Over the course of his deceptively long career (his first album came out way back in 1994), Usher has made a comfortable home at the top of the Billboard Hot 100. The Atlanta-based singer has managed to put a total of nine songs in the number one position, including the 2010 smash “OMG.” The man born Usher Raymond IV scored yet another chart-topper on this day in 2001, when “U Got It Bad,” the second single from his massive third album 8701 began its reign at number one.
Produced by fellow Atlanta native Jermaine Dupri, “U Got It Bad” is a prototypical Usher slow jam, full of digi-coustic guitars, a slow-burning bass line and sex funk drums. They support Usher’s silky-smooth voice, which floats and runs in between the melody and cranks up once the chorus shows up. It’s a simple, direct, catchy song that burned its way into the hearts of R&B and pop fans everywhere.
“U Got It Bad” had an unusual run at the top of the Billboard Hot 100. It only stayed in that spot for a single week before losing ground to Nickelback’s “How You Remind Me.” However, four weeks later “U Got It Bad” came back with a vengeance, displacing Nickelback in January of 2002 and staying at the top of the chart for five weeks before finally getting knocked out by Ja Rule and Ashanti with “Always On Time.”
The video for “U Got It Bad” is a low-key but still super-sexy romp that mostly features Usher snuggling with Rozonda “Chilli” Thomas of TLC (she also happened to be Usher’s girlfriend; the couple broke up in early 2004). Start your morning with a slow jam and see where it goes from there.