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Studio album by Mýa
Released July 22, 2003 (2003-07-22)
Recorded 2001–2003
Length 69:15
Mýa chronology
Fear of Flying
(2000)Fear of Flying2000
Singles from Moodring
  1. "My Love Is Like...Wo"
    Released: June 10, 2003
  2. "Fallen"
    Released: November 11, 2003

Moodring is the third studio album by American recording artist Mýa Harrison. It was her last studio album for then joint record label A&M and Interscope Records, released on July 22, 2003, in the United States. Before Harrison began to work on what would eventually be her third studio album, she participated in prior engagements which would result in the blockbuster success of "Lady Marmalade", a collaboration for the Moulin Rouge soundtrack, and a supporting role in the box office hit film Chicago.

Production on Moodring was handled by a bevy of producers and songwriters. Harrison enlisted the assistance of producers: Ron Fair, Missy Elliott, Timbaland, Rockwilder, Damon Elliott, Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis, and a handful of others. With this album, Harrison wrote "99.9%" of her own lyrics and co-produced many of the album's tracks. [1] While recording the album, Harrison funded her own studio time, and used several songs taken from her archive of music, recorded two years prior.[2] Moodring, in Harrison's words, is an experimental, somewhat bi-polar album with contemporary R&B/pop-influenced fusing soul, techno, reggae, and hip-hop substance.[3]

Moodring debuted at number three on the Billboard 200 album chart with first week sales of 113,000 copies. This marked Harrison's highest debut and first week sales yet. Upon its initial release, the album received generally positive reviews from music critics, with AllMusic praising Harrison for coming up with her best and most varied set of songs yet.[4] Two months after its release, the album earned a gold certification from the Recording Industry Association of America. To date, it has sold roughly 589,000 copies.[5] "Moodring" spawned two singles, including "My Love Is Like...Wo" and "Fallen", the former became a Top 40 hit globally. In August 2005, after five years with Interscope Records, Harrison decided to leave the company and her management.[6]


In 1999, Harrison began production on an album that would eventually become her second studio effort Fear of Flying. Partially inspired by Erica Jong's 1973 novel, Fear of Flying, the album featured contributions from Rodney Jerkins, Swizz Beatz, Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis, Knobody, and Wyclef Jean. The majority of Fear of Flying was co-written and co-produced by Harrison, she was also heavily involved in the recording, producing, mixing, and mastering processes.[7] Released in April 2000, Fear of Flying debuted at number fifteen on the Billboard 200 album chart with first week sales of 72,000 copies. Initially, the album stalled on the charts until the release of the album's second single, the confrontational "Case of the Ex",[8] the song reached number two and three in the United States and United Kingdom respectively and in turn solidified Fear of Flying as a hit.[9][10] Fear of Flying later earned Harrison a Soul Train Music Award nomination for R&B/Soul Album – Female and a MOBO nomination for Best Album in 2001.[11][12] The album sold over a million copies in the United States and received a platinum certification by the Recording Industry Association of America on March 28, 2001.

In 2001, Mýa lent her voice to Baz Luhrmann's Moulin Rouge! soundtrack, for which she collaborated with singers Christina Aguilera, and P!nk, and rapper Lil' Kim on the remake of Labelle's 1975 hit "Lady Marmalade". The single became a worldwide success, it topped the Billboard Hot 100 chart in its eighth week, spending five consecutive weeks at number one.[13] The song reached number one in over fifteen countries, and became Harrison's first chart-topper and third non-consecutive top ten hit on the Billboard Hot 100 chart.[14] In 2002, it won the quartet a Grammy Awards for Best Pop Collaboration with Vocals. Additionally, Harrison began to dabble in acting with a supporting role in the 2002 Academy Award-winning musical film, Chicago, for which she won a Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Ensemble Performance.[15] Speaking about the gap between albums, and her transition from one Interscope-distributed imprint University Music to A&M Records, Harrison told Billboard magazine, "this has been the biggest gap between projects. Not knowing when my album would come, working with someone like A&M Records president Ron Fair and the transition from moving from an independent label to Interscope sort of left us in limbo."[2]


Tricky Stewart produced two tracks on Harrison's third studio album Moodring (2003).

