That was the first thing that came into my mind when I read the topic´s title.Garf69 wrote:Duffy - Well Well Well ?
I think people are confusing "Single That Killed Someone´s Career" with "flop singles from big popstars".
Madonna´s, Mariah´s, and Whitney´s careers where not exactly dead (altough the latter is literally dead now).
And just because an album flopped, it doesn´t mean it was the single´s fault.
For example, Dido´s 3rd album flopped big time, but I think it´s not because of the single. It has everything to do with her coming back after 5 years without any promotion (except 3 tv shows in the USA), no touring, and a very bad promotional strategy. She still had quite a big fanbase (which shows with the fact the album still sold 1 million worldwide, and shipped 1.5 million, and the album peaking in the Top 10 in almost every country, and even #1 in a few countries...). However, "Don´t Believe In Love" has never even been officially sent to US radio stations. It has never debuted on music channels (it had a music video which was shot AFTER the song was already flopping). You might think VH1 would be eager to play it, since to this day they still feature Dido among their "Top 100 females of all time". So, to blame it all on the single, is quite unfair. Any other single wouldn´t do miracles for her.
As for Emma Bunton - her career was never actually on fire, was it? If we´re going to mention solo spices, I think Geri´s Desire is a better example. She was quite a respectable hitmaker before that (every single off her first 2 albums went Top 10 and she had 4 solo number ones), but that song was so bad it managed to miss the Top 20, despite being a lead single from a comeback album. The album itself debuted at #41 and then left the charts, which probably destroyed the label´s hopes since there was no followup single. Had she released a more catchy tune she would get a Top 10 single and album, and would have the chance to release a followup.
However, there are singles that can really put the public off of someone, at least for one album era. I believe Duffy´s Well Well Well is the biggest example, and I believe Madonna´s GAYL will be the same. Never heard anything else that bad from her.