Only One (Kanye West song)

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"Only One"
Kanye West - Only One (feat. Paul McCartney).png
Single by Kanye West featuring Paul McCartney
Released December 31, 2014
Recorded September 2014[1]
Genre Soul
Length 4:42
Label
Songwriter(s)
  • Kanye West
  • Paul McCartney
  • Kirby Lauryen
  • Mike Dean
  • Noah Goldstein
Producer(s)
  • Kanye West
  • Paul McCartney
  • Mike Dean (add.)
  • Noah Goldstein (add.)
Kanye West singles chronology
"I Won"
(2014)
"Only One"
(2014)
"FourFiveSeconds"
(2015)
"I Won"
(2014)
"Only One"
(2014)
"FourFiveSeconds"
(2015)
Paul McCartney singles chronology
"Hope for the Future"
(2014) Hope for the Future2014
"Only One"
(2014) Only One2014
"FourFiveSeconds"
(2015) FourFiveSeconds2015

"Only One" is a song by American recording artist Kanye West, featuring English musician Paul McCartney. The song was released on December 31, 2014 and was the first song released by West since the release of his sixth studio album Yeezus.[2][3][4][5][6] Both artists co-wrote the song with Kirby Lauryen, Noah Goldstein, and Mike Dean, the song is a tribute to West's daughter, North, and is sung as a message to Kanye from the perspective of his late mother, Donda West.[1]

Background[edit]

The song was recorded over a two-day period in Mexico in September 2014 in which West and McCartney, alongside other artists, recorded upwards of nine songs.[1]

The track was released on December 31, 2014 to the iTunes Store, the track features English musician and former member of The Beatles and Wings, Paul McCartney, and is the first of two rumored collaborations between the two artists, the other being a track called "Piss On Your Grave".[7] The song also features uncredited vocals by Ty Dolla $ign. West's wife Kim Kardashian tweeted upon the release of the track that it is her favorite track by West, saying, "People always ask me what my favorite Kanye song is and it's Only One. Kanye feels like his mom sang thru him to our daughter."[8] Kanye West is described in a press release as not being able to remember singing the words to "Only One" when he and McCartney were later reviewing the early 2014 sessions that generated the song. Later, West "realized that perhaps the words had never really come from him … he understood in that moment that his late mother, Dr. Donda West, who was also his mentor, confidante, and best friend, had spoken through him that day ... A message had been passed down through generations."[9] Kim also said, "I cry every time I hear this song. And such a beautiful photo of Kanye and North by Inez and Vinoodh."[10] In the song Kanye is singing from the perspective of his late mother Donda West who died in 2007. "Only One" was the first McCartney–West collaboration to be released commercially. The two would later feature on Rihanna's "FourFiveSeconds", released just twenty-four days after "Only One".

The song was originally slated to be released in West's album SWISH, eventually released as The Life of Pablo in February 2016.

Music video[edit]

On the episode of The Ellen DeGeneres Show which aired January 29, 2015, West revealed a preview of the music video for "Only One", directed by Spike Jonze on his iPhone.[11] West tweeted a link to the full music video available to watch on his web site later the same day,[12] during production, West also decided that the video should be heartfelt and simple.[citation needed] His daughter, North, is featured throughout the video. Pitchfork Media named "Only One" the sixth best music video of 2015.[13]

Chart performance[edit]

"Only One" debuted at number 35 on the Billboard Hot 100 on the chart dated January 17, 2015. Its debut was mainly on the strength of digital download sales; it sold 125,000 copies during its first week, making it the week's tenth-best seller. It also marked McCartney's first top 40 hit in the United States in over 25 years, when 1989's "My Brave Face" had reached number 25.[14] Following three weeks on sale in the United States, "Only One" had sold 230,000 total copies,[15] on 28 July 2015, the song was certified Gold.[16]

The song also debuted at number 35 in the UK Singles Chart on the chart dated January 10, 2015,[17] on its second week on the chart, the song rose to number 28.[18]

