Jay Sean, the best selling Urban artist in the history of the UK, is leaving Cash Money Records and independently releasing a mixtape, Mistress II, in November. Today Billboard premieres a new video for the song “Tears in the Ocean,” which will appear on the tape next month. Check it out below.
Sean only has kind words for his former label. “I had and still maintain a great relationship with Slim and Baby [CEOs of Cash Money],” he tells Billboard. “They believed in me and my talent and our partnership obviously garnered a lot of pop success.” But Sean wants to go in a different direction artistically. “It got to the point where I was chasing pop success and ‘the smash’ when really my heart wasn’t in it anymore,” he says. “That’s not why I got into this game.” (Cash Money is the second label that Jay Sean has left — he was on Virgin Records for a spell during the ’00s.)
“Tears in the Ocean” represents a return to Sean’s roots. He’s “always loved this style of melodic and emotional R&B.” The steamy track — co-written with Jared Cotter, who has helped Sean with “more than 30 songs” — sprang from a desire “to make music that meant something, that had substance.” He enlisted his family to help with the video: his brother filmed it and his wife co-produced it.
“When Sade drops a new album,” Sean points out, “you know she’s not going to be suddenly singing over a EDM beat produced by the hottest DJ at the time or jumpin’ on the bandwagon of what the latest ‘sound’ is.” “You should be able to do you,” he adds. “That’s what differentiates an artist from a singer.”