Single Review: Celine Dion “I Drove All Night”

I Drove All Night
Album: One Heart
Year: 2003

In 2003, Celion Dion endorsed Daimler-Chrysler. She did advertisements for their cars, featuring her driving them with her new single, “I Drove All Night” promoting it. According to autoworld.com, the deal also included “personal appearances by Ms. Dion, special consumer promotions, dealer tie-ins, interactive communications, owner communications, retail initiatives, television programming and recording tie-ins.” The strategy was to target rich, young people.
So would that be rich, young people who think Michael Bolton and Cher is relevant too?

But alas, it failed. In 2004, it was announced that Chrysler minimized Celine Dion’s role. David Barnas, Chrysler’s spokesman told the AP that “we’re moving in an exciting new direction.” A direction that involves distancing themselves as far away from Celine Dion as
possible.

In Celine Dion’s version, “I Drove All Night” is dance-pop lite. It doesn’t move too slow as not to alienate the younger listeners, but then it also doesn’t move too fast to keep the older audience interested. Like driving, Dion goes from zero to scream in under 5 seconds with her voice. From the first note, she is wailing. In this version, the words and intrepretation are not important. The focus is on Dion’s voice and how loud she can go.

It seems as though Dion heard Lauper’s version and thought “Ha! I could outsing her note for note.” It’s like a competition, which Dion is the only competitor. For Dion, her version is arrogant and garish, given the emphasis placed on her voice. The lover is simply a booty call, considering there isn’t any hint of wanting from her at all. As though it were a chore, she sings in the first verse “Maybe I should have called you first, but I was dying to get to you/I was dreaming while I drove the long, straight road ahead.” The pre-chorus is one, extended note that seems to go on far longer than all of the Lord of the Rings movies combined.

In the chorus, she’s cold and conceited as she sings “woke up from your sleep to make love to you/is that all right/I drove all night.” In the second verse, Dion adds a word to the song. Instead of singing “no matter where I go I hear the beating of our heart,” it’s “our one heart.” The addition is redudant. It’s already implied that they have one heart. Like the original, the chorus is sung again twice which ends the single.

The single is intended to be a commercial and it sounds like one. The sole purpose of hearing this is to sell, sell, sell.

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