|Single by Everything but the Girl|
|from the album Amplified Heart|
|Tracey Thorn, Ben Watt|
|Everything but the Girl singles chronology|
Everything but the Girl - "Missing" (Todd Terry Club Mix)
"Missing" is a song by British popular music duo Everything but the Girl, taken from their eighth studio album Amplified Heart (1994). It was written by the two band members, Tracey Thorn and Ben Watt, and was produced by Watt. It was taken as the second single off the album on 8 August 1994 by Atlantic Records and Blanco Y Negro Records. It initially did not achieve much success. It was remixed by Todd Terry and re-released in 1995, resulting in a worldwide hit, peaking near the top of the charts in many countries.
Musically the song takes in multiple genres. The original version from the album is a more low-tempo influenced song, while the popular Todd Terry remix version is a more up-tempo dance-pop song. Lyrically the song talks about one person missing the other because they have moved away. "Missing" was critically acclaimed by the majority of music critics, who praised the composition and generally considered it a highlight on the album.
The release of the remixed version of "Missing" gave an indication of the band's future experimentation with more electronic dance music on subsequent albums.
Prior to "Missing", Everything but the Girl was most known as an indie band; as with many UK bands of the era, their music had folk and jazz leanings. They had released eight albums prior to Amplified Heart and had a number-three UK singles chart success in 1988 ("I Don't Want to Talk About It"), but were relatively unknown in the United States. "Missing" was recorded as a relaxed-sounding guitar-based popular music song that had earned modest broadcasting airplay on US Adult Contemporary radio. The duo gave the track to house music producer Todd Terry to remix for nightclubs.
It was written with that idea in mind, totally... we put on sort of a laid back house groove instead. Then when we gave it to Todd, he took it in a really, really strong New York house direction, which had a real simplicity to it, but it was very infectious.
According to the music sheet published at Musicnotes.com by Sony/ATV Music Publishing, "Missing" is written in the key of A Minor. In vocal range, Thorn's vocals span from the key note of E4 to the key note of G5. The song is set in common time and has a beat of 128 beats per minute. Lauren Barnett from The Guardian recalled the style of music as "monochrome electronic beats."Toponehitwonders.com had said the remix "Add[s] a pulsing disco beat that sounds equally at home."
"Missing" was generally acclaimed by music critics. Billboard wrote about the song: "Lifted from the gorgeous "Amplified Heart" album, this forlorn love song is bolstered by a springy retro-pop arrangement that is brilliantly tweaked into a credible dance confection by post-producer Todd Terry. Singer Tracey Thorn's performance is a study in affecting, but restrained emotion, and the chorus instantly sticks to the brain."
The Gavin Report wrote: "What a difference a few months and a remix can make. Miami is where "Missing" has busted big, and where requests tell the story of how broad the appeal of the song really is. Track two, the remix edit, is the one to check out." And Network 40 described the song as "A very exciting uptempo groover from this debut artist."
In 2011, Fedde le Grand remixed the song and DJ Ron Slomowicz from About.com listed the song as Song of the Day. He said "Tracey's mournful voice fit perfectly over Todd's house beats to become a club classic and a pop hit around the world." Bill Lamb from the same publication ranked the song at top spot on his Top 10 Best Songs of 1996. He later reviewed the remix saying "pumps up the tempo, adds some beats but thankfully stays true to the original."Toponehitwonders.com. was very positive stating ""Missing" [...] is a tremendous pop song. One of the best of the 1990s. In fact, I would place it in the same company as "You Get What You Give" by New Radicals as a nearly perfect pop song." They later complimented the chorus, catchy hook and vocal performance by Thorn.
In 2012, "Missing" was ranked number 35 in NME's list of the 50 best-selling tracks of the 90s, adding: "The 1994 version of 'Missing' had at least a foot on the dancefloor - in defiance of EBTG style - but Todd Terry gave it the final push, his deep house beats complementing Tracey Thorn's rich melancholy pine. Slowly burning, it spent five months on the UK chart and an entire year on the Billboard Hot 100. Sold: 870,000"
|1996||Mixmag||United Kingdom||"The 100 Best Dance Singles of All Time"||21|
|2011||MTV Dance||United Kingdom||"The 100 Biggest 90's Dance Anthems of All Time"||8|
|2012||NME||United Kingdom||"50 Best-selling Tracks of the 90s"||35|
|2015||Idolator||United States||"The 50 Best Pop Singles of 1995"||22|
|2017||BuzzFeed||United States||"The 101 Greatest Dance Songs of the '90s"||10|
|2017||ThoughtCo||United States||"10 Best Pop Songs of 1996"||1|
(*) indicates the list is unordered.
The resulting Todd Terry remixed dance version of "Missing" became a worldwide success, matching Everything But the Girl's best UK chart score of number three in November 1995 and scoring number one on the German singles chart. The song became the duo's first and only US Top 40 entry on the Billboard Hot 100, entering at #94 for the week ending August 12, 1995. After a long climb, it peaked at number two during 1996 (in its 28th chart week) behind the sixteen-week number-one reign of "One Sweet Day", a duet between Mariah Carey and Boyz II Men. "Missing" eventually scored 55 weeks on the chart (a record at the time which has since been broken - the single is today the 11th-longest charting song on the US Hot 100). One record it has retained is that "Missing" was the first ever single to spend an uninterrupted year on the US Hot 100. On Radio & Records magazine's CHR/Pop (Mainstream Top 40) tracks chart, "Missing" spent four weeks at number one, and was ranked as the number one song of the year for 1996. The original album version of "Missing" also received airplay on adult contemporary and smooth jazz radio stations in the United States.
Even with its success in the mainstream and in nightclubs, ironically with the remix, the song never entered the US Hot Dance Club Play chart. Everything but the Girl would eventually amass four US dance chart number-ones, with singles released after "Missing", one of which, "Wrong," was the duo's only other single to reach the Billboard Hot 100.
In addition to this, "Missing" spent over 20 weeks on the UK charts on its way to gaining a platinum disc for the duo - an extremely rare feat for a record that was never a British number one.
The song also was successful in Australia and New Zealand. It peaked at number 2 in Australia staying in the charts for twenty-three weeks. It has similar success in New Zealand, peaking at 14 on the charts and stayed in the charts for fourteen weeks. The song eventually peaked inside the top ten in many European countries, including Switzerland, Austria, France, the Netherlands, Belgium (both Wallonia and Flanders), Sweden and Norway. To date, it is the group's most successful single in the charts.
The single has sold three million copies worldwide.
An accompanying music video was shot for the single (both the original and dance versions). It was directed by British director Mark Szaszy. The video features both Thorn and Watt in an apartment, having split up but them missing each other. It also features Thorn walking around Balham and Clapham South.
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