Usher reflects on critics’ lackluster reviews of ‘Confessions’ album: “It made me work harder”

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Eight years later, Usher is reflecting on Confessions.

The 2004 album was a staple among fans when it dropped. However, critics didn’t review the project as highly, something the R&B singer chalks it up to it being new territory at the time. 

“I feel it was partially on the story that we were telling and people getting acclimated to this new artist and having respect for or understanding of what it was for the guys who grew up with the Princes, the Michael Jacksons, the Whispers, the Isley Brothers, and the Luther Vandrosses,” Usher explained in an interview with Vulture. “They were looking at a new frontier.”

Ultimately, though, the “Yeah!” singer believes “things happen the way they’re supposed to.”

“Maybe this is the time when we look back and we begin to understand it the same way that as a kid I was influenced by music that I didn’t participate in,” he continued. “I wasn’t there for [Michael Jackson’s] Off the Wall. I wasn’t there for [Marvin Gaye‘s] What’s Going On. I wasn’t there for Donny Hathaway albums. But I could find them because there was a space to be able to hear them.”

Usher added that while he wishes that critics “celebrated” his work at the time, “It’s okay that they didn’t because it made me work harder.”

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