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Baby I

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Ariana Grande - Baby I (Official Lyric Video)-003:26

Ariana Grande - Baby I (Official Lyric Video)-0

"Baby I" is the second single off from Ariana Grande's debut album, Yours Truly.

Background

In an interview, Ariana Grande said that "Baby I" was more "sophisticated" and "mature" than her previous single "The Way", which was part of what made her excited to release the song.

Composition

"Baby I" is an uptempo R&B and pop song that runs for a duration of three minutes and seventeen seconds. It was written and produced by Babyface, Tony Dixon and J.Que. A writer from Rap-Up describes the track as a "summertime record" which features Grande's "big vocals" over a "breezy beat". Several critics noted the '90s R&B music influence demonstrated in "Baby I", which is also musically present on the rest of her album, Yours Truly. Additionally, '70s disco energy is also present in the song, with PopCrush describing it as "Mariah Carey gone retro".

Lyrically, the song is a confession on Grande's behalf admitting a special love for someone and how she can't formulate her feelings into words. The first verse introduces the concept of the song: "Baby I got love for thee so deep inside of me / I don’t know where to start / I love you more than anything / But the words can’t even touch what’s in my heart / When I try to explain it I be sounding insane / The words don’t ever come out right / I get all tongue tied (and twisted) / I can’t explain what I’m feeling."

Reception

Critical reception

"Baby I" received acclaim from music critics. Sam Lansky of the website Idolator opined that Grande succeeded in "meeting the bar where she set it with her debut," while praising her "extraordinary vocal performance" and describing her vocal runs as "nothing short of everything." He also stated, "Comparisons to Mariah Carey are starting to grow tiresome, but truly — who else has a range like that?" Kyle Anderson of Entertainment Weekly praised the production of "Baby I" as a "real throwback" and felt that the song argued Grande as "the new Mariah", writing: "Her range isn’t anywhere near Carey’s was at her peak (the runs at the end of 'Baby, I' sound like they push her to the limit), but her ability to shift between cooing and belting is pretty spot-on."

A reviewer from The Honesty Hour declared that the song was a "great followup" to "The Way" and complimented Grande's vocal performance, "In comparison to her contemporaries around the same age, Grande’s vocal ability is more advanced and she shows it off with this mature arrangement." Writing for the MTV Buzzworthy blog, Jenna Hally Rubenstein wrote, "While 'The Way' set the bar pretty high for Ariana, I'm super pumped to say that her latest single, 'Baby, I,' sets the bar even higher" and referred to the song as "a more than worthy followup." The Huffington Post wrote: "We've said it before and we'll say it again: Ariana is channeling some serious '90s Mariah Carey vibes in her new music – in the best way possible."

Amy Sciarretto of the entertainment website PopCrush also positively reviewed the song, commending it for focusing on Grande's "diva voice, and her deftness with the blue-eyed soul genre". Sciarretto further wrote, "Grande sings as though she is wise beyond her years, and she hits those notes without ever going so high she might make dogs bark."

Chart performance

The song sold 141,000 copies in its first week and debuted at #21 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart, her second top 40 hit. It also debuted at #6 on the Hot Digital Songs chart, making Ariana Grande the only woman to debut two songs in the top ten on the Digital Songs chart in the year 2013.

Music video

Filming for the song's music video took place July 28th – 29th, 2013. Grande hinted that the video would "travel" back to the 1990s and that there would be "lots of color" and "lots of baggy clothes." A "teaser video" was posted on Grande's personal YouTube channel on September 5, 2013. The official music video was released on September 6, 2013 on her VEVO account.

Trivia

  • The cover was a part of the Yours-Truly-photoshoot.

Live performances

Grande performed "Baby I" on the Believe Tour on August 8, 2013,[1] and at the MTV Video Music Awards Pre-show on August 25, 2013.[2]

Taro Hakase Edition

A renditon of "Baby I" featuring Japanese violinist Taro Hakase is featured the Japanese edition of My Everything. This track features the original musical and vocal tracks from the song with the violin tracked placed over the song. This song is only available to Japanese customers and was made available as a pre-release single 3 weeks prior to the Japanese release of My Everything on August 27, 2014.

Gallery

Ari2014-mod2 "I'll give you all I have and nothing less, I promise."
To view the Baby I gallery, click here.

Lyrics

[Verse 1]
Baby I got love for thee so deep inside of me
I don’t know where to start
(Yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah) Yeah yeah
I love you more than anything
But the words can't even touch what’s in my heart
(Yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah) No no

[Pre-Chorus 1]
When I try to explain it I be sounding insane
The words don't ever come out right
I get all tongue-tied (and twisted)
I can’t explain what I’m feeling
So I say baby, baby, baby

[Chorus]
Baby I, oh baby, oh baby, my baby
Baby I, oh baby, baby I
All I’m tryna say is you’re my everything baby
But every time I try to say it
Words they only complicate it
Baby, baby

[Verse 2]
Baby I’m so down for you no matter what you do
(Real talk) I’ll be around
(Yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah) Yeah yeah
Oh baby I been feeling you
Before I even knew what feelings were about
(Yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah) Oh baby

[Pre-Chorus 2]
When I try to explain it I be sounding all crazy
The words don’t ever come out right
I get all tongue-tied (and twisted)
I can’t explain what I’m feeling
And I say baby, baby, baby

[Chorus]
Baby I, oh baby, oh baby, my baby
Baby I, oh baby, Baby I
All I’m tryna say is you’re my everything baby
But every time I try to say it
Words they only complicate it
Baby, baby

[Bridge]
Straight up you got me all in
How could I not be I sure hope you know (I sure hope you know)
If it’s even possible
I love you more
Than the word love can say it
It’s better not explaining that why I keep saying

[Chorus]
Baby I, oh baby, oh baby, my baby
Baby I, oh baby, baby I
All I'm tryna say is your my everything baby
But every time I try to say it
Words they only complicate it
Baby, baby, (baby), baby, baby

Baby I, oh baby, oh baby, my baby
Baby I, oh baby, baby I
All I'm tryna say is your my everything baby
But every time I try to say it words they only complicate it
Every time I try to say it words they only complicate it
Every time I try to say it words they only complicate it
Baby, baby, baby, baby

References

Yours Truly
September 3, 2013 • 46:28 • Republic Records
Songs
Released Almost Is Never EnoughBaby IBetter Left UnsaidDaydreamin'Honeymoon AvenueLovin' ItPianoPopular SongRight ThereTattooed HeartThe WayYou'll Never Know
Unreleased Boyfriend MaterialDirect ContactDo You Love MeLa Vie En RoseNobody Does It BetterPink ChampagneStick AroundSuitcaseVoodoo LoveYou're My Only Shawty
Artists
Ariana GrandeBig SeanMac MillerMIKANathan Sykes
Tour
The Listening Sessions Tour

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