By DJ Buck

The Hot Morning Crew were backstage at Jingle Jam 12 and met up with recent GRAMMY nominee, and one of the hottest acts in the game today, Ne-Yo.  The R&B superstar talked about his GRAMMY experiences thus far, and how he plans to follow up on R.E.D.

Ne-Yo was recently nominated for “Best Dance Recording” for “Let’s Go” (with Calvin Harris) at last week’s GRAMMY Awards Nominations concert.   “I feel good,” said Ne-Yo on his fourth GRAMMY nod.  “The GRAMMYs, that’s a big one.”  Since 2007, Ne-Yo has been nominated thirteen times, taking home the award three times.  “Two of them are at [my] house,” the singer explained.“The first one ever is with my mom. She’s not giving it back. I tried to get it back when I moved into my house and she was like ‘no!’” he joked.

The singer attributes much of his success to those around him, including his assistants, production team, and his nutritionist. “[They] don’t stand behind me, but beside me,” he said humbly. “It’s a hand full of people that make sure the Ne-Yo that you see is the Ne-Yo that you see. By no means is it a one man show. It’s all about the team.”

Ne-Yo has been busy lately, going from the GRAMMY Nominations concert one night, to Jingle Jam the next, to performing on SNL over the weekend.  “It’s actually one of the more easygoing shows that I have done,” Ne-Yo said of his first SNL experience.  Although the artist stated that he enjoys acting, he wants to stay focused on music. “If I could find something where I could do that and stick with music, yea. I don’t know if I could take a year, two years out to just do movies.” Ne-Yo also pointed out that any free time he gets he wants to spend with his family. “I would be with my kids.  Hands down.”

Ne-Yo tore up the stage at Jingle Jam, performing some of his old favorites to the delight of the audience.  Some fans have questioned Ne-Yo’s recent jump from R&B to a more Pop sound. Ne-Yo answered his critics stating that he has never changed…  What becomes a hit is all up to the listeners.  “If I put out a R&B song and a pop song at the same time, and the pop song does better than the R&B song, what does that mean?  That means the pop fans got behind that song more than the R&B fans got behind that song,” he explained.  “If you get R.E.D.,which is in stores now, you will see that the album is literally split right down the middle. One half is R&B, one half is pop. If the pop songs are doing better than the R&B songs and they both come out at the same damn time, how can you blame that on me?It’s up to y’all. Y’all gotta call into the radio station and request the record… y’all gotta go out there and get the album and the concert ticket. If y’all are gonna stand behind this R&B, your damn right it is gonna be hot.”

Ne-Yo is already working on his follow up to R.E.D. Although he gave no hints on what we can expect genre-wise, he assured us it will be quality as always. “With this next album I am just going to go in and do whatever I feel like. Whatever comes out, comes out. The music is who I am,” he said.  “I am never gonna give anything to you that is crap… I am always gonna give you quality. It will just be quality of whatever genre I feel like. At the end of the day I don’t do music for white people, black people, whatever.  I do music for people who enjoy music.”

–Tyler Roman, Hot 93.7/ Hartford


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