The First Night – Monica | Top 40 Chart Performance, Story and Song Meaning

Chart Performance: Pop (#1 for 5 weeks) & R&B (#1 for 6 weeks); 1998

Story Behind The Song By Ed Osborne

In 1995 Monica joined the short list of female artists, such as 1960’s sensation Brenda Lee, who were bona fide stars while still in their teens. Both Brenda and Monica were born in Georgia (although 36 years apart), and both girls were professional performers before they were ten. Monica spent her formative years singing with Charles Thompson and The Majestics gospel choir, and was discovered at an Atlanta talent show- case when she was 12. By the time Monica reached “Sweet 16” she already had three consecutive Top 10 Pop/R&B singles, including a double-sided hit. At 17, her duet with Brandy, This Boy Is Mine, gave Monica her first pop #1, and The First Night became her second just three weeks shy of her 18th birthday, for a total of six Top 10’s to date. For you record keepers out there, Brenda Lee managed 11 Top 10’s before her 18th birthday.

This content and all Song Meaning articles were created and written by Top 40 Contributing Editor Ed Osborne. © 2023 Ed Osborne. All Rights Reserved. In addition to these song meaning articles, Ed has written our “Year in Music 1960s-1990s” articles.

Produced by:

  • Jermaine Dupri

Lyrics Written by:

  • Jermaine Dupri
  • Pam Sawyer
  • Marilyn McLeod
  • Tamara Savage