Usher has been on quite the run lately and that train isn’t stopping anytime soon. The eight-time Grammy-winning singer is currently wrapping up his hit residency in Las Vegas after a brief hiatus in September for a residency in Paris and gearing up for a new era with his upcoming studio album Coming Home .
After 30 years as an R&B mainstay, Usher is taking this time to reflect on what lies ahead as he enters a new era, one he calls his “magnum opus.”
“[Vegas] brought everyone together,” Usher told me on the inaugural episode of “I Know That’s Right,” HuffPost’s podcast about entertainment news and internet culture. He said his residency and these past few years have put him on a clear path to being able to tackle one thing that’s been on his bucket list for a while: a Super Bowl halftime performance.
“I’m so lucky that I got that call from Jay-Z that it was time, and of course, I was ready and I’m ready for it,” the “My Way” singer said. “I can tell you that you should expect a party, a party of a lifetime for those people who cannot be here with me for this show. I will celebrate for them. … We will celebrate 30 years of a career in which I stand. I’m going to celebrate because music has been this connective tissue between me and people, because for every experience I’ve had, I’ve put it into music and maybe that’s given us something to cry about, that’s given us something to be vulnerable and transparent to.”
During the interview, Usher took time to honor the life of his friend and drummer Aaron Spears, who died last month at the age of 47. He also emphasized respecting the lives of his children. The musician has partnered with Sanofi to encourage families to test early for type 1 diabetes with The 1 Pledge. His child, who he asked not to be identified, was diagnosed with the disorder at age 6. It was a shock for Usher, but he said he wants to be more vulnerable about their story to help other families.
“If I had that opportunity, I would feel really better prepared,” he said. “The biggest preparation is the fact that I was available. I love my babies. I love my children and I want them to live extraordinary lives that thrive and allow them to do whatever they want to do, and give them the tools they need to do it. So this journey begins with informing yourself.”
Usher gets candid about fatherhood, his residency, the 20th anniversary of “Confessions” and his upcoming album (out Feb. 11, Super Bowl Day) in this intimate interview.
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