Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Fergalicious - Fergie

(W. Adams, D.M. Birks, J.M. Burns, S. Ferguson, J. Lee, K. Nazel, D. Rahming, F. Shaheed,
K. Bantos, R. Huetter, F. Schneider-Esleben) A&M 1717620


Chart Entry: 4th December, 2006
Highest Position: #4
Accreditation: Gold
Points: 102,489
From the album "The Dutchess".


The "inspired" combination of Fergie and delicious brought a new word into the urban dictionary - "Fergalicious", describing something that makes the boys go crazy. And if you thought that was an English lesson in itself, then Fergie and will.i.am made sure almost every lyric in the song was spelled out for you.

There were concerns that Fergie's solo release was a signal of her leaving The Black Eyed Peas, but The Dutchess was really just an extension of their body of work, highlighting the member most sought after by the music buying public. Fergie made it clear that she was not leaving the Peas, a good move given the astronomical success they achieved towards the end of the decade.

"Fergalicious" was more nonsensical gibberish along the lines of "My Humps", the lyrical content best deciphered as sex, sex, and more sex. But it was all about Fergie, too, and what better way to "steal" that household name away from another "Ferguson".

This single is jam-packed with samples, so with all those many fingers in the pie, there was bound to be some legal wrangling over royalties. American female rap trio, J.J. Fad enjoyed re-newed exposure when their 1987 release, "Supersonic" was heavily sampled and incorporated almost note for note into "Fergalicious", but former N.W.A. member, the Arabian Prince, was none too happy with the absence of royalties paid as the original producer, and subsequently sued Fergie's record label.

Further samples from "Give It All You Got" by Afro-Rican and elements of James Brown's "Night Train" and Kraftwerk's "It's More Fun To Compute" made it quite a busy little song, and there was further "borrowing" from Dominic Frontiere's theme music to 60's TV show, The Rat Patrol, and will.i.am's use of the opening line of 2 Live Crew's "Throw The D", which he modified for his own opening line in "Fergalicious". Seriously, was there anything original in this. But if you think that's controversy enough, tensions between Fergie and fellow Interscope-Geffen-A&M stablemate, Nelly Furtado exploded.

It seems Fergie's use of the word "promiscuous" in "Fergalicious" hit a little too close to home with Nelly, taking it as a jab at her own hit single. Nelly rebutted during her collaboration with Timbaland, "Give It To Me", confirming a verse was aimed directly at Fergie, but which one I can't tell as the whole song could almost be interpreted that way. Not to be outdone, Fergie sent her reply via a video remix for Daddy Yankee's "Impacto", stating "you got a problem, come say it to my face". Bitchy indeed!

Given all the bad press and unoriginality, "Fergalicious" was a hit, her second of five straight top ten hits in Australia. It stalled at #2 on the US Billboard charts interrupting a possible run of four straight #1 hits but strangely was never properly released in the UK. Only an eventual coupling of the track with "Clumsy" became the albums' fourth release there, but could only muster a #62 peak. Given that The Dutchess had a dismal chart in the UK (a #18 peak), maybe the Brits weren't to happy for a new "Fergie" to take place of the old one.

The Dutchess hit #1 on the Australian albums chart, the only major market it did so on, eventually selling 8 million copies worldwide. We were bombarded with hit after hit from the solo Fergie, made she made good with the promise that she wouldn't be leaving The Black Eyed Peas. They returned in 2009 with what can only be described as a chart domination, leaving The Dutchess five years without a solo companion piece - but The Black Eyed Peas are on hiatus at the moment, and you know what happened last time they did that.


Chart Run: (45 weeks)
Re-entry: (31st December, 2007) 100 (1 week)
(ARIA Top 100)

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