Best Thing I Never Had
"Best Thing I Never Had" is a song by American singer Beyoncé Knowles taken from her fourth studio album, 4 (2011). It was released by Columbia Records on June 1, 2011, as the second single from the album. "Best Thing I Never Had" was composed by Patrick "J. Que" Smith, Kenneth "Babyface" Edmonds, Symbolyc One, Caleb McCambell, Atonio Dixon, Knowles and Shea Taylor. Recording and production of the song took place at MSR Studio as well as KMA Studio in New York City. As stated by Smith, "Best Thing I Never Had", which was originally not a ballad, was inspired by the drums of Doug E. Fresh's song "The Show".
An R&B-pop song, "Best Thing I Never Had" has lyrics about revenge and karma. Not wanting to end up broken-hearted, the female protagonist relates that she feels happy to have parted from her love interest who did not recognize the potential of leading a happy life beside her. Critical reception towards "Best Thing I Never Had" has been generally positive; several music critics noted that its theme and style bear resemblance to Knowles' 2006 single, "Irreplaceable". Knowles' vocals and the lyrical content of the song were also complimented. However, the inclusion of lines, including "showed your ass", were criticized.