Like a Boy
|"Like a Boy"|
|Single by Ciara|
|from the album Ciara: The Evolution|
|Released||February 13, 2007|
|Studio||Chalice Studios (Los Angeles, California)|
|Genre||R&B, hip hop|
|Producer(s)||Calvo Da Gr8, Ciara Harris, The Clutch|
"Like a Boy" is a song performed by American singer Ciara for her second album Ciara: The Evolution (2006). Written by Ciara, Candice Nelson, Balewa Muhammad, J. Que, Ezekiel Lewis, and Calvin Kenon, it is the third release in the U.S. and second single in Europe (see 2007 in music).
The release was confirmed in a MTV News article and chosen before polling ended for Ciara's second single on her official myspace page, being picked over "That's Right" and "Can't Leave 'Em Alone". Although the single was a moderate hit, it failed to match the success of its North American predecessor. It was solicited to mainstream urban radio on February 13, 2007. The single was released in the United Kingdom on April 2, 2007.
Theme and composition
"Like a Boy" which was written by Ciara, Candice Nelson, Balewa Muhammad, J. Que, Ezekiel Lewis, and Calvin Kenon,and Keri Hilson  details about double standards in society of how men in relationships can do certain things like staying out late, but when women do it is seen as disrespectful. According to Ciara, "it's a record for my women" and she had "a lot of girl talks". Ciara wanted to know what it would be like if "the roles were reversed". "It's a female-empowerment record". The protagonist wishes to "act like a boy". The song is notable for its mixture of synthesized orchestral strings and hard-pounding hip-hop instrumental. Ciara also co-produced the song along with The Evolution track "My Love".
Critical reception and promotion
"Like a Boy" was well received by critics. Bill Lamb of About.com wrote that Ciara gives a "breathlessness delivering" and says the song is "intoxicating". Jody Rosen of Entertainment Weekly wrote the song is "par excellence" and "stirring revenge fantasy". Britain's Manchester Evening News published that the song has an "epic instrumental", "gymnastic style vocals", and "photocopied lyrics", but it is "guaranteed to be a smash hit in the U.S." Chocolate Magazine published it is "one of her best tracks so far" and shows her mature side.
YourSpins.com had a contest where fans had a chance to remix "Like a Boy" and meet Ciara, if the remix is saved. On April 3, 2007, Ciara made an appearance on the reality show Dancing with the Stars, where she performed "Like a Boy". She did her famous matrix in a pair of high heels. While the song was at the height of its popularity Ciara's name was featured in a Sprint campaign along with Joss Stone and My Chemical Romance. On June 26, 2007, Ciara performed a medley of "Like a Boy" and "That's Right" at the 2007 BET Awards.
On the issue dated March 17, 2007, "Like a Boy" debuted on the US Billboard Hot 100 at number 81. On the issue dated May 5, 2007, the single reached its peak position at number nine on the chart. The song spent a total of 20 weeks on the chart. The song also peaked at number six on the US Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs, giving Ciara her sixth top-ten single on the chart. The song was ranked at number 68 on the Billboard Year End singles of 2007, and is the most successful year-end single from the album. On September 6, 2019, the single was certified platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) for sales of over a million digital copies in the United States.
Internationally, the song achieved moderate success. In Sweden, the song debuted at number 19 and peaked at number 8 in its second week, becoming her first top ten in the country. The song was also a top ten hit in other countries, peaking at number 8 in Belgium and number 7 in Finland. The song peaked within the top twenty in multiple countries as well, peaking at number 11 in Ireland, number 16 in Switzerland, and at number 20 in France. In the United Kingdom, it debuted at number 35 from digital downloads alone. After the physical release, "Like a Boy" moved up twelve spots from number twenty-eight to sixteen, which became its peak position in the country.
The music video for "Like a Boy" was directed by Diane Martel (credited as Ms. D), who also directed Ciara's "Promise" video. It was shot in late January, over a three-day period and edited by Paul Martinez. The video premiered on Yahoo! Music and BET's Access Granted on February 21, 2007. The video received a "First Look" on MTV's TRL on February 23, 2007 and debuted at #10 on February 26, 2007 and peaked at #4. "Like a Boy" premiered on The Box on March 9, 2007. On March 8, 2007, it debuted on BET's 106 & Park at #8 and peaked at #1. It peaked at #5 on the iTunes video charts. The song made number thirty-three on BET's Top 100 Video Countdown of 2007.
The black and white video begins with Ciara dressed like a boy sitting in a chair. She is sporting temporary tattoos and says, "2007. Ladies, I think it's time to switch roles." Next, Ciara confronts her boyfriend played by football player Reggie Bush throughout the video. During the first verse and chorus, Ciara dances with her male alter ego. The rest of the video, Ciara and female dancers, who are all dressed in more masculine styles, perform masculine choreography. After the bridge, there is a breakdown and Ciara performs her famous matrix as in the "Goodies" video. The video version of the song features different edits from the album version.
"Like a Boy" was nominated for "Best Choreography in a Video" (Choreog.-Jamaica Craft) at the 2007 MTV Video Music Awards, but the award was given to Justin Timberlake's "My Love" featuring T.I. The music video was also nominated for "Video of the Year" at the 2007 BET Awards, but lost to Beyoncé Knowles' "Irreplaceable." The video became widely popular, being viewed over 100 million times on VEVO, which is her most-viewed video.
Formats and track listings
|United States (RIAA)
|United States (RIAA)||Platinum||1,000,000*|
*sales figures based on certification alone
|United States||February 20, 2007|
|Germany||March 30, 2007|
|United Kingdom||April 2, 2007|
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