Introducing Claude Kelly: The Real Deal and More
By Souleo. When it comes to songwriters they rarely come in a more talented and versatile form than Claude "Studio Beast" Kelly. In 2009 Billboard Magazine ranked him #14 on the Hot 100 Songwriters for 2009, as he capped the year off by writing hits for everyone from Miley Cyrus' "Party in the USA," to Whitney Houston's "Like I Never Left." JimmyJazz.com hit the studio booth with Claude to discover what it was like to write for Whitney Houston, Christina Aguilera and Fantasia and to get his take on the race politics of being a multi-genre songwriter.
On Whitney Houston's generosity of spirit:
I was definitely nervous going into the studio with her. You don't want to piss her off or not do a great record. She is one of the most real people and she is not threatened by others. She is so larger than life and super nice and supportive.
On Christina Aguilera's unique creative process:
She is the biggest perfectionist and professional. She knows her voice really well and challenged me to expand my creativity. She is very visual and collected pictures and art that reminds her of a feeling. So we went about creating songs to describe those looks. We are both visual people so we clicked right away.
On Fantasia's emotional performances:
I've never seen a singer pour so much heart into a song. For her new album she sang "Love Ain't Supposed To," which is a break-up song. She closed her eyes in the studio and by the end she was crying and going through it. She is so amazing.
On race relations in music:
Music is very segregated. I think it stems from the categorization for awards and there's always been segregation in America. The internet is changing things since kids now have access to songs they would not have if only left up to radio. I hope that my career will show that it is possible to do all kinds of music no matter where you come from, your financial background or skin color.
For more information please visit: