Usher has finally announced his album title and is closing in on a release date. The singer's reps confirmed to MTV News that the new Usher album is named Here I Stand and will come out sometime in June.
Usher's return comes at a time when he may have more momentum on his side than any other performer in the business. His album's first single, "Love in This Club," is #1 in the country and made the third-largest jump to the top in the 50-year history of Billboard's Hot 100 chart. The record, which was just #51 last week, rose 50 spots. The single's video is being filmed in Atlanta next week.
The quick rise of "Love in This Club" — which features Young Jeezy — can partially be credited to producer Polow Da Don's triumphant club beat and his impetuous nature. First, he let Young Jeezy get on the track without Usher's permission; then, he leaked the song several weeks before it was supposed to be released.
"I actually leaked it. I'm the culprit," Polow told MTV News recently. "It's no secret. I told [Usher] when I saw him that I had to put my relationship on the line. 'If it fails, I know you probably gonna be mad at me. I know you probably won't f--- with me anymore.' I just felt like it was so much back-and-forth [between Usher and his record label]. I know this record is it! I'm out there, I know what it is. It got 600 spins in two days. That's great for a record label. Imagine how good that is for one person who leaked it? Radio stations were getting it off the Internet and playing it. Before I left Atlanta, they were playing it 10 times in a row.
"When I spoke to Usher, he was like, 'Maaan, why'd you do it?' " Polow added. "He knew I leaked the record; he didn't have to ask. I was like, 'What?' He said, 'You know you leaked the record.' But he was getting good calls on it too."
As for Jeezy's appearance on the song, Polow told Mixtape Monday it was perfect timing. The Snowman asked to be on the record, arriving to the studio minutes after Usher had left.
"I was like, 'Man, I don't know,' " Polow recalled of Jeezy's request. "He said, 'Just let me do the verse, dawg. If you don't wanna keep it, cool.' I played the version that night at [Jermaine Dupri's] club, and Usher went crazy. That was the first time he heard it."
In addition to Polow, the Here I Stand recording sessions have included collaborations with Dupri, Dre & Vidal, Timbaland, Ludacris and Nelly, with Sean "The Pen" Garrett and Lil Jon still scheduled to check in.