Dangerous Woman

Album: Dangerous Woman (2016)
Charted: 17 8

Songfacts®:

  • This sultry, moody ballad was released as the lead single from Ariana Grande's Dangerous Woman album on March 11, 2016. We hear her singing of reveling in the adrenaline of hooking up with a bad boy. In fact it is Ariana who has made the first move, "Don't need permission, made my decision," she croons. It is a choice that is both empowering and dangerous.
  • There is some synthesizer on this track, but also plenty of organ and even a guitar solo, giving the song a retro-blues feel. The time signature is 6/8.
  • The album was tentatively titled Moonlight, but Grande announced on February 22, 2016 she was renaming it after this song. The following day, the singer posted a photo on Instagram with a caption quoting Egyptian feminist writer Nawal El Saadawi's 1975 novel, Woman at Point Zero: "They said, 'You are a savage and dangerous woman.' I am speaking the truth. And the truth is savage and dangerous."
  • When Grande hosted a live chat for fans, one of the questions that came up involved her decision to change the title of her album. She explained "'Moonlight' is a lovely song and it's a lovely title. It's really romantic, and it definitely ties together the old music and the new music. But 'Dangerous Woman' is a lot stronger."

    "I want to be empowering my fans," Grande added. "I feel like my personal growth is reflected in the sound. I'm really proud of it."
  • In the mix are the crackle and popping sounds heard on vinyl records, which give the track a more organic, analog feel. Another popular song from this time also used this sound effect: Meghan Trainor's "No."
  • The song was co-produced by Swedish pop songwriter Max Martin, who previously worked with Grande on her My Everything hits "Problem," "Break Free" and her collaboration with Jessie J and Nicki Minaj, "Bang Bang."
  • The video was made by the Young Astronauts production company, which also did Grande's videos for "Almost Is Never Enough" and "Right There." In "Dangerous Woman," she is onscreen the entire time in various sensual poses - no cutaways or complementary storylines needed.
  • Ariana Grande pulled treble duty on the March 12, 2016 episode of Saturday Night Live. As well as hosting the show, she also used the Studio 8H stage to debut this song. In addition, the songstress took part in a sketch poking fun at Tidal where she impersonated the likes of Britney Spears and Whitney Houston.
  • Co-writer Ross Golan (Lady Antebellum's "Compass", Flo Rida's "My House") originally penned the song with a completely different superstar in mind. "I actually thought it was going to be more country," Golan revealed in an interview with CBS' This Morning. "I was kind of hoping Carrie Underwood would cut it. If Carrie Underwood's listening: please cut it," he added jokingly.

    Golan also considered Alicia Keys and Rihanna, before Ariana Grande's persistence won him over. He said: "There aren't a lot of artists that are appreciative of the songwriters, but the ones you want to work with are people like Ariana, who came in the room and said 'Please let me try this song. And if I do, I promise I'll treat it well.' It's the name of her album and the name of her tour now."

Comments: 1

  • Joel from Toronto, OntarioAriana has come a long way since her days of playing "Cat" on the Nickelodeon show "Victorious". While she can sing I do sometimes question her choices.
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