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|Single by Pharrell Williams featuring Jay-Z|
|from the album The Neptunes Present... Clones|
|Released||June 3, 2003|
|Pharrell Williams singles chronology|
|Jay-Z singles chronology|
"Frontin'" is the debut single by American musician Pharrell Williams featuring fellow American musician Jay-Z. It was written by the artists alongside Chad Hugo, who produced it with Williams as The Neptunes. At the time of its release, Williams insisted the single was a one-off, and that he was purely a producer and not an artist in his own right. However, he released his own solo studio album, In My Mind, in 2006.
The song's title refers to putting up a facade (or false 'front'), typically to impress peers. It was the 34th best-selling song of 2003 in the U.S., according to Billboard magazine. It was also featured on The Neptunes' 2003 compilation album The Neptunes Present... Clones, which debuted at number one on the Billboard 200 in August 2003. The video features a 17-year old Lauren London as Pharrell's love interest.
"Frontin'" peaked at number five on the Billboard Hot 100. It also peaked at number one on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs. In the UK, the song also charted inside the top 10, peaking at number six in the UK Singles Chart and spending 10 weeks within the top 75. It was Pharrell's biggest solo hit until 2013's "Happy" (his biggest hit as a collaboration being "Blurred Lines" with Robin Thicke and T.I.).
On February 11, 2004, the track was covered by British neo-jazz artist Jamie Cullum for BBC Radio 1's Live Lounge. Williams was very impressed by the cover after it was played to him on a visit to the show, and this led to Cullum providing backup vocals for "You Can Do It Too", a track on Pharrell's first solo album In My Mind. The cover appeared as a bonus track on the US release of Cullum's album Twentysomething. Cullum's version was released as a single and reached number 12 in the UK.
It was also covered live by Maroon 5, featuring Chad Hugo and rapper Mos Def, who replaced Jay-Z's verse with impromptu rapping from A Tribe Called Quest's "Bonita Applebum," in an apparent reference to similarities between parts of the tracks. New Orleans native Trombone Shorty and his band and Orleans Avenue cover the song on their 2005 debut album, Orleans & Claiborne. During the 2012 International Yardfest at Howard University, American singer Leah LaBelle performed her 2012 single "Sexify" as part of a medley with "Frontin'". In 2014, UK garage band Disclosure remixed the song.
- UK CD single
- "Frontin'" (featuring Jay-Z) (radio edit)
- "Hot Damn" (featuring Ab Liva)
- "Popular Thug" (Kelis featuring Nas)
- "Frontin'" (video)
|Australian Urban (ARIA)||11|
|Belgium (Ultratop 50 Wallonia)||33|
|Belgium (Ultratip Flanders)||6|
|Germany (Official German Charts)||61|
|Netherlands (Single Top 100)||21|
|Switzerland (Schweizer Hitparade)||23|
|UK Singles (OCC)||6|
|US Billboard Hot 100||5|
|US Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs (Billboard)||1|
|US Mainstream Top 40 (Billboard)||29|
|UK Singles (OCC)||87|
|US Billboard Hot 100||34|
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