Can I Have It Like That

Can I Have It Like That

Infobox Single
Name = Can I Have It Like That

Artist = Pharrell featuring Gwen Stefani
Album = In My Mind
Released = October 31, 2005
Format = CD, 7" vinyl, 12" vinyl, digital download
Recorded = 2005
Genre = Alternative hip hop
Length = 3:55
Label = Virgin, Star Trak, Interscope
Writer = Pharrell Williams
Producer = Pharrell Williams
Certification =
Chronology = Pharrell singles
Last single = "Frontin'" (2003)
This single = "Can I Have It Like That" (2005)
Next single = "Angel" (2005)
Misc = Extra chronology 2
Artist = Gwen Stefani
Type = single
Last single = "Cool" (2005)
This single = "Can I Have It Like That" (2005)
Next single = "Luxurious" (2005)

"Can I Have It Like That" is a song performed by rapper Pharrell Williams featuring Gwen Stefani. It was written and produced by Williams for his 2006 debut album "In My Mind", and the song is the opening track. The song's hook comes from a one-line contribution from Stefani, used as part of a call and response in the chorus. The song received generally negative reviews from music critics.

"Can I Have It Like That" was released as the album's lead single in October 2005 (see 2005 in music). It was commercially unsuccessful in the United States, but fared somewhat better worldwide. A rock remix of the song featured Travis Barker playing the drums and Pharrell playing the guitar.

Background and composition

P. Diddy was originally designated to use the track that Williams created. Several other artists were also interested in using it, but Williams changed his mind and decided to use the song himself. [Bainbridge, Luke. [,11913,1607765,00.html "Just Williams"] . "The Observer". November 6, 2005. Retrieved October 17, 2007.] In mid 2005, he worked with Stefani in Miami, Florida on her second solo album "The Sweet Escape" (2006). While she was in the booth recording "Breakin' Up", he told her that he had a song he thought would be his first single. Stefani asked to hear it, and he said that he wanted to record her for the track after the two finished working on "Breakin' Up". Stefani, however, insisted that they work on "Can I Have It Like That" then, and Williams recorded her performing the song's hook. [Reid, Shaheem and Bland, Bridget. [ "Pharrell Had To Be Sneaky To Record His Solo Album"] . MTV News. November 15, 2005. Retrieved October 17, 2007.] She contributed one line, which she performed twice, to the song.Vineyard, Jennifer. [ "Pharrell 'Can't Complain' About Lady Leopards; Gwen Moons Over Him On Video Set"] . MTV News. November 11, 2005. Retrieved October 17, 2007.]

Williams' rap is in a throaty baritone,Abbott, Spence. [ "Pharrell - "In My Mind"] . IGN. July 28, 2006. Retrieved October 19, 2007.] described as a "honey-coated version" of the styles of Snoop Dogg and Dr. Dre.Simpson, Claire. [ "Pharrell feat. Gwen Stefani - Can I Have It Like That : single review"] . OMH Media. Retrieved October 19, 2007.] He raps about his current lifestyle as well as his life and achievements. The rap is set over a rhythm section consisting of an irregular beat and a grinding bass.Tyrangiel, Josh. [,,1217325,00.html "In My Mind | Music Review"] . "Entertainment Weekly". July 21, 2007. Retrieved October 18, 2007.] The track reflects Williams' minimalist style, and it is inflected with jazz music, [Hoard, Christian. [ "In My Mind : Pharrell : Review"] . "Rolling Stone". July 24, 2006. Retrieved October 23, 2007.] including a trumpet part during the bridge.McGarvey, Evan. [ "Pharrell - In My Mind - Review"] . "Stylus Magazine". July 25, 2006. Retrieved October 23, 2007.]

Critical reception

"Can I Have It Like That" received generally negative reviews from music critics. Josh Tyrangiel of "Entertainment Weekly" called it an "odd opener" to "In My Mind" and remarked that Williams "never commits to putting his hips into it", leaving the track without any climax. "The Observer"'s Luke Bainbridge, however, referred to the song as "a grinding instant smash". [Bainbridge, Luke. [,13875,1590569,00.html "Pharrell Williams, In My Mind"] . "The Observer". October 16, 2005. Retrieved October 23, 2007.] For IGN, Spence Abbott described Williams' rapping as "a little sticky, but…ruggedly appealing in a manner of speaking", and commented that "it's the shuffling and infectious beat…that will have you swerving and slinking like a cobra with epilepsy." In his review for "Slant Magazine", Preston Jones characterized the song as "curiously inert", adding that it sounded better as a sample on Girl Talk's 2006 mashup album "Night Ripper". [Jones, Preston. [ "Music Review: Pharrell: "In My Mind"] . "Slant Magazine". 2006. Retrieved October 23, 2007.]

Stefani's presence as a featured artist on the song received negative reviews from music critics.'s Ivan Rott commented that the song's funk-influenced sound "definitely ", but was disappointed in Stefani's contribution, finding its repetition tedious. [Rott, Ivan. [ "Pharrell - In My Mind"] . Retrieved October 18, 2007.] Evan McGarvey of "Stylus Magazine" also found it repetitive, and described "Can I Have It Like That" as "a brief distillation of everything calamitous about [Williams'] and Chad Hugo's production style". "The Guardian" stated that Stefani's part was the only catchy hook on "In My Mind", but added that it "seems to be built around a one-line cast-off found on the "Love Angel Music Baby" factory floor." [ [,,1824855,00.html "Pharrell, In My Mind"] . "The Guardian". July 21, 2006. Retrieved October 18, 2007.] Finding "Can I Have It Like That" a "slow burner" that offered a "promising hint at what else is to come" on "In My Mind", Claire Simpson stated in her OMH Media review that Stefani's contribution was "purely cosmetic and clearly a transparent means of getting her name on the single to not only boost her own credentials but to help draw Pharrell to the attention of her increasingly mainstream following."

