Home Celebrity Justin Timberlake Single Sales Soft: Is it Jay Z or the Six...

Justin Timberlake’s first album in six years, “The 20/20 Experience,” is coming on March 19th. I told you about Timberlake’s new album last fall exclusively. Last week, he released the premiere single, “Suit and Tie,” featuring Jay Z, to some fanfare after teasing it on social media. The single is great, and so is the video. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KReoTOZK9W8 But after a flurry of initial interest and sales, “Suit and Tie” has struggled on all charts. It’s dropped to number 9 already on iTunes, and number 13 on amazon.com. It’s only been 10 days.

Of note: the top pop station in the US, Z-100, lists “Suit and Tie” at number 20 of its most popular records this week. And in morning drive, “Suit and Tie” is simply not in the rotation of the last 10 records played.

What does this say for “20/20”? A couple of things. First of all, “Suit and Tie” is just about ruined by Jay Z’s rap plopped into the middle of the song for no reason. Jay Z is fine if you like him, but Timberlake fans don’t want him popping up on records willy-nilly. I hope there’s a version of “Suit and Tie” without him, much like Alicia Keys released her own “Empire State of Mind” sans the entrepreneur rapper.

Second, six years may have been too long to stay away. “Suit and Tie” is behaving like a single from a ‘legacy artist’ like the Rolling Stones– and not like a contemporary artist. Timberlake is 31 years old, which is ancient in the world set up by record labels in 2013. The other Justin, who is frightful, is 18. Pop music has become the domain of prepubescents. “Suit and Tie” is already too sophisticated for the dumbed down audience of today. I hope someone’s thought about that. You think of JT as a kid, but Lady Gaga and Adele are six years younger than him.


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74 replies to this post

  2. The reason is he sucks. It’s not about Jay Z. Justin is untalented and trying to be cool but sucks so bad.. PLUS 6 years is a enough time to kill the career.. Britney is the only one who is still dominating from the early 00’s.. Timberlake is so over, sorry..

  3. The song sucks with Jay Z or without Jay Z. This song sucks because JT was trying to hard to do something different and unique and failed miserably at it. I am over 50 and I hate this song. Now, give me the weekend with wicked games and I am just mesmerized by that man’s talent. May be JT should hire him or better yet, steal his music like Beyonce did to get her fame and JT may be relevant again.

  4. It’s not Jay-Z. It’s the six year absence…Robin Thicke knocked him out the box while he was gone….and that’s who he sounds like with this song…actually I thought it was Robin Thicke

  5. The reason it’s not doing as well as expected is because a lot of people haven’t heard it. They’re not playing it on the radio here, and I don’t hear it on the TV being performed live or advertised in a commercial. I haven’t come across any interviews he’s done for the album either.

  6. Jay-Z ruins the songs, hes been trash since Reasonable Doubt. Hes a wannabe, acts like he owns the Nets when he doesnt own a full 1 % of the team, pathetic… all about what we think, well… we think your old and washed up… song woulda been dope if they had Kendrick Lamar as the rap part and he helped Justin with the hooks.

  7. Jay Z ruined it just like he has a hundred songs before. He should keep off of speaking on others songs and quit riding the backs of upcoming and respected artists. What a leech. Jay Z doesn’t need the money, why does he rip off others songs? Greed and False fame. He is the scourge of the music industry but due to abuse of power it seems that the industry just lets him keep doing it. Jay Z go away, you suck.

  8. Jt always bets on black from the start nsync gone by brian mcknight first solo album all mj rejects by the neptunes second album timberland remember when music was the only cure to racsim idiots please be quiet and check ur history jt was created by hip hop and r&b yall crossed over he didnt haters cant clam up this song is aimed at girls y are so many guys so mad pull your balls out of ur a$! And two step with ur woman in a suit and tie and take those tight a?! Jeans off

  9. This is by far some of Jay-Z’s best word play since WTT, so Jay isnt the blame Neither JT. The concept of the song is corny, and that beat fails to match up to that 2013 trance/hip hop sound. Not to say all music should sound a like; but we are in the day and age of programmed consumers. If Mike Will made the beat i bet this would be a #1 record.

