From the Web
More on Vibe
After a battle for the ages that saw Lil Jon and T-Pain playing 20 of their hits back and forth, Lil Jon previewed a long-awaited collaboration between him, Ludacris and Usher.
The song sounds like a sequel to their first collaboration, "Lovers and Friends" from 2004. Grounded by mellow piano keys, Luda's raps are as fresh as ever and Usher is still a perfect match with his previous collaborators.
After playing the song, Lil Jon said that they created it two years ago, but that Usher wasn't comfortable with it coming out. "Y'all don't know how many conversations I've had about this record," Jon said.
Next, it was T-Pain's turn. First, he played a song that showcased his real voice instead of using autotune, and then he played a new song with Chris Brown.
Instagram Live has been the place to be in recent weeks when it comes to the music world, and Swizz Beatz and Timbaland have coordinated a series of battles between some of the greatest producers and songwriters of all time. The next battle: T-Pain vs the king of crunk, Lil Jon. VIBE spoke to T-Pain about why he decided to participate, and what he expects from Lil Jon.
VIBE: I just spoke to Swizz and Timbo yesterday, and they were saying that some of these battles were difficult to set up, in part because some of the artists were scared to lose. What made you participate in this?
T-Pain: Well for one, I don’t see it as competition. I know the public sees it as competition, but I see it as a celebration of history. If all these people are going hits for hits, it’s not about who has the biggest hits. We had hits! There’s millions of millions of people who would pay to even be in these battles or be mentioned in the name of the people who are doing these battles. We all had hits. It’s not really a competition about who has the bigger song, it’s about two people getting together that actually had hits. That’s pretty difficult to do, to run for as long as anybody that’s been doing the competition is running. Like I said, I don’t see it as a competition; I see it as a celebration. Either way, the people win. Win or lose, it ain’t gon change my life tomorrow. (laughs) Even if they see it as me losing, I’m still T-Pain after that. Those hits still exist.
Have you watched all the other battles?
Oh of course. I’ve been tuned in crazy.
View this post on Instagram
Tomorrow who you got ???? @tpain vs @liljon ........... VERZUZ.... 9pm est
Which have been the best to you?
The obvious one. (laughs) Fucking Dream and Sean Garrett is my favorite one, just cuz of how Sean was tripping for a while. (laughs) But it made for a good show, and we got to hear a lot of dope records that a lot of young people not only didn’t know about, but that even older people forgot about. Like I said, the people watching are the real winners. Nobody’s really going against each other. It’s a competitive industry as it is, and we proved our point by putting out the hits in the first place. Seeing Sean and Dream go against each other, two of the greatest hip-hop/R&B songwriters of our generation, it’s a great thing to see.
One element from these battles is that they’ll bring out songs that the audience didn’t know that they did. Do you think there are a lot of songs you’ve done that people don’t associate with you?
There’s a ton of those. People don’t even know that I produce my own sh*t. People don’t look at credits no more. It’s a bunch of country records I did that I’m not even trying to put out there that I did. It’s an honor to do it, I just don’t look for that kind of props. I know what I did, the check’s coming in, I’m fine if people don’t do that.
What kind of strategy are you looking at for this?
I don’t really have a strategy man. I’m just playing songs. If I saw it as a competition, I’d definitely have a strategy. But I’m just playing music. I’m not trying to beat out Lil Jon. Lil Jon is a f**king GOAT. He changed sh*t. He created party music, the crunk era, sh*t like that. Not only are we completely different –– obviously you want to make it entertaining, but if there’s nothing there, you don’t want to force it and make it silly.
At first, the matchup was going to be you and Scott Storch. Did you feel any way when they switched it?
Nah, not really. I understood. It made complete sense. They said they didn't want it to be a pure producer against a songwriter. Even Lil Jon is a songwriter, he's on a lot of the songs that he's going to play. It's not pure production against songwriting, you wouldn't have anything to compare. I like keeping it the way it makes sense. Give me someone who's written a verse before.
That’s all the questions I have for you.
This was probably supposed to be way more controversial than this. (laughs)
(Laughs) I wasn't expecting controversy, you're not a controversial guy.
I'm not, man. I wish I could come in this b*tch like “I’ma kill this ni**a, ima murder that motherf***er.” But nah, the ni**a got slaps for real. (laughs) Ni**a got slaps. I can't wait to hear em. I know he's gonna have a DJ set up, he's gonna come in there screaming all over my goddamn phone. I'm more excited to have fun on live with Jon, I ain't seen Jon in a while. I'm more excited about that than the competition.
As self-isolation has become a new way of life for millions of people across the globe, Kiana Lede is finding ways to continue sharing original content with her fans, beginning with the release of her debut album KIKI. To promote its arrival on Friday (April 3), the vocalist dropped her music video for “Chocolate” featuring Ari Lennox. The visual was recorded solely through FaceTime, a mode of communication that has become increasingly used given social distancing orders.
In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, the "Plenty More" singer also shared a few words of comfort and how music can be used as a refuge in times of uncertainty.
“Music is therapy. It will always be therapy for me. I hope Kiki gives you a little entertainment while you’re stuck inside. Maybe it offers some comfort,” Lede wrote. “Donate, do what you can do in your community, and stay home! Jessie J once told me, ‘Be the soundtrack for the good things you do in life, especially during the bad and shitty times.’ I tried to do that by telling a true story.”
View the video above and stream Lede's album below.