"If" is a song by American singer-songwirter and entertainer Janet Jackson from her fifth studio album, janet.. Written and produced by Jackson with Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis, with additional writing from Harvey Fuqua, John Bristol and Jackey Beavers, "If" was released as the album's second single on July 13, 1993 by Virgin Records. It fuses various genres, including dance-pop, rock, trip hop, and industrial music with elements of hip hop and new jack swing. Its racy lyrics were a forefront of discussion among critics, showcasing Jackson's evolution into a sexual persona from her prior reserved, celibate image.
The song received critical acclaim from music critics and fans alike for its innovation and garnered various accolades, including a BMI Pop Award for Most Played Song, as well as Best Female Video and Best Dance Video at the MTV Video Music Awards, and a Billboard Award for Dance Clip of the Year. It was also ranked among Slant Magazine's Best Singles of the '90s. The song also experienced international success, reaching number four in the US Billboard Hot 100, and was certified Gold by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA). It also performed well in the Canada, New Zealand and the United Kingdom.
Its music video is regarded as iconic for its sensuality, intense choreography, and depiction of technology that was unavailable at the time, such as touch screens and web cameras. Its portrayal of voyeurism, interracial lust, and modern club setting pushed boundaries. It was notably performed on the MTV Video Music Awards in a medley with "That's the Way Love Goes", regarded as one of the most infamous performances of her career. The video was voted the second best female video of the decade by Idolator, and helped to rank Jackson at number one on Complex's list of Hottest Women of the '90s.
Tyson Lambert puts a pitched down, nu-disco spin on this one coming in at a steady 96 BPM.
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