  10. The song is as stuffy as its namesake. The only thing that could’ve saved this unfortunate mess of a song is a more uptempo beat to drown out the crappy singing and god awful lyrics.

    Instead of making the notion of wearing a suit and tie sound cool, the song actually made me look at suit and ties as attire for the lame and washed up.

    “Suit and tie” is like the mullet haircut of Justin Timberlake songs. It is not remotely cool and quite laughable, really.

    Being old is a state of mind–a mentality. Timberlake’s age isn’t an issue, but his mentality is. It appears that when he brought sexy back in 2006, he left it there.

  11. Whoever said this is a robin thicke imposter is clearly either young or ignorant because everybody in America knows Justin Timberlake was out way before Robin thicke even came on the scene. And I happen to like the song minus the intro and the Jay Z rap..

  12. Its amazing to read all the Jay-Z hate. I actually like this song. Jay-z attracted more attention and sales than he deflected. Blaming him is a cop out. Ya’ll sound more like Jay-Z, rap, or Black haters than you do actual music critics. Be for real.

  13. I think the song is good I love the instrumental. Now for all you haters on Jay-Z do you really think he cares what you think? While he’s going to the bank? bottom feeder my as-. Although he was not needed on this song.

  14. huge jay z fan. however, the song is just not a big crossover pop record. plain and simple. plus, it is far to mature for the top 40 radio stations with the trinidad james in the format.

  15. If anything, Roger, Jay-Z adds to the song. Justin Timberlake isn’t exactly a relevant artist anymore. Jay-Z only recently finished a successful, eight month tour in June 2012, so to have his presence on the album is a definite plus. It appears that JT is aiming for an older audience, so the song is having a hard time gaining steam due to the fact that the young fans who are doing all of the downloading/streaming hardly remembers Justin as an artist. The average 18-20 year old music lovers, who were ages 12-14 the last time Justin was hot on the charts, probably thinks of him as a “Where are they now” artist. He’s long been replaced by Beiber, Twilight, and One Direction (1D as my 13 year old daughter calls them…smh). Justin’s musical direction on Suit & Tie is a bit too mature for the young, gym shoe, and skinny jeans wearing fans of today.

    As far as “Empire State of Mind” is concerned, lets not forget that it is Jay-Z’s work, featuring Alicia Keys, not the other way around. The only reason why she was able to make her own rendition is because of Jay-Z. You shouldn’t discredit him as an artist.

    Finally, Justin’s soft sales are due to the artist he has allowed himself to become today. No one is checking for him anymore. Like it or not, that’s the reality of it.

  16. Justin Timberlakes audience is not aware of Jayz or any other mc so they don’t really know what they are talking about, to them he is just a rapper even though on this track he is talking about love. This backfires happens when you mix different audiences. I garuntee this track will get play on Hip Hop and R&B stations.

  17. The beginning was perfect then the song got too lovey dovey I think the whole song could have been the shit if he had a hot beat after the beginning then it would have been a hit !!!!

  18. this song is still new, if anything two weeks old. It has a very mature sound that a lot of people are not used to now a days and that will change very soon, Ill give this track 2 more weeks or so for it to be “popular” i dont know if anybody else sense the Michael Jackson vibe from this song. Loved the chopped and screw session in the beginning and Jay Z wordplay was not to disappoint. you guys are going to end up buying the album anyways. Only thing left is the video as you guys know the video can actually make the song and no not the lyric video he has out now.

  19. Uuuuummm Justin who??? He’s been gone for 6 years!!! Enough said. That long of an absence can hurt anyone’s career. He is very fortunate to get Jay on a track because he’s (Jay-z) is still relevant. If you are truly a JT fan then you would buy his song regardless just to support him. Give the man a break, he’s been gone for a LONG time. Kudos to JT!

