Hide and Seek (Imogen Heap song)

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"Hide and Seek"
Single by Imogen Heap
from the album Speak for Yourself
B-side "Cumulus"
Released 19 May 2005
Format Paid download, vinyl
Recorded 2005
Genre Folktronica, pop
Length 4:29 (album version)
3:01 (radio edit)
Label Megaphonic
Writer(s) Imogen Heap
Producer(s) Imogen Heap
Imogen Heap singles chronology
"Hide and Seek"
"Goodnight and Go"

"Hide and Seek" is a 2005 song written, produced, and performed by Imogen Heap. The song was released as the first single from her second album Speak for Yourself. The single was certified gold by the RIAA on 3 April 2009. Itself influenced by Paul Lansky's "Her Song", the track was later sampled in Jason Derulo's "Whatcha Say", a song receiving international success.


The song is performed with the sole accompaniment of keyboard synth or piano transformed by a vocoder, creating an altered a cappella sound.

Music video[edit]

The music video for the song was directed by Joel Peissing, featuring Heap singing against a gently flashing white backdrop. The video is presented in a heavily pillarboxed format.

Covers, remakes, and samples[edit]

Heap arranged an alternate version of the song, labeled "Hide and Seek 2", for the compilation album Songs for Tibet: The Art of Peace.

Canadian guitarist Antoine Dufour recorded a solo guitar version of the song. It is featured on his album "Convergences". British alternative rock band Fightstar covered the song as a B-Side to their single, "The English Way". This is performed solely by lead singer Charlie Simpson on vocals and piano. The Christian crunkcore band And Then There Were None has also covered the song. Additionally, English rock/folk artists The Dunwells recorded a guitar only version of the song with three-part harmony featuring vocalists Joseph Dunwell, his brother David Dunwell, and the band's drummer, Jonny Lamb singing counterpoint.[1] It is featured on the band's 2012 EP Leaving of the Rose. British band Amber Run also recorded a cover of the song in 2012.[2]

Jason Derulo's 2009 single "Whatcha Say" prominently sampled Heap's song.[3] The single topped the Billboard Hot 100.[4]

EDM artists Otto Knows and Afrojack have sampled the chorus from "Hide and Seek" in remixes of the song. Dubstep artist Roksonix produced a remix of the original song however titled it under Jason Derulo's single "Whatcha Say".

The song was featured in Tiësto's In Search of Sunrise Remix.

The song is covered by Tim Waurick with Jordan Litz on his first album, TimTracks, released in 2010.[5]

Ariana Grande covered this song on her world tour, The Honeymoon Tour, as an homage to Imogen Heap for allowing her to use Mi.Mu Gloves on tour.

Classically-trained string trio Time for Three covered the song in their 2010 album "3 Fervent Travelers."

The University of Oregon's women's a cappella group Divisi covered the track on their 2008 release Roots.

In 2014, Christina Grimmie sung a slightly shorter rendition of the song as part of season 6 of The Voice.

Bassnectar played "Hide and Seek" into his rendition of Ellie Goulding's "Lights" at the midnight mark on New Year's Eve 2015-2016 at his 360-degree concert in Birmingham, Alabama to ring in the New Year.

Other appearances in media[edit]

The song gained popularity after being featured as background music at the climax of the season two finale of the American television series The O.C., later parodied in a 2007 Saturday Night Live digital short called Dear Sister. This later spawned many Internet parody videos, with the music typically overlaid on dramatic scenes from television shows, video games, movies, and anime, mainly those involving a shocking or slow-motion death of a major character.

The song also appears in the films The Last Kiss, The Town and Warren Miller's Off the Grid. It has also been featured in the series So You Think You Can Dance, Smith, The L Word, The Real World: Sydney, Gossip Girl, Degrassi: The Next Generation, the German telenovela Anna und die Liebe ,CSI: Miami and the Norwegian television drama Skam.

Track listings[edit]

CD Single

  1. "Hide And Seek (Radio Edit)" – 3:02
  2. "Hide And Seek (Album Version)" – 4:29


  1. "Hide And Seek" – 4:29
  2. "Cumulus" – 3:34


Year Chart Peak position
2005 UK Download Chart[6] 22
UK Singles Chart[6] 125
U.S. Hot Digital Songs 37
U.S. Pop 100 91
2006 UK Singles Chart[6] 140
2008 Hot Canadian Digital Singles 57


Region Certification Certified units/Sales
United States (RIAA)[7] Gold 500,000^

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


Release history[edit]

Region Date Label
United States 19 May 2005 RCA Victor
United Kingdom 26 September 2005 Megaphonic