A while back, when Cee Lo’s “F-ck You” was first taking off, Vulture noted the track’s surprising credited co-writer: Bruno Mars, the young upstart behind harmless, airy jams from B.o.B and Travie McCoy (and, now, his own massively successful saccharine solo single, “Just the Way You Are.”). Sensibly, Cee-Lo — who has always written his own stuff, and has even farmed out chart-toppers to the likes of the Pussycat Dolls — is a bit salty about the population at large thinking his biggest solo single to date was gifted to him by a songwriting mercenary. Here’s how he explains the track’s creation in a new interview with the Guardian:
It wouldn’t work for just anyone … Some people have misconstrued Bruno’s contribution as him writing the song for me. If he knew the song was gonna be a big hit, he’d-a wrote it for himself! Nobody else would’ve got away with it but me. Look at me! I’m not ideal image-wise, I don’t think. I get a chance to stand out there and redefine what’s doable. I am a fuck you — that’s why the song works.
“I am a fuck you” — hard to argue with that. The rest of the Guardian piece is worth a read as well, most notably for Cee-Lo’s refreshing candor when it comes to the explicitly, ruthlessly commercial calculations going into the production of his upcoming third solo album.
With Lady Killer, I had to take all those other things into consideration, because I wanna be a professional, but the growing pains hurt a bit. I’m not allowed to be as liberal as I would like to be, you know? I’d do a lot more damage if I could! So, I know I shouldn’t say this, but I’ve got to: personally, I like [recent free mix tape] Stray Bullets better. But I hope you don’t think I’m insulting Lady Killer — I’m not. They’re all still pretty great songs.
Pretty great! (By the way, if you are now inclined to, you can download Stray Bullets here.)
Cee Lo Green: ‘I’d do a lot more damage if I could’ [Guardian UK]