Jordan Fisher
Jordan Fisher/ Instagram

Interview: Jordan Fisher Is On A Mission To Share His Music With The World

This triple threat--singer, actor, dancer--shares his inspirations, goals and more. 

Jordan Fisher knows how to put on a show, on stage and in the kitchen. He approaches a stove with the same fearlessness he does a crowd -- by finding comfort in the combination of unique elements to deliver a satisfying experience with a hint of his own flare.

A southern charmer from Birmingham, Alabama, Fisher recognized his passion for entertaining others at an early age. When he joined Red Mountain Theatre Company in elementary school, his natural gift for singing, dancing and acting began to flourish. After seven years with the company, Fisher was spotted by a talent scout from Disney, and that's when his career started to heat up.

Fisher has had appearances on shows such as Nickelodeon's iCarly, ABC Family's The Secret Life Of The American Teenager, and Disney's Liv and Maddie. He has also had roles in feature films such as Disney's Teen Beach Movie and Teen Beach Movie 2. Most recently Fisher starred in Grease: Live! as Doody, a guitar clad T-Bird who had the hearts of fans ripe for picking with his rendition of Johnny Contardo's "Those Magic Changes."

Since the success of Grease: Live!, Fisher has decided to strike the skillet while it's hot -- and pursue his music career head on. Back in May, VIBE debuted the music video for his single "All About Us." His self titled EP was released today (Aug. 19), and when we caught up with the Hollywood Records recording artist to discuss his transition from TV sets to recording studios, he cited cooking and time with his loved ones as his "therapy;" the things that keep him grounded.

VIBE: What can you tell us about your EP?
Jordan Fisher: It’s kind of a sneak peak [for] the album. It’s kind of the four corners of the album. I’m living in this chronic state of introduction. It’s just meeting people for the first time, people hearing my music for the first time and seeing my first music video. There's a lot of firsts that are happening right now, which is exciting, but I think the obligation is to just make the best first impression as possible and really introduce myself in a way that’s authentic and organic.

What impression do you want this EP to leave on people?
Timelessness would probably be a good one. Entertainment would probably be another one. I want to do this for the rest of my life. This is all I wanna do; I want to entertain. I want to make music. I want do film. I want to go on tour, work on Broadway, you know? Fall in love, get married, have a bunch of kids, go back on tour, work on Broadway again, put out another album and repeat until the cows come home. And figure out a way to be involved in other things that I love.

Who do you look up to in the industry?
It starts with Stevie [Wonder], Prince, Michael [Jackson] and Luther Vandross. It goes all the way to Tyrese to Joe to Usher to JT as well. I love Mariah [Carey], love Whitney [Houston]. There’s a certain kind of pop sensibility that soul and R&B had in the 80s that I wanted to take and kind of make “Jordan Fisher.” I feel like they did that in such a great way and really revolutionized that in the 80s.

Just hanging with the bro

A photo posted by Jordan Fisher (@jordan_fisher) on

Are there any artists that you really want to work with moving forward?
Justin Timberlake. I would love to collaborate with Usher at some point in time as well. Of course, those are the two guys that really, really do it for me. I’m such a fan of music that that’s kind of an unfair question. My “Collaboration Wish List” is a mile long. It’s crazy. Even people that wouldn’t necessarily sonically make sense for me where genres are concerned. People like Hayley Williams, the lead singer of Paramore -- that girl’s got pipes, mad pipes, and is one of the best live performers I’ve ever seen in my entire life.

You’ve been acting for years, so what sparked this need to move forward with your music more?
It all started in fifth grade. There was a girl I had a crush on that joined the drama club and that’s what made me love art. That’s what made me fall in love with music and acting and dancing -- the whole thing. So, moving out to L.A. years ago, that was the intention. To pursue a world where I could do all of those things. T.V. and film kind of took the bulk of my time and my life for a long time, thank God. But music was always something that was so prominent and something that I was so passionate about that I had to make music or I was gonna go crazy. For a certain period of time, you can only do TV and film and cultivate a real medium making music simultaneously.