Moodring has been characterized as a combination of G-funk, reggae and a little bit of pop rock. Prior to entering a recording studio, Harrison had twenty songs already written, produced and mastered before she decided to start recording new material for the album. Admittedly, Harrison hoped that the album would show her maturity as an artist. "I've grown up and gone through some things, so I'm expressing what I feel," she noted.[16]

Lloyd Banks(left) and Sean Paul (right) both make guest appearances each on (Why You Gotta Look So Good?) and (Things Come & Go).

Unlike her sophomore effort Fear of Flying (2000) which addressed somewhat superficial relationship issues, her new material was real and personal. Particularly, because Mýa wrote her own lyrics for this album, according to Elliott, who produced six songs on the disc. Elliott said Mýa's lyrical development was not a shock tactic or an effort to keep up with her racy peers – it's more a sign of her own maturation and her interest in being honest and open.[17] Summarizing, "Mya can stand on her own," Elliott said. "Her album is gonna be off the chain. It's gonna be off the hook, man."[17]


The opening track, and the album's first single, is "My Love Is Like...Wo", written and produced by Missy Elliott. The single reached the top twenty in the United States and the top forty elsewhere in countries like: United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand, and Ireland, it took Mýa a whole year before she decided to record the track because of its lyrics. The second single "Fallen", an elegant mid-tempo track, was produced by One Up Entertainment, it was less successful than Mýa's first single and was the album's final release. "Why You Gotta Look So Good?", the album's third track was written and produced by Rockwilder and Mýa and features G-Unit member and then-labelmate Lloyd Banks. The song itself tells the story of a woman struggling to leave a bad relationship, the Timbaland-produced "Step" is the album's fourth track and was written by Elliot, Timbaland, and Mýa. "Sophisticated Lady", the album's fifth track, was produced by Mýa, Don Vito, and Tricky Stewart. It incorporates elements of Rick James's 1983 song "Cold Blooded", the piano-powered "No Sleep Tonight" is the album's sixth track and was produced by Tricky Stewart and Mýa. The song itself tells the story of Mýa making a 3 a.m. booty call to her man. Track seven "Anatomy 1on1" was produced by Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis, it is one of Mýa's favorite tracks on the album and is consider bubble bath music. The album's eighth track "Hurry Up" and was produced by DJ Clue and features Mýa's artist Gunz.

The Knobody-produced "Things Come & Go", is the album's ninth track and features reggae-dancehall musician Sean Paul. It incorporates elements of Shuggie Otis's "Aht Uh Mi Hed". "You", the album's first ballad and tenth track, was produced by One Up Entertainment. The song was considered by Mýa's record label Interscope as a single at one point. "After the Rain", the album's eleventh track, was produced by Knobody. The song is a tribute to Aaliyah and Lisa Lopes. "Late", another Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis-produced track, is the twelfth song on the album. The song tells the story of a woman who has not come on her period yet. "Whatever Bitch", is a drag queen anthem and the album's thirteenth track. Written and produced by Damon Elliott and Mýa, the song incorporates elements of techno music. "Taste This", the album's fourteenth track, was written by Mýa and produced by Knobody. The song tells the story of a woman who is fed up with her lover half-stepping in their relationship and incorporates elements of quiet storm music. Track fifteen, "Take a Picture", was produced by Damon Elliott and written by pop rock singer Pink, the song was originally supposed to be featured on her 2001 album Missundaztood but was recorded later by Mýa. "Free Fallin' " is a remake of the Tom Petty song from his 1989 album Full Moon Fever. "Real Compared to What" is the album's final track. It features then labelmate Common and was featured in Mýa's 2002 Coca-Cola commercial.