  20. Regardless if JT is in his early 30’s, he is so talented and amazing he will surprise everyone regardless of this single with the most overrated rapper of all time. JT will show everyone he is the next Elvis whenhe does his live performances, He is the man, a total Stud!

  21. He would have been better working with T.I atleast he have a hit record T.i is a better Artist then anybody i know in this business who can make anybody a hit in this day in time

  22. The only thing good on the record was Jay. Justin’s time has passed. Happens to all of them. He is older and can’t do the same music now. And most importantly…it is the Usher Syndrome. A married JT won’t sell…period.

  23. This is the silliest group of white people I’ve witnessed all week. Jay-Z made the song suck???? Really? He’s sold more records than Timberlake, he generates way moer interest than Timberlake, He has more number on albums than anyone on the planet with the exception of the Beatles, and he is almost a billionaire. What planet are you idiots from?? Oh, by the way…to the writer of this article, you know, the Jay Hova hater….Jay-Z’s Empire State Of Mind single is the best selling single of all time. Alicia’s Key’s version was a flop. Stop the hate because I could go all day speaking lame white artists.

  24. The problem is Timberlake using Timbaland…also, Bruno Mars rules radio…the People want to hear Bruno, not Timberlake…the itunes position of Bruno’s 6 week number 1 Locked Out Of Heaven and the week old radio release of When I Was Your Man (no video or hype) tell the whole story…they are both in the top 10..When I Was Your Man will be Bruno’s 2nd number 1 of his 2nd ablum…Timberlake better bring something that makes folk love his tracks like they do Bruno’s…..Folks don’t like Suit And Tie…all its hope is on Hype, Payola, the Timberlake name, etc…This will change if Timberlake puts out a Great Song….

  25. J & Bey… “Bottom feeders”??? On some real shit nobody on here could put nothing like this together because you’re to busy bloggin, and hiding behind ya keyboards! Try doing something with ya selfs other then taken shots at people who you know deep down inside you want to be like! lol! Regardless if you like it, or not it’s creative work… Try it sometimes! Bloggers get no respect! #YZZO

  26. Jay Z is the best part of the song…..period!!!! JT should have come way better than that after being gone for 6 years. People never seem to amaze me, instead of just saying it was a bad song it’s much easier to put the blame on the featured artist. What about the person who wrote the stupid song to begin with????

  27. I’m not a huge Jay-Z fan, but I don’t think he’s to blame for the lack of sales. Putting him on the track helped JT open up to a broader audience. Its a catchy song, but I don’t think its COMEBACK material. More like “Hey, remember when I brought sexy back? Yeah, good times.”

  28. i’m gonna agree w/ the previous jeremy..this song didn’t need him..jay-z is irrelevant amongst the urban community that pays attn to hip-hop (14y.o.-24y.o.)..u think that the majority white listeners in that age group are interestd in hearing hov??its like the nj nets having jayz on their ownership board, all in effort to grab lebron james during his free agency,,,thinking that jayz’s presence as token minority owner would be enough to bring him in (nope, sorry russian owner)..JT’s pple misfire the same way on having a rapper that hasnt truly been relevant amongst true listeners in YEARS…

  29. Jay Z rap is awful. Justin needs to take Jay off the track and eliminate the slowed down part of the track. Then remix it and put a hot rapper like Drake, Wayne, Future, R .Ross or, French Montana on that track. HIT!!!!!

  30. The track is dope its like two different sophisticate worlds coming together and remember Justin always has a sund ahead of its time hes linkedthe up eithI timberland hands downon top 5of producers and how can a jay Z appearance ever hurt a record ??? Seriously y’all mu fuckas open your ears!

  31. What’s with all the Jay-Z hate? People don’t have respect for rappers who actually speak English these days……..of maybe people hate the super successful because they can’t match it.

