|“Rumour Has It”|
|Single by Adele|
from the album 21
|Released||November 5, 2011 (UK) • March 1, 2012 (US)|
|Recorded||2010; Serenity Sound (Hollywood, California)|
|Genre||Pop, jazz, blues, soul|
|Writer(s)||Adele Adkins, Ryan Tedder|
|Adele singles chronology|
|← Previous||Next →|
|"Set Fire to the Rain"||"Turning Tables"|
|21 track listing|
|← Previous||Next →|
|"Rolling in the Deep"||"Turning Tables"|
"Rumour Has It" is a song by the English singer-songwriter Adele and the final single from her second studio album, 21. The song was written by Adele and Ryan Tedder while the production was handled by Tedder. Adele revealed that the song was not inspired by the media but it was aimed at her friends who believed things they heard about her, specifically rumors involving her breakup with her boyfriend. Musically, "Rumour Has It" contains jazz, blues, and pop elements accompanied by a stomp beat and piano. It was released as the fourth and final single from 21 in the United States. It was originally planned to be the fourth track on the album rather than the second.
The song received generally positive reviews from critics who praised Adele's voice and the song's "catchiness." Even without having been released as a single, the song charted on the Billboard Hot 100 at number 39 and topped the Triple A chart. In the Netherlands, the record was released as the fourth single of the album, after "Rolling in the Deep," "Set Fire to the Rain," and "Someone Like You." By February 2013, The track has received a 2x Platinum certification by the RIAA for sales exceeding 2,000,000 units in the US.
- 1 Background
- 2 Composition
- 3 Reception
- 4 Cancelled music video
- 5 Live performances and cover versions
- 6 Cover art
- 7 Charts
- 8 Release history
- 9 Credits
- 10 Lyrics
- 11 References and notes
"Rumour Has It" was written by Adele and Ryan Tedder and produced by Tedder. Talking about the collaboration with Tedder on "Rumour Has It," Adele revealed: "You can really tell when you hear a Ryan Tedder song, which I liked, but I wanted to come out with something that would surprise everyone when it was us two put together, so we came out with this sort of bluesy-pop stomping song really." Adele explained that the song was not inspired by the media, but was aimed at her own friends, who frequently spread rumors about her break-up with her boyfriend: "People might think it's about blogs and magazines and papers, but it's not. It's about my own friends believing stuff that they hear about me, which is pretty mortifying really." Adele herself compared the song to "Rolling in the Deep" on several occasions, describing the two as having a similar vibe and admitting that she was tired of being "bitchy" on both tracks. She further stated that "Rumour Has It" and "Rolling in the Deep" were lyrically opposite of "Someone Like You," which she wrote having grown tired of "being such a bitch" on the former two songs.
Adele later told the English newspaper The Sun about the inspiration for this tune:
|“||I'd been away for about 18 months, going straight from the UK to America. When I go back I went for lunch with some of my girlfriends and one of them said, 'I heard you're going out with blah blah.' I was like, 'Who? I've never even heard of that person? I've never even met them.' I just thought it was funny. I had to set the record straight with my own girlfriends who know and love me.||”|
Ryan Tedder confirmed that prior to the release of "Rumour Has It," country singer Faith Hill had expressed interest in covering the song for her upcoming album, Illusion. Tedder insisted that the song was not a demo and therefore could not be used, resulting in Hill's decision to cover "Come Home" by Tedder's band, OneRepublic, instead.
On October 28, 2011, during an interview with Billboard, Columbia Records revealed that "Rumour Has It" would be released as the third single from the album and serviced to pop and adult contemporary radio. However, the release of the song was scrapped and "Set Fire to the Rain" was instead released as the third US single on November 21, 2011. A spokesperson for Columbia, Pete Cosenza stated: "Our research found more programmer preference for 'Set Fire to the Rain.' [...] Both 'Rumour' and 'Fire' came back strong, but 'Fire' was a bit stronger. [...] It's a better plan to go with 'Fire' over 'Rumour' at pop and adult radio."
After the 2012 Grammy Awards, "Rumour Has It" was confirmed as the fourth single from 21 in the United States. Adele collaborator Ryan Tedder, who co-wrote the song with Adele and produced it, revealed the news on the Grammy red carpet on February 12: "I found out three days ago that I have the next single. I'm very excited about it."
