Like a Boy is a song by Ciara for her second album "Ciara: The Evolution."
It was written by Ciara, Candice Nelson, Balewa Muhammad, J. Que, Ezekiel Lewis, and Calvin Kenon. It was produced by Ciara, Calvo Da Gr8 and the Clutch.
The single was released February 13, 2007,
Although the single was a moderate hit, it failed to match the success of its North American predecessor.
"Like a Boy" details about double standards in society of how men in relationships can do certain things, but when women do the same, it is looked down upon.
According to Ciara, "it's a record for my women" and she had "a lot of girl talks."
She wanted to know what it would be like if "the roles were reversed." According to her, "it's a female-empowerment record."
The protagonist wishes to "act like a boy."
The song is notable for its mixture of synthesized orchestral strings and hard-pounding hip-hop instrumental.
Ciara also co-produced the song along with "The Evolution" track "My Love."
YourSpins.com had a contest where fans had a chance to remix "Like a Boy" and meet Ciara if the remix is saved.
On April 3, 2007, Ciara made an appearance on the reality show "Dancing with the Stars" where she performed "Like a Boy." She did her famous matrix in a pair of high heels.
While the song was at the height of its popularity, Ciara's name was featured in a Sprint campaign along with Joss Stone and My Chemical Romance.
On June 26, 2007, Ciara performed a medley of "Like a Boy" and "That's Right" at the 2007 BET Awards.
The music video for "Like a Boy" was directed by Diane Martel (credited as Ms. D who also directed Ciara's "Promise" video). It was shot in late January over a three-day period.
On February 21, 2007, the video premiered on Yahoo! Music and BET's "Access Granted."
On February 23, 2007, thehe video received a "First Look" on MTV's "TRL" and debuted at #10 and peaked at #4.
On March 9, 2007, "Like a Boy" premiered on "The Box."
On March 8, 2007, it debuted on BET's "106 & Park" at #8 and peaked at #1. It peaked at #5 on the iTunes video charts.
The song made number thirty-three on BET's "Top 100 Video Countdown of 2007."
The black and white video begins with Ciara dressed like a boy sitting in a chair. She is sporting painted on tattoos and says, "2007. Ladies, I think it's time to switch roles."
Next, Ciara confronts her boyfriend played by football player Reggie Bush throughout the video. During the first verse and chorus, she dances with her male alter ego.
The rest of the video, she and the female dancers (who are all dressed in more masculine styles) perform masculine choreography. After the bridge, there is a breakdown and Ciara performs her famous matrix as in the "Goodies" video.
The video version of the song features different edits from the album version.
These are the tattoos Ciara has in the music video:
- "Need Love": The one on the top part of her hand
- "Like a Boy": The side part of her right hand
- "Fear No Man but God": On her arm
- An angel and it says "Sucker for Love"
- A caricature of a tomboy and the girl has her hat to the back. It says "Princess" and symbolizes Ciara.
- "Rest in Peace, Baby Angel Astin": Ciara’s niece that died not long after birth.
- "C" with a crown on it on her neck.
- "A": On her left hand which stands for Atlanta. It has Decatur and above it says "Zone Three" which is Riverdale where Ciara has the keys to the city.
"Like a Boy" was nominated for "Best Choreography in a Video" (Choreog.-Jamaica Craft) at the 2007 MTV Video Music Awards, but the award was given to Justin Timberlake's "My Love" (featuring T.I.).
The music video was also nominated for "Video of the Year" at the 2007 BET Awards, but lost to Beyoncé's video "Irreplaceable."
The video became widely popular, being viewed nearly 46 million times on VEVO, which is Ciara's most-viewed video.
On the issue dated March 17, 2007, "Like a Boy" debuted on the Billboard Hot 100 at number 81.
It reached its peak position of number 19 on May 5, 2007, and spent a total of twenty weeks on the chart.
The song also peaked at number six on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs, giving Ciara her sixth top-ten single on the chart.
The song was certified gold by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) for sales of 500,000 copies sold.
"Like a Boy" was ranked at #68 on the Billboard Year End singles of 2007, and is the most successful year-end single from "Ciara: The Evolution."
Internationally, the song achieved moderate success.
In Sweden, the song debuted at number 19 and peaked at number 8 in its second week, becoming her first top ten in the country.
The song was also a top ten in other international countries, peaking at number 8 in Belgium and number 7 in Finland.
The song peaked within the top twenty in multiple international countries as well, peaking at number 11 in Ireland, number 16 in Switzerland and at number 20 in France.
In the United Kingdom, it debuted at number 35 from digital downloads alone.
After the physical release, "Like a Boy" moved up twelve spots from number twenty-eight to sixteen, which became its peak position in the country.
"Like a Boy" was well received by critics.
Bill Lamb of About.com wrote that Ciara gives a "breathlessness delivering" and says the song is "intoxicating."
Jody Rosen of Entertainment Weekly wrote the song is "par excellence" and "stirring revenge fantasy."
Britain's Manchester Evening News published that the song has an "epic instrumental," "gymnastic style vocals" and "photocopied lyrics," but it is "guaranteed to be a smash hit in the U.S."
Chocolate Magazine published it is "one of her best tracks so far" and shows her mature side.