He’s Really Not That Sick Of Love Songs Ya’ll: 9 Popular Jams You Probably Didn’t Know Ne-Yo Wrote
Every time I hear “Irreplaceable” I’m thoroughly impressed. Not because Beyoncé sang the song oh so well or because it’s an anthem of some sorts for me. Rather, I have to give props to the track because of the fact that a man wrote it. Ne-Yo. He wrote a woman’s feelings damn near better than most women actually could share them, and even though he didn’t sing on the track, it has been one of the biggest hits of Ne-Yo’s career. But it’s actually one of many. Using his government name of Shaffer Chimere Smith on many credits, Ne-Yo has written many tracks we have had on repeat. Here are nine that just so happened to stand out the most.
“Epiphany” by Chrisette Michele
Despite the many jams that Chrisette Michele has, “Epiphany (I’m Leaving)” is actually the talented singer’s most successful song of all. It’s very clear that Ne-Yo has the Midas touch when it comes to creating bangers. The video featured an up-and-coming Drake playing the boyfriend that was about to get the boot (along with his skateboard). The song peaked at 14 on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart and as a lead single, it helped her album of the same name debut at the top spot on the Billboard 200 charts. This is of course a very big deal.
“Flaws and All” by Beyoncé
If you’re looking for a song that “sounds” like Ne-Yo just from its composition or chorus, “Flaws and All” for King Bey is a good example of such a track. Ne-Yo takes lead writing credits alongside Beyoncé and her sister Solange for the track, an honest love song off of Bey’s second solo album, B’Day. It was possibly the best track on the album and it was actually just a bonus one. The song received a positive reaction from critics and fans alike, and she of course did the song justice when she started performing it for The Beyoncé Experience tour back in 2007. She still sings it for the current Mrs. Carter World Tour.
“Pretty Girl Rock” by Keri Hilson
A talented writer in her own right, Hilson commissioned Ne-Yo to help write this hit along with Bill Withers, Ralph MacDonald, and William Salter. The two worked on the track “Knock You Down,” and this time around their collaboration scored Hilson big numbers. “Pretty Girl Rock” peaked at number four on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs and 24 on the Billboard Hot 100. The video was adorable as well with Hilson impersonating every black beauty from Dorothy Dandridge, and Josephine Baker, to Janet Jackson and T-Boz from TLC.
“Take A Bow” by Rihanna
Ne-Yo has also helped Rihanna get some very big hits, including “Unfaithful,” “Hate That I Love You,” and “Russian Roulette.” But his biggest contribution to her collection of number ones is the track “Take A Bow” from the Good Girl Gone Bad album. Ne-Yo wrote the song with the help of Tor Erik Hermansen and Mikkel Eriksen (Stargate). The track peaked at number one on the Billboard Hot 100 list, the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs, and the Pop Songs chart, as well as charting very well abroad.
“Rock With U” by Janet Jackson
Strobe lights make everything…sexier. And so does Ne-Yo! He wrote this very groove-worthy song from her tenth album, Discipline, along with Jermaine Dupri and Eric Stamile. It did well on the dance charts, and did especially well in the UK on the R&B charts. It wasn’t one of Janet’s biggest hits of course, but it’s still a deep cut worth jamming to. Plus, the video is pretty epic thanks to some very complex and killer choreography. It has a very simplistic look but it definitely looks like one of the dopest parties to be in…ever.
“Spotlight” by Jennifer Hudson
A pre-Weight Watchers and pre-baby Jennifer Hudson showed a different side of herself on the upbeat track that had to do with dealing with an overprotective partner. With the production team Stargate (Tor Erik Hermansen and Mikkel S. Eriksen) that Ne-Yo often collaborates with on songwriting, he helped create a song for the new Oscar winner that turned into a hit. While it only peaked at 24 on the Hot 100, it scored a number one spot on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart for two weeks. Ne-Yo and Hudson worked together again on the song “Act Like a Woman, Think Like a Man” for the Think Like A Man soundtrack.
“Not Anymore” by LeToya
While people know LeToya’s second album, Lady Love, for the single “Regret” with Ludacris, the lead single for the album was “Not Anymore.” The song was written solely by Ne-Yo and followed his formula for churning out jams by catering to the female audience who can’t get enough of break-up songs (especially ones you can two-step to). The song did pretty good on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart, peaking at number 18. In the video, the man she doesn’t want “anymore” from is Lance Gross…but what sense does that make!?
“That Girl” by Marques Houston
Back when folks used to appear in videos with multi-colored do-rags and pursued girls down the street while dancing, a pre-fame Ne-Yo gave “That Girl” to Houston (circa 2002). It was initially intended for Ne-Yo, but after getting dropped by his first record label, he gladly passed it on to pay the rent. The song was about a man in a relationship whose eye is wandering too damn much, and he tries to affirm that he loves his lady by saying that when it comes to the chicks he’s looking at, that girl will always just be THAT girl, not my girl. The song was a very catchy one, but it didn’t really chart since most attention on the album was directed toward the popular single, “Clubbin'” with Joe Budden.
“Let Me Love You” by Mario
Perhaps in the top three when it comes to the most successful Ne-Yo songs, it was one of the few songs in the world that could finally get folks to stop looking at Mario as the “Just A Friend” guy. It was smooth and dance-worthy. Honestly, who didn’t two-step to this song and blast it in their cars before the radio played it out? It actually wound up being the eighth most successful single of the 2000-2010 decade and is of course Mario’s biggest single. It peaked at number one on the Billboard Hot 100, the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart, and the Pop Songs chart, and did very well around the world.