Rodney Jerkins, the producer who has nourished Destiny's Child, Brandy and Mya over the years, has a new group to help: the victims of Hurricane Katrina.
Jerkins is putting together a benefit single featuring Ciara, Chris Brown, Ray J, George Clinton, Mary Mary and BeBe Winans, among others.
"People think 'cause the hurricane happened three months ago that it's over," Jerkins said at last week's American Music Awards (see [article id="1514422"]"Will Smith Beats 50 Cent, Kelly Rowland Flies Solo At American Music Awards"[/article]). "It's not over. People still don't have homes, people still don't have clothes and I feel it's our obligation as people to help and I'm being one of the ones to initiate it by doing a song that's gonna raise a lot of money for these people."
The song, due in the coming weeks, is a cover of Sister Sledge's 1979 disco smash "We Are Family."
"I love the original so much, it's so classic to me, but of course my beat is gonna be more me," Jerkins said. "I'm keeping the basics of it and vocally you have to let people really be themselves, like there's the template of the song, but I'm still letting the artist be the artist."
Along with the tribute single, Jerkins is keeping busy as usual, making music for the likes of Kelly Rowland, gospel singer Joy Enriquez and Mary J. Blige.
"I did a song [for Mary] called 'Enough Crying' that's amazing," he said (see [article id="1507040"]"Mary J. Blige Gets Over Herself With The Breakthrough"[/article]). "It's probably gonna come out for New Year's as a single."
Jerkins, who is currently riding the R&B charts with Ray J's "One Wish" (see [article id="1499763"]"Brandy's Brother Ray J Tells Ladies To 'Quit Actin' "[/article]), says he'll also re-team with Beyoncé when she starts work on her second solo album next year.