Chart performance

"Can I Have It Like That" was commercially unsuccessful in the United States. It debuted at number ninety-seven on the "Billboard" Hot 100 and peaked at number forty-nine three weeks later. It exited the chart after eight weeks. [ "Pharrell and Gwen Stefani - Can I Have It Like That - Music Charts"] . α Retrieved October 18, 2007.] It was somewhat more successful in urban contemporary and rhythmic contemporary markets, reaching number twenty on the Hot Rap Tracks, number thirty-one on the Rhythmic Top 40, and number thirty-two on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs. [

  • [ "Hot Rap Tracks - Can I Have It Like That"] . "Billboard". Retrieved October 18, 2007.
  • [ "Rhythmic Top 40 - Can I Have It Like That"] . "Billboard". Retrieved October 18, 2007.
  • [ "Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs - Can I Have It Like That"] . "Billboard". Retrieved October 18, 2007.
] It had some crossover success in mainstream music and reached number fifty-one on the "Billboard" Pop 100. [ [ "Pop 100 - Can I Have It Like That"] . "Billboard". Retrieved October 18, 2007.]

The single was more successful in Europe, where it reached number eleven on the "Billboard" European Hot 100 Singles chart. [ [ "European Hot 100 Singles - Can I Have It Like That"] . "Billboard". Retrieved October 18, 2007.] "Can I Have It Like That" is Williams' highest charting British single to date, after debuting at number three on the UK Singles Chart behind Westlife's cover of "You Raise Me Up" and Arctic Monkeys' "I Bet You Look Good on the Dancefloor". [ [ "UK Singles Top 75 - Music Charts"] . α Retrieved October 19, 2007.] It was unable to reach a higher position and left the chart after eleven weeks. The song was less successful throughout Europe and reached the top twenty in Finland, Ireland, and Norway; the top forty in Belgium, Germany, the Netherlands, and Switzerland; and the top eighty in Austria and France.

"Can I Have It Like That" was somewhat successful elsewhere. It debuted at number twenty-one on the ARIA Singles Chart and after gradually descending the chart, reached a second peak at number thirty-one seven weeks later. It remained on the chart for a total of twelve weeks. After debuting at number twenty, the song peaked at number eighteen on the New Zealand Singles Chart. It was listed on the United World Chart for five weeks, peaking at number twenty-seven.

Music video

The song's music video was directed by Paul Hunter. It depicts Williams being watched by a secret organization. Aware that he is being watched, he talks to a woman, revealed to be Stefani, on the phone. He makes appearances at an exclusive boat party and at another party in his penthouse.Vineyard, Jennifer. [ "Pharrell's Got Naked Women, Fireballs And, Oh Yeah, Gwen Stefani For Clip"] . MTV News. September 27, 2005. Retrieved October 18, 2007.] There are intercut sequences of people including Williams and Stefani dancing in front of a large equalizer, Williams standing in front of explosions, and people skateboarding.

The music video was filmed in late September 2005. The cinematography is designed so that the music video becomes the secret organization's surveillance of Williams. It uses shifting camera angles to create tension. The scenes in front of the equalizer were filmed in front of a greenscreen, and the explosion sequences were shot live on the streets of Los Angeles, California. In the penthouse scene, he is accompanied by two naked women with leopard-pattern body paint and a baby cougar. Hunter came up with the idea of showing body-painted women, and Williams suggested sitting with the cougar because he "wanted to exude power."

The video had little success on video chart programs. To date, it is Williams' only video as a main artist to debut on MTV's "Total Request Live". [ [ "The TRL Archive - Debuts"] . ATRL. Retrieved October 19, 2007.] It was on the program's countdown for three days, reaching number nine. [ [ "The TRL Archive - Recap - October 2005"] . ATRL. Retrieved October 23, 2007.] The video was unable to make MuchMusic's "Countdown". [ [ "MuchMusic Countdown"] . MuchMusic. Retrieved October 19, 2007.]

Track listings

;12" vinyl single
# "Can I Have It Like That" (clean) – 3:57
# "Can I Have It Like That" (dirty) – 3:57
# "Can I Have It Like That" (instrumental) – 3:57
# "Can I Have It Like That" (a cappella) – 3:49;American 7" vinyl single
# "Can I Have It Like That" (clean) – 3:57
# "Can I Have It Like That" (dirty) – 3:57

;British CD single
# "Can I Have It Like That" – 3:59
# "Can I Have It Like That" (the Travis Barker remix) – 4:10


{| class="wikitable"!align="left"|Chart (2005)!align="left"|Peak position
align="left"|United World Chart
align="left"|UK Singles Chart
align="left"|U.S. "Billboard" Hot 100
align="left"|U.S. "Billboard" Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs
align="left"|U.S. "Billboard" Hot Rap Tracks
-!align="left"|Chart (2006)!align="left"|Peak position
align="left"|New Zealand RIANZ Singles Chart


#" [ Pharrell Feat. Gwen Stefani- Can I Have It Like That (Song).] " Retrieved on 2006-12-21.
#" [ Pharrell & Gwen Stefani Can I Have It Like That?] " Retrieved on 2006-12-21.

External links

* [ Pharrell Williams' official site]
* [ Gwen Stefani's official site]

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