Professional ratings
Aggregate scores
Source Rating
Metacritic 63/100[18]
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 4/5 stars[4]
BBC Music favorable[19]
Blender 3/5 stars[20]
Entertainment Weekly B−[21]
People unfavorable[22]
PopMatters 4/10[18][23]
Rolling Stone 3/5 stars[24]
USA Today 3/4 stars[25]
Vibe 3/5 stars[18]
The Village Voice favorable[26]

Moodring received generally positive reviews from music critics. At Metacritic, which assigns a weighted mean rating out of 100 to reviews from mainstream critics, the album received an average score of 63, based on 9 reviews, which indicates "generally favorable reviews".[18] Allmusic's Andy Kellman gave the album 4 out of 5 stars and wrote, "Mýa comes up with her best and most varied set of songs yet. The album's biggest highlights are almost completely different from one another, demonstrated right from the beginning; the opener, the strutting, boastful, Missy Elliott-produced 'My Love Is Like...Wo' is immediately followed by the yearning, elegant 'Fallen'.' Although the constant changes of direction can be a little jarring on the first couple plays, they eventually become one of the album's charms."[4]

Entertainment Weekly's writer Neil Drumming gave the album a B−, saying, "At best, Moodring exhibits some minor genre dabbling, but truthfully, Mýa's source material hasn't broadened much. Besides 'jacking Black Rob's whole 'like...whoa!' thing from three years ago, Mýa recycles an eight-year-old Pharcyde loop and pathetically plunders Jay-Z's round-the-clock motif from 'Do It Again' circa 1999." In speaking of Mýa's voice he said, "Without a commanding voice to override such outdated overtures, Mýa's efforts sound strikingly out of touch." Although he did admit, "Harrison is at her most convincing when her mood turns nasty, whether she's berating a potential baby-daddy on 'Late,' ejecting a lowlife lover on 'Why You Gotta Look So Good?' or exacting sweet revenge on the RZA-like 'Taste This.' 'How would you feel,' she sneers on the last, 'if, when we're makin' love, I don't go down no more?' Now, that's 'whoa.'"[21]

PopMatters' Terry Sawyer gave Moodring a score of four out of ten stars and wrote, "For the most part, Moodring sinks like a stone." Declaring, the album is mixed to her disadvantage, he feels Mýa's voice sounds "thin". She feels the album "is supposed to be sexy and yearning, but it doesn't rise to the sincerity of a soap opera", she continued by saying "without the vocal acrobatics, the slower numbers serve only to highlight the squeaky fringe of her voice".[23]

Commercial performance[edit]

Moodring debuted at number three on the Billboard 200 album chart and Billboard's Top R&B/Hip Hop Albums chart at number two with first-week sales of 113,000 units sold. The album was certified gold by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) on September 25, 2003, and remained on the Billboard 200 album chart for 18 non-consecutive weeks. Moodring has sold 589,000 copies in the United States alone, according to Nielsen Soundscan.[5] The album was the 157th best-selling album of 2003 in the United States, outside the United States, the album debuted or peaked at number 197 in the United Kingdom, number 25 in Canada, and number 74 in Australia. Internationally, the album was not as successful as 2000's Fear of Flying.

Moodring debuted at number three on the Billboard 200 album chart, with first-week sales of 113,000 copies.[27] In its second, the album dropped 6 spots to number 9, selling 59,700 copies;[28] in its third week, the album dropped 4 spots to number 13, selling 39,690 copies.[29] In its fourth week, the album dropped 10 spots to number 23, selling 34,638;[30] in its fifth week, the album dropped to 17 spots to number 40, selling 25,891 copies.[31] In its sixth week, the album dropped to 2 spots to number 42, selling 20,041;[32] in its seventh week, the album moved up 3 spots to number 39, selling 22,197 copies.[33] In its eighth week, the album dropped to number 64 and fell out of Billboard's Top 50. Ten weeks after its release, the album sat at number 85 and was certified gold by the RIAA for shipments of 500,000 copies to retailers on September 25, 2003, on the Billboard 200 album chart, the album spent a total of 18 non-consecutive weeks.

Internationally, the album charted in four countries, it debuted and peaked at number 74 on the Australian Albums Chart. It failed to move up on United Kingdom's Top 75 album chart, spending one week below the chart, peaking at number 197, it debuted and peaked at number 25 on the Canadian Albums Chart. It debuted and peaked at number 53 on the Japan Oricon Albums Chart.


The first single from the album, "My Love Is Like...Wo", peaked at number thirteen on the Billboard Hot 100 and number seventeen on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs. The single was a commercial success due to its success on mainstream radio and became Mýa's fifth top forty hit (solo), it was a moderate success internationally, reaching the top forty in the United Kingdom, Ireland, New Zealand, and Australia.

