Akon’s melodic thuggin’ on the airwaves has helped turn records by superstars like Gwen Stefani into harmonic hits.
Now the singer is moving into the realm of three of music’s most iconic legends: Madonna, Whitney Houston and Michael Jackson.
“Ooh, don’t even say his name twice,” ’Kon joked recently in Miami, referring to Jackson. “I’m not supposed to be talking about this!”
Although he wouldn’t disclose the specifics of his collaboration or collaborations with Jackson fearing the cold, swift sting of a slap from the King of Pop’s signature gloved hand (or, at least, legal action), he did let MTV News in on the experience.
“He’s incredible,” ’Kon testified of M.J. “He’s a genius. Just to be in the same room [with him], I felt everything I wanted to accomplish in life has been achieved. That aura … that’s how incredible that aura is. We about to shake the world up, man. You know how you be with somebody and you can’t even explain [the feeling]? I used to sit and think, ’How does somebody sell so many records and dominate a whole business genre, to a point [where] nobody can’t be a part of that without associating with you?’ The way he thinks … some artists think regional, some think national, I was thinking international. He thinks planets. It’s on another level.”
While ’Kon hasn’t been in the studio with Madonna yet, he said he expects to “shock the world” with her Madge-esty before the end of the year.
He did say that the tracks he records with Whitney Houston will reflect her real, personal life.
“I’m starting on Whitney’s project,” he said. “She’s the truth. She’s undeniable. She’s got so much to think about, sing about. This album is going to be one of the biggest albums she decided to put out. She has so much energy, so much happiness and sadness to incorporate into the album. Her voice is strong enough to deliver any message she wants to sing to the world. It’s outta here.”
However, it will be a while before we see another album from Akon himself — he estimates about 18 months. Plans call for three more singles to be released from his multiplatinum Konvicted LP.
The hitmaker said he does have a clear vision for the album: He wants it to be the soundtrack to a film he is spearheading inspired by the 2006 documentary “Cocaine Cowboys” (see “Mixtape Monday: 50 Cent, Akon Become Phone Friends; Wyclef Lifts T.I.’s Swagger”).
“It’s the biggest movie in history,” he said. “You thought ’Scarface’ was crazy, this movie is a true-life story based on Jon Roberts. He was the leading pilot for the Medellin Cartel [Colombian drug traffickers]. Everything about it is real except the characters. It’s about the war on drugs.”