The Trouble with Love Is

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"The Trouble with Love Is"
Kelly Clarkson - The Trouble With Love Is CD cover.jpg
Single by Kelly Clarkson
from the album Thankful
Released November 12, 2003 (2003-11-12)
Format
Genre
Length 3:42
Label RCA
Writer(s)
Producer(s)
  • Evan Rogers
  • Carl Sturken
Kelly Clarkson U.S./Australia singles chronology
"Low"
(2003)
"The Trouble With Love Is"
(2003)
"Breakaway"
(2004)
Kelly Clarkson UK singles chronology
"Low"
(2003)
"The Trouble With Love Is"
(2003)
"Since U Been Gone"
(2005)

"The Trouble with Love Is" is a song by American singer-songwriter Kelly Clarkson, for her debut studio album Thankful (2003). The song was written by Clarkson with its producers Evan Rogers and Carl Sturken. It was released as the fourth and final single from the album, being first serviced to US contemporary hit radio on November 12, 2003. "The Trouble with Love Is" is an R&B and soul ballad, with elements of gospel music in its chorus. Lyrically, the song finds Clarkson explaining how love can be joyful and sorrowful at the same time. It received mostly positive reviews from music critics, who praised it for being "soulful" and "romantic", while also praising Clarkson's vocals, comparing them to those of Mariah Carey and Beyoncé.

Commercially, while failing to match "Miss Independent" success on the charts in the United States, the song performed considerably better internationally, reaching number eleven and a gold status in Australia, while also reaching significant positions in other three countries, including Canada and the United Kingdom. The song also served to promote the Christmas romantic comedy Love Actually (2003), being featured in its accompannying soundtrack. The music video for the song was directed by Bryan Barber and released on November 7, 2003. It features scenes from the film, while Clarkson performs the track on a rooftop. Clarkson performed the track during her Independent Tour (2004) and Breakaway World Tour (2005).

Composition and lyrics[edit]

"The Trouble with Love Is" was written by Kelly Clarkson with its producers Carl Sturken and Evan Rogers. Sturken was also responsible for drum programming and keyboards, while Rogers provided background vocals with Cindy Mizelle. The song was recorded at four different studios: The Hit Factory, New York City; The Record Plant, Los Angeles; The Enterprise, Burbank, California; and The Loft Recording Studio, Bronxville, New York. Its strings were recorded at a different studio: The Studio, Philadelphia. The song features drums, violins, violas, cellos, keyboards and strings in its instrumentation.[3] According to the sheet music published at Musicnotes.com by Kobalt Music Group, the song is written in the key of F major with a tempo of 60 beats per minute in common time. The song follows a chord progression of F – A7 – B – D - B, and Clarkson's vocals span from the low-note of B3 to the high note of F5.[4] "The Trouble with Love Is" is an R&B[1] and soul song,[2] with elements of gospel throughout the chorus.[2] Lyrically, it talks about the ups and downs of romance, with Clarkson singing, "Love may be a many splendored thing ... [But] it can tear you up inside/ Make your heart believe a lie."[5]

Release and reception[edit]

Following the release of "Low", which maintained her strong-hold on stateside fans, "The Trouble with Love Is" was announced as the album's third and final single, though there were fans who pant for the ballad "Anytime" to be released.[6] It was first serviced to US mainstream radio on November 12, 2003 in the United States,[7] and later released as a double A-side single with "Low" in the United Kingdom on November 17, 2003.[8] It was released in the remaining countries on January 12, 2004.[9] The song was also featured on the soundtrack of the 2003 film Love Actually.[10]

Critical[edit]

The song received positive reviews from most music critics. Stephen Thomas Erlewine of AllMusic picked the song as one of the best tracks on the album,[11] while Heather Phares of the same publication praised the track for "manag[ing] to be romantic, sassy, and empowering all at once, with her vocals reflecting their urban ballad surroundings."[10] Chuck Taylor of Billboard wrote a positive review, noting that Clarkson "mines her soulful side and riffs like a sista with the gospel-drenched [track]."[6] Caroline Sullivan of The Guardian praised the singer, writing that "[l]ike her fellow Texan Beyoncé, she has a background in the church, and it shows in the phrasing of the torchy song."[12] Sal Cinquemani of Slant Magazine called the song a "durable soul number reminiscent of Mariah Carey's 'Vision of Love'.[13] A writer of the website Sputnikmusic named it a "swooning, soulful, radiant song, with gospel-esque background vocals in the chorus that stands out amongst most pop music that plagues the music scene today with mediocrity."[2] Mike Wass of Idolator described it as "a bluesy ballad that is an early preview of the diva’s eventual flirtation with roots and blues."[14]

Commercial[edit]

