Hear Pharrell's Optimistic 'Girl' Bonus Track 'Smile' - Rolling Stone
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Hear Pharrell’s Optimistic ‘Girl’ Bonus Track ‘Smile’

The song appears on Japanese editions of the album

Pharrell Williams performsPharrell Williams performs

Pharrell Williams performs in Los Angeles.

Kevin Winter/Getty Images for NARAS

Pharrell Williams’ Japanese fans who bought the rapper and singer’s latest album, Girl, got a treat in the form of a buoyant, optimistic bonus track, “Smile,” which has just made its way online. Nearly as hypnotic as the singer’s ubiquitous “Happy,” the R&B pop number “Smile” boasts a catchy piano hook, a clicky hip-hop beat and, of course, Pharrell’s golden vocal cords singing about how happy he is to be a dad and proclaiming that he doesn’t have any fear, “because ‘F.E.A.R.’ stands for ‘false evidence of appearing real.'”

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Pharrell has been in a heady mood lately. Last week, the pop star posted a “social book,” Inspiration, online and asked his fans to guess which words were missing from its pages. Those who are able to divine the pop star’s Mad Libs proclivities get credit in the book when it gets a physical printing.

He has also revealed the origins of “Happy,” saying that Cee Lo Green had originally wanted to record the song. “He sounded amazing on it,” Pharrell told Howard Stern. But ultimately some unnamed Wizard of Oz–like music-industry string-pullers decided that the track would not belong to Cee Lo. “He burns my version,” Pharrell said. “But. . . how do I say this diplomatically? The powers that be at the time did not see it fit for him. Some folks on his team just felt that the priority should be on [Cee Lo’s] album at the time [2012’s Cee Lo’s Magic Moment], so they elected not to do that song.”

In This Article: Pharrell, Pharrell Williams


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