Timbaland Says Drake Wants to See Justin Timberlake and Usher Face Off in a Verzuz Battle
"Drake hit me up about that one too, he was like, 'We gotta make that happen, we gotta make that happen,'" Verzuz co-creator Timbaland said
During a virtual appearance on the Jalen & Jacoby podcast, (hosted by NBA analyst Jalen Rose and ESPN host David Jacoby), Verzuz co-creators Timbaland and Swizz Beatz weighed in on some potential face-offs for the show. Verzuz is a webcast series in which fan-favorite stars showcase their skills in highly anticipated friendly battles.
When Rose, 47, asked about a potential dual between Usher, 42, and JT, who turns 40 on Sunday, Timbaland was all ears — even saying the Canadian rapper had previously disclosed that he is onboard too.
"Yes, we know," Timbaland said with a laugh. "It's so funny, Drake hit me up about that one too. He was like, 'We gotta make that happen, we gotta make that happen.' I'm like, 'Soon to come, soon to come.'"
And when the NBA analyst pitched a session between "terrific writers, performers and entertainers with amazing longevity" Missy Elliott and Busta Rhymes, Timbaland couldn't have been happier. Turns out, he's already been working to get Elliott, 49, on the show
"It is, to me, the best party that could ever happen on Verzuz," he said. "It's just a matter of the comfort zone of my sister [and having her want] to celebrate with her brother and understand that it's not competition, it's a party. I've been working on that and talking to her, but I think that would be an amazing Verzuz."
Verzuz has done tremendous work in reuniting stars that many music listeners speculated were dealing with ongoing, "age-old beef" for years — and even decades in some cases. Notably, Brandy and Monica appeared on the show as well as Gucci Mane and Young Jeezy (each pair was rumored to have been at odds since the '90s and early aughts respectively). For longtime music heads, it was a great joy to watch them on the show.
While guesting on Jalen & Jacoby, Beatz, 42, who recently celebrated his wife Alicia Keys' 40th birthday, shared that he is incredibly proud that the series has been instrumental in bringing allegedly feuding stars together.
"If Gucci Mane and Young Jeezy can do it, anybody can do it," Swizz Beatz said. "Verzuz is a platform where we can put our differences aside and make it about the fans and make it about music and make it about love." He later added, 'To see those two on the stage? Wooo."
The producer is also glad to offer a platform in which the younger generation of viewers can learn about some music greats who came before them. "We're in a different day and age where we've got to show the youth how to celebrate and it's an educational celebration."
"A lot of people that didn't know certain artists' songs are just now learning," Beatz explained. "These kids weren't born yet when these songs were out, so now they're getting a 'front row at the show' form of the artists and they get to relive that. A lot of the artists that may have their differences should think about this and make it more about themselves and the people."