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"Obsessed" is a song by American pop-R&B singer Mariah Carey from her twelfth studio album, Memoirs of an Imperfect Angel. The song, produced and written by Carey, The-Dream and Christopher "Tricky" Stewart, was released to U.S. radio on June 16, 2009 as the lead single from the album which was released on September 29, 2009.

In July, the single debuted at number 11 on the Billboard Hot 100, making it Carey's highest chart debut since 1998, and peaked at number 7.

Background

On June 9, 2009, Carey announced via Twitter that the first single from Memoirs would be "Obsessed" and that it would be released to radio the following Tuesday, June 16; she also stated that "this is one of [her] favorite songs ever." The singer described the song as an "uptempo fun summer record". Carey said that even though she wanted to release a ballad, "Obsessed" had to come out first because she wanted "a fun summer moment to kick off the album". She wrote on Twitter, "It's different for me, but clearly, it's SO me!"The song was transmitted digitally to radio stations on June 16, 2009 for immediate airplay and made its debut on Chicago radio station B96 at 2:00 pm. An official remix of the song, featuring rapper Gucci Mane, premiered on the same day.

In an interview with MTV News, Cannon stated, "To be completely honest, she did the record 'cause she's a huge fan of this movie Mean Girls, and there's a line in the movie where one of the girls is like, 'Why are you so obsessed with me?' She says that at the beginning of the song, and that's where the concept came from. But you know, art imitates life." He also stated that Carey "doesn't beef".

Controversy

Within hours after the song's release, various outlets speculated that its target was rapper Eminem, in response to his song "Bagpipes from Baghdad," in which he taunted Carey's husband, Nick Cannon by telling him to back off and that Carey is his. According to MTV, Carey alludes to drug problems in "Obsessed," which Eminem opened up about on his sixth studio album, Relapse.

Remixes

The official remix feature the rapper Gucci Mane and premiered the same day the original version premiered. The remixed version is heard more often on "urban radio" but is not available. There is also a version that features the original beats with Gucci Mane as a featuring part.

Toronto remixer, DJ and 103.9 PROUD FM radio host Cajjmere Wray's take on the new single by Mariah Carey, "Obsessed," has hit the Billboard DJs. From there it stemmed to the public, and the feedback has been amazing. Wray's official statement on the Mariah mixes he did: "When I heard this song I felt so passionately about it that I had to make contact with Def Jam to see if I could do a remix for them. I'm very happy with the finished product and I hope that both the label and Mariah are happy with it too. See u on the dance floor!"

Chicago-based Hip-Hop Dance group "Jump Smokers" have also made a remix of "Obsessed".

Official versions

  • "Obsessed"
  • "Obsessed" (DJ Michael "5000" Watts of tha Swishahouse Chopped & Screwed Remix)
  • "Obsessed" (Remix featuring Gucci Mane)
  • "Obsessed" (Cahill Club Mix)a
  • "Obsessed" (Seamus Haji & Paul Emanuel Club Edit)a
  • "Obsessed" (Jump Smokers Club Edit)a
  • "Obsessed" (Friscia & Lamboy Club Mix)a




Notes:
  • a These were released to clubs worldwide for DJs and appear on the club promo CD.
  • b These remixes will be featured on a separate disc released exclusively with Memoirs of an Imperfect Angel .


Music video



The music video was directed by Brett Ratner and was shot from June 28, 2009 to June 29, 2009. Throughout the video, Carey plays herself and a male stalker. She alters her appearance to play her stalker by wearing a fake goatee along with male clothing. Two videos were shot for "Obsessed", one for the original version, and one for the remixed version, which features Gucci Mane. Both videos share a similar storyline. Carey announced on Twitter that the premiere of the "Obsessed" music video would be featured on the July 15, 2009 episode of America's Got Talent. Although the full video was expected to be shown on America's Got Talent, it only turned out to be a 2-minute preview. The full video premiered on Yahoo! Music the same day.Director Brett Ratner talked to MTV about the video: "It's not about Eminem -- we weren't like, 'Let's find an Eminem look-alike,'" he told MTV News about the stalker character in the video, which he originally wanted to be played by Ellen DeGeneres. "We weren't talking to any Eminem [look-alikes]. I guess it's a good rumor, but I don't think it's true. I don't really know. I never asked her, but then when I recommended Ellen, that's where she got the idea. [The video] was inspired by a movie that I love called 'King of Comedy,' when Sandra Bernhard was stalking Jerry Lewis -- and that's why I wanted to move it to New York," he said, adding, "Mariah loves Mean Girls. Carey visited 106 & Park to premiere the remix video for "Obsessed" on July 23, 2009.

