All I Want Is You is the debut studio album by American R&B recording artist Miguel. After signing a record deal with the Jive Records label ByStorm Entertainment in 2007, Miguel recorded the album with producers Dre & Vidal, Fisticuffs, Happy Perez, State of Emergency, and Salaam Remi. It was shelved by Jive for two years after legal issues with Miguel's former production company.
All I Want Is You was eventually released on November 30, 2010, selling poorly at first. With the help of its subsequent singles, the album became sleeper hit on the Billboard 200 and sold 404,000 copies by September 2012. It also received positive reviews; critics found some of the music inconsistent but praised Miguel's singing/songwriting abilities while drawing comparisons to American recording artist Prince. Miguel toured in promotion of the album as a supporting act for the singers Usher and Trey Songz.
In 2007, Miguel was signed Jive Records-imprint label ByStorm Entertainment. He subsequently recorded All I Want Is You, but legal issues with his former production company prevented the album from being released for two years. Miguel continued working with various underground acts and writing songs for mainstream recording artists, including Johnson&Jonson, Asher Roth, Jaheim, and Usher. Recording sessions for the album took place at Black Mango Studios in Van Nuys, California, Germano Studios in New York City, Glenwood Studios and Instrument Zoo in Miami, Florida, Studio 609 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and The Gym in Los Angeles, California.
According to Jason Newman from MTV Buzzworthy, All I Want Is You is "a diverse album rooted in R&B and hip-hop, thoughtfully laced with elements of classic rock, funk and electro". Marc Hogan from Spin said it featured neo soul music, while AllMusic critic David Jeffries described it as a "slick" and "sexy" synthesis of influences from Prince, Kanye West, and electro. "Girl Like You" and "Hard Way" feature aggressive hip hop beats, while "Pay Me" and "To the Moon" explore European electronic music and EDM, respectively. The album's first half features two romantic songs, an interlude, a song about a prostitute, and another about a quickie. The closing track "My Piece" uses a "piece"-"peace" homonym. Jeffries said the album featured Miguel's "sly sense of humor". On "Sure Thing", Miguel sang about loyalty in a passionate committed relationship.
All I Want Is You was released by Bystorm Entertainment and Jive, on November 30, 2010. It sold poorly at first; in its first week, the album charted at number 109 on the Billboard 200 and sold 11,000 copies in the United States. After falling off the chart for three weeks, it re-entered and climbed the chart for 22 weeks, before peaking at number 37 on May 14, 2011. The album became a sleeper hit, and by September 2012, it had sold 404,000 copies, according to Nielsen SoundScan.
According to Miguel, Jive marketed him as a "typical R&B artist" during their promotion of All I Want Is You: "That album was a huge learning experience. I left the marketing of my album and me as an artist up to the discretion of the label ... I can't really blame them for [that], because that's what they know. But that's not what my lifestyle was." Four singles were released from the album: the title track "All I Want Is You", "Sure Thing", "Quickie", and "Girls Like You". As the title track gradually received radio airplay, Miguel began touring as a supporting act for Usher and Trey Songz. By May 2011, "All I Want Is You" and "Sure Thing" had reached a combined digital/mobile sales of over 825,000 units.
In a review for About.com, Mark Edward Nero gave All I Want Is You three-and-a-half out of five stars and said Miguel "somehow managed to vocally glide across each" of the different styles he explored in music that was nonetheless rooted in R&B. He deemed the record imperfect but devoid of a poor song. B. Wright from Vibe found the music inconsistent and "schizophrenic" but praised Miguel's singing and songwriting abilities while determining the record was "worth the purchase price". In a three-and-a-half star review, Slant Magazine's Matthew Cole said the second half of songs was "less stimulating" on an album that "blends slick, radio-friendly R&B with Prince-aping theatrics, both refracted around a sense of humor that, surreal and sexually unsubtle, would have to make [Prince] proud". Cole also compared Miguel to singer Kelis, "whose work has an undeniably commercial cunning to it, but who never fails to imbue her pop confections with real personality".
Reviewing All I Want Is You for MSN Music in 2012, Christgau gave it a "B+" and believed Miguel "front-loaded his Prince-channeling debut" with "five hooky tracks" that were "followed by six pleasant tracks and capped by two hooky novelties". He viewed the song "Teach Me" as "a treasure hidden in the middle" and "supplicant's" song, "unprecedented" in "a genre that makes its nut promising untold pleasures". He credited Miguel for "laying out the truth that, as Norman Mailer put it in one of the few useful sex tips in his orgasm-mad canon, 'the man as lover is dependent upon the bounty of the woman.' Who knows what pleases her? She does, she alone, and Miguel craves to be let in on that shifting and enthralling secret." He nonetheless critiqued that the song lacked a first-rate hook that would have made it an R&B classic in the vein of Marvin Gaye's "Sexual Healing" and "Use Me" by Bill Withers.
Credits are adapted from the album's liner notes.