In New Zealand, the song debuted at number 8 on the New Zealand Singles Chart, marking West's first top ten single there since Jay-Z's 2009 single "Run This Town", and first top ten as a lead artist since 2008's "Heartless". It also marks Paul McCartney's first charting single there since his 1993 single "Hope of Deliverance" and first top ten single since 1983's "Say Say Say" with Michael Jackson.[19][not in citation given]

Charts[edit]

Chart (2015) Peak
position
Australia (ARIA)[20] 8
Austria (Ö3 Austria Top 40)[21] 31
Belgium (Ultratip Flanders)[22] 18
Belgium Urban (Ultratop Flanders)[23] 10
Belgium (Ultratip Wallonia)[24] 20
Canada (Canadian Hot 100)[25] 31
Denmark (Tracklisten)[26] 31
France (SNEP)[27] 30
Germany (Official German Charts)[28] 32
Ireland (IRMA)[29] 43
Japan (Japan Hot 100)[30] 34
Hungary (Single Top 40)[31] 19
New Zealand (Recorded Music NZ)[32] 8
Netherlands (Single Top 100)[33] 82
Scotland (Official Charts Company)[34] 14
Spain (PROMUSICAE)[35] 21
Sweden (Sverigetopplistan)[36] 85
Switzerland (Schweizer Hitparade)[37] 39
UK Singles (Official Charts Company)[38] 28
UK R&B (Official Charts Company)[39] 1
US Billboard Hot 100[40] 35
US Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs (Billboard)[41] 11
US Rhythmic (Billboard)[42] 23

Certifications[edit]

Region Certification Certified units/Sales
United States (RIAA)[43] Gold 500,000^

^shipments figures based on certification alone

Release history[edit]

Region Date Format Label
United States December 31, 2014[44] Digital download Def Jam
January 12, 2015[14] Contemporary hit radio
Urban contemporary
Rhythmic contemporary
Hot adult contemporary
Adult album alternative