The video begins with Carey speaking the line, "And I was like, why are you so obsessed with me?" Next, she is seen stepping out of her limousine and entering the Plaza Hotelmarker in New York City.Carey is later shown walking in various places, while clearly noticing that she is being stalked by a man wearing a gray hoodie and sweatpants. In various scenes of the video, Carey is shown avoiding the stalker as well as taking part in a photo shoot. Also in various scenes the video shows the stalker's room with Mariah wallpaper, blankets, dolls, posters, magazines, and countless other Mariah collectibles. As the video comes to an end, she waits for her limousine to arrive at the hotel. However, before she gets inside, she notices the stalker attempting to take a picture of her. She then looks directly into his camera and gives a smile. The video then shows the stalker again, still attempting to take a picture, right before a bus hits him. Carey gasps in shock after witnessing the incident. The video closes with more shots of the photo shoot. The scene where the stalker gets hit by a bus, and the opening line Mariah speaks, are both references to the 2004 film, Mean Girls.

Performances & Promotion



  • Carey began performing "Obsessed" at her Live At The Pearl concerts in the Pearl Arena at The Palms Casino & Resport, Las Vegas, on September 11 and 12, 2009.


  • On October 2, 2009 Carey performed the song on the The Today Show, as apart of a four piece setlist.


  • Carey continued performing "Obsessed" at her Live At The Pearl concerts on October 9 & 10.


Critical reception

The song and video received mixed to positive reviews from music critics. Daniel Kreps from Rolling Stone stated that "the biting mid-tempo track is already more musically and lyrically engrossing than E=MC²’s singles," Newsday writer Glenn Gamboa wrote on the paper's music blog that Carey "coos confidently, riding the laid-back beat, probably holding back the laughs as she insults again." MTV called the song "glossy, flossy, and decidedly 'urban'." FMQB's Bob Burke said that "There's no doubt that Mariah can sing like no one else, but sometimes less is best, as is the case on this hypnotic track that is sure to keep MC fans totally 'Obsessed'." The Boston Herald gave the song a B+ review, calling it "The soon-to-be-hot song of the season", adding that Carey "still got it". Billboard gave "Obsessed" a good review, saying that "Carey has crafted a gem of a diss record" and stated it could possibly be her 19th chart-topper. The song also became People magazine's "Single of the Week", calling it "[a] summery midtempo bouncer". Nicole Frehsee from Rolling Stone said that "The cut doesn't show off Mariah's fab pipes – Auto-Tuned coos are subdued in for those high C's – but it's the catchiest anti-stalking anthem of the summer".

In contrast, "Obsessed" received a mixed review from the Los Angeles Times, with a writer stating that although this was "a feistier Mimi than [they]'re used to," she ultimately "has been molded to fit current trends" and that the single "again sells out the songbird to her producers." Bill Lamb from About.com was also critical of "Obsessed," saying that Carey should have put out a stronger lead single from Memoirs of an Imperfect Angel, and ultimately called it "forgettable".

Digital Spy gave the video a mixed to positive review stating: "It isn't quite as ridiculous as we were hoping, and Mariah's insisting the male stalker she plays isn't meant to be a 'specific person,' but there's still plenty to enjoy in the 'Obsessed' video." Los Angeles Times review of the video was also mixed: "Rather than highlight the snappy put-downs of the song, it showcases the closed-off inner-sanctums of the rich and famous. But Carey still gets her revenge, albeit with the help of public transportation, in a somewhat abrupt and uncomfortable ending".

Chart performance

"Obsessed" made an early debut at number 52 on the Billboard Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart and since then has peaked at number 12, marking Carey's 40th chart entry and placing her in second place for most charted songs among women in the '90s and '00s (the first being Mary J Blige). It sold 119,266 digital downloads in its first week of release and made its entry to the Hot 100 at number 11 making this Carey's highest debut in over a decade, since "My All" (1998). This marked Carey's fortieth entry on the Hot 100, making her just the eighth woman in the chart's history to make 40 or more appearances. So far, the song peaked at number 7 on the Billboard Hot 100 making it her 27th top 10 hit, the second greatest amount among female artists and tying her achievements to those of Janet Jackson. In terms of total top 10 chart entries amongst all artists in the chart's history Carey is now joint-fifteenth place with Jackson and Elton John.

Carey made her 29th appearance on the Pop Songs/Mainstream Top 40 radio chart, with "Obsessed" debuting at number 39. It peaked at number 8. The arrival extends her lead for the most overall chart entries in the tally's nearly 17-year history. She is now three titles ahead of the second-place Madonna (26).

August 11, 2009 was announced as the official date that the single would be released as a CD single at Wal-Martmarker store locations in the United States, her first commercial single release since 2002 in the country. The CD single was accidentally released early at various Wal-Mart store locations and sold enough copies an entire week before its release date to debut at number 1 on the Billboard Hot Singles Sales chart, where it remained for four consecutive weeks on the chart. "Obsessed" marks Carey's 10th No. 1 on Hot Singles Sales. On October 15, 2009, Carey's website announced sales of 1,022,045 copies certifying the song Platinum, bringing her total number of Platinum singles in the U.S. to 12, more than any other female artist.

