Sisqo: Nothing To Prove, Pt 2

AHHA: So what’s your current hairstyle?

Sisqo: Well, I’m a blond guy. It almost seems like attack of the clones [with today's singers]. After Usher’s album, man, everybody had the same hairdo. I didn’t want like new people to hear my music and get me confused with them. I figured I’d be the blond guy.

They all have the same haircut though right? Chris Brown, Usher, Ne-Yo, they all got the same haircut. Even Bow Wow cut his cornrows off. Nobody has an original style, so I do my best to keep my [own] style in tact because in my personal opinion it sets me apart from other R&B artists out there, because you have different people that listen to different types of music and may not know one artist from the next. They’ll definitely be able to pick me out of a lineup.

AHHA: Speaking of Chris Brown…in a dance-off between you and him, who would win?

Sisqo: Chris Brown, man he can dance but…tall people look different from short people dancing, you ever realize that? It’s just different. The way he would hit a move and the way I would hit a move would look completely different. I guess it’s really up to your preference – what you prefer. His style is closer to what I think Usher would do. But then you look at like me and Omarion – our dance styles are pretty similar. I’m a little taller than him, but we’re around the same height. Chris Brown and Usher are around the same height, so if you notice their style is similar.

If you had to ask me who was the best dancer out of all of us, I’d have to go with Omarion. He’s serious; he’s smooth. But like I said, I think it’s all in the category. The difference between me and Omarion is his performances are focused more specifically on dance, whereas I sing and dance simultaneously. I can’t even use those little head mics that they use. Every time I try to use them it explodes. Maybe my voice is too strong for those things. I gotta go old school. Like if you notice, Beyoncé doesn’t really use that mic either. We take ya to church. [laughs]

AHHA: Are there any circumstances to which a man should wear a thong?

Sisqo: No. No, and again I say, no! See, I had a date tonight and you just ruined it for me.

AHHA: Which actor would you cast to play you in the story of your life?

Sisqo: Me! It’d have to be me. There’s just too much that went on and so many dynamics to my personality. People don’t really know everything about me. I don’t know. Maybe down the road. Especially with this project, being the leader in the digital revolution, there’s gonna be a lot more information and people can be a lot more personable and learn a lot more about me.

Funny you should ask that because we’re actually in talks of a book and hopefully soon a movie, kinda autobiography like what 50 [Cent] did. There’s a lot of parts to my story and personality that a lot of people don’t know about. I’m like from one extreme to the next – from Hip-Hop to rockstar.

AHHA: How do you feel about Tyrese rapping?

Sisqo: Man, Tyrese is a friend of mine. [laughs] I haven’t even heard him rap. He’s been pretty consistent with quality product, so I’m sure it’s gonna be pretty good. As it relates to actors, because R&B artists turn actors, I can honestly say in my personal opinion he’s the best R&B star turned actor. Hopefully, I’ll get my [acting career] up to his, because he’s pretty serious with that. As it related to the music, I’ve gotta hear it. On the R&B side he’s still consistent and I like his music. Me personally I would never rap. Ever.

AHHA: Ever?

Sisqo: Ever!

AHHA: [laughs]

Sisqo: I can say though that I think I started that whole sing-rap thing. Like Beyoncé’s doing on her new album, I think I started that. Like in “How Deep” and “Thong Song” where it’s kind of almost like I’m rapping. It’s hard to differentiate and it’s hard for people, because a lot of rappers are trying to sing and a lot of singers are trying to rap. I’ll tell you real simple how you differentiate between a rapper from a singer: for the singer, every word they sing is a note. You can write it out to the music. When rappers rap, most of the time you can’t write their words into music. Their music is music, but their words aren’t music. All of my words are music, like someone in a band or in an orchestra can literally play the notes that I sing.

AHHA: That’s a good breakdown.

Sisqo: It’s confusing right? ‘Cause sometimes 50 Cent be sounding like he’s singing. [laughs] Sometimes people think I’m a rapper like, “Oh Sisqo the rapper?” I’m like, “No!” I like to think of my self more like how Jay-Z does. His music has been consistent over the past 10 years, and he never sings. He’s a rapper; he takes it to heart. The quintessential rapper, he doesn’t want it confused so he stays in that lane. I’m the same way. I don’t want people to get confused with what I do. I sing, I don’t rap. I have a pretty ill rap flow when I sing though. [laughs]

AHHA: Nas says Hip-Hop is dead. With the constant filtering of Hip-Hop into R&B, is R&B dead too?

