Southern Hummingbird

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Southern Hummingbird
Tweet - Southern Hummingbird.png
Studio album by
ReleasedApril 2, 2002 (2002-04-02)
Tweet chronology
Southern Hummingbird
It's Me Again
Singles from Southern Hummingbird
  1. "Oops (Oh My)"
    Released: January 11, 2002
  2. "Call Me"
    Released: April 22, 2002
  3. "Boogie 2nite"
    Released: October 28, 2002

Southern Hummingbird is the debut studio album by American singer Tweet. It was released on April 2, 2002, by The Goldmind Inc. and Elektra Records. The album features production by Timbaland, Craig Brockman, Nisan Stewart, guitarist John "Jubu" Smith, and Tweet herself. It also features guest vocals by Elliott, Bilal, and Ms. Jade, and included a bonus track performed by Elliott, "Big Spender", which samples the song of the same name from the 1966 musical Sweet Charity.

The album was met with positive reviews from music critics, who commended the album's musical direction and its lyrical content. The album debuted at number three on the Billboard 200, selling 195,000 copies in its first week. Southern Hummingbird was certified gold by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) on April 30, 2002, and by September 2015, it had sold 897,000 units in the United States.

The album was preceded by lead single "Oops (Oh My)", which reached number seven on the Billboard Hot 100 and number one on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart. Southern Hummingbird also spawned the singles "Call Me""Boogie 2nite" and the Promotional Single "Smoking Cigarettes".


In the early 1990s, Tweet joined the female trio Sugah, leaving her daughter with her parents in Panama City, Florida, while Tweet relocated to many places. Sugah was composed of Tweet, Susan Weems, and Rolita White, and was a part of Devante Swing's Swing Mob collective. While there, she met Timbaland, Magoo, Missy "Misdemeanor" Elliott (who at the time was a part of Sista), Playa, Ginuwine, and Renee Anderson who were also all a part of the Swing Mob collective. During her time with Sugah, Tweet formed a close friendship with Elliott. In 1999, with Sugah going nowhere, Tweet returned to her parents' home in Panama City penniless and depressed. After Tweet fell into a deeper depression following a string of bad relationships and a number of jobs, she had suicidal thoughts, but she received a phone call from Elliott, calling to ask if Tweet would contribute background vocals on her then-latest album Miss E... So Addictive. Tweet felt she could tell Elliott about her situation and what she was going through.

In 2000, Tweet began recording vocals for Elliott's album and was also reunited with her old friends from the Swing Mob days, Timbaland, Magoo, Playa, and Ginuwine. She also recorded vocals for Timbaland and Magoo's follow-up to their platinum-selling 1997 debut album, Welcome to Our World, and Timbaland's solo album, Tim's Bio: Life from da Bassment. In 2001, Elliott released her platinum-selling third album, Miss E... So Addictive, with Tweet contributing vocals to five tracks. Throughout 2001, Tweet contributed vocals to albums such as Ja Rule's Pain Is Love, Bubba Sparxxx's Dark Days, Bright Nights, Petey Pablo's Diary of a Sinner: 1st Entry, and Timbaland and Magoo's Indecent Proposal.

Music and lyrics[edit]

This album is an irresistible blend of blues, rootsy soul, and soft acoustic rock, with poignant and heartfelt lyrical phrasing. A truly impressive debut album so expect more soulful humming from one of r&b's rising stars.

— Keyshia Davis, BBC Music[1]

According to Keysha Davis from BBC Music, the album is a blend of blues, rootsy soul, and soft acoustic rock.[1] Southern Hummingbird and Tweet were commended for creating a "mood in the room that might either make you want to take your clothes off or that of your significant others."[2] Noting the album's musical style as groovy and "just feels good".[2] Songs like "Smoking Cigarettes" were noticed for making the listener feel how Tweet feels.[2] Tweet's voice was compared to the album's title with critics saying "she's not called the Southern Hummingbird for no reason", describing her vocals as "[s]oft, gentle, emotional and captivating".[2]

Lyrically the album fixates on the opposite sex, noted by The A.V. Club for its lyrical "intensity that borders on pathological". The album opens with Tweet "writhing in a pit of suicidal despair", followed by themes of Tweet singing about chastised cheating men, pined for the commitment-phobic, offered to take back lovers, and generally behaved like a strong woman whose happiness is nevertheless dependent almost entirely on her romantic entanglements."[3] The album's lyrics received large amounts of praise with reviewers say Tweet has a way with words continuing to say "songs like 'Beautiful' helped us understand how lyrics can move people."[2]

