“Be Without You” by Mary J. Blige

“Be Without You” is centred on the singer’s resolution to be with her partner no matter what. MJB in this song, tells her lover that despite their frequent arguments, she only longs to be with him.

The singer reminisces on the challenges they’ve had and seems to be amazed at how they were able to get along so well in the beginning. She prides herself in the fact that their bond was not built overnight but took extra time and effort to put up a strong foundation. Though people brushed it off as a short phase, they now realize that their love was strong enough to last.

Mary J. Blige then encourages her lover not to feel down because they’ve been able to endure hard times. It appears her lover may have left home in the heat of an argument, thus she wants to wait for him to return because she can’t live without him. She reaffirms her lover’s stance in the relationship by asking if he would lie to her. She then concludes that they will both keep loving and staying faithful to each other through good and bad times.

Lyrics of "Be Without You"

Facts about “Be Without You”

  • Officially released as a single on the 15th of September 2005, “Be Without You” was also included on Blige’s 7th studio album entitled The Breakthrough.
  • The official video clip to this single was filmed in New York City. It was directed by American photographer and director, Matthew Rolston. It stars American movie icon, Terrence Howard, who played the role of the R&B singer’s boyfriend.
  • The clip of “Be Without You” was chosen as “Video of the Year” at the BET awards in 2006. It was also in contention for the award of “Best R&B Video” at the MTV Music Video Awards of 2006 but lost to “Check on It” by Beyoncé.
  • In 2006, this song performed excellently in the U.S., peaking at No.3 on the Billboard Hot 100 charts. It had a rather moderate performance in the UK, ranking at No.32.
  • The song, however, proved very popular in other regions, like Belgium, where it topped the charts. It also made it to No.6 and No.9 in the Netherlands and in New Zealand, respectively.
  • This single was interpolated in the 2016 song, “Bubble”, performed by the electronic musical group, Babyfather.
  • American hip-hop recording artist, Plies released “All Thee Above” in 2018, which has interpolated contents of “Be Without You” in it.

Who wrote “Be Without You”?

Jason Perry, Johntá Austin, and Mary J. Blige teamed up to compose this song. They were assisted by American record producer and songwriter Bryan-Michael Cox, who also received producer’s credit for the song.

Did Mary. J. Blige win a Grammy for “Be Without You”?

Yes. The tune was a multiple award winner and nominee at the Grammy Awards ceremony held in 2007. It won in the categories of “Best Female R&B Vocal Performance” and “Best R&B Song”.

Furthermore, it earned nominations for both “Song of the Year” and “Record of the Year”. However, it failed to secure both awards, losing the two categories to “Not Ready to Make Nice” by Dixie Chicks.

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