Missy Elliott Talks Writing Hit Songs For Aaliyah, Monica & Fantasia

The Hip Hop veteran is one of the most accomplished songwriters of all time.

(AllHipHop News) The Songwriters Hall of Fame announced its Annual Induction & Awards Gala will take place on June 13, 2019. Four-time Grammy winner Melissa "Missy" Elliott is one of the nominees for the class of '19.

Billboardcaught up with the musical legend to talk about her history of penning songs for some of the biggest names in music. She was asked which of her songwriting credits may surprise fans.

"Aaliyah songs have never been a surprise because people have always connected us. But I think Fantasia’s 'Free Yourself' is one. People from the era before know about Monica and 'So Gone.' But the new generation don’t know," stated Missy.

The Virginian, along with longtime collaborator Timbaland, was instrumental in helping to shape the sound of Aaliyah's classic 1996 album One In A Million. "So Gone" by Monica came out in 2003, and the track saw a resurgence in 2016 when the #SoFarGoneChallenge went viral. "Free Yourself" earned Fantasia two Grammy nominations.

"Fantasia’s such a strong singer, I wanted to make sure the music was live and not create a beat on a machine. I wanted to have bridges as well because songs don’t have bridges anymore," added Missy. "Then, of course, I’m famous for writing 'look if you do me wrong, I’m about to leave' kind of records [laughs]."

She continued, "And Fantasia was going through some things at the time. After Jazmine Sullivan, then 16 years old, demoed the song, Fantasia went in there and made it her own. She gave it that Fantasia church feeling mixed with some hood."

Additionally, Missy wrote records performed by Ginuwine, Mariah Carey, Whitney Houston, Beyoncé, Jennifer Hudson, Ciara, and more. Miss E also released six solo albums since her debut as a recording artist in 1997.

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