Sean Kingston sticks with his original, party sound with his third album, “Back 2 Life,” released this week.
His single, a hip-hop, R&B track “Beat It,” features Chris Brown and Wiz Khalifia. He and Wale team up for the bouncy “Seasonal Love.” 2 Chainz guests on the mid-tempo ballad “Shotta Luv.” Busta Rhymes displays his West Indian roots on their Caribbean anthem “How We Survive.”
Kingston discusses the collaborations during an interview with Yahoo! Music’s The Aftermath.
He also explains that the album name and title track, “Back 2 Life,” were inspired by his survival of a 2011 near-fatal water-skiing accident.
“The intro to my album is called ‘Back 2 Life,'” he said. “I felt like I couldn’t jump from the accident and go right into a song just about clubs or just wilding out. I felt like a lot of people want to know. It was a life or death situation, so I felt like my first song had to tell a little story.”
Kingston is grateful he survived. “God gave me a second chance at life,” he said. “I’m back. I’m healthy. I’m 100 percent good. … For all the people who was concerned, and for all the people who showed their love and support, I definitely appreciate all my fans for sure.”
“Back 2 Life” was also inspired by Soul II Soul’s song “Back To Life (How Ever Do You Want Me)” that is sampled on the track. Though the British R&B group’s original was released in 1989, the year before Kingston was born, the 23-year-old singer said he is a big fan of the classic hit.
“I was born in 1990,” he said. “I love that song. That’s why I sampled it. … It’s like when it’s in ‘Belly,’ when it came on. It was best time ever.”
Kingston also discussed something else dear to him, his mother, who was incarcerated when his self-titled debut hit the charts in 2007.
Kingston said it was tough finding success without his mom by his side, but the situation motivated him to work harder, and his accomplishment kept her encouraged during her time away. She returned home in 2009.
“She was watching my videos and ‘Today Show’ performances and stuff on TV, and it had her spirits up.”
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Video and editing: Robert Gardner