While failing to match "Miss Independent" in the United States, "The Trouble with Love Is" performed considerably better internationally.[14] In Australia, the song debuted at number twelve on February 22, 2004, while the next week it reached a peak of number eleven on the ARIA Charts week of February 29, 2004, remaining at the peak position for a further week. It matched the same peak position of the previous single, "Low",[15] and ultimately, the song was certified gold by the Australian Recording Industry Association for selling over 35,000 copies. In Netherlands, the song peaked higher than her previous single, "Miss Independent", debuting at number eighty-one, on December 27, 2003, and reaching number twenty-six, on January 24, 2004.[16] In Switzerland, the song became Clarkson's lowest charting-single of her career, peaking at number sixty-two.[15] In the United States, "The Trouble with Love Is" did not chart on the Billboard Hot 100 chart, but made its appearance on three Billboard component charts: the Top 40 Mainstream chart, where it peaked at number twenty-two, the Adult Top 40, reaching number thirty-one, and the Top 40 Tracks, where it reached number thirty-six.[17] On the Canadian Hot 100, the song performed significantly at number twenty-five.[17]

Music video[edit]

The music video for the song was directed by Bryan Barber and premiered on November 7, 2003, on TRL.[18] The video features Clarkson performing the track on a rooftop in downtown Los Angeles, with people watching Love Actually on a rooftop adjacent to the one Clarkson's on. As noted by MTV News' Corey Moss, "along with the high-altitude shots, Barber also created several vignettes showing kids dealing with troubled relationships, which [were] interspersed with the performance footage. The scenes [took] place in the rooms of the building Kelly is performing on and include[s] a girl fighting for attention from her video-game addict boyfriend and another girl climbing on the fire escape after arguing with her mother."[18]

Live performances[edit]

Clarkson promoted the song with a handful of live performances, including The Ellen Show,[19] Pop Idol,[20] Today[21] Live on Air, AOL Music, Smile and Popworld. Clarkson also performed the track on her Independent Tour (2004), Hazel Eyes Tour and last on the "Breakaway World Tour" (2005-2006). In 2012, on her Stronger Tour, Clarkson performed the track on a medley with "Walk Away", "How I Feel" and "I Want You".[22]

Formats and track listings[edit]

Credits and personnel[edit]

Recording
  • Recorded at The Hit Factory, New York City; The Record Plant, Los Angeles; The Enterprise, Burbank, California; The Loft Recording Studio, Bronxville, New York.
  • Strings recorded at The Studio, Philadelphia.
  • Mixed at The Hit Factory, New York City.
Personnel

Credits adapted from the liner notes of Thankful, RCA Records.[3]

Charts[edit]

Chart (2003-2004) Peak
position
Australia (ARIA)[15] 11
Canada (Canadian Hot 100)[28] 25
Germany (Official German Charts)[29] 42
Netherlands (Dutch Top 40)[16] 32
Switzerland (Schweizer Hitparade)[30] 62
UK Singles (Official Charts Company)[31] 35
US Adult Top 40 (Billboard)[32] 31
US Mainstream Top 40 (Billboard)[33] 22
US Top 40 Tracks (Billboard)[17] 36

Certifications[edit]

Region Certification Certified units/Sales
Australia (ARIA)[34] Gold 35,000^

^shipments figures based on certification alone

Release history[edit]

