Why I Love You (Jay-Z and Kanye West Song)
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Why I Love You Jay-Z and Kanye West Song

"Why I Love You"
Whyiloveyouthethrone.jpg
Single by Kanye West and Jay-Z featuring Mr. Hudson
from the album Watch the Throne
ReleasedSeptember 13, 2011
Recorded2011
GenreHip hop
Length3:21
Label
  • Kanye West
  • Mike Dean
  • Anthony Kilhoffer
Jay-Z singles chronology
"Niggas in Paris"
(2011)
"Why I Love You"
(2011)
"Gotta Have It"
(2011)
Kanye West singles chronology
"Niggas in Paris"
(2011)
"Why I Love You"
(2011)
"Gotta Have It"
(2011)
Mr Hudson singles chronology
"Love Never Dies (Back for the First Time)"
(2010)
"Why I Love You"
(2011)
"Charge"
(2012)

"Why I Love You" is a song by American hip hop artists Kanye West and Jay-Z, from their first collaborative album Watch the Throne (2011). The song features pop musician Mr. Hudson who is signed to West's GOOD Music label. "Why I Love You" heavily samples French house duo Cassius' 2010 single "I <3 U So", which itself is based upon a sample from the original 1971 version of "I Feel a Song (In My Heart)" by Sandra Richardson. The song almost entirely features Jay-Z rapping and only contains a few lines provided by West. Lyrically, the song is about the people who have stood in the way of Jay-Z throughout the year and expresses themes of victory and anger. The song received generally positive reviews from music critics, who normally praised the production.

The song was released as the fifth single from Watch the Throne on September 13, 2011. However the song was only released outside the US. The song became a top 40 single on the UK R&B Chart, in Iceland and in Belgium. Kanye and Jay performed the song at all the stops on their 2011 Watch the Throne Tour.

Background

Kanye West and Jay-Z are both American rappers who have collaborated on several tracks together.[1] In 2010, they began production and recording on a collaborative record Watch the Throne.[1] The track features Mr. Hudson, who is signed to West's GOOD Music label, singing an interpolation of Cassius track "I <3 U So".[2][3]Mike Dean and West handled the production of the song.[4] The artwork for "Why I Love You" features the French flag with a black third substituted for blue and is exactly the same cover used for Kanye West and Jay-Z's song "Niggas in Paris", which was sent to rhythmic radio simultaneously with "Why I Love You" on September 13, 2011.[5] The track was performed by West and Jay on their Watch the Throne Tour.[6] It was released as a single in the United Kingdom on November 28, 2011.[7]

Composition

The track contains a "sledgehammer beat" which is "built around French house duo Cassius' 2010 single "I <3 U So".[4] West, who co-produced the track, "continues in the sonic vein he introduced in My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy, lacing the songs with rock dynamics, layering his beats with eerie vocal chorales, piling on proggy flourishes."[8] "Slashing violin parts" come in on the bridge before the song ends abruptly.[4]

Lyrically the song is about "Jay's dismay at past crewmates' betrayals."[9] The track features lines such as "Caesar didn't see it, so he ceased to exist / So the nigga that killed him had keys to his shit" which have been interpreted as insults towards artists such as Dame Dash, Beanie Sigel and Wiz Khalifa.[10][11] The song "revisits" the split-up of Roc-A-Fella Records and has Jay-Z lamenting betrayal and how his past protégés failed to maintain without him.[12] The track makes the "trendentious point that being Sean Carter or Kanye West can have its downsides."[3]

Critical reception

"Why I Love You" received mostly positive reviews from music critics. Rob Harvilla of Spin commented that "Why I Love You" closes out the album proper with a monster Cassius-lifted chorus."[11]Alexis Petridis of The Guardian stated that the song is "pure pop aggrandisement", musing that "this rather enjoyable piece of maximalism feels quite at home on an album writ so large, both in sound and verse, that a planetarium was deemed the only fitting venue for its first playback."[3] Craig Jenkins of Prefix wrote that "Mike Dean's titanic, Cassius-sampling "Why I Love You" slowly peels layers off its stuffy largess to reveal the gorgeous string accompaniment underfoot. Kanye and his team are still trafficking in proggy, kitchen-sink experimentation, and Kanye's transformation into rap's own ELO is nearly complete."[13]Entertainment Weeklys Kyle Anderson was less enthusiastic about the track, writing that "Everything falls apart on the album-closing "Why I Love You," which cranks up West's love of prog-rock bombast so much that it sounds like guest crooner Mr Hudson is trying to sing the hook over a poorly recorded bootleg of a Muse concert."[14]

Chart performance

"Why I Love You" debuted on various charts globally on the week of the album's release. In the UK, the song reached a peak of 87 on the Singles Chart and 27 on the R&B Chart.[15][16] In South Korea, the track charted at position 94.[17] The song became a top 40 single in both Iceland and Belgium.[18][19] It also charted in France at number 56, and in Switzerland at 52.[20][21]

