8701 - Usher

Four years after the multi-platinum success of his 1997 breakthrough sophomore album, My Way, Usher returned with 8701, an album that serves as a transition from Usher’s teenage years into him becoming an adult singing more mature songs. The album’s title signifies the year he began singing in church (1987) and the year this album was released (2001). The album also coincidentally was released on 8/7/01. Usher initially planned for his third album to be called All About U and release it on October 31, 2000, but after songs from the album were leaked on Napster, Usher scrapped that project and recorded new songs for the album that became 8701. While My Way was primarily produced by Jermaine Dupri, 8701 enlisted superstar producers Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis, Babyface, and The Neptunes to join J.D. and Bryan-Michael Cox among others. The album debuted at #4 on the Billboard 200 and was certified triple platinum in the US six months after its release with support from the #1 pop singles “U Remind Me” and “U Got It Bad” as well as “U Don’t Have to Call,” which peaked at #3 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. “U-Turn” and “Can U Help Me” were also released as singles. Usher won a Grammy Award in 2002 in the Best R&B Performance Vocal Male category for “U Remind Me” and won the same award the following year for “U Don’t Have to Call.” To celebrate 8701’s 20th anniversary, Usher, Jermaine Dupri and Bryan-Michael Cox came together to talk about the making of the album for the Billboard R&B/Hip-Hop Summit.
Distribution of songs on 8701 by producer