He already scored with “Sexy Lady,” but that was last year. In a world where you can be hot one minute and virtually unknown the next, you’ve got to live up to — and hopefully exceed — the hype.
So as he unveiled tracks from his debut LP, Look What You Made Me, last week at Legacy Recording Studios in Manhattan, Yung Berg knew that the stakes were high. He’s kept his momentum rolling with a spot on Ray J’s “Sexy Can I” this year, and he credits Ray for the song that “changed his life.”
But Berg is out to prove he’s here to do more than churn out catchy hooks. As he unveiled his debut album, he boasted that at just 22, he has his own label (Yung Boss) and he writes, raps and produces music for himself and others.
“I don’t know nobody that’s signed to their own label,” he said. “Twenty-two years old and producing their own records with their tight buddies and [has] millions of downloads.”
He’s also revealing himself to be a singer. Many of the cuts on Look What You Made Me are slower and feature some of the most prominent names in the genre. Trey Songz lends his vocals on “One Night,” and Lloyd turns up on “Manager.” He even uses his next single, “The Business,” to get some shine for Casha, the first artist signed to his label.
“Its called ’One Night,’ ” he said of his collabo with Songz, which is a strong contender to be the single. “It’s produced by me and my boy J.F.K. It’s a real big record. One of them joints that’s about the ladies, but all my dudes gonna feel it. All the dudes gonna rock with it. It’s got a lot of live instrumentation. Me and the boy J. took it to a whole ’nother level, brought to you by [samples of] Wah Wah Watson. It’s a whole ’nother level showing that young-boss swag.”
But Berg mixes it up, seemingly having a song (and guest artist) for every occasion. Amerie helps out on the club banger “Get Your Number.” “Do That There” is his self-proclaimed “street anthem,” and the reggae-influenced “Victory Lap” features Eve and Collie Buddz. But Berg said his favorite song on the album may be “Outta Space,” an almost hypnotizing voice-box-drenched track reminiscent of songs by T-Pain and Lil Wayne.
“I’m an R&B dude at heart,” Berg revealed. “And I like rap. I started with [DMX]. My craft has evolved. I try to be a jack-of-all-trades where I can sing R&B and write R&B as well as me doing my rap thing and producing as well. I’m multitasking.”
But the party didn’t end after the new tracks got their world premiere. Berg worked the room, relaxed and in good spirits, soaking up the atmosphere and encouraging everyone to enjoy themselves (imploring guests to stick around and “enjoy the Hennessy”). The party continues when Look What You Made Me drops August 12.