Eventually you have to decide what is going to take up a lot of your energy and a lot of your time. Now that I have the album, I have the songs, I have a label that believes in me, management that works really hard, marketing teams that are pouring in blood, sweat and tears to make this thing the best that it possibly could be. After I did Grease: Live! earlier this year, that’s really all it boiled down to was “Alright, we’re ready to go now.” It’s time to gently shut the door in one area for now and allow what is so hot and prominent in my life artistically take shape.

#tbt to my first audition ever. Oscar's to you not booking me.

A photo posted by Jordan Fisher (@jordan_fisher) on

You play a bunch of different instruments (piano, guitar, bass, harmonica and French horn). What was the first instrument you learned to play, and how old were you?
I classically learned French horn, funny enough, so I guess that has to be the first one. I started playing on my grandmother’s organ at a really young age. I learned “Chopsticks” and that kind of thing, but I didn’t really start picking it up and start taking it super seriously until I was probably about 13, 14. That’s my main instrument.

What would you say is really unique about your music and your sound?
Wow. That’s a loaded question. Who was it? Was it Maxwell? I think Maxwell at one point in time said he doesn’t like to explain lyrics to his songs because he wants—when you hear a song, you see a story. Subconsciously, you paint a picture in some way and it’s however you paint that picture is what makes that moment so unique. I think, personally, when I listen to Brandy, when I listen to Full Moon, I have a very specific picture in my head that I’m painting in my head as I listen to every song, from the intro to “[Come A Little] Closer.”

It’s the memory of creating those images in my head over years, and hours of listening to that song that makes that record so special to me. So, I guess, in short, to answer your question, that’s hard to say. Just because subjectivity is so real. I’m trying to do something that feels real to me. I’m not going out of my way to try to make some crazy impact that hasn’t been made yet. If that happens naturally and organically and overtime? Amazing. But, what I’m doing is making music that I have fun making and that is very meaningful to me and sharing stories that I’ve experienced, that friends around me have experienced that other songwriters—songs that I haven’t written but other songwriters have experienced that I can interpret because it’s relatable and something that could have come from my own heart that I’m excited to share that content with people. I think it just coming from me is what makes it unique.

My baby boy #tbt

A photo posted by Jordan Fisher (@jordan_fisher) on

Where do you draw inspiration from on a daily basis?
My dog. [Laughs] I’ve gotten used to hauling him around all the time. Kind of a little bit ofeverything. I love people, which might be a little rare for artists. I don’t know if a lot of artists like people, but I do. I love love. I love food. I love experiences. I love just waking up, starting my day knowing I’ll get to do what I love at some point in time, somehow during that day. If it’s not scheduled, then I make time to do that. I think people really inspire me. I love just watching somebody live and breathe and work and walk and talk and if they have a significant other, hug and kiss and hold hands and if they have kids then interact with them. There’s a different kind of love and protection that people have over their offspring. I like people. I think dynamics are really, really interesting. Sometimes annoying, sometimes infuriating, sometimes immaculate and almost perfect. It’s very unique to wherever I am and whoever I’m around.

Are you more passionate about singing than acting? Or vice versa?
I can’t say that I am. Because I love both equally, simultaneously. I want to find a revolution in my life where I can do each thing, just like JT. Artistically, we have to fuel those things or we start to go crazy. Music is my life right now. It’s gonna be awesome when I can get back onto a set and work on a film, and then I’m gonna miss music so much and, I’m gonna wanna go back on tour, and then I’m gonna be stoked to do the next movie. I’m fortunate that I can do those things and live in both of those worlds. These are the most transitional years in my little over a decade of being a part of this industry. I’m excited because it feels like the right time, but I’ve never done just one thing at a time. So now it’s a whole kind of new phase, new chapter in my life where I’m learning how to cope and learning how to be cool with just doing one thing. And I’m loving it because thankfully—thanks to everybody that’s on my team and my family, we’re all keeping me very busy so I don’t really have time to sit and miss the other thing. This is it. This is what’s happening right now, and I’m excited about it.

