Cheerleader (Felix Jaehn Remix)
Writer(s): Omar Samuel Pasley, Clifton Dillon, Mark Bradford, Ryan Dillon, Sly Dunbar (see lyrics here)
Released: May 19, 2014
First Charted: May 3, 2015
Peak: 16 US, 14 DG, 11 RR, 11 AC, 6 A40, 14 UK, 111 CN, 1 AU, 17 DF (Click for codes to charts.)
Sales (in millions): 3.0 US, 1.92 UK, 8.3 world (includes US + UK)
Airplay/Streaming (in millions): -- radio, 1705.42 video, 1447.79 streaming
Click on award for more details.
About the Song:
Singer Omar Samuel Pasley (stage name: OMI – a nickname his father called him SF) was born in 1986 in Jamaica. He loved American hip-hop but also developed a taste for singers like John Legend, Nat “King” Cole, and Sam Cooke. WK So far, he has only released one album, 2015’s Me 4 U. it featured his sole hit in the United States, the chart-topping “Cheerleader.”
The song dates back to 2008 when OMI first created its melody. WK He said, “It was like a little Jamaican nursery rhyme, like ‘one, two, buckle my shoe,’ that kind of thing – ‘ring game’ is what we’d call it. The rest of the song just fell into place like a jigsaw puzzle.” WK The lyrics focus on “the protaganist’s joy at finding a ‘cheerleader’ – a romantic companion that will be a support system.” WK
Jamaican producer Clifton Dillon then refined it over several years and it was finally recorded with veteran session musicians Sly & Robbie as the rhythm section and Dean Fraser on saxophone. WK The song was released in 2012 and topped the charts in Jamaica. Patrick Moxey, the president of Ultra Music, an American electronic music label, heard the song while on vacation and signed OMI to a contract in 2013. WK
German DJ Felix Jaehn then remixed the song in early 2014. He explained that he was mainly putting out bootlegs online and record companies started contacting him to do official remixes – one of which was “Cheerleader.” SF He took an acapella version of the song, sped up the vocal, and built a new track around the vocal. SF It “eschews much of the original rhythm” WK in favor of a “tropical-flavored deep house rendition.” WK It was released in 2014 and found success the next year, topping the charts in 20 countries.
First posted 7/30/2023.