Usher Reveals All
With a career spanning over three decades, nearly 50 million albums sold and still only 32-years-old one would have thought that talented R’n’B star UsherRaymond would be wanting to slow down a little. However, when Ahlan! editor Nathan Kay caught up with the American star this weekend he revealed that he’s loving his career more than ever before and can’t wait to get stuck into his seventh studio album. What’s more, The Grammy award winner enjoys focusing on being a mentor to forever growing starlet Justin Bieber and most importantly his own sons. Despite his need to nurture others, Usher is still very much on the lookout for that special someone and is busy concentrating on his future in the music industry. And, with his OMG tour in full swing – coming to Dubai on March 10 – Usher opens up about life on tour, his wish list for that important other half and reveals what he thinks about Gaga...
During the interview, I was surprised at how down-to-earth and intelligent Usher was, so when I congratulated him on winning two Grammys, for best contemporary R’n’B album and best male R’n’B vocal performance, at this year’s ceremony, I wasn’t surprised by his humble response, “Thanks, I’m really happy with the year that I’m having so far, I’m a little bit disappointed that Justin Bieber didn’t win best new artist, I thought it was an incredible moment to recognise what he had been doing.”
It’s nice for me to hear that Usher has reached a certain level in his own career and is able to step back and look at things from Bieber’s perspective. Justin is someone that Usher has taken under his wing and wants as much success for his career as his own. At this point, we must not forget that Usher was introduced to the music industry by Diddy who took him to all night wild parties in New York and LA. So, does Usher think that Justin will go the same way or even go off the rails? “I don’t see him going off the rails, I see a career that will continue to evolve, I’ll continue as a mentor and offer Justin advice and as he grows as an artist and as a person he will find incredible music, incredible cultural experiences depending on what he’s exposed to and he will continue to be a positive role model.” Usher insists. So, has this need to nurture someone younger come from the role that he now has as a father? “I love being a dad. They’re so young so I’m starting off by exposing them to art and exposing them to life. I hope that they would have travelled all the way around the World by the age of five.” Usher says.
“I know they will see things that will potentially inspire them so that they can do something incredible with their lives. I’m not going to force them to be artists but of course if they have the talent I will nurture it, if they want to be athletes I’ll nurture it, if they want to be doctors, whatever they naturally gravitate to I will encourage it.”
Usher is currently a single man, His present love is definitely his career but with any relationship it could all become a little tiresome. “I’m not tired of it at all.” Usher quips. “I am really loving this tour because before It has just been about work, work, work and this time I have really been able to take time to enjoy my stops. I’m really looking forward to coming to Dubai for the first time to enjoy the sites and hopefully taking in some of the culture.” He added. And, with his current album Raymond v. Raymond selling like hot cakes he is already raring to go with the seventh, “I’ll be working on my album in the middle of this year, returning to America.’ He says, but insists that he won’t stop enjoying time with his friends and family. And, boy does he enjoy himself, recent reports suggest that he had been a guest at risque burlesque club ‘The Box’ which has just opened in London. It has has seen the likes of Prince Harry and Emma Watson attend, “It was a unique experience, let’s put it like that.” Usher joked. “It was a great club, the music was cool and the performers were pretty unique.”
So, with all this work, touring and boys nights out will Usher ever find time to find a Mrs Raymond who will accept his lifestyle?
“I don’t have another half right now. I’m single but I would hope that any woman that I’m with would be open to things, and respect that. I hope that a woman would be open minded. I always have my eyes open for the ladies.” He adds. Speaking of open minded ladies, Lady Gaga continues to ride high in the charts, so will Usher start to mix-up his performances to rival hers? “I think who she is as an artist is her own artistic interpretation so as long as the fans are loving it then why shouldn’t anyone else listen to her music and get into her story.”
“She’s a one of a kind artist and has done well to make herself the topic of conversation. We all have a different way of articulating ourselves, wardrobe is a part of what I do but I wouldn’t go as far as Lady Gaga. Even though there are times when I have thought about putting on a meat suit.” He joked.