Internationally, the song has had minor success reaching the top 10 in France and Italy and top 20 in most other countries. In Australia, the song peaked at #13 thus charting higher than "Touch My Body" (#17 in 2008) and was certified gold for digital sales of 35,000 or more. In the UK the song was lined up to be released in August before the original albums release but was pushed back several times and was ultimately cancelled in October. However, remix to the song with Gucci Mane was released onto various compilation albums but as soon the song began to rise the iTunes charts, the label had the albums removed, the song peaked at a respectable #52 on download alone. After the album was released the original version of the song charted at #62 from downloads.

Charts

Chart (2009) Peak

position
Australian Singles Chart 13
Belgium Singles Chart (Wallonia) 20
Belgium Tip Chart (Flanders) 14
Canadian Hot 100 15
Czech Airplay Chart 11
Dutch Singles Top 100 61
European Hot 100 28
French Singles Chart 8
Italian Singles Chart 6
Japan Hot 100 16
New Zealand Singles Chart 21
Slovak Airplay Chart 37
Swiss Singles Chart 61
UK Singles Chart
  • No official release.
62
UK R&B Singles Chart 15
U.S. Billboard Hot 100 7
U.S. Billboard Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs 12
U.S. Billboard Hot Dance Club Songs 1


Release history

Region Date Format Label
United States June 16, 2009 Urban airplay Island Records
July 6, 2009 Digital download
July 21, 2009 (Remix)
July 27, 2009 Mainstream airplay
August 11, 2009 CD single
August 25, 2009 Vinyl single
Italy June 19, 2009 Airplay Universal Music
Worldwide July 6, 2009 Digital download Island, Universal
France September 21, 2009 CD single Universal


References

  1. Mariah Carey Remix Puts the 'G in Ghetto'. Rap-Up. June 14, 2009. Retrieved June 15, 2009.
  2. http://www.billboard.com/#/song/mariah-carey/obsessed/14106251
  3. Twitter / Mariah Carey. Twitter. June 9, 2009. Retrieved June 15, 2009.
  4. Obsessed - New Mariah Single Out Next Week!. mariahcarey.com. June 9, 2009. Retrieved June 15, 2009.
  5. Twitter / Mariah Carey. Twitter. June 9, 2009. Retrieved June 15, 2009.
  6. Twitter / Mariah Carey. Twitter. June 9, 2009. Retrieved June 15, 2009.
  7. Vena, Jocelyn & Kash, Tim. Nick Cannon: Mariah Carey's Not Dissing Eminem In 'Obsessed'. MTV News. July 1, 2009. Retrieved July 2, 2009.
  8. Kreps, Daniel. Mariah Carey Fires Back at Eminem in New Single “Obsessed”. Rolling Stone. June 16, 2009. Retrieved June 16, 2009.
  9. Gamboa, Glenn. Mariah Carey's "Obsessed" single takes down Eminem. Newsday. June 16, 2009. Retrieved June 16, 2009.
  10. Martens, Todd. Mariah Carey: Are we 'Obsessed'?. Los Angeles Times. June 16, 2009. Retrieved June 16, 2009.
  11. Wete, Brad. HOT FIVE AT 5: Featuring Mariah Carey. Vibe. June 16, 2009. Retrieved June 16, 2009.
  12. www.jumpsmokers.com
  13. The Island Def Jam Music Group. Mariah Carey Puts Finishing Touches on Her New Album, MEMOIRS OF AN IMPERFECT ANGEL, for August 25th Release. Yahoo! Finance. June 16, 2009. Retrieved June 16, 2009.
  14. http://www.lvrj.com/neon/58935592.html
  15. Montgomery, James. Mariah Carey? Drake? Who Will Have The Summer Jam Of '09?. MTV News. June 16, 2009. Retrieved June 19, 2009.
  16. Carter, Lauren. Disc Reviews: Mariah Carey. Boston Herald. Retrieved June 24, 2009.
  17. Herrera, Monica. Single Reviews: Obsessed. Billboard. July 4, 2009. Retrieved June 29, 2009.
  18. People magazine, page 45, July 6, 2009 issue.
  19. Rolling Stone, July 9-23 issue
  20. Lamb, Bill. Mariah Carey - "Obsessed". About.com. Retrieved June 19, 2009.
  21. Martens, Todd. As subtle as being hit by a bus: Mariah Carey's 'Obsessed' video. Los Angeles Times. July 15, 2009. Retrieved August 25, 2009.
  22. http://www.mariahcarey.com/news/news.php?uid=2652
  23. http://acharts.us/song/33798
  24. http://www.digitalspy.co.uk/music/singlesreviews/a170981/mariah-carey-obsessed.html
  25. http://www.chartstats.com/songinfo.php?id=34503
  26. http://uk.launch.yahoo.com/c/uk/single_charts.html
  27. http://www.billboard.com/bbcom/charts#/charts/european-hot-100?begin=21&order=position
  28. http://www.chartsinfrance.net/MIKA/news-68678.html
  29. http://www.billboard.com/charts#/song/mariah-carey/obsessed/14044086
  30. http://www.ifpicr.cz/hitparadask/index.php?a=titul&hitparada=18&titul=145742&sec=23c2ad0cb081e454a7c818c3297513ff
  31. http://uk.launch.yahoo.com/c/uk/single_charts.html



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