Dilemma
by Nelly (featuring Kelly Rowland)

Album: Nellyville (2002)
Charted: 1 1
  • Featuring Kelly Rowland from Destiny's Child, this song is about a girl who thinks about another guy even when she's with her boyfriend (thus the "Dilemma"). Nelly and Kelly act this out in the video, but also in the song, as they sing to each other by name.
  • This was the first big release for Kelly Rowland away from her group, Destiny's Child. Nelly was an established star and hot on the charts, but Rowland was not widely known on her own. This was a good (and very safe) way to introduce her as a solo artist and get her ready for her first album. The song appeared on both Nelly's album Nellyville and on Roland's debut solo album, Simply Deep.
  • The chorus is based on Patti LaBelle's 1983 song, "Love, Need And Want You." LaBelle is in the video.
  • Nelly heard a tune written by his friend Bam (Antoine Macon), and wanted to include it on his album. Bam recalls: "We sat down at the keyboard and just messed around. Then we added some drums and Nelly began to write some words." It was almost finished when Bam put on the Patti LaBelle album I'm In Love Again and started humming one of the tracks, "Love, Need And Want You." Nelly was not familiar with the song but liked it and insisted they use the "I love you" hook. When Nelly heard the finished track, he said, "I wanted to do something that nobody would think of, and that's why I bought in Kelly Rowland. I thought she would be better on her own as opposed to Destiny's Child." (Quotes from 1000 UK #1 Hits by Jon Kutner and Spencer Leigh.)
  • This prompted rumors that Nelly and Kelly were dating. They maintained that they were simply good friends.
  • This was the first big solo hit for any Destiny's Child member. Michelle Williams was the first to release a solo album, which appeared in April 2002. Rowland's "Simply Deep" followed in October, but "Dilemma" was released earlier, landing at #1 US in August. Beyoncé did a single for the Austin Powers in Goldmember soundtrack in 2002 before releasing her first solo album, Dangerously in Love, the next year. It was a dazzling debut, featuring the #1 "Crazy In Love," a collaboration with her boyfriend, Jay-Z.
  • Five writers are credited on this track: Nelly, the song's producers Ryan Bowser and Antoine "Bam" Macon, and the guys who wrote the sampled track "Love, Need And Want You": Kenny Gamble and Bunny Sigler.
  • At the 2003 Grammy Awards, Nelly performed his hit "Hot In Herre," and was then joined by Rowland, who sang this with him. This won the award for Best Rap/Sung Collaboration. It was nominated for Record of the Year, but lost to "Don't Know Why" by Norah Jones.
  • This spent 10 weeks at the top of the American chart in two runs. It paused for a couple of weeks to allow in recent American Idol winner Kelly Clarkson's "A Moment Like This."
  • The duo recorded an update of this song titled "Gone," which was a track on Nelly's 2010 album, 5.0.
  • Nelly recalled collaborating with Kelly Rowland on this song in a 2010 interview with XXL magazine: "I did the Nellyville album in Miami, recorded the songs and all that [short pause] and we kind of felt like we needed a couple more songs on there. So, the last two songs that we put on Nellyville were 'Hot In Herre' and 'Dilemma.' At this time we had been on tour with the girls from Destiny's Child so we had become, fairly close to the girls and all that and I was like, 'What do you think about Kelly?' but at this time she was dating someone very close to me, I should say that, and we was like, 'Yo, fam, this would hot.' So you know we got her in the studio and s--t was magic."
  • On the Hot 100 dated August 17, 2002, "Dilemma" replaced "Hot in Herre" at #1, making Nelly the fifth artist in that chart's history to succeed himself in pole position, following The Beatles, Boyz II Men, Puff Daddy and Ja Rule.
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Comments: 13

  • Miles from Vancouver, CanadaFirst of all, don't badmouth Norah Jones. Well, ok, her newer stuff is nothing to write to home about, but I do still love her first two albums. Second, I'm not a fan of either artist, but this is a great song. It holds (dare I say?) warm feelings of Grade 11, when me and my friend Andrew would have sleepovers at his mother's house. We saw the video on TV, which is probably what triggers those feelings. It's not so overproduced, either. (But I do also like Nelly's songs "Ride Wit Me" and "Hot in Herre".)
  • Eliete from São Paulo, BrazilThis is the best music i have been heard! I love all about that song! I love is too much. Please don´t tell bad things about that one, because it´s beautifull, lovely and sensible too much. I´d like to have more notices about Kelly, mainly NELLY of course. Kisses for them, mainly NELLY of course...
  • Brian from London, CanadaDon't like this song. Better then Grillz.
  • Kelli from Cedar Rapids, IaHow would you know what kind of music to commit suicide to? Its not like you've ever done it.
  • Danielle from Richmond, KyI really like this song and kelly and nelly actually work good together~! (maybe they should do another one together~!)
  • Michael Jones from Berlin, MdThis song brings back a lot of old memories. Good and bad, but it's nice to listen to this song all the same.
  • Sarah from Quito, South Americaok, you DONT commit suicide to noah jones. its too...slow. you cant commit suicide to slow music. there is no anger, you are at peace with jazz. you do it to like...staind, or something like that...but you shouldnt have to do it all all. its pointless, and even though you think its gonna help other people, it wont. it will make it worse for them
  • Sarah from Quito, South Americanelly and kelly arent even that good, and noah jones has more sophisticated music....but i hate her anyways. she sucks. ive had too much!
  • Autumn from Las Vegas, NeThis song totally relates to me!!!! Even though i dont have a b/f i still cant stop thinking about this one guy. i cant believe it lost to norah jones. that sucks!!!
  • Peter from Carmel, Inwhile nelly is good, norah's music is part of a dying artform. not many people can write jazz.
  • Tiffany from Las Vegas, NvI agree with Lara Kelly and Nelly are WAY better than Norah Jones. Kelly and Nelly are the BOMB!
  • Jude from Db, CaNorah Jones is ten times better than Kelly or nelly.
  • Lara from Cape Town, South AfricaI don't believe this song lost to NORAH JONES ! She sings the kind of music you commit suicide to! If she was any slower on her videos MTV would have to use fast forward & it would still be slow! This is the best song ever when I hear the first part where she goes "& I luv u" I just have to sing along !
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