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Rivers Cuomo on Adam Lambert Team-Up, Favorite Pop Stars

November 2, 2009 6:06 PM ET

Tucked in the middle of Adam Lambert's For Your Entertainment track list, squeezed between songs written by Lady Gaga and producer Max Martin, there's a tune called "Pick U Up," credited to a surprising name: Weezer's Rivers Cuomo. "He has the kind of voice I convince myself that I have," Cuomo tells Rolling Stone in our new issue. The team-up is just the latest in an ongoing stream of collaborations that began with the hootenannies Cuomo hosted on Weezer's 2008 tour.

As Cuomo started to move into a poppy direction — he tells RS he sought out everyone from Dr. Luke to Aly and A.J. — another of his collaborators, Butch Walker, told him, "I want 'My Name Is Jonas, not Nick Jonas.' "

Rivers Cuomo's Surf Wax Adventure: photos from the Weezer frontman's RS shoot.

The results of Cuomo's sonic exploration are all over Raditude (read the RS review here). Weezer recruited Lil Wayne for "Can't Stop Partying," though the two parties never met: "He snuck into the studio while I was away," Cuomo tells RS. The All-American Rejects' Tyson Ritter co-wrote "Put Me Back Together," and told RS, "If I die tomorrow, I'll have one of the biggest shit-eating grins on my face."

Cuomo has also spent in the studio penning a song with Katy Perry, Sugar Ray (the band's recent Music for Cougars featured Weezer's "Love is the Answer," a song now bound for Raditude) and Shirley Manson ("It was a master class in pop writing," Manson tells RS). "I really like all the female pop stars," Cuomo tells Rolling Stone. "Miley Cyrus is my favorite."

For more on the birth of Raditude and how Cuomo managed to start a family and commune with the universe without losing his geek-rock mojo, check out the feature in our new issue, on stands now.

Related Stories:
Weezer Riff Like Metal Gods, Party With a Hip-Hop Star at Tour Launch
Working With Weezer: All-American Rejects on "Raditude" Sessions
Weezer Say Lil Wayne "Tapped Into the Spirit" of "Raditude" Track

To read the new issue of Rolling Stone online, plus the entire RS archive: Click Here

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Song Stories

“San Francisco Mabel Joy”

Mickey Newbury | 1969

A country-folk song of epic proportions, "San Francisco Mabel Joy" tells the tale of a poor Georgia farmboy who wound up in prison after a move to the Bay Area found love turning into tragedy. First released by Mickey Newbury in 1969, it might be more familiar through covers by Waylon Jennings, Joan Baez and Kenny Rogers. "It was a five-minute song written in a two-minute world," Newbury said. "I was told it would never be cut by any artist ... I was told you could not use the term 'redneck' in a song and get it recorded."

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