Jermaine Dupri made the most of some recent time in the studio with Jay-Z, having Hov lay guest vocals for an Usher track and a Mariah Carey remix.
The Carey remix is a reworking of "Bye Bye," the second single from her E=MC2 LP. On the original, Mariah sings about losing family members, but JD hints that the remix will be more upbeat.
"The remix for the Mariah record is crazy," Dupri said Friday (April 18). "Young Hov and Mariah crank it up, and myself, JD — a.k.a. Barry Bonds — cleans up."
When asked if it was awkward to remix such a melancholy song, Dupri said we'll forget about the sad sentiments.
Just last week, Jermaine leaked footage online, in which Jay-Z paid a visit to the studio after the Atlanta stop of the Heart of the City Tour. Jay, Usher, Dupri and Anthony Hamilton were seen laughing it up and promising a hit record.
"It's a Jay-Z and Usher record produced by me," the mogul said. "It's about their lives right now. They talk about their past relationships and how they are where they are now."
"The Best Thing" will be featured on Usher's May 27 release, Here I Stand.
"It's cool," the producer said. "They not really sappy. It's not a sappy song. Usher's album is more about teaching men [that] at some point, you gotta grow up. And growing up is respecting a woman and having a woman in your life and taking care of your woman. That's his definition of growing up. A lot of other n---as have a different definition. That's his definition of becoming a man, taking care of home. This song is kinda like that. It's a responsible type of record. When that girl you settled down with, she leaves you. You realize you lost the best thing that ever happened to you.
"The hardest part about this Usher album is that I'm not involved in the record-company process," he added. "This is the first album where we're not in charge of who picks the singles. So I can't speak on that part of it. I would hope it would be the next single. It feels like it should be. Usher left the studio saying it was the next single. But he also told y'all weeks ago [that] 'Moving Mountains' was the next single. Lyric-wise, hearing Jay-Z say what he's saying and Usher saying what he's saying, people wanna hear this. I could tell you that. N---as wanna hear that."
Another Dupri remix on the horizon is O'Neal McKnight's "Check Your Coat." No, Jay-Z does not appear, but Greg Nice raps on the song. Dupri even threw his own flavor on there as well.