Saturday, 10 December 2016

Nelly featuring Justin Timberlake 'Work It'

Chart Peak: 7

Back when I started this album in November 2015, you might recall that Justin Timberlake and Nelly were right next to each other as tracks 2 and 3 on Disc One, with tracks that were the Top 2 singles for a week in 2002. Here at the exact midpoint of Disc Two, they're even closer together on the same record and in a moderately entertaining coincidence, this entered at 7 in a week when Timberlake had a solo hit at 8. It was a week when we were looking to see whether Eminem would manage the rare-at-the-time feat of two simultaneous Top 10 singles: he didn't but Timberlake managed to sneak in almost unnoticed.

Funny that the subjects of "moderately entertaining" and "almost unnoticed" have cropped up because they pretty much define this track, which at best does exactly what you'd expect. It wasn't their first time together as Nelly also guested on late N-Sync hit 'Girlfriend' and he carved out a big niche for himself as a rapper either unconcerned with being credible or unaware that he wasn't, and thus willing to front pop/dance oriented tracks his peers might consider a sellout. That's probably why his career has never entirely recovered from the emergence of Flo Rida, but that's another story.

Here in 2003 both were doubtless only too happy to add to their hits with this rather by-numbers collaboration, although in the event this didn't do much in the US (it was outcharted there by the unappealingly-titled follow-up 'Pimp Juice'). They probably even enjoyed going to the Playboy Mansion to film the video, and as far as I'm concerned they're welcome to that. Some people were apparently impressed by a remix which plays the vocals over the riff from 'Back In Black' by AC/DC though this was inevitably denied commercial release. And I'm not sure it's even in time but I can't say I blame Jason Nevins for being reluctant to listen to the original track often.

Nelly also appears on: Now 47, 49 [with City Spud], 52, 59, 60 [with Tim McGraw], 61, 77, 85, 95 [with Cash Cash & Digital Farm Animals]
Justin Timberlake also appears on: Now 55, 56, 57, 65, 66, 67, 85, 94
Available on: Nellyville

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