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Janet Jackson - Son Of A Gun single cover

CD single cover art.

"Son of a Gun (I Betcha Think This Song Is About You)" is the third single from Janet Jackson's 2001 album, All for You. Released on December 11, 2001, the song was written and produced by Jackson, Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis, and is built around a sample of 1972's "You're So Vain" by Simon, who also adds some new spoken parts into the song.

BackgroundEdit

Sonofagunlive

Jackson performing "Son of a Gun (I Bethca Think This Song Is About You)" live on the All for You Tour in 2002.

Like "You're So Vain", "Son of a Gun (I Betcha Think This Song Is About You)" generated speculation of who exactly the man described in the song was. Jackson has alluded that the song is actually about men that are after Jackson's multi-million dollar fortune. However, many fans still believe the song is about Jackson's ex-husband René Elizondo, Jr. Simon created a similar controversy when she released "You're So Vain" after she wed James Taylor. It was speculated to be about either Warren Beatty (which she denied in 2000) or many others. (The rumor of it being about Mick Jagger was disavowed by Simon directly in "Son Of A Gun", stating " the apricot scarf was worn by Nick, there's nothing in the words that refer to Mick".) Like Simon, Jackson has never confirmed the identity of the man. The song is also thought to be about Jackson's friendship breakup with dancer, choreographer & friend Tina Landon, namely the second verse referencing "stupid b*tch, at my beach house".

The song was remixed for release and features Missy Elliott and P. Diddy, peaking at number twenty-eight in the U.S. and becoming Jackson's thirtieth top forty single. The song became the first single that Jackson couldn't force out its entry on the hot 100 by canceling the physical release given the rules of the hot 100 saying that even singles without physical releases would still chart and thus becoming her first single to miss the top ten of the Billboard Hot 100 since 1987's "The Pleasure Principle". Because Jackson had been canceling single releases when her label would realize they would chart poorly (see previous singles like 1996's "Twenty Foreplay", and 1997's "Got 'til It's Gone", etc).

Music videoEdit

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Screen cap from the video.

For the single's music video, directed by Francis Lawrence and released in September 2001, The Original Flyte Tyme Remix of the song was used. Filmed at the Millennium Biltmore Hotel in Downtown Los Angeles, the video includes themes of the undead and occult. Jackson is depicted in an angry manner, stalking a man (played by Project Runway season 5 contestant Jerell Scott) in an abandoned hotel. She summons Missy Elliott and a legion of zombies (including one that was created from a toilet). Jackson is also seen eating a spider, smashing jugs of water with a baseball bat, and taunting the man using telekinetic powers. Simon does not appear at all in the music video; she is however shown on the video screens on Jackson's All for You Tour during the song's opening. The video appears on the 2004 video compilation From Janet. to Damita Jo: The Videos. A video for the P. Diddy Remix also exists and it's the same of The Original Flyte Tyme Remix, with P. Diddy in some parts.

Pop singer Britney Spears referenced and was inspired by Jackson's "Son of a Gun (I Betcha Think This Song Is About You)" music video in her "Overprotected (Darkchild Remix)" video during the elevator scenes and scenes of Spears walking down the hotel lobby. Both videos also use the same hotel setting, filmed at Los Angeles' Millennium Biltmore Hotel. Spears also references and draws inspiration from Janet in several other music videos, including "Stronger", "Circus" and "Womanizer", which she mentions in her Britney: For the Record documentary.

