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Cee-Lo Green

“Fuck You”

[Elektra; 2010]

By ; August 27, 2010 

Purchase at: Insound (Vinyl) | Amazon (MP3 & CD) | iTunes | MOG

Here’s the genius of what Goodie Mob and Gnarls Barkley alum Cee-Lo Green did on the first single from his third solo album, The Lady Killer: he wrote a song that’s catchier than “Crazy” and “Hey Ya!” combined, and virtually guaranteed that it wouldn’t reach the level of radio overexposure that those two songs did by calling it “Fuck You”. (The radio edit is called “Forget You,” and if you would ever knowingly choose to listen to that over the original, I don’t want to be your friend.)

The songwriter’s trick of writing lyrics that are diametrically opposed to the music is an old one, but it’s very rarely done as well as it is here. The song rides a classic Al Green groove (as a matter of fact, the vocal melody is quite similar to “Let’s Stay Together”), pairing it with a gleeful kiss-off to a woman whose tastes are just too expensive for him, as well as her new man. Cee-Lo wants his successor (the Xbox to his Atari, if you will) to be very clear what he’s getting himself into (“I pity the foooooooooooooool who falls in love with you/Oh shit she’s a gold digger/just thought you should know, nigga”), and even though he seems relieved to be free of her, he still harbors feelings of jealousy and heartbreak. It would be a brilliant lyric on its own, but put it with the most joyous ’70s-vintage R&B imaginable and you’ve got the best pop single since at least “Umbrella.”


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