Private Number (Judy Clay and William Bell song)

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"Private Number"
Clay and Bell Private Number.jpg
Single by Judy Clay and William Bell
from the album Private Numbers
Songwriter(s)William Bell, Booker T. Jones
Producer(s)Booker T. Jones
William Bell singles chronology
"A Tribute to a King"
"Private Number"
"I Forgot to Be Your Lover"

"Private Number" is a song recorded by American soul singers Judy Clay and William Bell, and included on Bell's album Private Numbers (1968). Released as a single, it peaked at #8 in the UK and #75 in the US Billboard Hot 100.


The opening seconds and guitar riff of Clay and Bell's original version of the song were prominently sampled in Rappin' 4-Tay's hip-hop single, "Playaz Club," which reached #36 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart in 1994. The opening seconds were also sampled in Pretty Lights's "Finally Moving", which is featured on his 2006 album Taking Up Your Precious Time, Nightmares On Wax's "You Wish" from his 2006 album In a Space Outta Sound, and more recently by Purple Disco Machine on "Devil in Me", featured in his 2017 album Soulmatic.

Cover versions[edit]

In 2000, Bell performed a live version of "Private Number" with the Scottish rock band Texas. In 1999, the song was covered by English boy band 911 for their third studio album There It Is. In 2011, Jon Stevens covered the song for his album Testify! and in 2016 Beverley Knight recorded a version with Jamie Cullum for her album Soulsville. Knight performed the song with Bell at a 2017 Prom celebrating Stax Records.

911 version[edit]

"Private Number"
911 private number cd 1.jpg
Single by 911 featuring Natalie Jordan or Fann Wong
from the album There It Is
Released3 May 1999
FormatCD single, cassette single
Songwriter(s)William Bell, Booker T. Jones
Producer(s)Nigel Lowis
911 singles chronology
"A Little Bit More"
"Private Number"
Alternative cover
UK CD2 cover
UK CD2 cover

English boy band 911 covered "Private Number" for their third studio album, There It Is (1999). There are two different versions of the song, one version featuring Natalie Jordan and one featuring Fann Wong.[1] The song was released as the third and final single from the album on 3 May 1999 and peaked at number three on the UK Singles Chart.

Music video[edit]

The music video features 911 performing the song in pouring rain in China. There are two different versions of the video, one featuring Natalie Jordan and one featuring Fann Wong. In Jordan's version, she can be seen singing her parts whilst on a television screen and in a dark room. In Wong's version, she is standing by herself in the rain as well.


Chart (1999) Peak
Scotland (Official Charts Company)[2] 2
UK Singles (Official Charts Company)[3] 3

Release history[edit]

Country Date Format
United Kingdom 3 May 1999 CD single, cassette single


  1. ^ Richard (2011-11-15). "poplovedance: Vanessa Amorosi channels 911 in new duet". Retrieved 2016-10-02.
  2. ^ "Official Scottish Singles Sales Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company.
  3. ^ "Official Singles Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company.