Ne-Yo Talks Returning to R&B on New Album, Being Tough on His New Artists


Ne-Yo black and white

We’ve been hearing him say it for a little while now, and many fans are hoping for Ne-Yo to return to R&B on his upcoming sixth studio album. While, we didn’t want to count on it completely, following the release of his ‘3 Simple Rules‘ EP on Valentine’s Day, we are getting much more excited for what the singer/songwriter has in store.

“As of right this second my main focus is my new album,” Ne-Yo recently told Billboard’s The Juice. “It’ll be out probably towards the summertime, predominately R&B this time. I had a little stint with the dance music and all of that, which I had a good time with– and I love the audience, I love them for accepting me doing it –but I had to go home on this one. Had to take it back to my roots, and not to say that there won’t be one, maybe two songs on there that the dance crowd can get into, but the majority, the girth of the album, will be R&B.”

His last hit single, the dance based “Let Me Love You,” peaked at No. 6 on the Hot 100, and No. 4 on the US Hot Dance Club Songs and Mainstream Top 40 charts respectively, yet he has been itching to get back to R&B for the last couple releases.

“I’ve actually been wanting to go back to my R&B roots for two albums now but [I didn’t], just from the standpoint of being a pioneer, leading people into whatever the next thing was gonna be,” Ne-Yo admits. “There wasn’t a lot of R&B cats doing songs at 120 beats per minute before ‘Closer,’ which I take full credit and responsibility for. That’s all good, but it was an experiment. You experiment with something, if it goes good, cool, but you never forget where you come from and R&B is where I come from.”

Along with his own new music, Ne-Yo has been grooming a larger roster under his Compound Entertainment. “I have a few artists under me right now that I’m putting together. I pray that the stuff will be next year, but at the end of the day, until it’s right, I can’t put it out. It’s gotta be right. I try not to be a perfectionist, I try not to be too hard on them but at the end of the day, it’s gotta be right.”

These artist include Adrienne Bailon, RaVaughn, Candi Kush, Sonna Rele and Trevor Wesley; and he expects nothing less than a 100 percent from them. “If I know your potential I’m not gonna let you give me less than what I know you’re capable of,” he said.


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