"Rumour Has It" is a percussion-driven jazz number which contains blues elements while Adele described as a "bluesy pop stomping song." Ian Walker of AbsolutePunk wrote that the song "details the complexity that would obviously come with being a part of multiple love triangles." He noted that, in the stripped-down piano bridge, Adele's vocals carry a "twinge of sweetness" before "being rushed away by the infectious chorus once more." Noel Murray of The A.V. Club found a "persuasive backbeat" and soul comparing the song to Adele's earlier material during her first studio album 19 (2008) due to their similar instrumentation consisting of piano and guitars. Ian Wade of BBC Online wrote that the song "channels the avenging rock'n'roll soul of Wanda Jackson." Tom Townshend of MSN Music found a "similar primal stomp" to "Rolling in the Deep" (2011) which made a "pacey, hypnotic, funk, interrupted by sublime symphonic blues." According to the sheet music published by Universal Music Publishing Group at the website Musicnotes.com, "Rumour Has It" is written in the key of D Minor. It is set in a time signature of common time with an up-tempo beat of 126 beats per minute. It incorporates pop, adult alternative, pop rock and neo soul elements while Adele's vocal ranges from the note of D3 to the note of B♭4.
Ian Walker of AbsolutePunk commented that in "Rumour Has It," Adele is "equal parts demeaning and seductive, flitting between emotional poles with an impressive elegance that's all too rare in today's music scene." While reviewing 21, AllMusic's Matt Collar concluded that "Rumour Has It" and "He Won't Go" are "terrifically catchy, booty-shaking numbers, and exactly the kind of songs you want and expect from Adele." Noel Murray of The A.V. Club wrote that the song was "overpowering," while Leah Greenblatt of Entertainment Weekly praised Adele's voice comparing it with The Shangri-Las. Chris Parkin of NME called it "a swamp song so perfectly shadowy David Lynch might be fond of it." Jon Caramanica of The New York Times found "hollow counterpoint vocals, and a daringly morbid bridge that jerks away from the song’s rhythm, before once again acceding to it." Matthew Cole of Slant Magazine concluded that when Adele sings an adventurous arrangement like the "spooky Tin Pan Alley blues" on "Rumour Has It," she "sounds every bit the phenomenon the press has made her out to be." Joanne Dorken of MTV UK said that the song is a "bluesy/soul anthem [which] shows a more sassy side to Adele. With its banging drums, infectious beats and cheeky lyrics, you can't help but tap your feet to this up-tempo number from Miss Adkins." PopMatters' Jer Fairall called "Rumour Has It" a "booming John Barry homage."
A writer of URB compared Adele's voice with a "'40s, piano-vixen lounge singer." John Murphy of musicOMH wrote that "Rumour Has It has more sass, a brilliant blues/soul anthem with more fantastic drumming and a cute lyrical twist at the end." While reviewing 21, Gary McGinley of No Ripcord called the song a "potential single" from the album, while Ian Wade of BBC Online called it a "literally banging" song. Jim Farber of Daily News wrote that Adele "mined a bayou stomp" the catchy "Rumour Has It." Allison Stewart of The Washington Post wrote that "'Rumour Has It' is set in a fictional universe where Dusty Springfield fronts The Ronettes." Sputnikmusic's Joseph Viney chose the song as the best on the album, praising its "pounding drums, sweet vocal harmonies and a tale of love both won and lost with some alacrity." Nima Baniamer of Contactmusic.com gave a positive review of the song in its review of the album; he further wrote that the song "exemplifies" Adele's ability to write "truly brilliant music."
Despite the song's critical success, it was the lowest-charting international single from the album, peaking at #16 on the US Billboard Hot 100 (in contrast to the album's previous three number-one singles).
"Rumour Has It" charted on various formats, including the Rock Songs chart peaking at number 28 and the Triple A chart, where it reached the top position for one week in August 2011. It has also charted on the Billboard Hot 100 at number 96 for the week ending August 3, 2011. As of January 2013, "Rumour Has It" sold 2 million copies in the United States, according to Nielsen SoundScan, and should be noted that the song sold 1 million copies before its single release. The track already has a history on the singles chart. "Rumour Has It" reached No. 60 on the Hot 100 in December, fueled largely by the Glee cast's exposure of the song. The same week, the TV troupe bowed at No. 11 with its mash-up of the song and Adele's "Someone Like You."
The song reached a peak of 16 for three weeks in a row on the Billboard Hot 100. Despite it charting before a single release, it is still the lowest charting single from the album (not including "Turning Tables," which did not have an international release).
