The First Night
|"The First Night"|
|Single by Monica|
|from the album The Boy Is Mine|
|B-side||"Cross the Room"|
|Released||July 7, 1998|
|Format||CD single, 12", cassette single|
|Songwriter(s)||Jermaine Dupri, Pam Sawyer, Marilyn McLeod, Tamara Savage|
|Monica singles chronology|
"The First Night" is a song recorded by American singer Monica for her second studio album, The Boy Is Mine (1998). It was written by Tamara Savage and Jermaine Dupri, featuring production and additional vocals from the latter. Built around a sample of Diana Ross's 1976 recording "Love Hangover," penned by Marilyn McLeod and Pam Sawyer, who share co-writing credits on the song. The song is about the protagonist practicing abstinence on the night of her first date, despite her conflicting emotions and strong sexual desires.
Following the major commercial chart success of previous single "The Boy Is Mine," a duet with fellow R&B singer Brandy, "The First Night" song was released on July 7, 1998 as the album's second single by Arista Records. Upon its commercial release, it emerged as one of Monica's biggest successes in years, topping both the US Billboard Hot 100 and the component Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Singles & Tracks chart, becoming her first chart solo topper. A remix version with producer Dupri, and rapper Da Brat appeared as a bonus track on Monica's 1998 CD single, "Angel of Mine".
Background and development
"The First Night" was written by Tamara Savage and record producer Jermaine Dupri, while production was handled by the latter. In the mid-1990s, Savage, a USC alumni and musical performer, signed a development deal with EMI while she was still in college. In 1997, her mentor, Big Jon Platt, then Senior Vice President of Creative at EMI Music Publishing, started setting up collaborations between her and EMI writers such as Soulshock & Karlin and Jermaine Dupri. EMI flew Savage to Atlanta to co-write a song with Dupri for the South Park: Bigger, Longer & Uncut soundtrack, which was expected to be recorded by singer Janet Jackson. But when Savage began working with Dupri, they decided to focus first on writing a song for Monica, which resulted in "The First Night".
"The First Night" was one of Monica's biggest worldwide hits, reaching number one on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 and Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Singles & Tracks charts, spending five weeks at number-one on the chart. It, however, became Monica's sixth domestic top 10 hit of her career (following Top 10 singles "Don't Take It Personal (Just One of Dem Days)", "Before You Walk Out of My Life", "For You I Will") and her second number one single on the Billboard Hot 100 since "The Boy Is Mine" in early 1998. "The First Night" stayed in the top forty for twenty weeks and was ranked eighteen on the Hot 100 1998 year-end charts.
The song also spent six consecutive weeks at number one on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Singles & Tracks chart. It was ranked on the top ten of the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Singles 1998 year-end charts. The song also spent one week on top of the Hot Dance Club Play chart. The song also peaked within the top ten in Canada and United Kingdom, the top 20 in New Zealand, and the top 30 in Australia and Ireland.
In the music video, directed by Joseph Kahn, Monica is seen dancing in a tight, white top and long khaki pants with a crowd of dancers. Throughout the video, there are cuts of Monica standing up in a white dress & sitting down on a long couch holding opera glasses. Other cuts show boys on the couch then girls on the couch & Monica on the couch with her lover. The instrumental break features breakdancing then cuts back to the dance with the crowd. The video ends with Monica rejecting her lover's kiss while they are seated on the couch.
Formats and track listings
Charts and certifications
- List of Hot 100 number-one singles of 1998 (U.S.)
- List of number-one R&B singles of 1998 (U.S.)
- List of number-one dance singles of 1998 (U.S.)
- The Boy Is Mine (Media notes). Monica. Arista Records. 1998.
- Vendargon, Alain. "Tamara Savage Co-Writes Top Hits For Monica, Whitney Houston And Shanice". Songwriteruniverse.com. Retrieved May 3, 2015.
- "Australian-charts.com – Monica – The First Night". ARIA Top 50 Singles. Retrieved 2011-05-23.
- "Ultratop.be – Monica – The First Night" (in Dutch). Ultratip. Retrieved 2017-10-23.
- "Ultratop.be – Monica – The First Night" (in French). Ultratop 50. Retrieved 2017-10-23.
- "Top RPM Singles: Issue 7039." RPM. Library and Archives Canada. Retrieved 2015-06-01.
- Urban Top 30 Singles peak
- "Euro Chart Hot 100" (PDF). Music & Media. 1998-10-24. p. 14. Retrieved January 7, 2018.
- "Lescharts.com – Monica – The First Night" (in French). Les classement single. Retrieved 2011-05-23.
- "Offiziellecharts.de – Monica – The First Night". GfK Entertainment Charts. Retrieved 2018-10-30.
- "The Irish Charts – Search Results – The First Night". Irish Singles Chart. Retrieved March 18, 2018.
- "Nederlandse Top 40 – week 45, 1998" (in Dutch). Dutch Top 40 Retrieved December 8, 2017.
- "Dutchcharts.nl – Monica – The First Night" (in Dutch). Single Top 100. Retrieved 2017-11-28.
- "Charts.nz – Monica – The First Night". Top 40 Singles. Retrieved 2011-05-23.
- "Official Scottish Singles Sales Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 2011-05-23.
- "Monica: Artist Chart History". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 2011-05-23.
- "Official R&B Singles Chart Top 40". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 2011-05-23.
- "Monica Chart History (Hot 100)". Billboard. Retrieved 2011-05-23.
- "Monica Chart History (Dance Club Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved 2011-05-23.
- "Monica Chart History (Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved 2011-05-23.
- "Monica Chart History (Pop Songs)". Billboard.
- "Monica Chart History (Rhythmic)". Billboard.
- "Billboard Top 100 - 1998". Retrieved 2009-09-15.
- "1998 Year End Chart: R&B/Hip-Hop Songs". Billboard. Retrieved 2012-01-27.
- Geoff Mayfield (December 25, 1999). 1999 The Year in Music Totally 1990s: Diary of a Decade - The listing of Top Pop Albums of the 1990s & Hot 100 Singles of the 1990s. Billboard. Retrieved October 15, 2010.
- "American single certifications – Monica – The First Night". Recording Industry Association of America. If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Single, then click SEARCH.
- "Best-Selling Records of 1998". Billboard. BPI Communications Inc. 111 (5): 75. January 30, 1999. ISSN 0006-2510. Retrieved May 31, 2015.