If there’s one word that can describe Lloyd’s past two years in the game, that word would have to be evolution. The R&B heartthrob has made some shocking moves since the release of Lessons in Love in 2008, including leaving The Inc., signing to Interscope, and even cutting off all that beautiful hair. But as Lloyd said himself, “change and shock go hand-in-hand,” and if there’s anything Lloyd could’ve taken away from it all, it’s that change can only lead to growth and opened doors.
VIBE had the chance to catch up with the angel-faced singer last week where he briefly discussed 2011 in rewind. He also let us in on what he’s got going for the holidays, his experiences with Weezy, and even gave us a look into what fans can expect in 2012. Studio sessions with will.I.am? Yup. An upcoming collaboration with Wiz Khalifa? Possibly. But you’re just going to have to stay tuned to find out. – Stephanie Long
VIBE: 2011 was a big year for you. You released your first album since leaving The Inc., King Of Hearts, and it received pretty positive reviews. As 2012 makes its way in and you look back, how are you feeling about everything that happened this year?
LLOYD: I think this is my best month on TV between the Soul Train Awards and the BET Christmas Special. I think we had a really good strong showing, this month in particular, and I just think it’s a good way to top off an already great year.
For sure. Who do you think were some of the hottest R&B artists in 2011?
The hottest R&B artists… Other than me? I would say definitely my boy Chris did his thing this year. Rihanna. She’s always hot, no denying that. And Frank Ocean. Frank Ocean definitely popped on the scene with a vengeance this year. It’s been a good year for R&B.
Definitely. Continuing on with the ladies, who do you think were some of the hottest female R&B artists besides Rihanna in 2011? And besides Beyoncé! Because we all know Beyoncé definitely had a big year.
That girl’s always poppin’. Let me see… Female R&B artists of the year. I mean, who we got? Shit, Nicki [Minaj]. She does everything so definitely gotta throw her in there.
[Laughs] ‘Cause she can sing! I don’t think Alicia put anything out this year, right?
No, except she did re-release Songs In A Minor.
Right. Man, any time Alicia does something it’s just magic.
Oh, of course.
I’m tryna see. I feel like I’m missing somebody that was really dope! I think Rihanna pretty much held it down this year.
Alright! Now you mentioned Nicki, too, who raps and sings. 2011 saw an influx of singing rappers and rapping singers. Do you see that crossover as a good look?
Yeah. I don’t mind it’s fine with me [Laughs]
[Laughs] Okay. Well what are your views on R&B competition? I guess I ask you this because of that mini spat, if you can even call it that, you had with Miguel earlier this year over the hair thing. Is there competition in R&B? Is it about who’s the most original, who’s bringing what to the table first, etc?
Well as far as what you just mentioned, I still really have no idea what that was so I’m not even sure if I can really confirm that was really in a competitive light. I don’t think that really falls into the category of competition. I think that’s in its own category by itself – it’s just stupidity. But I think any time that there is a number one spot, any time that you are surrounded by other people your age who are driven, any time there’s any kind of survival of the fittest, there’s always gonna be a competition. But what people don’t understand is that there’s such thing as a healthy competition where you really just push each other to be the best that you can really be.