Michael Jackson Taps Rodney Jerkins, David Foster To Produce Next Record

After a year of scouting locations for a potential hotel resort and gambling casino, singer Michael Jackson has resurfaced in a Los Angeles studio to cut a new album with several producers, including David Foster and Rodney Jerkins.

Foster produced Jackson's album of dance mixes, "Blood on the Dance Floor," as well as Dru Hill's recent release, "Enter the Dru," while Jerkins produced the Grammy-winning Brandy and Monica duet, "The Boy Is Mine."

In an interview with MTV News, Jerkins said that the Jackson tunes he's heard for the project so far are "totally next level."

"He's incredible," Jerkins said of working with the pop icon. "He just sat down and said, 'I want you to give everything you got. Reach for something deeper. Go for it. Anything that you've never done before. Do it again. Do it now.' And he said, 'Just go. Just go.'"

"And I went

in the studio," he continued, "and in six days I did 14 tracks. So when he came back, I had these 14 tracks waiting for him. And he was like 'Wow.' So I'm like, this is Michael Jackson. I've dreamed about working with Michael and now I'm working with him" [28.8 RealVideo].

Jackson hopes to have a new solo album out later this year, but remains non-committal about appearing on a Jackson Family reunion album being put-together by his brothers.