Friends (Justin Bieber and BloodPop song)

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"Friends"
Justin Bieber and BloodPop Friends.jpg
Single by Justin Bieber and BloodPop
Released August 17, 2017 (2017-08-17)
Format Digital download
Genre
Length 3:09
Label
Songwriter(s)
Producer(s)
  • BloodPop
Justin Bieber singles chronology
"2U"
(2017)
"Friends"
(2017)
"Hard 2 Face Reality"
(2018)
BloodPop singles chronology
"Friends"
(2017)
"Capital Letters"
(2018)

"Friends" is a song by Canadian singer Justin Bieber and American record producer and songwriter BloodPop. It was written by Bieber, Julia Michaels, Justin Tranter and BloodPop, with production handled by BloodPop, the song was released through GENPOP Corporation, RBMG Records, School Boy Records, Def Jam Recordings and Republic Records on August 17, 2017. It is Bieber's first single credited as lead artist to be released in over a year, the previous being "Company", which was released in March 2016 for his studio album Purpose (2015). "Friends" peaked at number two on the UK Singles Chart and number 20 on the Billboard Hot 100. On October 20, 2017, Bieber released a remix version of the song featuring American singer-songwriter, Julia Michaels.[1]

Background[edit]

In July, Bieber played fans a clip of the song at Milan Airport,[2] on August 13, 2017, Bieber first teased the single by tweeting: "Can we still be friends". On August 14, 2017, Bieber announced an upcoming release on Twitter and Instagram, the accompanied artwork featured a monochrome illustration of two birds tearing apart a worm in front of highlighter yellow text,[3][4][5][6] captioning: "New music. Thursday noon".[7][8][9] Julia Michaels and Justin Tranter later revealed on social media that they co-wrote the single.[10][11]

Critical reception[edit]

Spencer Kornhaber of The Atlantic called the single "sleek electro" and "the zillionth child of the Eurythmics' "Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This)" to approach the public in the past three decades". He wrote that BloodPop provided "an insistent beat", "a tight verse-prechorus-chorus structure" and "an on-trend wordless hook".[12] Jordan Sargent of Spin thinks that the four songwriters "seem to nod overtly at that song", and that the song "has the same little between-beat drum fills as 'Sorry', as well as its pitched-up vocal counterpoints".[13] Brittany Spanos of Rolling Stone felt that Bieber "traded in the tropical house leanings of his previous solo hits for a more pop direction" with this song.[14] Maeve McDermott of USA Today opined that the song "finally jailbreaks Bieber from the soulless trop-house prison of his other EDM one-offs".[15] Phil Witmer of Vice wrote that the song "pretty much sounds like a synth-disco remix" of "Sorry", in which "the chord progression is the exact same".[16] Beatrice Hazlehurst of Paper called the song "a shameless club banger".[17]

Chart performance[edit]

In the United States, the song had 16,000 downloads counted only on its release day,[18] the following week, the single debuted at US Adult Contemporary (No. 28), Adult Top 40 (No. 17), Dance Club Songs (No. 42), Mainstream Top 40 (No. 11) and Rhythmic (No. 19). Consequently, it debuted and peaked at No. 20 on the Billboard Hot 100 with 32 million impressions on the radio, 39,000 downloads and 13.3 million streams and being his 23rd Top 20 in the country.[19] In Canada, "Friends" charted on the Canadian Hot 100 within a day of release, debuting at number 96 and jumping to number 4 the following week, marking Bieber's 19th top 10 song, it received a double platinum certification from Music Canada for more than 80,000 downloads in the country.

In Europe, the song debuted at the top of the charts in Denmark, Norway and Slovakia, dethroning the hit "Despacito" by Luis Fonsi and Daddy Yankee with Bieber himself, in the second place of five nationalities, including the United Kingdom, in addition to the top 10 of fourteen. He has received platinum certifications from the Federazione Industria Musicale Italiana (FIMI), gold from the Belgian Entertainment Association (BEA), IFPI Denmark, Bundesverband Musikindustrie (BVMI), Productores de Música de España (PROMUSICAE), the Swedish Recording Industry Association (GLF) and the British Phonographic Industry (BPI).

In Oceania, "Friends" reached at number two both in Australia and New Zealand, receiving double platinum certifications from the Australian Recording Industry Association (ARIA) and gold from Recorded Music NZ (RMNZ).

Credits and personnel[edit]

Credits adapted from Tidal.[20]

  • Justin Bieber – songwriting
  • BloodPop – songwriting, production, keyboard, background vocals, bass, synthesizer
  • Julia Michaels – songwriting, background vocals
  • Justin Tranter – songwriting
  • Josh Gudwin – engineering, recording engineering
  • Michael Freeman – mixing assistance
  • Spike Stent – mixing

Charts[edit]

Certifications[edit]

Region Certification Certified units/Sales
Australia (ARIA)[90] 2× Platinum 140,000^
Belgium (BEA)[91] Gold 15,000*
Canada (Music Canada)[92] 2× Platinum 160,000^
Denmark (IFPI Denmark)[93] Platinum 90,000^
Germany (BVMI)[94] Platinum 400,000^
Italy (FIMI)[95] Platinum 50,000double-dagger
New Zealand (RMNZ)[96] Gold 15,000*
Spain (PROMUSICAE)[97] Gold 20,000^
Sweden (GLF)[98] Gold 20,000^
United Kingdom (BPI)[99] Gold 400,000double-dagger
United States N/A 137,419[100]

*sales figures based on certification alone
^shipments figures based on certification alone
double-daggersales+streaming figures based on certification alone

Release history[edit]

Region Date Format(s) Label(s) Ref.
Various August 17, 2017 Digital download [20]
Italy August 18, 2017 Contemporary hit radio Universal [101]
United Kingdom August 19, 2017 Virgin EMI [102]
United States August 22, 2017
  • RBMG
  • School Boy
  • Def Jam
  • Republic
[103]
Rhythmic contemporary radio [104]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

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