You started out in Birmingham’s Red Mountain Theatre Company at a very young age. Do you think you would ever start your own theater company?
Until just now, I’d never thought about starting my own theater company. I have a lot of goals in my life, trust me. I’m probably one of the most obnoxiously goal-oriented people you’ve ever met. From short term to long term, I think the list just continuously rolls. That’s definitely something I could add to that list that I would like to do. I want to get to a place where money is just stupid so that I can dig back into my communities. I want to make sure that music stays in schools because if I didn’t have it in mine I would have no clue. It’s sad the way people don’t recognize the importance of that. I think if you slowly start stripping a garden from the roots, eventually there’s going to be no beauty left. I implore you to imagine a world where you are watching a football game and it goes into commercial with no music in the background. Or you walk into a wedding and it’s just silence while people are walking to the pews. Eventually, over time, it’s no longer going to be meaningful to people and that’s sad for me that that goes away first in school systems that can’t afford certain things. So I’m kind of making it a mission to make sure there’s a great music program in every school in L.A. county. It’s beyond important; it’s a necessity.

Here's a fun little throwback for my sweet mama. So grateful for you. Words will never fully express. Love you so much!

A photo posted by Jordan Fisher (@jordan_fisher) on

How do you feel about police brutality and the Black Lives Matter movement?
It’s sad that it’s a conversation that has to be had. That’s really just they way that I look at it. It’s sad to me that it’s a thing. Obviously the movement needs to be present. It needs to be prominent. Everyone needs to know what’s happening. I was having a conversation with somebody recently about this kind of thing. The argument was do we think that there was as much of this happening when social media wasn’t a thing and I can’t say that I think that there wasn’t. I just think that we see it more now. A lot of people say news is propaganda, and I believe that to an extent, but this is a real life thing that is happening. My life motto is “Would you be proud to die this way?” A buddy of mine has it tattooed on his arm, the director of my music video. To me, that’s just a simple reminder in a few short words. To love people and to take care of people. To go out of your way to be kind to people. I think people that are filled with hate, filled with resentment find false justice in taking anger out on pedestrians or innocent police officers as well. Gotta turn that right back around. It’s a real life thing that just happened in Baton Rouge. There’s violence happening and brutality happening in a world where we desperately need love. And an affinity towards our race and our genders and just who we are as human beings. Our species. We need love so badly right now. It’s hard to talk about for a lot of reasons. I mean obviously it’s easy to get emotional about these kinds of things. My question is just where, when and how does this stop? I don’t know that a lot of people are thinking about that. They’re just thinking about how angry they are at the people who made the mistakes that they did. I hate that it’s a conversation that needs to be had, but it’s definitely a conversation that has to be had.

Coming from the South, have you ever felt racism or discrimination touch your life personally, or the lives of the people around you?
Not violence, thank God. A couple of social instances. I’m very, very, very mixed. My family is from England, I’m Polynesian, I’m Cambodian, I’m Nigerian, I’m Italian, I’m Greek, I’m Scandinavian. I’m a melting pot of everything. My family looks like a GAP ad. They do. There’s a little bit of everything. It’s beautiful. I think it’s exactly what an American family should be. That said, being from a small football town in Birmingham, Alabama, I really was one of the only people that looked like me. People didn’t really know what to think about that. I worked at Game Stop when I was 16, part-time, and had somebody refuse my service. My Irish white manager came around the corner and said “You can leave my store and never come back.” This super, super southern short little white dude that was managing this Game Stop kicked this massive dude out of the store that wouldn’t let me serve him because of the way that I look. It goes back to that motto, “Would you be proud to die this way?” Whether you’re Christian or whatever, do you think that would be condoned by the big man upstairs? Would your mom be proud of that? Would your dad be proud of that? Maybe. Probably. I find that that is much more of a nurture thing than a nature thing. How is that right? And it’s not unfortunately, but, again, I can’t sit and be mad about that because it started somewhere way, way, way earlier than them. And probably his parents and probably his parents before that. It’s unfortunate, but it’s not my place to sit and try to throw stones. It’s my obligation to love and forgive.

From the Web

More on Vibe

Courtesy of Wondery

Taraji P. Henson Hosting New Podcast Series, 'Jacked: Rise of the New Jack Sound'

Actress and philanthropist Taraji P. Henson is the host and producer of Jacked: Rise of the New Jack Sound, a newly premiered podcast series on the rise and fall of the popular music genre, New Jack Swing.