The album's third song "Smoking Cigarettes" is described as a "lush, laid back affair" which incorporates "bluesy 70's soul" and multi-layered vocals, built over a snare drum. Lyrically the song is based on the idea of cigarette smoking being used as a coping mechanism.[1] "Best Friend", featuring American singer Bilal, displays "lilting strings, exquisite vocals and heartbeat bass" noted for its use of "grassroots soul".[4] "Boogie 2nite" is a "feel-good" song that contains a repetitive "funky guitar riff" with lyrics discussing the "party vibe".[1] "Oops (Oh My)", is club classic, noted for its lyrical content which can be interpreted as discussing "female masturbation or a tribute to self-love." The song is built around a "superb groove" noted for its unmistakable Timbaland production. The song also contains "quick syncopated rhythms and Tweet's raspy vocals."[1] "Drunk" is an atmospheric song that continues to take influence from the idea of intoxicants, in the same vein as "Smoking Cigarettes". Lyrically the song sees Tween broken and alone with only the aid of alcohol for company.[1]


"Oops (Oh My)", featuring Missy "Misdemeanor" Elliott, was released as the album's lead single in January 2002. The song was a commercial success, reaching number seven on the US Billboard Hot 100, number one on the US Billboard's Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart, and number five on the UK Singles Chart.[5][6]

"Call Me" was released as the second single in April 2002. It peaked at number 31 on the Billboard Hot 100 and at number nine on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart, becoming Tweet's second consecutive top-10 entry on the latter chart.[6] The track also reached number 35 in the United Kingdom.[5]

The album's third and final single, "Boogie 2nite", was released solely in Europe in October 2002. After English dance music duo released a cover version of the track in November 2006, Tweet's original song charted at number 167 in the UK that same month.[7]

Critical reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Aggregate scores
Review scores
AllMusic4/5 stars[9]
The A.V. ClubA[3]
BBC MusicFavorable[1]
Robert Christgau(choice cut)[10]
Entertainment WeeklyC+[11]
Rolling Stone2.5/5 stars[14]
Slant Magazine4/5 stars[15]

Southern Hummingbird received generally positive reviews from music critics, upon its release. At Metacritic, which assigns a normalized rating out of 100 to reviews from mainstream publications, the album received an average score of 73, based on 10 reviews.[8] Stephen Thomas Erlewine of AllMusic praised the album's musical direction and production, but felt that Tweet fading into the mix.[9] The A.V. Club praised the album's lyrical content and Tweet's "sultry" vocals, continuing to say, "Tweet recognizes the value of subtlety and understatement, but she also skillfully writes and produces or co-produces much of her own material."[3] BBC Music gave Southern Hummingbird called the album "the stuff of real divas", adding that "Tweet's inherent melancholy further confirms the musical rite of passage in the tradition of other soul greats such as Aretha, Mary J Blige and Billie Holiday."[1]

Dotmusic commended Tweet's vocals saying she has the "kind of voice that doesn't overpower her music but lets it breathe."[4] Entertainment Weekly gave the album a mixed review noting that the album's production was a highlight which helped to showcase her "breathy coo", while praising the "well-crafted" the critics felt the album contained "too-similar ballads."[11] Imran Ahmed of NME gave a positive reception towards the album's production and musical style saying the album is a "rarely thrilling collection of R&B"; however, he felt the album lacked front to back cohesiveness.[12] Rolling Stone felt that "Oops" and "Make Ur Move" were highlights of the album, noting them for making "this hummingbird [fly]."[14]

Commercial performance[edit]

Southern Hummingbird debuted at number three on the US Billboard 200, selling 195,000 copies in its first week.[16] The album was certified gold by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) on April 30, 2002,[17] and had sold 897,000 copies in the United States as of September 2015.[18] The album also fared well in European territories, peaking at number 15 on the UK Albums Chart.[5]

Track listing[edit]

1."So Much to Say (Intro)"
  • Stewart
  • Brockman
2."My Place"
  • Keys
  • Stewart
  • Brockman
  • Stewart
  • Brockman
3."Smoking Cigarettes"
  • Keys
  • Stewart
  • Brockman
4."Best Friend" (featuring Bilal)
  • Keys
  • Stewart
  • Brockman
  • Bilal Oliver
5."Always Will"
  • Keys
  • Stewart
  • John Smith
  • Jubu
  • Stewart
6."Boogie 2nite"
  • Keys
  • Stewart
  • Smith
  • Jubu
  • Stewart
7."Oops (Oh My)" (featuring Missy "Misdemeanor" Elliott)
  • Keys
  • Elliott
8."Make Ur Move"Timbaland3:49
  • Keys
  • Brockman
  • Keys
  • Stewart
  • Brockman
  • Weems
  • Keys
  • Stewart
  • Brockman
13."Call Me"
  • Keys
  • Elliott
  • Keys
  • Stewart
  • Brockman
  • Tweet
  • Brockman[a]
15."Southern Hummingbird (Outro)"
  • Keys
  • Brockman
16."Sexual Healing (Oops Pt. 2)" (featuring Ms. Jade)
  • Keys
  • Mosley
  • Chevon Young
17."Big Spender" (bonus track, performed by Missy "Misdemeanor" Elliott)
  • Elliott
  • Troy Johnson
  • Elliott
  • Johnson



Credits adapted from the liner notes of Southern Hummingbird.[20]

