From The Vault: Monica – ‘The First Night’

Published: Sunday 13th May 2012 by David

After the mammoth hit that was her classic collaboration with Brandy ‘The Boy Is Mine’, all eyes were on Monca (pun intended) to see if she could deliver a smash of a follow-up.

Yet it was Mission Accomplished with ‘The First Night’, the second single lifted from her 1998 sophomore album, also titled ‘The Boy Is Mine’. Penned and produced by Jermaine Dupri, the track charted at #1 in the US Hot 100 and Hot R&B/Hip-Hop charts, and peaked inside the Top 10 of the Canadian and British charts. It was Monica sixth US Top 10 single and serves as one of her signature songs

The song is built around a sample of Diana Ross disco classic ‘Love Hangover’ and the now-Mrs. Brown pulls out yet another flawless vocal performance.
Lyrically, ‘Night’ boasts a very similar theme to Janet Jackson‘s 87 hit ballad ‘Let’s Wait Awhile’ -albeit much more sassier- with its central narrative being hooked on new boyfriend but insisting on furthering their like of each other before they take the next step in their relationship. Or as Mo’ would say it, before they “get down”.

Through the years, Monica has managed to stay a R&B force to be reckoned with and, contrary to numerous artists, has never turned her back on the music that made her a household name. Over the couse of her 15 years career, we’ve seen the diva evolve from a young vocal acrobat to a seasoned songstress; continues to surprise us with the quality each release and every live performance.

Ms. Monica we salute you.

Your thoughts?

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  1. The-Truth May 13, 2012

    This is the monica I miss. Now she’s Soooo Boring. She needs that Sass back. Just because she’ s a wife and mother doesn’t mean she has to dress and act like an old lady.

  2. number1k9 May 13, 2012

    @ THE-TRUTH

    I COMPLETELY CO-SIGN with EVVVVVVERYTHING you said!

    It’s sad. Monica in the 90s was WAY better than her post her ‘After The Storm’ 2002 era. I think after she tried with “Everytime Tha Beat Drops,” she felt like it would be better for her to come with a more matrue feel…. Which sucks because just because one of you uptempo songs is not recieved well doesn’t mean you should stop making uptempo, mid tempo, or sassy Hip Hop & R&B tunes!

    I really liked this album by Mo’! I even own this album! And I agree, lately Monica acts like she is so mature, it seems liek she should be turning 45+ next year, and she just turned 30 in the recent years…. Crazy.

    I agree Mo’ needs to losen up if she wants to keep her fans from the 90s that grew up with her music and even grasp some newer fans. Her new singles, I could care less for. I liek the fact she keeps it R&B, but hell could I get some Hip Hop & R&B here and there????

  3. The-Truth May 13, 2012

    After Monica flopped with Everytime the Beat Dropped she became so afraid to take a risk and do fun music. She has no business making music like Mary J. Blige. Monica needs to remember just because she started out with artist like Mary J and Toni does not make them her peers.

  4. KELIS May 13, 2012

    Agree! with everythin ya’ll said, she needs to do fun DANCE Music again her last good songs were So gone/All eyes on Me/Everytime the beat drop
    i think she should do more Pop now tho

  5. Vandrea May 13, 2012

    Stop being dramatic, Monica is basically the same today as she was back then. “Every Time the Beat Drop” was her trying to conform to what was hot at the time, be something she wasn’t and nobody liked it. She realized fast that it wasn’t what people wanted from her, and she returned to her former self.

    To say that she acts ‘old’ is stupid. Monica is now a grown woman who acts her age, and how a woman her age with 2 small kids should. She’s not a teenager anymore. The problem with most 20 and early 30-somethings today is that too many of them act like they’re in extended adolescence. It’s not cool to be 24, 25, 26…30, 31, etc., etc. still coming off like you’re 17-20.

  6. EnormousHeart87 May 13, 2012

    @Vandrea I agree with you. Monica still sounds the same today and that’s what I like about her, that she’s not trying to change into something she’s not and she’s staying true to herself. Yes, that comment people posted saying she acts old is really stupid because she’s a grown woman with a husband and two children. Have you heard her New Life album, it’s amazing and when I say I wake up every day listening to it and I go to bed listening to it, I even take it everywhere I go because it’s that good. I think people don’t like her music like they used to because they’re so used to most of these crappy pop songs today, I like some pop songs but music isn’t the same anymore like it used to be back in the 90s

  7. Darshelle Jones May 13, 2012

    One thing that has stood out about Monica to me throughout her career is that she is so small and has such a BIG VOCAL WILL. She is a powerhouse. Happy Mothers Day

  8. Truth May 13, 2012

    That’s my girl- real chick
    I too have every Monica album and each one is better than the last. New Life is real s*** and proves soo much vocal growth since 95

    Soo many go pop and flop. So what she plays it safe- her top ten track record is built on ballads. And what?! Her friends are wise and she is now a mom of 2, who says she aims to “lead by example”.

    So what sence are any of you making about her being too mature, or that she should make more cute bubble gum dance songs? Get real!

  9. Truth May 13, 2012

    And who the f*** is the truth- after I’ve had this title for years now?!

  10. Dave May 13, 2012

    Agreed w @Vandrea & @ENORMOUSHEART87 . People stay trying to bring Monica down, but she’s blessed with a husband & 2 kids & she’s a positive image for everyone. If people understood “New Life” is “NEW” life & not old life, they would get that she’s changed. She is not a kid anymore, & she will not make music as such. She’s is god fearing, intelligent, & is a mother. Just because you haven’t grown up, does not make Monica is boring artist. Different strokes for different folks. I love both old & new Monica, because I grew up with her, & I can still go back & rock to her old jams.

  11. Kyle May 13, 2012

    I actually disagree with the first few comments. While I do love “The First Night” and some of Monica’s older hits, I appreciate her sound now because she definitely has shown growth and maturity. She’s a progressive artist and I think she reflects that on “New Life.” Just because the sound is mid-tempo doesn’t mean she’s boring. If you listen to the lyrics I think it outlines exactly where she is in life right now and I think that’s what makes an an artist an ARTIST. I really think if she was making up-tempo songs like everyone else is doing right now then people would be saying that she’s a wannabe and that she’s trying too hard. It’s so hard to please people nowadays. Just take the music for what it is and appreciate that Monica is STILL doing her thing. #NEWLIFE.

  12. Stephen May 13, 2012

    TGJ, actually, her career is 17yrs old, not 15

  13. Galuda May 13, 2012

    Wow. Feels like a million years ago since a black artist topped the Hot 100 with an R&B song…

  14. ajm265 May 13, 2012

    while i do miss the old monica i love appreciate the new monica…. vocally shes much better and can do much more with her voice. the new life era is the closes she has come to the boy is mine era look wise, promo wise…. hell when was the last time monica had more than 2 to 3 videos come out from a single album… but anywho keep doing your thing you will continue to be here singing your @ss off

  15. KING TASHA May 13, 2012

    I was so young but this was my s***

  16. LoveBoyz May 13, 2012

    Monica is a legend! She has remained strong and relavant through many changes in music.. She may not be the #1 selling or most #1 but she is musical force…. She is still makin music and still changing lives! Shes legendary! I respect her.. Many do!

  17. dillpickle May 15, 2012

    It’s so amazing how everyone is covered in this video….no sleazy c****** popping or any of that.

  18. Jay1 May 15, 2012

    Monica has come back with a purpose when she put out “stil standing”, the reality show and the cd. New Life is Monica showing her appreciation for her evolution to adulthood. I like the grown folks lyrics and music.

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