|Single by Future featuring Kanye West|
|from the album Honest|
|Released||April 8, 2014|
|Label||A1 Recordings, Freebandz, Epic Records|
|Writer(s)||Theron Thomas, Nayvadius Wilburn, Timothy Thomas, Leland Wayne, Kanye West, Nick Seely|
|Producer(s)||Metro Boomin & Rock City|
|Future singles chronology|
"I Won" is a song by American hip hop recording artist Future. The song was released on April 8, 2014 as the fifth single from his second studio album, Honest (2014). "I Won" was produced by Metro Boomin and features a guest appearance from fellow American rapper Kanye West. The song features Future and Kanye West rapping about their respective fiancées, Ciara and Kim Kardashian, who they see as their "trophy wives". Following its release, "I Won" peaked at number 98 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart.
"I Won" by Future was produced by Metro Boomin and features a guest appearance from fellow American rapper Kanye West. The song features Future and Kanye West rapping about their respective fiancées, Ciara and Kim Kardashian. Overall the song is about the rapper's fiancées being their trophy wives. Future takes control of the song's first part, performing romantic and sexual bars through a massive layer of auto-tune.
West starts his verse by mentioning his daughter North West saying, "You grew up on J. Lo, Timberlands by Manolo now, till one day I put an angel in your ultra sound." Later in his verse West cleverly insults Kardashian's exes Reggie Bush and Kris Humphries simultaneously with the line, "I made it over NBA, NFL players so every time I score it’s like the Super Bowl". As ever, West appears fully aware of the reaction he’s bound to receive when he says "If people don’t hate then it won’t be right." Kanye West also makes reference to his infamous music video for his single "Bound 2" and Kardashian's sisters and mother. The latter reference closing his part of the song with West saying, "You could look at Kylie, Kendall, Kourtney and Khloe, All your mama ever made was trophies, right?", praising Kim and all her sisters as beautiful.
In an April 2014 interview with Pitchfork, Future spoke of the song saying, ""I Won" is not a love song. It's just me uplifting women in general. I'm giving women the power to treat themselves as a trophy—to show that and know it in yourself and be confident—because when they do that, whoever they're with is winning. I'm not teaching motherfuckers how to love."
To promote the song, Future released an online game to go with the song on May 7, 2014. The concept of the game is to click on either Future or Kanye West to make them throw gold chains at the women walking across the beach in their view. If the player hits the women with the chain they become trophies similar to the single cover. Upon its release, the video was criticized by writers for major publications as sexist. Gaby Whitehill of Gigwise stated, "'I Won' saw Future and Kanye boast about how attractive their respective spouses - Ciara and Kim Kardashian - are, calling them "trophies". Now, you too can turn grown adult women into inanimate objects with the 'I Won' video game! To gain points, carelessly toss chains at bikini-clad women as they saunter across the beach, and turn them into a gold cup. Brilliant. Play it below, if you really hate yourself/women that much." Lauren Duca of Huffington Post said, "That warranted a conversation about an intersectional understanding of marriage. The horrifyingly sexist video game that Future released this week as a companion to the song? That really only warrants a conversation about the next available time you can take a shower."
"I Won" sold 19,276 copies during its debut sales week in the United States according to Nielsen Soundscan, which ended on April 13, 2014. It would be the highest debut on the Billboard Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart that week.
The music video for "I Won" was filmed on a picturesque California beach and was directed by Hype Williams in March 2014. Speaking of the video with Hot 97 later that month, Future said, "It’s incredible. We on the water, we on the beach, and it’s beautiful women. We made [them] look like the old Hype Williams video girls, when video girls were stars back then." The clip was released on April 17, 2014. In the black-and-white video West and Future "serenade a slew of curvaceous models striking sexy poses on a private beach." Noticeably, both Ciara and Kim Kardashian do not appear in the music video.
|Chart (2014)|| Peak|
|Belgium Urban (Ultratop Flanders)||34|
|UK Singles (The Official Charts Company)||169|
|UK R&B (Official Charts Company)||28|
|US Billboard Hot 100||98|
|US Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs (Billboard)||26|
|US Hot Rap Songs (Billboard)||17|
|United States (RIAA)||Gold||500,000^|
*sales figures based on certification alone
|United States||April 8, 2014||Digital download||A1 Recordings, Freebandz, Epic Records|
|April 14, 2014||Mainstream urban radio|
|United Kingdom||April 21, 2014||Urban contemporary radio|
|United States||July 1, 2014||Rhythmic contemporary radio|
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