Now that you’re back do you feel like there is competition with your return?
I mean the fans will always compare you to a Breezy [Chris Brown] or Trey [Songz] or Miguel, etc. I focus on Leigh Bush solely and creating my own lane and creating the best music I could possible create. I think at this time with r&b I hate to say it—I’m very competitive by the way, I don’t like to be compared to anybody and if I am, I like to demolish them. But I think at this time we need to all come together and make great music since it’s a dying genre. Hip-hop will always be the dominate genre but you’ve got country, pop, hip-hop, and r&b is struggling right now. I think it’s essential that individually we take responsibility to make the best music we can.
Yeah, but there are good R&B singers that aren’t getting a lot of love?
It’s tricky too because labels don’t even give us the budgets that the hip-hop artist get and I hate that they force you to make club records. I still believe that ballads and mid-tempos can be major radio smashes but labels don’t want to spend that money on a ballad they rather hope the record catches on in the club and DJs. We’re in a tricky spot right now.
Is it about the #1 hits, or about how many people are affected?
For me it’s about touching the people, hits are going to come. I think hits also come and go. You can be hot for 3 to 6 months and that’s the end of that. I rather give you a body of work that touches the masses for 5, 10, 15 years as opposed to being hot for a season.
I know you don’t like to be compared but if you could be compared to a legend who would you want it to be?
I’m a big Usher fan. I think he created the blueprint for being a child star to the grown man that he is. He’s 35 and still highly relevant. He’s very multi-talented; not just on the stage but he has other things he endorses. I respect anybody that’s able to stay in this business as long as he has. R Kelly too, he’s the king of r&b because he’s so multi-faceted. When I do my research, of course Stevie Wonder and Marvin Gaye.
Photo Credit: Sean Howard