Tuesday, 26 January 2010

8: Beyonce feat. Jay Z - Crazy In Love

I went on YouTube last night, searching for the video for the next song in my countdown. As has often been the case in my research for this list, the record label have prevented the official music video from being embedded, so I was forced to look for a suitable live video.

In doing so, I discovered exactly why Beyonce is such a special live performer, the most gifted pop star of her generation. I must have watched 10 live performances of 'Crazy In Love', from gigs all over the world, recorded at various points during her solo career. Every performance was unique. The one I chose sees her working a remix of Gnarls Barkley's 'Crazy' into the song at a 2007 show in Los Angeles, but there were countless others I could have picked. Her performance from outside the Rockefeller Center in NYC, live on breakfast TV, is just one example. Check out YouTube yourself, if you want to see an incredible variety of performances. Each one has a stunning or unusual costume, unique choreography, and most important of all, astounding vocals.

The other noticeable point about all these videos is that in many of them, 'Crazy In Love' appears to be the opening song of the set. This is understandable - with its triumphant horn intro (sampled from The Chi Lites' 1970 hit, 'Are You My Woman?'), it is the perfect crowd-pleasing set opener. Jay Z's contributions aren't half bad either, especially as he reportedly wrote his rap interlude in just 10 minutes. (Incidentally, I love the "Jay Z in the range, crazy and deranged, they can't figure him out, they're like 'hey, is he insane?'" line)

There are numerous statistics I could wow you with - about 'Crazy In Love' being nominated for SIX Grammys, or about the mobile ringtone version of the song being certified gold (for 500,000 copies sold). Or I could note that it was voted the 3rd best song of the decade by Rolling Stone, the 4th best song of the decade by Pitchfork. But I don't need to do any of this. The song speaks for itself, and in the finest tradition of the Motown divas that Beyonce seems to be emulating, this song will live on long after its creators.

1 comment:

  1. It is an absolutely awesome song, I love it. It never gets old.