Cutting-edge technology makes the human touch -- and sound -- even more vital, writes the singer, who releases new album 'M.E.' on Sept. 30.
Ever since technology gave us the ability to put an endless number of tracks on a recording and to manipulate a voice into perfect pitch, the sound of popular music has changed. It has affected nearly every genre of music. All of this finally hit home earlier this year when I was recording my latest album, This Is M.E., my first on my very own independent label, ME Records. (I'm very "me, me, me" these days.)
With the guidance of my brand-new managers, Steven Greener and Larry Mestel of Primary Wave, I found myself in the studio creating music with their client, a fiery young hip-hop producer named Rocc Starr, who has Chris Brown, Usher and Jennifer Lopez, to name just a few, on his list of productions. It was one of the funnest, funkiest days I’ve ever had in the studio. Rocc's massive beats and my crunchy Les Paul guitar made for a perfect collision of hip-hop and rock'n'roll. It was thrilling to have my vocals guided by a hip-hop master. My favorite moment was watching Rocc move alongside the engineer so he could take a look at the computer screen. "Hey, where's the Auto-Tune?" he asked.