Juicy J Talks Teaming Up With Usher for Hit ‘I Don’t Mind’ and Exec-Producing A$AP Rocky’s New Album

Juicy J Talks Teaming Up With Usher for Hit 'I Don't Mind' and Exec-Producing A$AP Rocky's New Album

Courtesy of Columbia Records

Juicy J, 39, is having a moment in the wake of his verse on Katy Perry’s “Dark Horse.” The rapper talks to Billboard about his success with Usher and Ne-Yo singles.

Dr. Luke co-produced Usher‘s “I Don‘t Mind” and Ne-Yo‘s “She Knows,” both hits that you rap on. Did he make those beats with you specifically in mind?

Yup. For the Usher record, Luke was trying to get me on it, but I was on tour. I was trying to go to a big studio to do it, but he was like, “You did ‘Bandz A Make Her Dance’ in a hotel room, right?” I was like, “Yeah — I did it in a closet.” So I went to a hotel room and recorded it on a cheap-ass $200 mic. Usher loved it, but later on, I went to a studio and redid it.

You‘re executive producer of A$AP Rocky‘s upcoming album. What‘s the extent of your input?

I was there from the beginning. Executive-producing, it means picking out the best songs, beats — making everything the best.

How far along are you on your mixtape Blue Dream & Lean 2?

It’s pretty much done. Lex Luger, Sonny Digital and Mike Will Made It produce on it, but I did a lot too. I’m going to give you that old Three 6 Mafia sound.

This story originally appeared in the Feb. 14 issue of Billboard.