"Titanium" started off life as a demo.... written by Sia, recorded by Sia, and sent to David Guetta, possibly for a collaboration with Katy Perry, or Alicia Keys. Sia had retired from performing and recording her own music, since she was meeting with little to moderate success, and, as a pop star, she was done....
David Guetta recorded the song with Mary J. Blige. And it was really good.
And that version leaded online .David Guetta then removed her vocals and put Sia's back on. The story goes, it was Katy Perry (who declined the song because it was too similar to "Firework" in message) who encouraged him to release the sing with Sia's vocals. Which, ultimately, was an excellent decision...
But he probably should have told Sia he was going to do that BEFORE she heard it on the radio.
In Sia's words:
"I wrote it for Alicia Keys. And then she passed," Sia says, standing next to a black upright piano. "And then Mary J. Blige sang it. And then he took her vocal off it, and put my vocal back on, my demo vocal, without asking and released it. And I never even knew it was gonna happen, and I was really upset. Because I had just retired, I was trying to be a pop songwriter, not an artist."Well, the rest, to be sure, is pop history, a critical and commercial success that kickstarted Sia's performing career.... one that she didn't even want anymore. It would be Sia's first top 10 hit in the United States.
And it's a really really powerful song. REALLY powerful.