Region Date Format Label Ref.
United States November 12, 2003 Mainstream radio RCA Records [7]
United Kingdom November 17, 2003 CD single [8]
Germany January 12, 2004 [25]
United Kingdom Digital download 19 Recordings [35]
Germany [36]
Greece [37]
France [9]
Ireland [38]
Italy [39]
Sweden [40]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Aicher, Bill (April 14, 2003). "Shouldn't This Have Been a Big Deal?". Music-Critic. Retrieved November 17, 2013. 
  2. ^ a b c d "Kelly Clarkson - Thankful (album review) - Sputnikmusic". Sputnikmusic. May 26, 2006. Retrieved November 18, 2013. 
  3. ^ a b Thankful (Booklet). Kelly Clarkson. RCA Records. 2003. 
  4. ^ "Kelly Clarkson - "The Trouble With Love Is" - Digital Sheet Music". Musicnotes.com. Kobalt Music Group. MN0046112. Retrieved June 24, 2016. 
  5. ^ Waliszewski, Bob. "Kelly Clarkson - Thankful - Plugged In". Plugged In. Retrieved November 18, 2013. 
  6. ^ a b Taylor, Chuck (November 29, 2003). "Singles". Billboard. Nielsen Business Media, Inc. 115 (48): 41. ISSN 0006-2510. Retrieved June 24, 2016. 
  7. ^ a b "R&R :: Going for Adds :: CHR/Top 40". Radio and Records. Retrieved November 17, 2013. 
  8. ^ a b c "Low / The Trouble With Love : Amazon.co.uk: Music". Amazon.com. Retrieved November 17, 2013. 
  9. ^ a b "iTunes - Music - The Trouble With Love Is - EP - Kelly Clarkson". iTunes. Retrieved November 17, 2013. 
  10. ^ a b "Love Actually - Original Soundtrack | Allmusic". AllMusic. November 11, 2003. Retrieved November 18, 2013. 
  11. ^ Thomas Erlewine, Stephen (April 15, 2003). "Thankful - Kelly Clarkson | Allmusic". AllMusic. Retrieved November 18, 2013. 
  12. ^ Sullivan, Caroline (August 28, 2003). "Kelly Clarkson: Thankful". The Guardian. Retrieved November 18, 2012. 
  13. ^ Cinquemani, Sal (April 17, 2003). "Kelly Clarkson: Thankful". Slant Magazine. Retrieved 2012-11-18. 
  14. ^ a b Wass, Mike (April 15, 2013). "Kelly Clarkson's 'Thankful' Turns 10: Backtracking". Idolator. Retrieved November 18, 2013. 
  15. ^ a b c "Australian-charts.com – Kelly Clarkson – The Trouble with Love Is". ARIA Top 50 Singles. Retrieved June 24, 2016.
  16. ^ a b "Nederlandse Top 40 – Kelly Clarkson search results" (in Dutch) Dutch Top 40. Retrieved June 24, 2016.
  17. ^ a b c "Thankful - Kelly Clarkson - Awards". AllMusic. All Media Network. Retrieved June 24, 2016. 
  18. ^ a b Moss, Corey (November 6, 2003). "Kelly Clarkson Hits The Roof For New Clip, Plans DVD". MTV News. Retrieved November 18, 2013. 
  19. ^ "Kelly Clarkson - The Trouble With Love Is (Live) 2003". YouTube. October 29, 2011. Retrieved November 18, 2013. 
  20. ^ "Kelly Clarkson The trouble with love is live U.K. Pop Idol". Pop Idol. YouTube. Retrieved November 18, 2013. 
  21. ^ "Kelly Clarkson The Trouble With Love Is Live Today". Today. YouTube. Retrieved November 18, 2013. 
  22. ^ McSheffrey, Kevin (January 31, 2012). "Kelly Clarkson gives strong performance in Boston". Boston Music Spotlight. Retrieved July 19, 2016. 
  23. ^ "Kelly Clarkson – The Trouble With Love Is Promo". Discogs. Retrieved June 24, 2016. 
  24. ^ "Kelly Clarkson – The Trouble With Love Is [CD]". Discogs. Retrieved June 24, 2016. 
  25. ^ a b "The Trouble With Love Is : Amazon.de: Musik". Amazon.com. Retrieved November 17, 2013. 
  26. ^ "Kelly Clarkson – The Trouble With Love Is (Bermudez And Bertoldo Remix)". Discogs. Retrieved June 24, 2016. 
  27. ^ "Kelly Clarkson – The Trouble With Love Is [Promo]". Discogs. Retrieved June 24, 2016. 
  28. ^ "Kelly Clarkson – Chart history" Canadian Hot 100 for Kelly Clarkson. Retrieved June 24, 2016.
  29. ^ "Musicline.de – Kelly Clarkson Single-Chartverfolgung" (in German). Media Control Charts. PhonoNet GmbH. Retrieved June 24, 2016.
  30. ^ "Swisscharts.com – Kelly Clarkson – The Trouble with Love Is". Swiss Singles Chart. Retrieved June 24, 2016.
  31. ^ "Kelly Clarkson: Artist Chart History" Official Charts Company. Retrieved June 24, 2016.
  32. ^ "Kelly Clarkson – Chart history" Billboard Adult Pop Songs for Kelly Clarkson. Retrieved June 24, 2016.
  33. ^ "Kelly Clarkson – Chart history" Billboard Pop Songs for Kelly Clarkson. Retrieved June 24, 2016.
  34. ^ "ARIA Charts – Accreditations – 2004 Singles". Australian Recording Industry Association. 
  35. ^ "iTunes - Music - The Trouble With Love Is - EP - Kelly Clarkson". iTunes. Retrieved November 17, 2013. 
  36. ^ "iTunes - Music - The Trouble With Love Is - EP - Kelly Clarkson". iTunes. Retrieved November 17, 2013. 
  37. ^ "iTunes - Music - The Trouble With Love Is - EP - Kelly Clarkson". iTunes. Retrieved November 17, 2013. 
  38. ^ "iTunes - Music - The Trouble With Love Is - EP - Kelly Clarkson". iTunes. Retrieved November 17, 2013. 
  39. ^ "iTunes - Music - The Trouble With Love Is - EP - Kelly Clarkson". iTunes. Retrieved November 17, 2013. 
  40. ^ "iTunes - Music - The Trouble With Love Is - EP - Kelly Clarkson". iTunes. Retrieved November 17, 2013.