Potential Breakup Song

Potential Breakup Song

"Potential Breakup Song" (also known as "Potential Break Up Song" in Europe) is a song written by American teen pop duo Aly & AJ, and is the first single from their second studio album, Insomniatic (see 2007 in music). It was a very successful single in the summer and early fall of 2007, topping many video countdowns, and becoming Aly & AJ's most successful single to date. The track also was the second-most successful single by a Hollywood Records artist on the Hot 100 (standing behind Jesse McCartney's "Beautiful Soul", which reached #15) until then.

Original Aly & AJ version

Song information

There are two versions of this song that are on the radio. One is the official album version, which is played on mainstream radio, while a version with all of the violence and sexual innuendo removed is played on Radio Disney. In the chorus, in "gettin' me", the edited version adds a "to" between "gettin'" and "me". In the bridge, in "without me you're gonna die", "die" is replaced with "cry." Rumors have it that the song was written by AJ to express her feelings about her relationship at the time with Joe Jonas of the Jonas Brothers.

Much of the melody is modeled after Del Shannon's "Runaway".

Single release

The single was released by Radio Disney on May 12, 2007, containing the edited lyrics than the official version of the single. The song was made available for sale on the U.S. iTunes Store by June 26, 2007, along with a pre-order offer for their third studio album, Insomniatic.

The single was released on October 1, 2007 in the United Kingdom digitally, to follow a physical CD single release on the 8th. The album followed two weeks later on the October 22. The song served as the group's second UK single when it was released in October, after their debut UK single, "Chemicals React", failed to chart in the UK in May 2007. Also, the bonus track for the United States Wal-Mart collector's edition "Careful With Words" serves as the b-side of the CD single in the United Kingdom.

The UK CD single has been pulled out of the stores for unknown reasons, resulting into the fact it's only available digitally.

Track listings and formats

Digital download single 1

  1. "Potential Breakup Song" (Radio Disney Edit)

UK Single CD

  1. "Potential Break Up Song"
  2. "Careful With Words"
  3. 1 The Radio Disney version of the song contains different lyrics and is a bit shorter in length.

Music video

The music video, directed by Chris Applebaum, was shot on May 17 2007 and was premiered on TRL on June 18, 2007. It debuted at number ten on TRL on August 21 2007, and peaked at number 6 on August 29 2007. On July 18 2007, the video for the single reached number one on AOL Music's Top 10 Video Countdown.

The video shows Amanda Michalka and older sister Alyson Michalka singing "Potential Breakup Song" on a grey set dressed in black. At the end of the video, the black ink floating on the air stains a blank paper forming the group's new logo, as well as the sequence of letters XOXO. It also includes the web address to

In the Disney Channel version, the Radio Disney lyrics are used. The version also does not include the web address at the end. The music video is sometimes shown on Nickelodeon Asia.

"Potential Breakup Song" is the 79th most seen video in Youtube history, with over 20 million views.

Chart performance

"Potential Breakup Song" debuted at No. 77 in the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 on July 5 2007. The next week the song rose to No. 48, before reaching No. 23 in its third week on the chart. The song peaked at No. 17 becoming the group's best single performance on the Billboard Hot 100. One month after its big success, the song had already fallen down the chart up to No. 63 on August 23 2007. The week after, the song recovered for one last time and moved up the chart to No. 41 after Aly and AJ co-hosted MTV's TRL for one entire week. As of September 26 2007, the song has logged over 522,192 digital downloads in the United States, meaning that it has been rated Gold by the RIAA. In the UK the single was released to download on the 1st October and debuted in the UK Top 75 at #33. Following the physical release of the CD in the UK, the song managed to get to #22.

Time magazine named "Potential Breakup Song" one of The 10 Best Songs of 2007, ranking it at #9. Writer Josh Tyrangiel singled out the lyrics in the bridge: "This is the Potential Breakup Song/ Our album needs just one/ Oh baby please”, and praised the authenticity of its having been written by the teenage sisters who sing it.

Chart (2007-2008) Peak
Canadian Hot 100 72
Canadian Hot Canadian Digital Singles 36
Dutch Mega Single Top 100 83
Euro 200 Singles Chart 70
Irish Singles Chart 16
Norwegian Singles Chart 18
UK Singles Chart 22
U.S. Billboard Hot 100 17
U.S. Billboard Pop 100 19
U.S. Billboard Hot Digital Songs 17

Uses in pop culture

  • "Potential Breakup Song" is played in the video game Thrillville: Off the Rails.
  • "Potential Breakup Song" is played in episode 2 of The Miley and Mandy Show.

Ami Suzuki version

"Potential Breakup Song" was later covered by Japanese singer Ami Suzuki under the label Avex Trax. It was released on November 28, 2007.


The song has been used in the Japanese horror flick X-Cross, in which Suzuki has a lead role, alongside the original Aly & AJ version. The single is produced by Japanese DJ Sugiurumn and has a stronger club feel than Aly & AJ's versions.

In June 2008, it was announced that this single would be Suzuki's final "joins" single.

Track listing

  1. Potential Breakup Song
  2. Feel the beat
  3. Potential Breakup Song (Sugiurumn Remix)
  4. Potential Breakup Song (Instrumental)


Oricon Sales Chart (Japan)

Release Chart Peak position First week sales Total sales Chart run
November 28, 2007 Oricon Daily Singles Chart 16
November 28, 2007 Oricon Weekly Singles Chart 34 4,151 5,315 5 weeks


External links

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