Britney Spears Wiki

"Don't Let Me Be the Last to Know" is a song by American recording artist Britney Spears, taken from her second studio album, Oops!... I Did It Again (2000). It was released on January 17, 2001, by Jive Records as the fourth single off the album. The teen-pop ballad speaks of a woman wanting to hear her boyfriend say that he needs loves her, and features a sound similar to David Bowie and Iggy Pop's song "China Girl" (1983).

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In 1999, Spears began work on her second studio album, Oops!... I Did It Again (2000), in Sweden and Switzerland. After meeting with Robert Lange in Switzerland, the singer started to record several songs for the album, including "Don't Let Me Be the Last to Know". After finishing the track, Spears revealed in an interview with Billboard that "with the first album, I didn't get to show my voice off. The songs were great, but they weren't very challenging. This song is incredible. It's going to surprise people in the best way." "Don't Let Me Be the Last to Know" was written and produced by Robert Lange, while additional lyrics were written by his then-wife Shania Twain and Keith Scott. Spears recorded her vocals for the song between November and December 1999 at Robert Lange's and Shania Twain's chateau in La-Tour-de Peilz, Switzerland, and it was later mixed by Nigel Green and programmed by Cory Churko, Kevin Churko and Richard Meyer. During a live concert at Hawaii, included on her second home video release Live and More! (2000), Spears claimed the song as one of her favourites on Oops!... I Did It Again. "Don't Let Me Be the Last to Know" was released on January 17, 2001 as the final single from the album.

"Don't Let Me Be the Last to Know" received mostly positive reviews from contemporary critics. Stephen Thomas Erlewine from Allmusic deemed it a "sweetly sentimental ballad" along with the other ballads on Oops!... I Did It Again, while a Rhapsody review considered them "perfectly constructed ballads". Stephanie McGrath of Jam! called the song "the best showcase of Spears' talents." A NME staff reviewer considered the track "absolutely frightening," with Tracy E. Hopkins of Barnes & Noble deeming "Don't Let Me Be the Last to Know" a "polished ballad", and praising Shania Twain for the songwriting. Billboard journalist Michael Paoletta noted that Spears may not have the vocal range of "colleagues Jessica Simpson and Christina Aguilera, but she does have an instantly recognizable style-and Oops!... indicates that she's developing a soulful edge and emotional depth that can't be conjured with a glass-shattering not", further commenting that this can be confirmed "on the hitworthy, Shania Twain-penned ballad 'Don't Let Me Be the Last to Know'." While reviewing 2011's Femme Fatale Tour, Jocelyn Vena of MTV considered the song, along with "Toxic", "old-school jams". The song was nominated at Nickelodeon Kids' Choice Awards in the category of "Best Song" in 2002.

"Don't Let Me Be the Last to Know" was not commercially available in the United States, and was sent only to mainstream radio on March 26, 2001, a week earlier than planned by the record label. Therefore, the track failed to appear on any major music chart in the United States. However, "Don't Let Me Be the Last to Know" was successful in Europe, debuting and peaking at number nine on the European Hot 100 Singles on the chart issue dated April 14, 2001. The song was also able to reach the top ten in Austria and Switzerland, while attaining top twenty positions in Belgium (Flanders), Finland, Ireland, Norway and Sweden. In the United Kingdom, it debuted and peaked at number 12 on April 7, 2001, exiting the UK Singles Chart after eight weeks. "Don't Let Me Be the Last to Know" achieved commercial success in Romania, where it reached number one and was the third best-selling single of 2001. Despite reaching number 14 in Denmark, the song was later certified Gold by International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI), for shipping over 5,000 units of the single in the county. The single was not released in Australia; instead, it was included as a bonus second disc of the limited edition of Oops!... I Did It Again released in the country.

Spears and her fictional boyfriend kissing each other in the music video. The scenes generated conflict between the singer, her mother Lynne Spears, and her real-life boyfriend at the time, Justin Timberlake.

The music video for "Don't Let Me Be the Last to Know" was directed by the American photographer Herb Ritts, and shot at Key Biscane in Miami, Florida in the last week of January 2001.

Spears was inspired by Janet Jackson's video for "Love Will Never Do (Without You)" to select Ritts as the video's director. "He did Janet Jackson—remember when she made her comeback?" she said, alluding to Janet's makeover, which was orchestrated by Ritts when he directed her "Love Will Never Do (Without You)" video.

According to Ritts, Spears "wanted to do something fresh. There was one outfit, no dancing, and that meant that it boiled down to her. She really had to act the song, and she was very impressive." He also revealed the setting of the video was built as "a funky beach shack" similar to Madonna's "Cherish" (1989) and Chris Isaak's "Wicked Game" (1989). "The story is, pretty much, Britney longing for him to tell her the words", said Ritts, who was impressed with the chemistry between the singer and her fictional boyfriend, played by French model Brice Durand. Spears' real-life boyfriend at the time Justin Timberlake, however, "was said to be miffed at Spears' kissing scenes with French model," according to Jennifer Vineyard of MTV. Spears mother, Lynne, also criticized considered the original music video for being too racy at the time, because it contained sexually explicit material. Parts of the video were edited before its release to the public.

The music video debuted at number one on MTV's TRL on March 2, 2001. The video begins with Spears and her boyfriend in a hammock. Cuts of her cuddling with her love interest beside a fire are also included. We also see her and her boyfriend on the seashore doing a love scene. Inside a tiki hut, Spears exclaims the words she wants her boyfriend to know. In the second half of the video, she is seen on a tree where her boyfriend reaches for her. There are also scenes where she is running on the beach and her boyfriend is chasing after her. Spears wears only a bikini top and a pair of cutoff shorts during the whole video. The music video was considered by Spears as "the funnest video I've ever done." An alternate footage of the video can be found on the DVD of Spears first compilation album Greatest Hits: My Prerogative. Vineyard considered the footage as the one that "makes the most use of Britney's body of work, with the spaceman from "Oops!... I Did It Again", an opening door from "My Prerogative" and one love interest from "Toxic" all making cameos".

[Verse 1]
My friends say you're so into me
And that you need me desperately
They say you say we're so complete
But I need to hear it straight from you
If you want me to believe it's true
I've been waiting for so long, it hurts
I wanna hear you say the words, please

Don't, don't let me be the last to know
Don't hold back, just let it go
I need to hear you say
You need me all the way
Oh, if you love me so
Don't let me be the last to know
Ooh, yeah
Ooh yeah, baby

[Verse 2]
Your body language says so much
Yeah, I feel it in the way you touch
But 'til you say the words, it's not enough
Come on and tell me you're in love, please

Don't, don't let me be the last to know
Don't hold back, just let it go
I need to hear you say
You need me all the way
Oh, if you love me so
Don't let me be the last to know

Come on, baby, come on darling, ooh yeah
Come on, let me be the one
Come on now, oh yeah
(I need to hear you say) I need to hear you say
(You love me all the way) You love me all the way
And I don't wanna wait another day
I wanna feel the way you feel
Oh, come on

Don't (don't), don't let me be the last to know
(Just let me be the one)
Don't (don't) hold back, just let it go (Just let it go)
(I need to hear you say) I need to hear you say
(You need me all the way) You need me all the way
So baby, if you love me
Don't let me be the last to know


  • Britney Spears – lead vocals
  • Robert Lange – songwriting, production
  • Shania Twain – songwriting
  • Keith Scott – songwriting
  • Kevin Churko – programming
  • Cory Churko – programming
  • Richard Meyer – programming
  • Michel Gallone – assistant recording, mix engineer
  • Chris Trevett – vocal engineer
  • Paul Oliveira – assistant vocal engineer