'Turn' Me Loose
R&B artist Brian McKnight collaborates with such guest vocalists as Nelly, Carl Thomas, Fabolous, Tyrese, and Kirk Franklin on "U-Turn," due this week from Universal/Motown. The first single from the new set, "Shoulda, Woulda, Coulda," is No. 54 this week on Billboard's Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Singles & Tracks chart. "U-Turn" is the follow-up to 2001's "Superhero," which debuted at No. 7 on The Billboard 200 and has sold more than 870,000 copies in the U.S., according to Nielsen SoundScan.
Other tunes appearing on "U-Turn" include "All Night Long" with Nelly; the title song, featuring Fabolous; and "Good Enough" with Joe, Carl Thomas, Tyrese, and Tank. "I was really feeling on Quincy Jones'  'The Secret Garden,'" McKnight says of the inspiration behind the latter cut. "What if I came up with a song like that with younger guys and me as the elder statesman? It's a good batting lineup with Joe leading off, then Carl, Tyrese, Tank, and myself."
Even in an increasingly hip-hop dominated music scene, McKnight remains confident in the fortunes of his new album. "For those of us who sing, it's hard," he concedes. "But I'm still a traditional person: You have to get radio to get success. If I want to become obsolete, I'll go against what's out there. I try to write songs and tempos that play on radio. I'm always cognizant of what's going on. So 'U-Turn' has hip-hop, it has R&B ... it has something for everyone."