While most of us are cracking up about Lady Gaga’s wacky attire, Akon is laughing straight to the bank. The pop superstar is signed to Akon’s KonLive imprint and her success has made a fortune for the Senagalese singer turned mogul. Pop the hood for Akon’s words!
“She’s pretty much retired me,” Akon said. “She was definitely a blessing. She came at the right moment. I’m glad I believed in her, boy. That goes to show you, if you believe in something strong enough, it will pay off.”
Gaga was dropped from at least one major record label. She was available just as Akon closed his deal with Interscope chairman Jimmy Iovine.
“And I was like ‘Yo, I want to sign that right there. She needs to be under my umbrella,’” Akon said. “Jimmy was like ‘Yeah, whatever you want. Take her. Let’s get it done.’ And she just blossomed into a super megastar, man.”
In addition to Gaga, Akon’s next album will also include contributions from Dutch dance DJ-producer Chuckie and David Guetta, the French producer behind The Black Eyed Peas’ smash “I Gotta Feeling” who collaborated with Akon on “Sexy …”
“Actually that’s what excited me more about her [Gaga] because you’ve got some straight hardcore hip-hop guys actually moving into the dance realm,” Akon said. “And that’s shocking. When you’ve got someone like Dr. Dre about to do a dance record … that’s crazy.”
Akon’s next project is due out later this year:
“It’s on a whole ‘nother level,” he said. “We named it ‘Stadium,’ because it’s one of those records. We’re going to do straight stadium tours overseas with this record.”
He also addressed past tour mishaps, explaining, “I forgot how popular I am. I started to realize the kind of arena that I’m playing in. Before, you could just do whatever you want to do onstage and it’s entertaining. Now, it’s not quite entertaining.”
As for what’s next for Akon? He has his sights set on film.
“I just want it to be a movie with a great story, great cinematography, to a point where people are like ‘Wow, that was great. I didn’t expect that from him.’”