I Got a Boy (song)
|"I Got a Boy"|
|Single by Girls' Generation|
|from the album I Got a Boy|
|Released||January 1, 2013|
|Recorded||2012; S.M. Boomingsystem|
|Girls' Generation Korean singles chronology|
"I Got a Boy" is a song recorded in Korean language by South Korean girl group Girls' Generation for their fourth Korean-language studio album of the same name. It was released on January 1, 2013 by S.M. Entertainment and KT Music. Produced by the group's long-time collaborator Yoo Young-jin and Will Simms, the song is described as a hybrid of various genres including bubblegum pop, dance, and electropop.
"I Got a Boy" was a success domestically, debuting atop the Gaon Digital Chart and has sold over 1.3 million digital copies in South Korean in 2013. Internationally, the song received generally positive reviews from music critics, who praised its eclectic sound and noted it as a "phenomenon" that could challenge popular Western singers like Katy Perry or One Direction. The single peaked at number 98 on the Japan Hot 100 and number 3 on the US World Digital Songs.
A music video for the song was filmed in October 2012. It features hip hop-inspired dance moves choreographed by renowned American choreographers Nappytabs. It won the award for Video of the Year at the first YouTube Music Awards in 2013, which generated much attention for beating other popular nominees like Justin Bieber and Psy despite the fact that the group was considered lesser-known to the Western audience at the time.
Background and composition
A sample of "I Got a Boy", an eclectic mix of various genres
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“I Got a Boy” was written by European composers Will Simms, Sarah Lundbäck Bell, Anne Judith Wik with additional writing by Korean composer Yoo Young-jin, who is also Girls' Generation's longtime collaborater. The song was recorded at S.M. Entertainment studio Boomingsystem and was produced by Will Simms and Yoo Young-jin.
"I Got a Boy" is a K-pop song that is described as an eclectic mix of various genres. According to U.S. magazine Billboard, the track features elements of electropop and minimal drum and bass. On reviewing I Got a Boy album for the same publication, Jeff Benjamin noted dubstep elements on the song. Meanwhile, Rolling Stone's Nick Catucci opined that "I Got a Boy" was made up of a range of genres from minimal R&B to "high-BPM" dance. Writing for Time, Douglas Wolk described the track as a "monomaniacally charming" hybrid of bubblegum pop, dubstep, and hard rock. Meanwhile, AllMusic's David Jefferies characterized "I Got a Boy" as a mix of dubstep, EDM, and pop-rap.
On January 1, 2013, Girls' Generation performed "I Got a Boy" for the first time on their MBC comeback special Girls’ Generation’s Romantic Fantasy. To further promote the song, the group appeared on several South Korean shows in 2013 including Mnet's M! Countdown, KBS' Music Bank, MBC's Music Core, and SBS's Inkigayo.
The music video for the song was directed by Hong Won-ki for Zanybros, and was choreographed by Nappytabs, who had worked with the group's label mates TVXQ and BoA. It aired on Mnet and was released on S.M. Entertainment's YouTube channel on January 1, 2013.
According to MTV's Liza Darwin, the costumes featured in the music video included streetwear fashion such as Kenzo x Opening Ceremony, Adidas Collection by Jeremy Scott and printed leggings; Stussy's "Good Vibe" T-shirt, Obey's "OG Basic" crewneck, and Joyrich varsity jacket. In the sleepover scene, the girls are seen wearing clothes by UK independent label Lazy Oaf, such as a Batman shirt, a "fruity" T-shirt, and a "pizza crewneck". The fashion style in the visual was hailed as "a kaleidoscopic streetwear explosion", and the music video itself "a fashion whirlwind ... jam-packed with rad clothes". Clyde Barretto from Prefix magazine opined that the video was "more colorful than a rainbow" and featured "alluring" and "bombastic" dance moves.
The video became an instant success on YouTube, achieving over 20 million views within six days and becoming the fastest K-pop video to achieve such a feat at its time of release. It has since attracted over 100 million views on YouTube, becoming the group's second music video to do so following "Gee".
"I Got a Boy" was a success in the group's home country South Korea. It debuted atop the South Korean Gaon Singles Chart on the week commencing December 30, 2013, selling 319,824 copies within its first week of release. The following week, the single dropped to number 4, selling 242,803 copies. The single sold over 1.35 million copies in South Korea in 2013, becoming the 13th best-selling single of the year in the country. On the Korea K-Pop Hot 100, "I Got a Boy" debuted at number 36 on the week of January 12, 2013. The following week, the single charted at number one on the chart and remained its peak for a further week.
The song was nominated for Song of the Year at the 2013 Mnet Asian Music Awards. It was a success on South Korea's music programs, achieving the top spot on M Countdown (three consecutive weeks), and Music Bank (three consecutive weeks).
Internationally, "I Got a Boy" received generally positive reviews from music critics. The Los Angeles Times' music critic Randall Roberts called it a "scattered anthem" and a "gleefully chaotic" song that could "indicate pop music's future trajectory." Billboard K-Town columnist Jeff Benjamin praised the song as "one of the most-forward thinking lead pop singles heard in any country" for its intense mix of different sounds and melodies, and commended Girls’ Generation for "[setting] the bar truly high for pop in 2013." Staff writers of Entertainment Weekly picked "I Got a Boy" as Girls' Generation "key track" and recommended the group as one of the fifteen "artists to watch" in 2013.
Rolling Stone's contributor Nick Catucci described the song as a "musical gymnastics routine." Upon reviewing I Got a Boy album for AllMusic, David Jefferies named "I Got a Boy" a highlight on the album. Time named "I Got a Boy" the 5th best song on their Top 10 Songs of the Year list, calling it a "pop phenomenon" that rivals the likes of One Direction and Katy Perry. In August 2014, Pitchfork Media's Jakob Dorof listed the song as part of his 20 Essential K-Pop Songs Lists, writing that "I Got a Boy" helped "prove the adventurousness of K-pop’s listenership." "I Got a Boy" became the fourth best-selling K-pop single in the United States in 2013, behind Psy's "Gangnam Style" and "Gentleman" and Big Bang's "Fantastic Baby".
The music video for "I Got a Boy" won the award for Video of the Year at the first YouTube Music Awards, held on November 3, 2013 at Pier 36 in New York City. Following the event, Girls' Generation received a considerable amount of negative feedback from Western audience as the group was not well known in the United States compared to other nominees for the same category including Psy, Justin Bieber and Lady Gaga. As a result of the controversial event, the music video gained 86,000 views on the awards day, up from 25,000 the day before. The following five days, it achieved an increase of 327% in viewership.
Billboard named the song #21 on their list of 100 Greatest Girl Group Songs of All Time.
|Billboard K-Pop Hot 100||1|
|Japan Hot 100||98|
|South Korea (Gaon)||1|
|U.S. World Digital Songs (Billboard)||3|
|Billboard K-Pop Hot 100||20|
|South Korea (Gaon)||13|
Credits adapted from I Got a Boy album liner notes
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