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Molly Beauchemin (January 3, 2015). "Ty Dolla $ign Says He, Kanye West, Rihanna, and Paul McCartney Are Dropping A Song Together". Pitchfork Media. Retrieved January 3, 2015. 
  2. ^ Nostro, Lauren. "Happy New Year: Kanye West Just Dropped "Only One" f/ Paul McCartney". Complex. Retrieved 1 January 2015. 
  3. ^ Markman, Rob. "Kanye West Drops New Song For The New Year: Listen To 'Only One'". MTV. Retrieved 1 January 2015. 
  4. ^ Nelson, Michael. "Kanye West – "Only One" (Feat. Paul McCartney)". Stereogum. Retrieved 1 January 2015. 
  5. ^ "Kanye West Season Returns With The Release Of ‘Only One’ Ft. Paul McCartney". Uproxx. Retrieved 1 January 2015. 
  6. ^ Young, Alex. "Kanye West premieres "Only One" featuring Paul McCartney — listen". Consequence of Sound. Retrieved 1 January 2015. 
  7. ^ Ed Keeble. "Paul McCartney and Kanye West's 'Piss On My Grave' is leaking". gigwise.com. 
  8. ^ West, Kim Kardashian (2014-12-31). "People always ask me what my favorite Kanye song is and it's Only One. Kanye feels like his mom sang thru him to our daughter.". @kimkardashian. Retrieved 2017-09-13. 
  9. ^ "Kanye West's "Only One (feat. Paul McCartney)": His worst-ever track?". Los Angeles Times. 2 January 2015. 
  10. ^ "Kanye West releases Only One in celebration of daughter North". Daily Mail. 
  11. ^ "Kanye West Previews "Only One" Video, Talks Fatherhood, Adidas Partnership on "Ellen"". Pitchfork Media. 29 January 2015. 
  12. ^ "ONLY ONE directed by Spike Jonze http://www.kanyewest.com". Twitter. 29 January 2015.  External link in |title= (help)
  13. ^ "Best Music Videos of 2015". Pitchfork Media. Retrieved January 14, 2016. 
  14. ^ a b Trust, Gary (January 9, 2015). "Kanye West, Paul McCartney Debut in Hot 100's Top 40 With 'Only One'". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved January 9, 2015. 
  15. ^ Trust, Gary (January 28, 2015). "Rihanna, Kanye West & Paul McCartney Debut on Hot 100 With 'FourFiveSeconds'". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved January 29, 2015. 
  16. ^ Peake, Kyle (July 28, 2015). "Gold & Platinum: West, Kanye". Retrieved August 19, 2015. 
  17. ^ "2015-01-10 Top 40 Official Singles Chart UK Archive - Official Charts". 
  18. ^ "2015-01-17 Top 40 Official Singles Chart UK Archive - Official Charts". 
  19. ^ "NZ Top 40 Singles Chart - The Official New Zealand Music Chart". 
  20. ^ "Australian-charts.com – Kanye West feat. Paul McCartney – Only One". ARIA Top 50 Singles. Retrieved January 10, 2015.
  21. ^ "Austriancharts.at – Kanye West feat. Paul McCartney – Only One" (in German). Ö3 Austria Top 40. Retrieved January 25, 2015.
  22. ^ "Ultratop.be – Kanye West feat. Paul McCartney – Only One" (in Dutch). Ultratip. Retrieved January 10, 2015.
  23. ^ "Ultratop.be – Kanye West feat. Paul McCartney – Only One" (in Dutch). Ultratop Urban. Retrieved January 10, 2015.
  24. ^ "Ultratop.be – Kanye West feat. Paul McCartney – Only One" (in French). Ultratip. Retrieved January 10, 2015.
  25. ^ "Kanye West – Chart history" Canadian Hot 100 for Kanye West. Retrieved January 29, 2015.
  26. ^ "Danishcharts.com – Kanye West feat. Paul McCartney – Only One". Tracklisten. Retrieved January 25, 2015.
  27. ^ "Lescharts.com – Kanye West feat. Paul McCartney – Only One" (in French). Les classement single. Retrieved January 11, 2015.
  28. ^ "Offiziellecharts.de – Kanye West feat. Paul McCartney – Only One". GfK Entertainment Charts. Retrieved January 25, 2015.
  29. ^ "Chart Track: Week 2, 2015". Irish Singles Chart. Retrieved 8 January 2015.
  30. ^ "Kanye West – Chart history" Japan Hot 100 for Kanye West. Retrieved May 20, 2015.
  31. ^ "Archívum – Slágerlisták – MAHASZ" (in Hungarian). Single (track) Top 40 lista. Magyar Hanglemezkiadók Szövetsége. Retrieved January 8, 2015.
  32. ^ "Charts.org.nz – Kanye West feat. Paul McCartney – Only One". Top 40 Singles. Retrieved January 9, 2015.
  33. ^ "Dutchcharts.nl – Kanye West feat. Paul McCartney – Only One" (in Dutch). Single Top 100. Retrieved January 9, 2015.
  34. ^ "Official Scottish Singles Sales Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company. Retrieved July 6, 2015.
  35. ^ "Spanishcharts.com – Kanye West feat. Paul McCartney – Only One" Canciones Top 50. Retrieved January 11, 2015.
  36. ^ "Swedishcharts.com – Kanye West feat. Paul McCartney – Only One". Singles Top 100. Retrieved January 25, 2015.
  37. ^ "Swisscharts.com – Kanye West feat. Paul McCartney – Only One". Swiss Singles Chart. Retrieved January 25, 2015.
  38. ^ "Official Singles Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company. Retrieved January 8, 2015.
  39. ^ "Official R&B Singles Chart Top 40". Official Charts Company. Retrieved January 8, 2015.
  40. ^ "Kanye West – Chart history" Billboard Hot 100 for Kanye West. Retrieved January 8, 2015.
  41. ^ "Kanye West – Chart history" Billboard Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs for Kanye West. Retrieved January 8, 2015.
  42. ^ "Kanye West – Chart history" Billboard Rhythmic Songs for Kanye West. Retrieved February 12, 2015.
  43. ^ "American single certifications – Kanye West – Only One". Recording Industry Association of America.  If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Single, then click SEARCH
  44. ^ https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/only-one-feat.-paul-mccartney/id955053780

External links[edit]