From Univeral Music Group and independent podcast publisher Wonderly, the six-part series "focuses on the complex relationships of a group of teenagers from Harlem who would create a sound that forever changed music." Aside from featuring classic songs from UMG's catalog—like Wreckx-N-Effect’s “Rumpshaker,” Bobby Brown’s “My Prerogative,” Bell Biv Devoe’s “Poison”— the audio feature includes interviews from the singers, songwriters, and musicians including Teddy Riley, former member of Guy and one of the innovators of the hip-hop, R&B, funk, house-fused genre that dominated the airwaves from the mid-'80s until the early '90s.

Jacked is written by Rico Gagliano and Andy Hermann, with Barry Michael Cooper serving as a c0nsulting producer.

Earlier this year, Henson kicked off the year with the debut of her hair care line, TPH by Taraji. Her non-profit Boris Lawrence Henson Foundation has been providing free virtual therapy session for people of color to combat the stressors of the COVID-19 pandemic. She'll also be hosting the 2020 American Music Awards with Bel Biv Devoe and Nelly scheduled to perform. Clearly, Taraji P. Henson is booked and busy.

As for the Jacked podcast, you can find it on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, the Wondery App, and other streaming platforms.

Continue Reading
Dana Lixenberg

VIBE Vault: 'Dre Day: Andre Harrell' (December 1995 / January 1996)

In the business of music, there's no name with as much resonance as Motown. Former Uptown Entertainment president Andre Harrell—the man responsible for Jodeci, Mary J. Blige, and Heavy D—is taking over the legendary label and promising to bring the noise. But can he fight through the nostalgia and lead Motown into the 21st century? By Anthony DeCurtis. Photographs by Dana Lixenberg

"You know how Jeffrey Katzenberg became Disney? That's what I want to do. Like, how you felt Jeffrey had a passion about Disney—his Mickey Mouse watches, Disney sweatshirt, Disney tie. That's what I'm talking about. I will be at the Motown Cafe. I'll make Motown ties, watch­es, sweatshirts. I intend to make Motown the black Disney," Andre Harrell says with a smile. "You might as well start calling me Walt."

Harrell, 35, is obviously a man with a plan. Good thing, too. He's stepping into one of the most vis­ible jobs in the entertainment industry: president and CEO of Motown Records. "It's always been a dream of mine to head up Motown," he says.

Yet the lofty position confronts Harrell with a critical challenge. Motown has fallen far from what it once was. Aside from the monumental Boyz II Men, Motown has increasingly become a sound­track for nostalgia, much more redolent of the past than the present. It's so hard to say good-bye to yesterday, indeed. Harrell, a product of the hip hop generation, knows his job is to introduce Mo­town—music, television, film, video, animation, and new media—to tomorrow.

A Bronx native, he got his start in the early '8os as half of the rap duo Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. (He was Dr. Jekyll.) After moving over to the business side of the business, he hooked up with rap mogul Russell Simmons and soon landed a top spot at Simmons's company, Rush Communications, where he worked with the likes of Run-D.M.C., L.L. Cool J, and Whodini.

Harrell stepped out on his own in 1986, when he launched his own label, Uptown Entertain­ment, as part of a joint venture with MCA. At Uptown, Harrell defined a contemporary R&B sound for the hip hop age, bringing the world Guy, Heavy D, Jodeci, Mary J. Blige, Al B. Sure!, Father MC, and most recently, Soul for Real (with whom he had his first No. 1 pop hit, "Candy Rain"). He produced the 1991 film Strictly Business, and he coproduces the hit Fox series New York Undercover.

Successful as the artists on his label proved to be, Harrell has felt constrained in his efforts to make them pop superstars, both by his arrange­ment with Uptown's parent company, MCA, and by the troubling racial politics of the music busi­ness in general. Moving to Motown, which is now based in Los Angeles and owned by PolyGram, presents Harrell with the opportunity to put at least some of these issues behind him. At Motown, Harrell says, he'll have more people, more prerogative, more punch.

Seated on a couch in the living room of his Upper West Side New York apartment, dressed simply in a black shirt and white slacks, Harrell focused squarely through his blue shades on what must be done. A framed photo of a serious-looking Harrell arm-in-arm with Mickey Mouse sat on an end table.

