American R&B/pop musician NE-YO is a perfect show of how Michael Jackson has inspired musicians of this generation. First known to be a stellar songwriter, NE-YO has gone on to producer, perform and sell record shows allover the world making him one of the most iconic and multi-talented artistes of this era. His debut album In My Own Words is credited to have birthed R&B classics like Sexy Love and So Sick.
Shaffer Chimere Smith better known as NE-YO is a world celebrated R&B/pop singer, songwriter, record producer, dancer and actor.
Starting out in the industry as the most sought after songwriter, NE-YO has been known to write hit songs for global pop and R&B stars including Beyonce, Rihanna, Mario and Jennifer Hudson. NE-YO’s was Let Me Love You - a song he wrote for the R&B crooner Mario back in 2004. This is what would later land NE-YO a lucrative recording deal with Def Jam.
NE-YO was ranked as 57th Artist of the 2000s decade. His album Year of the Gentleman was nominated as the Best Contemporary R&B Album and Album of the year at the 2009 Grammy Awards.
He looked up to Michael Jackson and had started working on projects with him before his untimely passing. Till date NE-YO has never given anyone songs he’d written for Michael Jackson. He says he does not know what to do with the songs as he felt like selling them to another artiste or releasing them as his own would be disrespectful for Jackson’s legacy.
Both of NE-YO’s parents were musicians. He joined an R&B quartet called Envy under the stage name GoGo before finally settling for NE-YO and embarking on a solo career. When GoGo parted ways in 2000 he took up song writing, with Marques Houston re-recording one of his then unreleased song. The rest is history. NE-YO has also written songs for Mary J. Blige, Monica, Alexandra Burke, Cheryl Cole, Willow Smith, Christina Milan.
NE-YO loves nothing more than spending time with his two kids Madeline and Mason. He also now owns a production label called Compound.