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"Boys and Girls" is a song recorded and co-written by English singer–songwriter Pixie Lott. It acts as the second single from her debut studio album, Turn It Up. It was released digitally in the United Kingdom through her label, Mercury Records, on 5 September 2009 as an iTunes EP which was followed by an iTunes single on 6 September. A physical copy was released on 7 September. Similar to "Mama Do" the track was again strongly supported by BBC Radio 1, becoming Lott's second consecutive single to feature on the station's A-list. The song was the second consecutive number one single by Lott in the United Kingdom topping the charts in September.

Background

"Boys and Girls" is an up-tempo electropop song, that follows a combination of a retro-syled beat produced by various brass instruments which are most prominent in the song's intro, as well as synthetic rhythms put together as a pop and club-sounding finished product through many synthesizers, drum machine, and keyboards. Pixie employs a low note throughout the chorus, whilst experimenting with other notes in the song's verses and as a backing toward the end of the song. Lott's voice is heavily vocoded in the song's bridge to build the song up from upbeat pop to upbeat club and electropop.The song's lyrics follow a simple concept of having fun with people and friends in a party-like atmosphere. The song is one of nine tracks co-written by Pixie on her debut album Turn It Up. Lott co-wrote the song with co-producer Phil Thornalley (acclaimed for his work with Bryan Adams) as well as Mads Hauge, a prominent contributor Lott's tracks from the album. Well record-producer, Fraser T. Smith (who recently produced hits for the likes of James Morrison and Tinchy Stryder), teamed up with Thornalley for the track's production. The track demo was recorded and leaked in 2008 but the song received a re-working for its single release in 2009, the song's opiginal riffs were removed and replaced with attention-grabbing brass and trumpet instrumentation, described as typical to the Mark Ronson-type song production.

Release and promotion

For the CD single release, the song was accompanied by a B-side entitled as "If I Changed". The B-side was co-written by Lott and is one of the slower numbers she's recorded. "If I Changed" takes on a R&B and soul style in the form of a ballad. As part of the promotion for "Boys and Girls," Pixie performed the single on various television shows and at various major gigs which included performances on: GMTV, Loose Women, The National Lottery, The 5:19 Show, Alan Carr: Chatty Man and on The Work Tour with UKmarker girl-band, The Saturdays. On 15 August 2009, Lott performed the single alongside the likes of Hoobastank, The All-American Rejects, Kasabian, Cobra Starship, Dizzee Rascal, Boys Like Girls, Estranged, and Raygun as one of the live acts at Asia's very first MTV World Stage Live in Malaysia concert that was held in Malaysia. The song became Lott's second song to be featured on EA Games game, The Sims. English electronic music duo, Moto Blanco have also done various club-styled remixes of the song, which are featured on the single's digital remix bundle. The single is also featured on disc one of the "Now That's What I Call Music! 74" compilation album as track number fourteen.

Critical reception

"Boys and Girls" was given mixed reviews. Pete Cashmore of The Guardian stated the song "is endeavouring to bestow upon us a brassy, sassy dancefloor heater like some smug Italia Conti Pink", but criticized the track for being "much like a vegetarian restaurant, she just ain't got the chops." He also made comment on the lyrics claiming they were the "oomph and pizzazz of an English-speaking robot struggling to read Sanskrit from an autocue. A Lott of shite." Andrew Hirst of the Huddersfield Daily Examiner praised the song crediting it for having a "full-bodied big production" and "late 60s fun sound." Fraser McAlpine of BBC Chart Blog made comparisons to other songs and artists stating that it had a "hefty dose of 'I Want It All' from High School Musical 3 to the verses." He then stated "there is also a lot of Rihanna to the chorus." McAlphine also made comment that "the chorus is a one-note drone, with harmonic support, over a three-chord pounding vamp thing." Jess McGuire of Defamer Australia said "the song is catchy, but not in a retarded nursery rhyme kinda way. Children will probably find it appealing, but so will adults who harbour secret dreams of appearing on So You Think You Can Dance?"Brit Music Scene's Dave Parrack used a comparison to previous single "Mama Do" as the basis for his review of the "party feel song with an unashamedly happy underlying vibe". Parrack mentioned "Boys and Girls" as a song that much more upbeat and appealing on a different level than "Mama Do". He went onto say that the song's chorus is not as catchy as the previous single but a more memorable song as a whole. He then went onto describe the song as a cross between accomplished UK girl-group, the Sugababes and Americanmarker pop-rock artist, Katy Perry.Rach Read of Teentoday.co.uk raved the song as a "barnstormer with a brilliant video to boot", further saying the track is "far poppier than we ever expected of the Pixie but it's all the better for it - in fact as the song itself says 'A good beat never hurt no-one'". FemaleFirst.co.uk had little compliments for the single in their review, deeming "Boys and Girls" as "too throwaway pop, the lyrics are boring, and the single is just amateur, it’s not really delivering anything positive!" Another mixed review was published by musicOMH's Michael Cragg, describing the track as "brilliant fun, if slightly unconvincing."

