Saturday, April 10, 2004

Usher debuted at #1 with Confessions



Released: March 23, 2004

Charted: April 10, 2004

Peak: 19 US, 111 RB, 11 UK, 11 CN, 2 AU

Sales (in millions): 10.0 US, 1.2 UK, 20.0 world (includes US and UK)

Genre: R&B


Song Title (date of single release, chart peaks) Click for codes to singles charts.

  1. Intro
  2. Yeah! (with Lil’ Jon & Ludacris) (1/3/04, 1 US, 1 UK, 1 RB, platinum single)
  3. Throwback (2/5/05, 36 RB)
  4. Confessions (Interlude)
  5. Confessions Part II (4/10/04, 1 US, 5 UK, 1 RB, gold single)
  6. Burn (3/13/04, 1 US, 1 UK, 1 RB, platinum single)
  7. Caught Up (8/28/04, 8 US, 9 UK, 13 RB)
  8. Superstar (Interlude)
  9. Superstar
  10. Truth Hurts
  11. Simple Things
  12. Bad Girl
  13. That’s What It’s Made For (12/25/04, 59 RB)
  14. Can U Handle It?
  15. Do It to Me
  16. Take Your Hand
  17. Follow Me
  18. My Boo (with Alicia Keys) (9/4/04, 1 US, 1 RB, platinum single) *
  19. Red Light
  20. Seduction (2/19/05, 68 RB) *
  21. Confessions Part II (remix with Shyne, Kanye West, and Twista)

* Added to the expanded edition of the album.

Total Running Time: 60:30


3.921 out of 5.00 (average of 25 ratings)

Awards: (Click on award to learn more).

About the Album:

“Usher was already a star in 2004, a sly singer and slick dancer whose R&B hits found a home with pop fans.” RS’20 This was Usher’s fourth album, following two multi-platinum, top-5 outings which produced six songs to peak in the top 3. However, Confessions took Usher to a new level. It sold more than a million copies in its first week, debuted at the pinnacle, spent nine weeks there, and generated four #1 songs – plus a fifth top-10 hit. It ended up as the second-best selling album of the 2000s behind Eminem’s The Marshall Mathers LP, WK “one of the last 10-million-plus sellers ever made.” RS’20

It ”turned him into an unstoppable juggernaut. Usher worked with a murderers’ row of R&B and hip-hop talent, from Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis to Jermaine Dupri to Just Blaze; the album moves easily from club wreckers like the Lil Jon- and Ludacris-assisted smash ‘Yeah!’ to forgive-me-for-cheating ballads to love-you-forever duets.” RS’20

The lead-off single, Yeah!, with its “crunk-meets-R&B foundation” AMG is the “only club track” AMG on the album. Its “instantly addictive eight-note keyboard vamp” AMG was “one of Usher’s most muscular turns [and] is so absorbing that Ludacris’ 1500th guest verse floats by with little notice.” AMG The song was definitely noticed, spending 12 weeks atop the Billboard Hot 100 and being named the song of the year by the magazine.

Overall, Usher felt this was “his most personal record to date.” WK Chart-toppers Burn and Confessions Part II dealt respectively with the winding down of Usher’s two-year relationship with TLC’s Chilli Thomas and the concept of an impregnated mistress. WK

There was also a conscious effort to showcase Usher’s new talents. Songs like Superstar and Follow demonstrated Usher in “crooner mode” WK and “the ballad-oriented ‘Burn’ also showcases his vocal aptitute.” WK That song and “the upbeat Caught Up…rate as some of the vocalist’s best moments yet.” AMG

Throwback, produced by Just Blaze, sounds like it was made for the sole purpose of trailing Alicia Keys’ ‘You Don't Know My Name.’ Like that hit, ‘Throwback’s sensitively treated soul sample provides a nostalgic tint that complements the wistful, regret-filled tone of the lyrics.” AMG

“A small batch of Jam & Lewis productions, including the effortlessly gliding Truth Hurts, continue to help raise Usher's loverman stock.” AMG

Confessions’ most detracting factor is its length. At an hour in duration, it could be stripped of five songs and be far more powerful, especially since no one would have to do any wading to get to the meaty parts.” AMG Instead, the album was released as a special edition which made the album even longer.

Notes: A special edition of Confessions was released which added My Boo, Red Light, Seduction, and an alternate version of Confessions Part II that featured Kanye West, Shyne, and Twista.

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First posted 3/25/2008; last updated 4/27/2022.

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