Tears Always Win
|"Tears Always Win"|
|Single by Alicia Keys|
|from the album Girl on Fire|
|Released||May 7, 2013|
|Recorded||The Oven Studios (New York City)|
|Alicia Keys singles chronology|
"Tears Always Win" is a song recorded by American singer-songwriter Alicia Keys for her fifth studio album, Girl on Fire (2012). It was written by Keys, along with Bruno Mars, Jeff Bhasker and Phillip Lawrence, and produced by Keys and Bhasker. It was digitally released on May 7, 2013, as the fifth single from Girl on Fire. Keys debuted the single during a performance on American Idol on May 9, 2013. The song has been met with general critical acclaim from critics. Keys included the song in the setlist for her fifth concert tour, the Set the World on Fire Tour. It is being released as the second Top 40/Mainstream single following the lead single "Girl on Fire". Keys also performed the song on the May 9, 2013 episode of American Idol.
Background and release
Girl on Fire is Keys' fifth studio album and a follow-up to The Element of Freedom (2009). It is her first release under RCA Records, after a re-organization at parent company Sony Music Entertainment led to her previous label J Records roster being absorbed into RCA. After 2009, Keys got married to record producer and rapper Swizz Beatz, became a mother, began co-managing her own career, produced and directed both a Broadway Play and short film, in addition to designing a line of trainers for Reebok. Keys revealed the inspiration behind the song during one of her live performances while on tour, stating, "Some things don't always work out the way that you wish that they would, but [...] you have to give it a try, and at the very least, I have a song for that too."  It was digitally released on May 7, 2013, through the iTunes Store and serves as the fifth single from Girl on Fire. Keys officially debuted the single during her performance of the song on American Idol on May 9, 2013. The single was supposed to impact Top 40/Mainstream radio in the U.S. on July 1, 2013, however, its release was scrapped at the last minute. This is the third push back of the song to radio, it previously had two impact dates: May 21, 2013 and June 11, 2013.
The song was met with general critical acclaim. While Allmusic did not name it one of the standout tracks on the album, they reacted positively to it. Billboard said of the song, "In Keys' hands alone, this missing-my-baby ballad might have fallen victim to overly sappy platitudes about life on the road without her man by her side. But with a little help from Bhasker and songwriting partners Bruno Mars and The Smeezingtons, "Tears Always Win" becomes an anthemic, soaring winner worthy of Keys' heroes Prince and Stevie Wonder."  Rap-Up also reacted positively to the track and deemed it a highlight of the album. The co-writing credits shared partially by Bruno Mars and Philip Lawrence was met positively, with some critics, BET in particular, saying, "this song has a nice doo-wop touch, a welcome turn with the album sometimes threatening to veer towards Alicia's middle-of-the-road R&B comfort zone." 
Upon release the album Girl on Fire, "Tears Always Win" debuted at the top of the South Korean Gaon Chart for international singles. That same week, every song on the album charted in South Korea. Following Keys' announcement that the song would be a single and its debut live performance on season twelve of American Idol, "Tears Always Win" sold 15,000 copies in the United States.
|Belgium (Ultratip Flanders)||67|
|Belgium (Ultratip Wallonia)||26|
|South Korean International Singles (Gaon)||1|
|U.S. Bubbling Under R&B/Hip-Hop (Billboard)||3|
|U.S. R&B/Hip-Hop Digital Songs (Billboard)||28|
|United States||May 7, 2013||Digital download|
|Italy||June 14, 2013||Contemporary hit radio|
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- "Ultratop.be – Alicia Keys – Tears Always Win" (in Dutch). Ultratip.
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