Usher: I Got To Get My Swagger Back

Usher is on this months cover of Billboard Magazine and he speaks on getting his swagger back. He admits he lost it. “I had checked out,” the singer acknowledges. “I went all the way into being super husband and super dad, thinking, ‘I’ve got to be serious all the time. I’ve got to be the man.’ I put my swagger down for a minute, but I didn’t throw it away. Now it’s time to get it back.” More below.

Speaking on his greatest passion: His quiet fortitude on a rainy afternoon becomes all the more compelling-and fitting-when it’s learned the room he’s rehearsing in was last used by Michael Jackson while mapping his own anticipated return on the This Is It tour. “It wasn’t intentional,” Usher says when asked about the coincidence. “But I love being in this space. That same energy is still here; it lingers. All I’ve ever wanted as an artist is to appeal to as wide an audience as Stevie Wonder and Michael Jackson.”

How does Ushers team suggest he get’s his swagger back: Despite a title that echoes the confrontational heading of a divorce filing, “Raymond Vs. Raymond” was never envisioned as a contemporary take on Marvin Gaye’s 1979 marriage-rending epic, “Here My Dear.” It was more about “we’ve got to get this old-man shit off you; you’ve got to have some fun,” says Mark Pitts, who A&R’d the project and is president of black music for Jive Label Group. “We said, ‘We’ve got to get the guys wanting to be him and the girls wanting to do him.’ That was our approach.”

What will Usher’s Album really be about?
“People immediately thought, ‘Oh, damn, he’s about to talk about what happened in his marriage,’ ” Usher recalls. “But it would be too shortsighted to just talk about my relationship. A lot of the things I spoke about on ‘Confessions’ weren’t my own experiences. It was an outlet for stories I’d heard.”

About the track papers:” ‘Papers’ let everyone know that Usher knew what everyone was saying about him, his marriage and his relationship with his mom; that he understood what was being said,” Pitts says. “It was just to make a statement. We didn’t realize it would be as big as it was.”

Usher adds, “The song wasn’t intended to glorify my personal situation or people breaking up. I didn’t know if it was going to be the single or part of the album. I just thought it was a special track that would represent me well.”

To catch this interview in it’s entirety read here.

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