The second single "Fallen" peaked at number fifty-one on the Billboard Hot 100 and number thirty-five on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs. The single was a commercial failure due to poor radio airplay and lack of promotion.[citation needed]

Track listing[edit]

No. Title Writer(s) Producer(s) Length
1. "My Love Is Like...Wo"
2. "Fallen"
  • Richard Shelton
  • Kevin Veney
  • Loren Hill
  • Leonard Huggins
  • Luiz Bonfá
  • Maria Toledo
  • Shelton
  • Hill
  • Veney
  • Fair
3. "Why You Gotta Look So Good?" (featuring Lloyd Banks)
4. "Step"
5. "Sophisticated Lady"
6. "No Sleep Tonight"
  • Stewart
  • Oakes
  • Sparks
  • Harrison[C]
  • Fair[C]
7. "Anatomy 1On1"
8. "Hurry Up" (featuring Gunz)
9. "Things Come & Go" (featuring Sean Paul)
10. "You"
  • Shelton
  • Veney
  • Hill
  • Marthea Jackson
  • Shelton
  • Hill
  • Veney
  • Fair
11. "After the Rain"
  • Harrison
  • Beal
  • Thealodius Reddick
  • Lamont Dozier
  • McKinley Jackson
  • Shelton
  • Hill
  • Veney
  • Harrison[A]
12. "Late"
  • Harrison
  • Harris
  • Lewis
  • B. Avila
  • I. Avila
  • Eddie Cole
13. "Whatever Bitch"
  • Damon Elliott
  • Harrison
14. "Taste This"
15. "Take a Picture"
  • Damon Elliott
  • Harrison[B]
  • Fair[B]
16. "Free Fallin' "
  • Damon Elliott
  • Harrison[A]
  • Fair[A]
Notes and sample credits
  • ^[A] denotes co-producer
  • ^[B] denotes additional producer
  • ^[C] denotes vocal producer




  • Vocal production: Ron Fair, Mark Harrison
  • Vocal assistance: Patrice Bowie, Sue Ann Carwell, Eric Dawkins, Laurie Evans, Katrina Willis
  • Engineers: Mike Anzel, Dylan Dresdow, Bruce Buechner, Randy Bugnitz, Ian Cross, Jimmy Douglass, David Guerrero, Tal Herzberg, Troy Hightower, Pete Karam, Brian Summerville, Brian "B Luv" Thomas, Ryan West, Doug Wilson, Frank Wolf
  • Assistant engineers: Matt Marrin
  • Mixing: Dave Pensado
  • Mixing assistance: Ethan Willoughby
  • Mastering: Eddy Schreyer
  • A&R: Kathryn Keller Moss
  • Art Direction: Drew FitzGerald
  • Photography: Marc Baptiste, Sheryl Nields

Charts and certifications[edit]

Weekly charts[edit]


Release history[edit]

Region Date Label
Japan[43] June 26, 2003 Interscope
United Kingdom[44] July 21, 2003
United States[45] July 22, 2003
Australia August 28, 2003
Germany[46] September 8, 2003
Austria October 29, 2003


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  4. ^ a b c
  5. ^ a b c "Mya Gets Real On 'Liberation'". Billboard. Retrieved 2011-04-16. 
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  19. ^ BBC Music review
  20. ^ Blender review Archived February 11, 2009, at the Wayback Machine.
  21. ^ a b Drumming, Neil (2003-08-01). "Moodring Review". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved 2011-12-14. 
  22. ^ People review
  23. ^ a b Sawyer, Terry (2004-03-05). "Mya: Moodring". PopMatters. Retrieved 2011-12-14. 
  24. ^ Rolling Stone review
  25. ^ USA Today review
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  36. ^ "ORICON STYLE". Oricon Style (in Japanese). Retrieved 2011-01-21. 
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  44. ^ "Moodring: Mya: Music". Retrieved 2011-01-21. 
  45. ^ " Mya: Music". Amazon. Retrieved 2011-01-21. 
  46. ^ "MYA - MOODRING - CD -". Retrieved 2011-01-21. 

External links[edit]