  32. What a ridiculous article, Justin timberlake has ALWAYS featured a rapper on his first single, check every one of his last albums, Jay is not the problem, infact he’s the only thing saving that song. Fact is the song itself just isn’t that good which really is to be expected all things considered, to quote Jay Z “music is like sport to be great you have to keep practicing” Justin has been out of the game so long it’s no surprise he’s a bit rusty

    But hey who cares about that when you can just blame the black guy

  33. All y’all are just haters. Timber lake has been out of the spot light. He’s old news no point in trying to make a comeback. Jay z probably should have been left off but his other work is bringing in plenty money

  34. Looks like there’s one hater of jay and bey that keeps writing the same comment in different ways. Lol. Beyonce has nothing to do with this and you still mention her. You haters are better than fans at keeping celebs relevant…The failure of the song has nothing to do with Jay z, stop using him as a scapegoat. Although I don’t think someone like Justin needs Jay on a song; Justin can sell a song just fine. Why the song is doing so badly is because it sucks!!!!! It just doesn’t sound good. It’s very slow and sounds dated. Every person I know doesn’t like the song becuz it just doesn’t sounds so average. It’s ok, bland, boring, nothing to get excited about.

  35. It’s a lot of jealous people on here hating on Jay Z,must be a racial thing…Justin Timberlake is decent but nowhere near on the level as Jay Z, Jay is still hot Timbrlake is not he should stick to acting….

  36. Jay Z is a modern day slave owner. Exploits everything.Leaches on the back of talent. I don’t see the industry and artists attraction to him. Justin, what were you thinking having him involved?

  37. what mutant wrote this hatchet job on Jay Z? Timberlake’s mom?

    Jay Z’s fault?
    JT’s “too old”?
    Jay Z, who has 11 #1 albums, is in his 40’s and still gets spins on Z100 as well as the hip hop stations.
    So there goes that asinine allegation

    Timberlake is David Cassidy with a better haircut & production
    He was a young Michael Bolton
    “Blue-eye soul” for proms

    Now he’s older & the appeal is over cause he’s too old for that teeny-bopper scene but he doesn’t have the chops to be taken seriously by an older audience.

    Stick to making bad movies & have fun with your beautiful wife

  38. Don’t throw the blame on Jay-Z. The song is just bad. His sales ploy backfired (putting the top rapper on his single) so he should take responsibility for it and accept that it was a bad choice. Hopefully the rest of the album is better than this track!

  39. So the song sucks! The writing is lame and unauthentic. I love Justin but he needs some sort of bass somewhere in that song. It’s way to airy and weak. He sings with out passion on this track almost as if he just threw something together. I love Jay Z but I felt like he was not a good fit for the track at all. I wonder if Jay even listened to the song before he put his rap on it because he has way too much swag for it. This goes to show that you can’t just throw the hottest rapper alive on a track and think that he will make it a hit.
    Not even Jay could make this a hit! So Sad

  40. i liked j years ago but i dont get is y hes not up on stage with obama saying guns need banned. wait his first 3 records sang about toatin guns around marcy projects.ill never buy or play his songs again and i used to like him but my principles are just more important.

  41. It reminds me of Rebecca Black’s song. “Hey, let’s put in a black rapper because he is black and everyone loves listening to black rappers.” I kinda liked the song except for JZ’s crap and the first 30 seconds of the song.

  42. answer: timberlake is not as popular as he was 6 years ago…the song is awful…& the jay-z verse while surprisingly mediocre is the only thing keeping it on life support

  43. Of course he’s dated. The cyclical nature of pop culture has accelerated over the past 5-10 years. I think Beiber is old now. It’s all about One Direction, basically.


  45. EXACTLY WHAT I THINK…the song has a good beat and a good melody…THEN JayZ comes in with that horrible rap. Hope they release a version WITHOUT the rap part. I will then purchase it

  46. This article lacks intuition.

    The problem with this new Timberlake single is that it just isn’t good songwriting. On top of that it’s poorly mixed. It’s a warm up single at best.

    31 is not ancient in any music market right now. Are you serious, Showbiz411?





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