Readers of That Grape Juice know what avid music lovers we are – especially of hits past.
So, as our retrospective segments, ‘From the Vault’ and ‘TGJ Replay,’ allow us the chance to re-spin the gems and jams of yesterday of one artist, our newest feature Chart Rewind serves as a variation of our Retro Rewind assay to salute an entire era of music history.
This week, we’ll look back on ‘Not Myself Tonight’ – the first single from Christina Aguilera‘s fourth album, ‘Bionic.’
Join us inside:
After topping the charts in 2006 with ‘Back to Basics’ (nabbing the best first week sales of her career in the process), the pressure to match or exceed that success was mounting for Aguilera as she cooked up its successor. Having already proven herself one of Pop’s top chameleons, to follow ‘Basics’ (a nod to the Golden Age of music) the diva designed its subsequent set to be the exact sonic opposite.
Tapping Ester Dean, Sia, Claude Kelly, Polow da Don, Tricky Stewart, and more of the day’s biggest producers and songwriters to create a futuristic sound, what the crew created would be christened ‘Bionic.’ The first single lifted from the project was the Dean-penned, Don-produced ‘Not Myself Tonight.’
As the song garnered praise from critics and fans alike, some cynics branded the tune Christina’s “try hard” attempt to be current and copy the sounds of music’s then-“it” girl Lady Gaga. Noses were further turned when the GRAMMY winner unveiled its accompanying Hype Williams music video featuring a smörgåsbord of scenes many deemed offensive (see: BDSM, sexualized religious imagery, ritualistic behavior, etc.). The clip suggested the era would not only be a sonic departure from its predecessors, but also a visual egress as it seemed to one-up the controversy caused by her iconic ‘Dirrty’ video.
Hot 100 This Week in 2010
Debuting and peaking at #23 on the Hot 100 this week in 2010 (as seen above), the tune’s commercial performance – ironically much like ‘Dirrty’ – was ultimately derailed by its music video. The chatter surrounding the clip not only worked against the song (which quickly fell off charts despite an onslaught of promotion), but was ultimately one of many factors working against its parent album as well.
Better appreciated in hindsight, ‘Tonight’ is easily Xtina’s best music video – not only for its daringness but also its glossy presentation. While remembered for those very attributes, when the dust settled the tune failed to nab a GRAMMY recognition or RIAA certification.
Hot 100 This Week
Click here to read this week’s full ‘Hot 100’ chart check.