained in the top ten for two weeks and was certified double platinum in the country for shipments of 140,000 units.[40][41]

In the United Kingdom, "Dear Future Husband" debuted at number 89 on the UK Singles Chart in March 2015,[42] and attained its peak of number 20 on the week of May 3, 2015.[43] Across the rest of Europe, "Dear Future Husband" peaked at number 37 in Germany,[44] number 26 in Ireland,[45] and number 15 in Spain.[46] It was subsequently certified platinum in Canada for shipments of over 80,000 copies.[47] In New Zealand, "Dear Future Husband" was certified gold, indicating sales of over 7,500 copies.[48] It shipped 20,000 copies in Spain, eventually reaching a gold certification.[49] While in the United Kingdom, it reached silver status and was certified for shipments of 200,000 copies.[50] International chart peaks for "Dear Future Husband" included number 14 in Austria,[51] number 17 in Mexico,[52] number 58 in Sweden,[53] and number 57 in Switzerland.[54]

Music video[edit]

Background and concept[edit]

On August 18, 2014, Trainor announced that a music video for "Dear Future Husband" was directed by Fatima Robinson who previously directed Trainor's video for "All About That Bass".[7] On March 12, 2015, Trainor uploaded a teaser of the music video to her Instagram account.[15] The music video premiered on The Today Show on March 16, 2015.[55] The video features a cameo by Charlie Puth.[55]

Synopsis[edit]

The video begins with Trainor leaning on a bed reciting the song's lyrics, interspersed with scenes of dolls and a young girl and boy having a tea party. As the video progresses, Trainor proceeds to fail at her attempt to bake pies, setting a pie on fire. Trainor is then shown scrubbing the kitchen floor. The entire video is interspersed with scenes of a singing and dancing barbershop quartet. Throughout the remainder of the video, Trainor tests potential suitors. The first date cooks her a meal consisting of a small portion of scallops, which fails to impress Trainor. The second potential suitor takes her to a carnival and tries to impress her with his strength, which also fails to impress Trainor. The third date takes her boating, with the boat nearly capsizing and Trainor getting seasick. This also fails to impress Trainor. Finally, Trainor meets Charlie Puth on the online dating service, PlentyofFish. Puth comes to Trainor's home with a carryout pizza, which succeeds in impressing Trainor. The video ends with Trainor smiling and inviting Puth into her home.

Reception[edit]

After two days of being available on YouTube, the video garnered 2.2 million views.[56] Upon release, the music video for "Dear Future Husband" received negative reviews from critics, receiving criticism for gender stereotypes. Kelly Lawler of USA Today wrote, "There are a lot of gender stereotypes. There is a very, very catchy melody", and compared the nature of the video to that of Taylor Swift's music video for "Blank Space" (2014).[57] The video received accusations of sexism, and backlash from feminists.[58] In a negative review of the video, Julia Shumway of State Press wrote, "The video calls back to a romanticized version of the 1950s or '60s, featuring a yellow version of a little pink house, complete with gramophone and groovy colors".[59] MTV News' Christina Garibaldi criticized the video, writing "the video depicts Meghan going back to the 1950s, scrubbing floors and working hard in the kitchen".[60] Trainor responded to the criticism of the video, saying, "Just surprised the random places people are asking me if I was being sexist. But no, I don’t believe I was."[60]

Live performances[edit]

A young long-haired blonde woman singing into a microphone onstage. She wears a black skirt and black Bad Gal jacket while pink stage lighting shines upon her. An iHeartRadio logo is her backdrop.
Trainor performing "Dear Future Husband" on the 2014 Jingle Ball Tour.

Trainor performed "Dear Future Husband" as part of her set for the Jingle Ball Tour 2014.[61] "Dear Future Husband" was also performed by Trainor on the 2015 iHeartRadio Music Awards in March 2015. During the performance, Trainor wore a sailor's hat and a knee-length skirt.[62] On May 19, 2015, she performed a stripped down version of "Dear Future Husband" on the eighth season of American reality television singing competition The Voice.[63] Trainor later performed it on May 22, 2015 on The Today Show.[64] The song was included in the set list of Trainor's That Bass Tour (2015).[65][66]

Formats and track listing[edit]

CD single[67]
No.TitleLength
1."Dear Future Husband"3:04
2."Dear Future Husband" (Instrumental)3:04

Credits and personnel[edit]

Credits adapted from the liner notes of Title.[26]

Locations
Personnel

Charts[edit]

Certifications[edit]

Region Certification Certified units/Sales
Australia (ARIA)[41] 2× Platinum 140,000^
Canada (Music Canada)[47] Platinum 10,000^
New Zealand (RMNZ)[48] Gold 7,500*
Spain (PROMUSICAE)[49] Gold 20,000^
Sweden (GLF)[92] Platinum 40,000^
United Kingdom (BPI)[50] Gold 400,000double-dagger
United States (RIAA)[93] 3× Platinum 3,000,000double-dagger

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

Radio and release history[edit]

Region Date Format Label
United States[16] March 17, 2015 Contemporary hit radio Epic
Germany[67] June 26, 2015 CD single Sony

References[edit]

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External links[edit]