Cancelled music video
A music video for the single was hinted at by Adele's manager, Jonathan Dickins, who stated:
|“||We're looking into maybe doing an official video, looking at somebody. It's the fourth and last single from this record.||”|
It was rumored that the official video for the song would be the live performance of the song from Live at the Royal Albert Hall, as this was the case with "Set Fire to the Rain" and "Turning Tables." However, due to time constraints as a result of Adele's pregnancy and recording of "Skyfall," the song did not receive a video. Consequently, "Rumour Has It" became the first of Adele's single to not have any music video.
Live performances and cover versions
Adele added "Rumour Has It" to the setlist of her Adele Live tour, and included it in both of the tour's live recordings, iTunes Festival: London 2011 and Live at the Royal Albert Hall. It was also performed during the Adele Live 2016 tour, which supported Adele's third album, 25.
"Rumour Has It" was used in several television shows, including: Grey's Anatomy ("This Is How We Do It"), The Lying Game ("Pilot"), Ringer ("That's What You Get For Trying to Kill Me"), and Pan Am ("Secrets and Lies").
American singer Jeremih covered the song during Billboard's Mashup Mondays. During an interview he said: "I know you probably haven't heard this type of sound from my voice, so I just wanted to touch it. And see what I could do with it. [...] The bridge is my favorite part. It showcased my vocals entirely, being so bare, just the keys and guitar. At first I was going to switch from keys to strings, but that was just too much." Jessica Letkemann of Billboard praised Jeremih's tenor and his "dusky-yet-feminine voice" saying that he was "centered on stripping the song's instrumentation down." During the cover, Jeremih made references to Vanilla Ice, David Bowie, and Freddie Mercury.
Amber Riley, Naya Rivera, and Heather Morris sang a mash-up of "Someone Like You" and "Rumour Has It" during Glee's episode "Mash Off" which aired on November 15, 2011. However, the cover was posted online on November 10. Jenna Mullins of E! Online praised the cover saying that it will "knock your socks right off" and a writer for OK! described it as "AMAZE-ing". Erica Futterman of Rolling Stone noted that the cover was "one of the greatest things the show has done [so far]." Similarly, Billboard's Raye Votta commented that the cover was "arguably the best performance 'Glee' has done since 'Don't Stop Believin'.'" Their version of the song peaked at number 11 on the Billboard Hot 100 while selling 160,000 digital downloads in its first week and became the fifth highest digital sales week by a Glee Cast single. In Canada, the song debuted on the Canadian Hot 100 at number 12, selling 14,000 downloads. The mash-up also peaked at number 35 on the UK Singles Chart, number 28 in Australia and number 19 on the Irish Singles Chart.
Katharine McPhee also covered the song on the TV series Smash. When asked about her performance of the song, she stated: "I’ve been obsessed with her record for like the last year, much like the rest of the world. It was originally in the script and then it got cut out and I actually had to fight for it.”
Following reports that "Rumour Has It" would be released as a single from 21, several fan-made covers were uploaded to the Internet and used on various websites as official artwork. However, Columbia Records released the single's official artwork in late 2011 (as it was released in the UK months before its international single release).
The single artwork is a cropped image taken from Adele's Live at the Royal Albert Hall DVD/CD booklet. It was shot by Lauren Dukoff.
|Austria (Ö3 Austria Top 40)||26|
|Belgium (Ultratop 50 Flanders)||46|
|Belgium (Ultratip Wallonia)||7|
|Canada (Canadian Hot 100)||16|
|Germany (Media Control AG)||68|
|Hungary (Rádiós Top 40)||36|
|Israel (Media Forest)||1|
|Mexico (Billboard Mexican Airplay)||31|
|Netherlands (Dutch Top 40)||21|
|South Korea International Chart (GAON)||1|
|UK Singles (Official Charts Company)||85|
|US Billboard Hot 100||16|
|US Mainstream Top 40 (Billboard)||8|
|US Adult Top 40 (Billboard)||2|
|US Adult Contemporary (Billboard)||4|
|US Triple A (Billboard)||1|
|US Billboard Hot 100||64|
|Canada (Music Canada)||2× Platinum||160,000^|
|United States (RIAA)||2× Platinum||2,000,000*|
*sales figures based on certification alone
|United Kingdom||5 November 2011||Mainstream radio|
|United States||1 March 2012||Mainstream radio|
- Adele – songwriting, lead vocals, backing vocals
- Ryan Tedder – songwriting, producer, engineer, programmer, arrangement, acoustic guitar, bass, piano, organ, drums, strings (arrangement)
- Jerrod Bettis – drums, acoustic guitar
- Tom Elmhirst – mixer
- Dan Parry – mixing assistant, recording (additional vocals)
References and notes
- Adele: The Biography