Hit me baby 16 times.

It’s incredible when an artist makes an impact with their very first single / music video ever. What’s more incredible is lasting 16 years in the music industry that’s notorious for chewing up and spitting out artists. But, that’s why we love Britney, *****! She’s been through it all, and without the major success of “Baby One More Time,” I’d probably own a Christina Aguilera fansite for the last ten years and that just depresses me. Anyway…

On September 30, 1998, Britney released “Baby.” The song debuted on the Nov. 21, 1998, Billboard charts and hit No. 1 on the Hot 100 on Jan. 30, 1999.

“I had been in studio for about six months listening and recording material, but I hadn’t really heard a hit yet,” Britney told Billboard at the time about the process of recording the track. “When I started working with Max Martin in Sweden, he played the demo for ‘…Baby One More Time’ for me, and I knew from the start it one was of those songs you want to hear again and again. It just felt really right. I went into the studio and did my own thing with it, trying to give it a little more attitude than the demo. In 10 days, I never even saw Sweden. We were so busy.”

Here is her best performance of the song ever:

Happy burfday!