Clearly a man who enjoys control, Harrell was soft-spoken and intent. He didn't want to be mis­understood. "Am I correct?" he would ask. "Do you follow me?" He leaned forward, and his voice rose with passion as he discussed his frustrations with MCA. Otherwise, he slipped back into the pil­lows of his sofa and spoke as if he was envisioning his future life in a dream.

Harrell knows he has as much on the line as Motown, if not more. All eyes will be on him. It's one thing to say you would've done something if only you'd gotten the chance. It's quite another to get the chance and have to do it.

"Every record has gotta be right," he said. "I'm trying to sign stars. I'm not gonna have wack-juice on me. Never did, never will."

What has Motown meant to you over the years? When was the first time you knew what it was?

The first true Motown experience I had was when the Jackson 5 were on the Ed Sullivan Show. I think it might've been, like, 1969, '70. They sang "Stand!" and "I Want You Back." I had never seen a black teenager on television—it was incredible. After that, I realized who the Motown artists were. My parents listened to them: the Supremes, Marvin Gaye, Diana Ross, the Four Tops, the Temptations.

What did the company represent for you?

Motown has always been the epitome of black excellence and artistry. Stevie sang about love in the most sensitive way, as well as telling about the plight of his people. Marvin sang about the plight of his people and his internal fight, but he sang about love in a very sexy way. They were major influences.

Speaking of Stevie Wonder, he made a strong album last year and nothing happened with it. Can Motown sell a Stevie Wonder record in this day and age?

The Four Tops, the Temps, and, especially, Stevie Wonder and Diana Ross—these are national trea­sures. You have to treat them like events. Stevie Wonder, he's someone I would do an Unplugged with. Or a couple of years ago, it was Stevie's 3oth anniversary in show business. You could have got­ten Stevie Wonder a television special. We could have had artists pay tribute to him—pop artists, rock artists, R&B artists, rap artists, everybody could have participated. And there's probably no other female, black or white, who's as fabulous as Diana Ross, who epitomizes the glamour and excitement of a star diva.

What about new directions? What makes Motown happen in the '9os?

Motown has to become the lifestyle label for the times that the active record-buying audience—the audience who's 15 to 3o—is living in. One of the ways you do this is by putting out records that are in the groove that that audience is living in. Like if Mary J. Blige was a Motown artist, Motown would have some of her imaging on it. It's that young, hip hop—soul, Generation X energy. Same thing if Jodeci was on the label. Back in the day, Motown talked to everybody in the ghetto—and it talked to the rest of the world too.


That sounds like the philosophy you espoused at Uptown.

The thing that [Motown founder] Berry Gordy led the way with is the idea that the label head becomes the image of the label. Myself, I allowed whatever celebri­ty occurred in my career to happen through the artists. I was so consistent with the kinds of artists who were on my label, after a while, it was, like, "Who's behind all this?" I was behind it.

Going into Motown, my plan is this: When you think of Motown now, you're gonna think of Andre Harrell. I'm not gonna work for Motown, I'm gonna be Motown—in the way I dress, the records I put out, the causes I choose to get involved in, the artists from the past, the artists who are there now, and the artists in the future. Like I lived Uptown Records, I'm gonna live Motown Records.

But you, Russell Simmons, Sean ."Puffy" Combs—and Berry Gordy before you—are entrepreneurs. You're identified with the companies you founded. With this, you're stepping into something—

—that's already existing. I'm gonna be Motown for this generation of young-adult record buyers. Motown was the blueprint. Berry Gordy was the blueprint for what I became.

Were you conflicted about leaving Uptown?

I had tremendous conflict. It was like I was walking away from my works of art. There will never be another Mary J. Blige—it's rare to find a queen. There will nev­er be another Jodeci. There'll never be another Heavy D. But I have to go, because Motown gives me the power I need to go to the next level. I have to make African-American superstars. At Uptown, I was able to make black icons, but they were icons only to black people.

[I was] trying to grow Uptown, to have indepen­dence, to be able to say, "This act is getting ready to be a worldwide star, and I'm gonna take all my resources, and we're gonna march to this one beat." I was trying to do that for nine years. Between me and the corpora­tion, I could never get it to happen.

In terms of support from MCA?

