In this song, the ladies of Destiny's Child know that "no" really means "yes" when it comes to the guy they're after. He needs to drop the act and show some affection.
The group recorded two versions of this song, both of which were included on their self-titled debut album. The first, with a sensual R&B feel, is "No, No, No Part 1." The second is a remix by Wyclef Jean (of the Fugees), who also adds vocals on the track. This version has a beat behind it, and more importantly, is the song where they developed their quick, punctuated vocal style, which became their signature sound. Lead singer Beyoncé Knowles sang it fast as a joke, by Wyclef liked it and had her record it that way.
The Wyclef version was released as a single and gave the group their first hit.
"No, No, No" went to #3 on the Billboard Hot 100 and #1 on the R&B chart. Both the single and the album went Platinum, giving Destiny's Child a solid stepping stone on their way to stardom. The album didn't produce any more hits, but their next one, The Writing's On The Wall
, was huge. Its first single was the #1 "Bills, Bills, Bills
"; they continued their affinity for songs titled with a repeated word in "Jumpin' Jumpin'," another hit from the album.
Destiny's Child may have landed a hit with their first single, but they certainly paid their dues. They formed in 1989 and had made the pop music rounds, including an appearance on Star Search (they lost). They changed names a few times during this period; as Da Dolls, they signed with Elektra Records in 1994, but nothing came of it. Columbia picked them up in 1997 and teamed them with various songwriters and producers. "No, No, No" was written by Mary Brown, Rob Fusari, Vincent Herbert, and Calvin Gaines. Of these, Herbert was the most accomplished, with co-writes for Toni Braxton ("How Many Ways") and Monifah ("You").
Different videos were made for Part 1 and Part 2 of this song, both directed by Darren Grant. Part 1 finds them singing at a supper club; Part 2 is on a modern set with backup dancers.
There were four members of the group at this point, with LeToya Luckett and LaTavia Roberson along with mainstays Beyoncé Knowles and Kelly Rowland. Soon after, Roberson and Luckett tried to change management and were booted from the group, replaced by Farrah Franklin and Michelle Williams; Franklin left soon after, leaving them a trio.
Part 2 of this song samples "Strange Games & Things" by Barry White's Love Unlimited Orchestra.
The first time Kelly Rowland heard herself on the radio was in 1998 when she was in Houston driving with her Destiny's Child colleagues, Beyoncé, LeToya Luckett and LaTavia Roberson. They were on their way to pick up, Beyoncé's little sister, Solange Knowles, from school when this song came on the radio. "We were like, 'Oh my God, Oh my God!'" she recalled to Radio.com. "We started running around the courtyard at Solange's school and she hops out of the school and is like, 'Why are y'all embarrassing me?'"
The girls explained what was happening and Beyoncé's little sister started running around the courtyard, too. "It was beautiful moment," Rowland said. "We were just really happy."