  • Tweet – vocals (tracks 1–16); production (tracks 3, 4, 9, 11, 12, 14); executive production
  • Ruven Afanador – photography
  • Chuck Amos – hair stylist
  • Yaneley Arty – A&R
  • Carlos Bedoya – engineering (track 17)
  • Bilal – vocals (track 4)
  • Merlin Bobb – A&R
  • Anita Marisa Boriboon – art direction, design
  • Alan Branch – product management
  • Craig Brockman – production (tracks 1, 2, 10); additional production (tracks 3, 4, 11, 12, 14)
  • Jay Brown – A&R
  • Michaela Angela Davis – stylist
  • Dontae – bass (track 4)
  • Jimmy Douglass – engineering (tracks 7, 8, 12, 13, 16); mixing (tracks 7, 8, 13, 16)
  • Dylan Dresdow – engineering, mixing (tracks 1–6, 9–12, 14)
  • Missy "Misdemeanor" Elliott – vocals (tracks 7, 17); production (track 17); executive production
  • Bernie Grundman – mastering
  • Nzingha Isis – make-up
  • Ms. Jade – rap (track 16)
  • Troy Johnson – production (track 17)
  • Tyson Leeper – engineering (tracks 16, 17)
  • Greg Leiz – steel guitar (track 11)
  • Lil Charlie – lead guitar (tracks 2, 4)
  • Manny Marroquin – mixing (track 17)
  • Mona Scott – management
  • Chris Frazer Smith – management
  • John "Jubu" Smith – guitar (track 3); production (tracks 5, 6)
  • Nisan Stewart – production (tracks 1, 2, 5, 6); additional production (tracks 3, 4, 11)
  • Timbaland – production (tracks 7, 8, 13, 16); additional production (track 12); executive production



Region Certification Certified units/sales
United States (RIAA)[17] Gold 897,000[18]

Release history[edit]

Region Date Label Ref.
United States April 2, 2002 [9]
Japan April 10, 2002 Warner [19]
Australia May 13, 2002 [34]
United Kingdom Elektra [35]
Germany May 27, 2002 Warner [36]


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  2. ^ a b c d e Deyior (June 24, 2012). "Lifestyle: 5 Reasons We Want To Tweet The Southern Hummingbird". Singersroom. Retrieved February 17, 2014.
  3. ^ a b c Rabin, Nathan (April 17, 2002). "Tweet: Southern Hummingbird". The A.V. Club. Retrieved October 24, 2017.
  4. ^ a b c Evans, Diana (May 13, 2002). "Southern Hummingbird". Dotmusic. Archived from the original on January 10, 2004. Retrieved January 7, 2013.
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  7. ^ "Chart Log UK: 1994–2010: DJ T – Tzant". Zobbel. Retrieved October 24, 2017.
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  10. ^ Christgau, Robert. "CG: Tweet". Retrieved April 21, 2012.
  11. ^ a b Tucker, Ken (April 5, 2002). "Southern Hummingbird". Entertainment Weekly. No. 647. ISSN 1049-0434. Retrieved October 24, 2017.
  12. ^ a b Ahmed, Imran (May 17, 2002). "Tweet : Southern Hummingbird". NME. Archived from the original on February 23, 2014. Retrieved January 7, 2013.
  13. ^ Pride, Felicia (August 15, 2002). "Tweet: Southern Hummingbird". PopMatters. Retrieved October 24, 2017.
  14. ^ a b Hardy, Ernest (March 27, 2002). "Tweet: Southern Hummingbird". Rolling Stone. Archived from the original on January 7, 2008. Retrieved April 21, 2012.
  15. ^ Cinquemani, Sal (March 20, 2002). "Tweet: Southern Hummingbird". Slant Magazine. Retrieved October 24, 2017.
  16. ^ Martens, Todd (April 11, 2002). "Ashanti Album, Single Dominate Charts". Billboard. Retrieved March 21, 2013.
  17. ^ a b "American album certifications – Tweet – Southern Hummingbird". Recording Industry Association of America. April 30, 2002. Retrieved October 24, 2017. If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Album, then click SEARCH. 
  18. ^ a b Mitchell, Gail (September 14, 2015). "Tweet Returns With New Single: 'Won't Hurt Me'". Billboard. Retrieved October 24, 2017.
  19. ^ a b サザン・ハミングバード [Southern Hummingbird] (in Japanese). Warner Music Japan. Retrieved January 7, 2013.
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  31. ^ "Tweet Chart History (Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums)". Billboard. Retrieved October 24, 2017.
  32. ^ "Billboard 200 Albums – Year-End 2002". Billboard. Retrieved October 24, 2017.
  33. ^ "R&B/Hip-Hop Albums – Year-End 2002". Billboard. Retrieved October 24, 2017.
  34. ^ "Southern Hummingbird by Tweet". Angus & Robertson. Archived from the original on February 19, 2013. Retrieved January 7, 2013.
  35. ^ "Southern Hummingbird". Retrieved October 24, 2017.
  36. ^ "Southern Hummingbird" (in German). Retrieved October 24, 2017.