I think MCA, after a period, wanted some of these things to happen. For whatever reasons, though, the execution between the two sides never worked. The biggest record I ever had was Jodeci's [1991] Forever My Lady—3 million.

When [Arista president] Clive Davis got in the game, I felt myself shrinking. Once he got in business with LaFace [L.A. Reid and Kenneth "Babyface" Edmonds] and [Dallas Austin's] Rowdy Records and Puffy [Bad Boy Entertainment], Davis's commitment and his exe­cution were taking those artists where I wanted my artists to go. I wanted Mary J. Blige to sell the 7 million that Toni Braxton did.

Jodeci came to me because I had Al B. Sure! So they figured, "He knows how to do this. We wanna be down with him." They drove 13 hours, sat in my lobby for eight hours just to meet me. Now, I feel like, with Arista being involved with LaFace and the other labels, they sold 7 million Toni Braxtons. They sold 6 million TLCs. I'm, like, if I can't sell these kinds of records, I'm gonna slowly shrink. I was catching heat from my artists, who wanted that kind of stature. I would bring that frustra­tion to MCA, and we couldn't seem to come to terms.

Was the idea, "Well, Andre's doing fine. He's doing a cou­ple of million here, a couple of million there. He's covered. Were gonna invest somewhere else"?

I felt like a figurehead. I had all this energy around me—like, I was the Man. I was the founder and chairman of Uptown Records, a major, culturally influen­tial entertainment company for African-Americans in the '9os. But I didn't feel like the Man, because I could­n't put my finger on the button that would really make it happen. I don't want to be in that position anymore. I need to have more control. I need to be responsible for the big picture. And being at Motown positions me to create a truly black pop company. I got a film divi­sion, a television division. I got green-light power for small movies. I don't have to ask anybody.

What are your plans with Gordy?

We're gonna do a series of commercials—print and television. He endorses me. We spoke yesterday for about an hour, and he said, "Any advice I can give you about where we go from here, feel free to call me." We're gonna spend time together and talk about his history with the elder stars. I feel as if I've had a tremendous amount of experience working with stars' drama and ego, but we're talking a whole 'nother level of stars. I've never built a superstar. There're superstars at this house.

How do you build superstars?

If black stars are gonna have a shot at becoming pop stars, it's gonna be because the chairman of the company is committed to them—and because their music is his personal taste. That's what I'm bringing to black music, to black musical stars. Not just their art form but their plight as African-American men and women.

What you're describing is a role that black executives play, but aren't they often frustrated in their attempts to rise at most record companies? 

I can't talk about it enough, how few black execu­tives get to control their playing field. Black music is becoming the music of the popular culture. Because of that, companies are repositioning their priorities and trying to get in the game. But as black music becomes more important, there should be more black presidents and black chairmen. As soon as the black executive's artist reaches platinum, suddenly the artist and man­ager have to deal with the president of the corporation, because he controls the priorities at pop radio. The black executive becomes obsolete. As his music gets bigger his power diminishes. He's more or less told, "Go find the next act and establish it."

It's an emphasis on the creative—

—as opposed to the business. That's why young black executives don't get to become the old chairmen—the wise men who've seen it and done it. They get to stay hot black executives so long as their instincts are hot. But this is a lifestyle business—only a few of us, black or white, are going to be cool enough to have great in­stincts our whole career.

The black executive is not given the opportunity to become the business and the music. Why not? Why shouldn't he be the one that everybody reports to? When you get an act that sells 5 million—at a major compa­ny—the black executive's out of the room. But when there's some sort of problem, the major label looks at the black executive: "Why can't you handle this act?" When the artist hires a violent manager and the violent manager is coming up to the record company, the label's, like, "How did it get to this?" How? Because they [the white executives] couldn't see it coming. Because they re not sensitive to his issues. By then the relation­ship between the record company and the artist is dys­functional. And then the black executive gets blamed and fired. But they created the monster.

When I had the artist, I talked to his mother, his girl­friend, his babies' mother with the two children, dealt with his drug counselor, and whatever other dysfunc­tional Generation X problems he has. He'd call me late at night.

But he feels like they're just businesspeople. And they don't understand. And they might be racist. He's comin' with all that energy. Even if they like him as a person, he still has goo years of issues he has to get over to accept them. And they have a lot of work to do to gain his trust and respect.

