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#TIL: Pharrell’s “Happy” Was Almost a CeeLo Green Song

Pharrell Williams hit “Happy” was very close to being a CeeLo Green song.

by Sean Smith

In yesterday’s #tbt post here on, I talked a bit about Pharrell Williams becoming a judge on NBC’s The Voice this season. As I mentioned before, I really like the additions of Pharrell and Gwen Stefani as judges this season, and I’m especially looking forward to seeing how Pharrell takes his deep production knowledge and uses it to his team’s advantage as the show progresses.

But when I was doing a bit of research on Pharrell the other night I came across a pretty cool fact. In an interview on The Howard Stern Show back in late April of this year, Pharrell told Stern that his worldwide hit “Happy” was originally going to be sung by CeeLo Green. In fact, Pharrell went on to say that CeeLo actually even recorded his version of the song. So why did “Happy” end up as a Pharrell song rather than a CeeLo song? Pharrell answered by saying:

“How do I say this diplomatically? The powers that be, at the time, did not see it fit for him…. He wanted to do it. But I think some folks on his team just felt that the priority should have been on (his) album at the time (2012’s “CeeLo’s Magic Moment”), so they elected not to do (“Happy”).” 

If you are a Pharrell Williams fan, and have an hour to kill, you can check out the audio here.

If you have some musical knowledge that you think would make for a good #TIL post, share it with us on Twitter (@Clizbeats) or on our Facebook page. If we like it, you may just see it posted here in the coming weeks with the credit that you deserve.