Sisqo: I wouldn’t say dead, I would say it’s a little wayward. It kind of went a little left. It’s like the big distribution companies, they keep going through this cookie cutter process of going to who’s supposed to be the biggest producer at the time. Making collaborations with rappers, and at the end of the day the artist is totally lost. I don’t wanna say any names, but some artists have songs with specific rappers and specific producers, and if you took the producer and rapper away, and the artist had to do it on his own, you probably wouldn’t even like the song.

That’s an interesting point you brought up because I don’t have any cameos on my album. Like you said, R&B is so confused right now, people don’t even know where it is. It’s like who’s the artist? When you get Pharrell to do the track or Lil’ Jon to do the track and then so and so is rapping on it, it’s like where’s the artist in that equation? Like do you even care? If you took the artist out would you care? You’d still rock to the beat and then here comes the rap.

For the new younger generation listening to the radio now, hopefully my music will give them another avenue, something else to listen to. I’m trying to up the game, man. Make it tough. As an artist, it’s my responsibility to try to continue to grow and push my peers as well beyond this cookie cutter [sound]. It’s not fair to the consumer. Think about it, when so and so does a song with such and such producer and such and such rappin’ on it, most of the time when they perform the rapper never comes out. You get cheated; it’s like you’re sitting there wondering if they’re gonna come out and then somebody who carries the bags comes out and says the rap. [laughs] They’re trying to dupe the public like you’re not smart enough to know the hit was all these pieces of the puzzle put together.

How about the artists? It’s time for the artists to step up and be artists again. Not taking anything away from the producers, but man, nowadays the artists are like hoes. The producer is the pimp and the artist is thrown away and the producer is still eatin’. The artist is like broke and has to turn in his rented mansion and turn in his rented car. I’m not playing that game. I’ve got a young kid, 19-years-old, just came out of an Art School and making a few beats of the same quality as the biggest Hip-Hop producers doin’ it right now.

AHHA: What is this producer’s name?

Sisqo: His name is Brian Turner. He produced my single “Who’s Ur Daddy?” and another single on my album called “2 A.M.” Very talented kid. The funny part is I had records from both Pharrell and Timbaland, but they didn’t make the album. We didn’t really have an opportunity to work. Those guys are really busy, and a lot of times they give you like some music and it’s just kinda ok, but once they hop in the video with you, you duping the audience into believing it’s hot, when it’s just ok. It ain’t really that hot.

Not taking anything away from what they do; we just didn’t have an opportunity to work, like really go in as a respected artist and a respected producer and come up with the best we could come up with. It was like, “Oh here’s a track with my name on it, so it’s gonna blow up.” I’m like, “Eh, well my name’s on it too, so I could just go get shorty over here. [laughs] I appreciate it, but I don’t need you in my video buddy.”

AHHA: What other producers do you have on the album?

Sisqo: A lot of new cats; I did a lot of production. We have another young cat, his name is Dudley. He wrote this incredible ballad called, “The One.” I did a song called “Sexual” with the Beat Bangers. None of the really high profile guys. Now if any of the high profile guys came to me with a tailor-made song for me, it’s like a mutual respect like, “Hey man, I wrote a song that I wrote for you”, then I’d be more than willing. Just don’t reach into the bag and throw me a CD - and because we both got star power it’s supposed to be hot. That’s not music; that’s something else.

AHHA: Nowadays with record sales being so low, the industry gets excited over pushing 70,000 units, a big change from Dru Hill’s sales. Are you concerned at all with your album’s success given those odds?

Sisqo: No not at all, because we’re still multi-platinum. Just in 2005, we released The Best of Dru Hill and we sold three million. I can attribute that to our fans being out there supporting us, anybody that hears the music, apparently they like it because we’re still selling the millions. We don’t really focus on the numbers, we focus on the music and the performance and the numbers just happen.

People appreciate when you put time and effort into what you do. It’s been happening a lot with movies and television too. I went to go see that Eragon movie and it was terrible. I walked out. They fronted with all of these billboards and tell you it’s hot and it’s really not. It’s a cookie cutter, and I think the reason why people are selling less albums is because consumers are fed up. You spend $20 on a CD and there’s like two songs on there. It brings us right back to the beginning with the digital revolution. I’m not gonna force my album on people. We’re going single by single. I have that power now that I can really release as many singles as I would like.

AHHA: So what’s the most annoying song out about a dance move?

Sisqo: You’re not gonna get me with that one. [laughs] I ain’t touchin’ that with a ten foot pole.

AHHA: What would you say is the worst part about being famous?

Sisqo: I can’t go nowhere! I’m flattered that even when I haven’t been in the public eye people still want to take photos and they notice me no matter what I have on. I can have a hat on or a hoodie and they still recognize me. I’m flattered, but man, I can’t go nowhere. I want a disguise like Michael [Jackson]. We were looking for disguises, but they didn’t work. They still noticed me! But…I’m flattered.