Drake's 'Fancy': A Tale Of Two Songs

I already wrote about the greatness of "Fancy" at great length as part of the MTV News Top 25 Songs of 2010 series, but there is one thing that needs to be addressed when it comes to one of Drake's signature songs. On Monday (December 6), I pointed out how truly bizarre it was that Eminem's "Love the Way You Lie" became a chart-topping hit in the middle of the summer, considering that it is a song about domestic violence that is more about negative cycles in relationships than any type of redemption.

But the success of Drake's "Fancy" is just as odd, and not just because it was never actually released as a single. While it's impossible to quantify the size of the song because we don't have any real chart statistics for it, "Fancy" is undoubtedly a huge track. It was the song Drizzy chose to perform on the 2010 MTV Video Music Awards (perhaps his biggest public exposure to date) and always seemed to be the song that people were singing as they were leaving Drake concerts over the course of the summer (had it become a crossover radio hit, "Oh, you fancy, huh?" would have been one of the year's biggest catch phrases).

The viral quality of "Fancy" isn't what makes it odd, though. Rather, it's the structure of the song that makes it an unlikely favorite among fans. Those who have heard the album version of "Fancy" know that it represents a certain transition on Thank Me Later (which is more or less broken up in between the straighter hip-hop tracks of the first half of the album and the more R&B-kissed efforts of the second half). "Fancy" is right in the middle of that movement, and it literally changes in the middle of the tune. While the first part of "Fancy" revolves around Swizz Beatz' punchy production and Drake's straight spitting, the second part of the song mellows out and lets Drake use his after-hours croon. It's odd from any angle, but it also sums up everything that's awesome about everybody's favorite Canadian rapper.

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MTV News' Top 25 Songs of 2010 countdown continues. Make sure to keep checking back to see what song we've named #1, and don't forget to share your picks with us in the comments below!