If I Ain’t Got You” is a song by American singerAlicia Keysfrom her secondstudio albumThe Diary of Alicia Keys(2003). Inspired by the 2001 death ofAaliyah, the terroristSeptember 11 attacks, and other different events in the world and in Keys’ life at that time, it is about “how material things don’t feed the soul.” Musically, the slowbluesypiano balladfeatures musiciansHugh McCrackenon guitar andSteve Jordanondrums.
Released in February 2004 as the album’s secondsingle, the song peaked at number four on the USBillboardHot 100and became Keys’ second consecutive R&B chart-topper, remaining atop of theHot R&B/Hip-Hop Songschart for six weeks. The song received two nominations at the2005 Grammy Awards, forSong of the YearandBest Female R&B Vocal Performance, winning in the latter.
A remix featuringUsher, aKanye WestRadio Mix, and aSpanish-languageversion featuringArturo Sandovalappear on the bonus CD of select international pressings ofThe Diary of Alicia Keys. The song is featured in the 2004PlayStation 2karaoke gameKaraoke Revolution Volume 3.
The single cover depicts Keys similarly to the subject ofMan Ray’s 1924 paintingLe Violon d’Ingres.
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