Track listingsEdit

European 12" single (VUST 232)
A1. P. Diddy Extended Remix featuring Missy Elliott and P. Diddy – 7:59
A2. Route 80 Remix featuring Missy Elliott – 4:09
B1. Cottonbelly Dub – 5:27
B2. The Original Flyte Tyme Remix featuring Missy Elliott – 4:13
European CD maxi single (VUSCDF 232)
  1. The Original Flyte Tyme Remix featuring Missy Elliott – 4:13
  2. P. Diddy Remix featuring Missy Elliott and P. Diddy – 5:01
  3. Cottonbelly Remix – 5:31
  4. Rock Remix featuring Missy Elliott – 4:10
  5. Album Version – 5:56
UK 12" R&B promo single (VUSTDJ 232)
A1. The Original Flyte Tyme Remix featuring Missy Elliott – 4:13
A2. Rock Remix featuring Missy Elliott – 4:10
B1. P. Diddy Extended Remix featuring Missy Elliott and P. Diddy – 7:59
B2. Route 80 Remix featuring Missy Elliott – 4:09
UK 12" promo single (VUSTDJX 232)
A. Cottonbelly Remix – 5:25
B. Cottonbelly Dub – 5:27
UK promo CD single (VUSCDJ232)
  1. The Original Flyte Tyme Remix featuring Missy Elliott – 4:13
  2. Radio Edit – 4:00
UK CD single (VUSCD232)
  1. The Original Flyte Tyme Remix featuring Missy Elliott – 4:13
  2. P. Diddy Extended Remix featuring Missy Elliott and P. Diddy – 7:59
  3. Route 80 Remix featuring Missy Elliott – 4:09
U.S. 12" promo single (304 594)
A1. Al B. Rich Son of a Club Edit (Clean) – 7:01
A2. Al B. Rich Radio Edit (Clean) – 4:00
B1. Al B. Rich Son of a Club Mix (Dirty) – 9:41
B2. Al B. Rich Tribe-A-Pella (Dirty) – 4:30
U.S. double 12" promo single (SPRO-16497)
A1. P. Diddy Extended Version - Edited featuring Missy Elliott and P. Diddy – 7:59
A2. Rock Remix featuring Missy Elliott – 4:10
B1. The Original Flyte Time Remix Video Version featuring Missy Elliott – 4:13
B2. Route 80 Remix featuring Missy Elliott – 4:09
B3. Route 80 Instrumental – 4:10
C1. P. Diddy Instrumental – 4:54
C2. The Original Flyte Time Remix Instrumental – 4:10
C3. Rock Remix – 4:10
D1. Album Version - Edited – 4:03
D2. Cottonbelly Remix – 5:31
U.S. 12" single (7243 5 46171 1 9)
A1. P. Diddy Super Extended Remix Edited featuring Missy Elliott and P. Diddy – 7:59
A2. The Original Flyte Time Remix Video Version featuring Missy Elliott – 4:13
B1. Rock Remix featuring Missy Elliott – 4:10
B2. P. Diddy Super Extended Instrumental – 7:55
U.S. promo CD single (DPRO-16483)
  1. P. Diddy Remix Radio Edit featuring Missy Elliott and P. Diddy – 4:26
  2. The Original Flyte Time Remix Video Version featuring Missy Elliott – 4:13
  3. Rock Remix featuring Missy Elliott – 4:10
  4. Route 80 Remix featuring Missy Elliott – 4:09
  5. P. Diddy Super Extended Remix Edited featuring Missy Elliott and P. Diddy – 7:59
  6. Radio Edit – 4:00
Japanese promo CD single (VJCP-12144)
  1. The Original Flyte Tyme Remix featuring Missy Elliott – 4:13
  2. P. Diddy Remix featuring Missy Elliott and P. Diddy – 5:01
  3. Cottonbelly Remix – 5:25
  4. Rock Remix featuring Missy Elliott – 4:10
  5. Album Version – 5:56

Official versions/remixesEdit

The song's album version features Simon only, while the version released for radio was The Original Flyte Time Remix which cut Simon's and Jackson's parts significantly, censored explicit words, and also included a new rap from Missy Elliott (then she raps to all the house mixes). Other remixes such as the Route 80 Remix, the Rockwilder Remix, and the P. Diddy Remix were remixes of The Original Flyte Time Remix, not the album version. The remixes produced by P. Diddy completely eliminate the original song's chords and background music.

  • Album Version (Clean) – 5:56
  • Album Version (Dirty) – 5:56
  • Radio Edit (Clean) – 3:58 (also: Album Edit)
  • The Original Flyte Tyme Remix featuring Missy Elliott (Clean) – 4:14 (also: Video Version)
  • The Original Flyte Tyme Remix featuring Missy Elliott (Dirty) – 4:14
  • The Original Flyte Tyme Remix Instrumental – 4:04
  • P. Diddy Instrumental – 4:45
  • P. Diddy Remix featuring Missy Elliott and P. Diddy (Clean) – 5:07
  • P. Diddy Radio Remix featuring Missy Elliott and P. Diddy (Clean) – 4:26
  • P. Diddy Radio Remix w/o Intro featuring Missy Elliott and P. Diddy (Dirty) – 4:20
  • P. Diddy Super Extended Mix featuring Missy Elliott and P. Diddy (Clean) – 8:01
  • P. Diddy Super Extended Mix featuring Missy Elliott and P. Diddy (Dirty) – 8:01
  • P. Diddy Super Extended Mix Instrumental – 8:01
  • Cottonbelly Remix – 5:31
  • Cottonbelly Dub – 5:35
  • Cottonbelly Extended Dance Mix – 6:35
  • Al B. Rich Son of a Club Remix (Dirty) – 9:41
  • Al B. Rich Son of a Club Edit (Clean) – 7:01
  • Al B. Rich Radio Edit (Clean) – 4:00
  • Al B. Rich Tribeapella (Dirty) – 4:30
  • Al B. Rich Son of a Dub (Dirty) – 9:37
  • Route 80 Remix featuring Missy Elliott (Clean) – 4:09
  • Route 80 Remix featuring Missy Elliott (Dirty) – 4:09
  • Route 80 Instrumental – 4:10
  • Rock Remix featuring Missy Elliott (Clean) – 4:10
  • Rock Remix featuring Missy Elliott (Dirty) – 4:10
  • Rock Instrumental – 4:04
  • Neptunes Ruff Remix - 4:25

ChartsEdit

}U.S. Billboard Pop Songs

Chart (2001/2002) Peak
position
Australian Singles Chart 20
Belgian Singles Chart (Flanders) 20
Belgian Singles Chart (Wallonia) 25
Danish Singles Chart 19
German Singles Chart 69
Dutch Top 40 34
Irish Singles Chart 21
Italian Singles Chart 36
New Zealand Singles Chart 49
Romanian Top 100 54
Swedish Singles Chart 48
Swiss Singles Chart 56
UK Singles Chart 13
U.S. Billboard Hot 100 28
20
U.S. Billboard Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs 26
U.S. Billboard Hot Dance Club Songs 7
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