'Free' To Be Fantasia
Not many artists work on their debut album with producers on the level of Missy Elliott, Jermaine Dupri and Rodney Jerkins, but then again, being an "American Idol" has its privileges. For "Free Yourself," due this week via J Records/19 Recordings Ltd., "Idol" third season winner Fantasia recorded a mix of new and familiar songs with an impressive roster of music industry heavies.
Elliott produced and co-wrote the album's title track, "Good Lovin'" and "Selfish (I Want U 2 Myself)" and makes a guest appearance on the latter. The Underdogs also produced three cuts: "This Is Me," "Ain't Gon' Beg You" and "You Were Always on My Mind," the latter an adaptation of a song made famous by Willie Nelson.
Dupri produced "Got Me Waiting," while Jazze Pha was tapped for "Don't Act Right" and Jerkins was behind the boards for "It's All Good." Harold Lilly co-wrote and produced "Baby Mama." Soulshock & Karlin produced the set's first single, "Truth Is," which was recently serviced to U.S. radio stations for airplay consideration.
"Free Yourself" will also include the single "I Believe," released shortly after Fantasia won the third "Idol" competition in May. Co-written by former "American Idol" competitor Tamyra Gray, the track debuted at No. 1 on Billboard's Hot 100. Fantasia's rendition of the George and Ira Gershwin standard "Summertime," which she performed more than once during the Fox television series, also made the cut for the album.