Charts

Chart (2011) Peak
position
Belgium (Ultratip Wallonia)[19] 14
France (SNEP)[20] 56
Iceland (Lagalistinn)[18] 30
Swiss Music Charts[21] 52
South Korean Gaon Chart[17] 94
UK Singles (Official Charts Company)[16] 87
UK R&B (Official Charts Company)[15] 24
US R&B/Hip-Hop Digital Song Sales (Billboard)[22] 50

Credits and personnel

References

  1. ^ a b Dombal, Ryan (October 25, 2010). "Kanye West and Jay-Z Planning Joint Album". Pitchfork. Archived from the original on August 24, 2012. Retrieved .
  2. ^ Published Monday, 12 Oct 2009, 06:24 BST (12 October 2009). "Mr Hudson - Music Interview". Digital Spy. Archived from the original on 14 October 2012. Retrieved 2012.CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  3. ^ a b c Petridis, Alexis (August 11, 2011). "Jay-Z & Kanye West: Watch the Throne - review". The Guardian. Guardian News and Media Limited. Archived from the original on March 1, 2014. Retrieved 2011.
  4. ^ a b c Vozick-Levinson, Simon (July 8, 2011). "Jay-Z Previews 'Watch the Throne' in New York". Rolling Stone. Wenner Media. Archived from the original on February 4, 2019. Retrieved 2011.
  5. ^ "Kanye West & Jay-Z Reveal Cover Art For Single "Why I Love You"". Hip Hop DX. September 9, 2011. Archived from the original on January 26, 2012. Retrieved .
  6. ^ Bretbaf (May 21, 2012). "Kanye West & Jay-Z Concert Setlist at the O2 Arena, London, UK on May 21, 2012". the Independent. Archived from the original on May 23, 2012. Retrieved 2012.
  7. ^ "New Releases 28-11-11". Official Charts Company. November 28, 2011. Archived from the original on June 28, 2012. Retrieved .
  8. ^ Rosen, Jody (August 11, 2011). "Watch the Throne by Jay-Z and Kanye West". Rolling Stone. Wenner Media. Archived from the original on September 19, 2011. Retrieved 2011.
  9. ^ Breihan, Tom (August 11, 2011). "Album Reviews: Jay-Z / Kanye West: Watch the Throne". Pitchfork Media. Archived from the original on August 16, 2011. Retrieved 2011.
  10. ^ Amidon, David (August 12, 2011). "Jay-Z & Kanye West: Watch the Throne". PopMatters. Archived from the original on September 27, 2011. Retrieved 2011.
  11. ^ a b Harvilla, Rob (August 10, 2011). "Jay-Z and Kanye West, 'Watch the Throne' (Roc-A-Fella/Def Jam/Roc Nation)". Spin. Spin Media. Archived from the original on October 28, 2011. Retrieved 2011.
  12. ^ Gissen, Jesse (August 8, 2011). "Jay-Z & Kanye West Miraculously Manage to Keep Watch the Throne Leak-Free". XXL. Harris Publications. Archived from the original on August 16, 2011. Retrieved 2011.
  13. ^ Jenkins, Craig (2011-04-16). "Jay-Z Kanye West Watch the Throne". Prefix. Archived from the original on March 3, 2016. Retrieved .
  14. ^ Anderson, Kyle (August 9, 2011). "Kanye West and Jay-Z's 'Watch the Throne': Read the EW review". Entertainment Weekly. Time Inc. Archived from the original on November 14, 2011. Retrieved 2011.
  15. ^ a b "Archive Chart". UK R&B Chart. Official Charts Company. December 17, 2011. Archived from the original on January 17, 2016. Retrieved 2019.
  16. ^ a b "Archive Chart". UK Singles Chart. Official Charts Company. December 17, 2011. Archived from the original on February 20, 2018. Retrieved 2019.
  17. ^ a b "South Korea Gaon International Chart (Week: August 13, 2011 to August 20, 2011)". Gaon Chart. Archived from the original on November 5, 2011. Retrieved .
  18. ^ a b "Iceland Official Top 30 airplay chart - Lagalistinn". tonlist.is. Archived from the original on January 11, 2012. Retrieved .
  19. ^ a b "Ultratop.be - Jay-Z / Kanye West feat. Mr Hudson - Why I Love You (in French)". Ultratop. ULTRATOP & Hung Medien / hitparade.ch. Archived from the original on December 16, 2011. Retrieved 2011.
  20. ^ a b "Lescharts.com - Jay-Z / Kanye West feat. Mr Hudson - Why I Love You" (in French)". Les classement single. Hung Medien. Archived from the original on October 16, 2011. Retrieved 2011.
  21. ^ a b "Jay-Z / Kanye West feat. Mr Hudson - Why I Love You". Swiss Singles Chart. Hung Medien. Archived from the original on February 1, 2012. Retrieved 2011.
  22. ^ "Kanye West Chart History (R&B/Hip-Hop Digital Song Sales)". Billboard. Archived from the original on March 30, 2019. Retrieved 2019.

External links


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