Chart performance

On the issue dated 3 September 2009, the song debuted on the Irish Singles Chart at number forty-five. The following week, it was the greatest gainer on the chart moving up to number four setting a new peak, making it her highest charting single in Ireland so far. "Boys and Girls" debuted on the UK Singles Chart at number seventy-three on the issue dated 6 September 2009. It moved up to number one the following week making the biggest chart leap in UK history. It replaced "Run This Town" by Jay Z featuring Rihanna and Kanye West giving Lott her second consecutive chart-topper in the United Kingdom.During the week in which it reached number one, the single sold just under 50,000 copies and over 174,800 copies to-date in the United Kingdom, alone. It has so far spent nine consecutive weeks within the top seventy-five and eight consecutive weeks within the top forty of the UK Singles Chart.

Music video

Lott plonked into a human-sized teacup in the music video.
The song has been accompanied by a music video and was directed by Diane Martel. Filming was complete on 13 June 2009. According to an interview with journalist Paul Lester of The Guardian in regards to the video, Lott stated: "It's got a crazy house-party vibe. There were loads of interesting extras, weird indie boys and rude-boy gangstas. It's got a dance routine. It's unusual for a British performer to do singing and dancing, but it's important if you're a pop star to do everything." According to publicity materials, Pixie plays "a cool B-Girl 2009 surrounded by a crazy house party in full swing." Britain's Got Talent dance troupe, Flawless, were invited by Lott to appear in the video but were unavailable at the time. The Sun quoted her saying: "They're my friends so I called them to see if they wanted to be in it with me. They're great dancers and would have been perfect. Oh well, maybe next time..."The video begins with Pixie's name flashing onscreen before moving into a scene where Pixie opens a door and walks into a club. In this scene, however, only her legs and shoes are visible until the focus shifts to a large radio and various record players. Lott then can be seen in full, looking in the mirror with her face being showcased in numerous reflections.The video's attention is moved in sequence between Pixie and various other young people in the club, that can either be seen preoccupied with a hip-hop-styled dance or standing up against the wall and in one occasion kissing with their partner.On time with the first chorus, Lott takes the lead role in a fast-pace pop dance in a group of female dancers on the club's dancefloor. The next scene involves Pixie wearing a white sleeveless shirt leaning on an Indie-inspired boy as they stand side-by-side up against a white lit-up wall.Other scenes include Lott sitting in a human-sized tea cup. The majority of the video revolves around dancing in the urban-inspired atmosphere of the club's dancefloor. In some of the short scenes, Lott can also be seen wearing a pair of black sunglasses.

Track listing

CD single and iTunes single
  1. "Boys and Girls" (Single Version) – 3:02
  2. "If I Changed" – 3:41


iTunes (Remix Bundle) - EP
  1. "Boys and Girls" – 3:04
  2. "Boys and Girls" (Moto Blanco Remix Full) – 7:04
  3. "Boys and Girls" (Fuzzy Logic Remix Full) – 5:47
  4. "Boys and Girls" (Hot Pink Delorean Remix Full) – 6:37


Charts

Chart (2009) Peak
position
Australian Singles Chart 68
Eurochart Hot 100 Singles 10
Irish Singles Chart 4
UK Singles Chart 1


Chart procession and succession

References

  1. MTV World Stage Live in Malaysia
  2. http://www.polyhex.com/music/chartruns/chartruns.php
  3. http://pandora.nla.gov.au/pan/23790/20091105-0000/issue1028.pdf



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