Jesse McCartney Celebrates New LP, Future David Cook Collabo

May 22, 2008 6:51 PM ET

Jesse McCartney is known for being a child actor, pop dreamboat and consistently the most celebrated person at the Kids Choice Awards. But he's also half the brains behind last year's highest-grossing song in the U.K., Leona Lewis' sultry ballad "Bleeding Love," and the owner of two Number One singles, a platinum record and a rack of Radio Disney trophies that would make Miley Cyrus jealous. Not bad for a dude who started out balancing soap opera roles with a tap-dancing boy band (Wiki search: Dream Street. Hilarious.) Rock Daily stopped by McCartney's release party for Departure at New York's Marquee last night and learned McCartney has good reason to be psyched that David Cook won American Idol. "Ryan [Tedder of OneRepublic] and I are planning to write some songs with him for his album," he said. So does he have any regrets about giving "Bleeding Love" (which he also penned with Tedder) away? "No, no," he said. "I'm so happy for Leona. She deserves it. There are really no bad feelings."

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Song Stories

“Try a Little Tenderness”

Otis Redding | 1966

This pop standard had been previously recorded by dozens of artists, including by Bing Crosby 33 years before Otis Redding, who usually wrote his own songs, cut it. It was actually Sam Cooke’s 1964 take, which Redding’s manager played for Otis, that inspired the initially reluctant singer to take on the song. Isaac Hayes, then working as Stax Records’ in-house producer, handled the arrangement, and Booker T. and the MG’s were the backing band. Redding’s soulful version begins quite slowly and tenderly itself before mounting into a rousing, almost religious “You’ve gotta hold her, squeeze her …” climax. “I did that damn song you told me to do,” Redding told his manager. “It’s a brand new song now.”

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