News Flash: There Are Still Radio Stations Out There That Play “All The Hits, None Of The Rap”

Aug 28th, 2007 // 8 Comments

justin.bmpARTIST: Justin Timberlake
TITLE: “Ayo Technology”
WEB DEBUT: Aug. 27, 2007

ONE-LISTEN VERDICT: Yes, that’s the very same “Ayo Technology” that was supposed to save 50 Cent’s Curtis–only this new version, credited solely to JT, slices 50 right out of the song, giving it over fully to Timberlake’s chorus and Timbaland’s musings about “hips” and “thighs.” So what new verses does this track use to make up for the fact that 50′s been edited out? None, actually! All you get are long stretches of Timbaland’s “malfunctioning copy of Punch-Out!” backing track, which, now that it’s so far out front on this new version, unnervingly reminds me of the 8-bit remix of my co-editor’s hottttest summer jam.
WHERE TO FIND IT: It’s currently up at IKevinMusic (via Blender), but it’ll probably be in heavy rotation on your local rap-averse hits station within the next 24 hours. Sorry Curtis!

  1. Chris Molanphy

    Damn you…now I have a new version of “Chocolate Rain” running through my head to go with the original and John Mayer versions polluting my brain since July.

  2. Al Shipley

    Maybe the most awkward edit of this kind that I’ve heard on pop stations in recent years was the version of “Promiscuous” that excised as much as possible of Timbaland’s parts while leaving in Nelly Furtado’s raps, so that she seemed to be responding to noone in particular with lines like “what kind of girl do you take me for?” and “so does everybody else.” This might be the first time I’ve heard of such a mix that turns the featured artist into the main event, though.

  3. Chris Molanphy

    The key question on this is whether Billboard will rule that airplay of this version will count toward the chart point totals for the Fitty version of “Ayo Technology.” That would seem like a total cheat to me - he’s credited as the lead artist!! – but stranger things have happened.

    I also wouldn’t be surprised if Interscope looked into this with Billboard before dropping the remix – the whole point of a rap-less mix like this is getting more aggregated format airplay (“Hot AC,” midwestern Top 40 stations), which pushes the record up the Hot 100 and theoretically leads to more radio adds across the board.

  4. spinachdip

    Shit, radio stations still do this?

    This was more understandable in the early 90s when people were genuinely afraid of rapping itself (as opposed to the lyrical content or the performer’s criminal background), or back when Mariah Carey still sang white people-friendly pop songs but Ol’ Dirty Bastard or Jay-Z would have been genuinely out of place on Soccer Mom Radio.

    The most egregious of the rap-free rap song was Heavy D & the Boyz’s “Now That We Found Love”, which was basically just an instrumental version of the Third World song with the chorus coming in every minute or so.

  5. Mezzy

    On my craptacular local radio station I get to listen to an extended instrumental at the beginning of “Umbrella”. Apparently the vocal stylings of Jay-Z have no place on our small town’s air waves…Some people have called his verse weak but you don’t really realize how much you miss it until it is gone.

  6. Chris Molanphy

    @spinachdip:
    Shit, radio stations still do this?

    Sure — have you ever heard Beyonce’s “Crazy in Love” without the Jigga rap in the middle? Not only do certain stations only play such version, but even some stations that *do* play the rap version will also “daypart” the rap-free version at midday. “Daypart” is industry lingo for hits-oriented stations that wear different masks at various parts of the day to attract different listeners: during drive time and at midday, it’s all soccer-mom-friendly pop; after 7, when the teens are all listening while doing homework, the rap comes out full-force.

  7. Al Shipley

    @dennisobell: I’m betting that Billboard will count plays of the Justin-only version towards the same chart placement as the 50 version, if the example of “I’m A Flirt” by ‘R. Kelly and/or Bow Wow’ earlier this year is any indication.

  8. Anonymous

    @Mezzy: Why not just eliminate the instrumental intro? I created my own version of this edit and I don’t miss Jay-Z’s verse in the least. Although I mostly end up listening to the remix with Lil Mama at this point.

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