|Single by TLC|
|from the album CrazySexyCool|
|Released||October 31, 1994|
|Format||CD single, 12-inch single|
|TLC singles chronology|
"Creep" is the lead single by American girl group TLC from their second album, CrazySexyCool. The song became their first #1 on the Billboard Hot 100, and remained there for four weeks. It was nominated for two Grammy Awards at the 1996 Grammy Awards, winning the Grammy Award for Best R&B Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocals. It was the third most successful single of 1995, finishing behind their other successful hit, "Waterfalls", on the 1995 Billboard Year-End Hot 100 Charts.
Its lyrics are taken from the perspective of a woman who is aware of her man's infidelity and, in turn, cheats on him in an effort to appease her need for affection. Lead vocals are performed by TLC member Tionne "T-Boz" Watkins.
In the documentary The Last Days of Left Eye, TLC member Lisa "Left Eye" Lopes said she was against the release of "Creep" as a single, and threatened to wear black tape over her mouth in the music video. She thought that when a woman finds out that her man is cheating on her, the girl should leave him rather than cheat as well.
There were three music videos made for this song between June and August 1994, with the third video being released on September 16, 1994. The video features each girl individually in front of a color background wearing silky pajamas, though it was only Chilli who had two different pajamas that were gray and pink (one edited digitally), with T-Boz in blue and Left Eye in red. There are other scenes featuring T-Boz singing into a microphone with Omar Lopez, a previous dancer for Janet Jackson, with an open shirt, playing trumpet behind her and flirting with her. There are also black and white shots of them rehearsing dance moves, being silly and hanging out.
There are two versions of this video. One includes additional scenes of the dance rehearsals in favor of some pajama scenes. The second version also contains shots of a Chilli in pink pajamas.
- Original version
Filmed on location in Atlanta, GA at the beginning of June 1994, this was the original version of Creep. Not much is known about the original version, as it remains currently unreleased in any form, aside from this 1995 video of 3 different versions.
- Second version
The second version, shot on location in Los Angeles, CA during July 1994, follows a theatrical depiction of the lyrics. Chilli is in a diner with her boyfriend, T-Boz is in her apartment with her boyfriend and Left Eye is in her apartment on the phone talking to her boyfriend. Chilli later sneaks out of the diner to meet her lover, T-Boz sneaks out of the window when her boyfriend falls asleep to meet her lover, Left Eye's phone call is interrupted by T-Boz and Chilli so she hangs up the phone and leaves to be with Chilli and T-Boz.
A black cat is seen at each scenario, the cat later shows up the Chilli & T-Boz' boyfriends, symbolising the secret that the boyfriends do not know. Chilli returns to her boyfriend, who has fallen asleep at the diner and she wakes him up. T-Boz returns to her apartment just as her boyfriend wakes up. Lisa returns home and picks up the phone again. There are also scenes of the girls dancing with back up dancers in a parking lot.
T-Boz and a Chilli are both seen hanging out with their lovers while Left Eye is dancing to a boom box on her own. Left Eye is seen sporting a mask over her eyes with only her left eye highlighted. This version of the video went unreleased, in favour of the third and final version listed above, and at least two different edits of it were made. One is now available to watch online on director Lionel C. Martin Vimeo account, part of the other can be seen in TLC's 1995 documentary "CrazyVideoCool".
The song was nominated for two Grammys at the 1996 Grammy Awards: Best R&B Song (for songwriter Dallas Austin) and Best R&B Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocals, winning the latter. "Creep" was voted at number eight on the The Village Voice's Pazz & Jop critics' poll of 1995, with the group's previous single "Waterfalls" at number five on the same poll.
- DARP Mix*
- Jermaine's Jeep Mix
- Smooth Mix*
- Super Smooth Mix*
- Untouchables Mix*
- Maxx Remix
- Tin Tin Out Remix
Track listings and formats
The single was re-released in 1996 as "Creep '96"
"On Bended Knee" by Boyz II Men
|Billboard Hot 100 number-one single
January 28, 1995 – February 18, 1995
"Take a Bow" by Madonna
- List of number-one R&B singles of 1994 (U.S.)
- List of number-one R&B singles of 1995 (U.S.)
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- Video on YouTube
- Discogs.com, Creep (CD, Single), Retrieved on December 23, 2008
- Discogs.com, Creep (12"), Retrieved December 23, 2008
- Discogs.com, Creep (CD, Maxi), Retrieved on December 23, 2008
- Discogs.com, Creep '96 (Vinyl, 12", 33 ⅓ RPM), Retrieved on March 31, 2009
- Discogs.com, Creep '96 (CD, Single), Retrieved on March 31, 2009
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- Canada Top 50 Dance Tracks of 1995
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- Geoff Mayfield (December 25, 1999). 1999 The Year in Music Totally '90s: Diary of a Decade - The listing of Top Pop Albums of the '90s & Hot 100 Singles of the '90s. Billboard. Retrieved October 15, 2010.
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- Jeffrey, Don (20 January 1996) (1996-01-20). Best-selling Records of 1995. Billboard. Retrieved 2014-01-05.
- Jeffrey, Don (21 January 1995) (1995-01-21). Best-selling Records of 1994. Billboard. Retrieved 2014-01-05.