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"Single Ladies (Put a Ring on It)" is a song by Beyoncé, from her third studio album, I Am... Columbia Records released "Single Ladies" as a single on October 13, 2008 as a Double A-side alongside "If I Were a Boy", showcasing the contrast between Beyoncé and her aggressive onstage alter ego Sasha Fierce.
It explores men's unwillingness to propose or commit.
"Single Ladies" was placed at number two on MTV News' list of The Best Songs of 2008; James Montgomery called it "hyperactive and supercharged in ways I never thought possible.
It's epic and sexy and even a bit sad." Sarah Rodman, writing for The Boston Globe, named "Single Ladies" the fourth most irresistible song of the decade, and stated, "[Beyoncé] combined leotards with crass engagement-bling baiting into one delicious sexy-yet-antiquated package.
Beyoncé told Simon Vozick-Levinson of Entertainment Weekly that the inspiration for the video was a 1969 Bob Fosse routine entitled "Mexican Breakfast" seen on The Ed Sullivan Show, which featured Fosse's wife, Gwen Verdon, dancing with two other women. [The dancers] had a plain background and it was shot on the crane; it was 360 degrees, they could move around.
And I said, 'This is genius.' We kept a lot of the Fosse choreography and added the down-south thing—it's called J-Setting, where one person does something and the next person follows. It's like the most urban choreography, mixed with Fosse—very modern and very vintage.
Throughout the video the women click their heels and shake their hips and legs.
The song and particularly its music video have been widely parodied and imitated.
from the mainstream public eye", he accredited "Single Ladies" with its resurgence, and stated that after the video appeared on the Internet, people began to "consciously look for music videos because of its art". Online placed the video at number one on their list of Beyoncé's ten best music videos writing, "[It has] All of the sex appeal. Beyoncé doesn't need anything but an empty room in this one. Swift's acceptance speech was interrupted by rapper Kanye West, who grabbed her microphone to declare the "Single Ladies" video as "one of the best videos of all time".
Footage of Beyoncé in the audience looking shocked was then shown.
In an interview with MTV, Beyoncé expressed her appreciation of the public's response to the video, and stated that she had spent much time watching several of these parodies: "It's beautiful to feel you touch people and bring a song to life with a video." In an interview with Chandler Levack for Eye Weekly, Toronto director Scott Cudmore stated that the Internet age has impacted the way music videos are made, as well as perceived by an audience. And it's epic." "Single Ladies" was nominated for nine awards at the 2009 MTV Video Music Awards, ultimately winning three including Video of the Year.
Although Cudmore believes that the music video as a medium is "disappearing ... Its failure to win the Best Female Video category, which went to American country pop singer Taylor Swift's "You Belong with Me", sparked controversy during the ceremony.