So what are your immediate plans?

I will be moving to Beverly Hills. I'll have a house out there for a 12-to-18-month period, and I'll be bicoastal between the New York and L.A. offices. Then I'm moving the company to New York. I'm going to have a satellite office in Atlanta—A&R-oriented. I'm going to build a recording studio in New York, Motown Studios.

Any new musical directions?

The sound I'm going for now is soul. I'm looking for voices that sound like 400 years of slavery and then some. I'm looking for that inspirational, take-us-out­-of-our-plight, Aretha Franklin, Bill Withers, Al Green voice. I'm looking to build those kinds of stars now.

What about the younger acts on Motown? Have you met with Boyz II Men?

No. Those meetings will come after I execute the deal. Boyz II Men are the biggest group I've ever seen. I don't know what I'm bringing to the party except to keep them from goin' crazy from the level of success they've had. They probably need a break, a little time out to lead their personal lives. Outside of that, that for­mula is working. Queen Latifah, I'd like to bring her record sales up to match her celebrity. Zhané I'd like to give a little bit more image. I'm gonna bring Johnny Gill back—he had a fabulous first album. And I'm excit­ed about working with Michael Bivins. He's tremen­dously talented, and if he and I get together, we can real­ly do some important things.

Are you apprehensive?

I got a lot of work to do. But no problems. Making hits is not a problem. I'll be making some noise real quick. And I ain't gonna stop makin' noise until I'm done.


This article originally appeared in the Dec. 1995 - Jan. 1996 issue of VIBE Magazine | Written by Anthony DeCurtis | Header Photography by Dana Lixenberg

Continue Reading
DJ Khaled attends the 62nd Annual GRAMMY Awards at STAPLES Center on January 26, 2020 in Los Angeles, California.
Frazer Harrison/Getty Images for The Recording Academy

DJ Khaled Cuts Off Twerker On Instagram Live, Inspires "Talk To Me Normal" Remix

Like the saying goes: when you give an inch, they take a mile. DJ Khaled learned that lesson over the weekend after he had to cut off a twerking follower on his Instagram Live session.

The producer and recording artist hopped on his social media account on Sunday (May 3) to chat with his fans and followers. To make the moment more engaging and interactive, Khaled opened up his request lines for one-on-one chats and chose a couple of lucky followers. What he didn't realize was that one request would be from a woman ready to twerk on camera, Quarantine Radio style.

"Oh, sh*t, oh, sh*t," he said aloud with his hands up in the air once he realized what was about to go down. "No, no, don't do that. No, it's all love but you know what I'm saying? I've got a family and everything. I've got love," he stressed to the giggling blonde before she proceeded to pour water on her derrière.


View this post on Instagram


I have love for everyone please take it easy when I’m on fan luv ig luv . Again I have love for everyone please lets be respectful nothing but love BLESS UP !

A post shared by DJ KHALED (@djkhaled) on May 3, 2020 at 4:25pm PDT

"Just talk to me normal, talk to me normal," he requested as he covered his eyes from seeing what she was doing. But did she care to oblige? Nope, because 45 seconds of fame and "we live baby!" Khaled gave up on pleading and closed out the chat repeating, "I can't, I can't."

Shortly after, Khaled posted the incident on his Instagram account with the caption, "I have love for everyone please take it easy when I’m on fan luv ig luv. Again I have love for everyone please lets be respectful nothing but love BLESS UP!"

And like clockwork, the video made its rounds and inspired one producer to create a remix, because, that's what we do when we need another level of comic relief. Much like Brooklyn's own DJ iMarkkeyz, who gained momentum on Billboard's charts for his remix of Cardi B's coronavirus rant, producer DJ Suede posted a remix of the moment and it brought more laughs to probably one of DJ Khaled's most stressful moments.

Hear it down below. You're welcome.


View this post on Instagram


#IGotAFamily #IGotLove 🕺🏾💎#RemixgodSuede #AnotherOne @therealcocoabrown #Diamonds @sophiajamesxo

A post shared by Dj Suede (@remixgodsuede) on May 3, 2020 at 9:48pm PDT

Continue Reading

Top Stories