While most fans of a particular artist may not realize it, there are many songs popularized by a particular artist, songs which were written by another. Sometimes an artist may write a song, and while the song is by itself great, it has no place with the rest of the songs in the album. Or perhaps the artist changes his, or her, or their mind about using the song themselves. Here are some examples of songs written by other artists.
In 2001 Avril Lavigne wrote “Breakaway” with Matthew Gerrard and Bridget Benenate. The song was originally intended to be included on her debut album Let Go. However, the song was declared unsuitable for her album. The song was shopped to various artists until Kelly Clarkson agreed to record it as part of the soundtrack for The Princess Diaries 2: Royal Engagement. The song was such a hit that Clarkson included the song on her second album and named it Breakaway in honor of the song.
In 2007 Ryan Tedder, a prolific singer-songwriter and frontman of One Republic, and Jesse McCartney wrote the song “Bleeding Love” for McCartney’s third album Departure. However, McCartney’s record label disliked the song, but Tedder still felt that song was “massive.” Tedder saw Leona Lewis on the British show The X Factor and worked with Simon Cowell to arrange for Lewis to record “Bleeding Love,” which became a huge international hit. McCartney was later able to record his version on the deluxe version of Departure.
Pink wrote “Whataya Want from Me” for her album Funhouse,” along with Max Martin and Shellback. However, it didn’t make the cut. In November 2009, Adam Lambert announced that “Whataya Want from Me,” would be the second single from his debut album For Your Entertainment, which became a top 10 hit in thirteen different countries. Pink later included the song in the International Edition of her album “Greatest Hits…So Far!!”
Gloria Estefan wrote “Let’s Get Loud” for herself with Kike Santander…but after reviewing the song, she felt it was too similar to her other material. She passed the song on to Jennifer Lopez. Lopez recorded a Spanish version first, called “Vivir Sin Ti” before being convinced to record it in English. “Let’s Get Loud” was released in 1999 and became a top ten hit in five European Countries and was nominated for best dance recording.
Today, Chris Brown is a controversial figure, because of his conviction of domestic assault and other run-ins with the law. However, before all that, back in 2007, Chris Brown was recording a song called “Disturbia” for the re-release of his second album Exclusive. After finishing the song, he decided to go with the song “Forever” instead. He passed the song on to Rihanna, who recorded the song as the re-release of her own album Good Girl Gone Bad, called Good Girl Gone Bad: Reloaded. “Disturbia” became a number one hit in the US, Belgium and New Zealand, and was a top ten hit in eighteen other countries.
While some original artists’ versions of their songs do exist, like Jesse McCartney’s “Bleeding Love” or Pink’s “Whataya Want from Me,” the other three originals may never officially see the light of day. Sometimes the record label may pass on the original artist’s version, but sometimes the artist themselves can see the potential of another artist singing their words. Check out these five singles written by artists for themselves that became massive hits for other singers.