The Weeknd Says He and Usher Never Had a Feud: 'He's One of the Reasons Why I Make Music'
In a recent Esquire cover story, the 30-year-old "Starboy" musician shared that there is no bad blood between him and the fellow R&B crooner, 41, despite rumors that the two had beef after The Weeknd compared his work to Usher's 2012 single "Climax" in a previous cover story with Variety.
"I heard 'Climax,' that Usher song, and was like, 'Holy f---, that's a Weeknd song,'" he told the outlet at the time. "It was very flattering, and I knew I was doing something right, but I also got angry. But the older I got, I realized it's a good thing."
The "My Boo" singer didn't respond directly but later posted a video to Instagram where he sang the track a capella.
In his Esquire story, The Weeknd stated that he never had any type of feud with Usher due to his comments and noted that he even called him up to apologize for how they could have been misinterpreted.
"I hit him up to apologize and tell him that it was misconstrued," he told Esquire. "He's one of the reasons why I make music ... I have nothing bad to say about Usher. The sweetest, most down-to-earth guy ever."
News of the potential drama inspired headlines earlier this year. The Weeknd then tweeted out a response after Diplo, who worked on Usher's "Climax," shared that the production on the track "lends itself to House of Balloons era," The Weeknd's debut mixtape.
"Of course media blows things out of proportion and takes things out of context," The Weeknd tweeted in response. "Usher is a King and always an inspiration so it was flattering to hear what him and Diplo did on climax."
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Around the same time, Usher's frequent collaborator Eric Bellinger created the #ClimaxChallenge on Instagram, where he showed off the same video of Usher performing the track a capella, writing in his caption, "Big Bro jumped in to set the record straight!!! ... Now all we waitin for is you @theweeknd."
Additionally, one of the song's co-writers, Ariel Rechtshaid, responded to Diplo in his own tweet and shared, "I tweet this with the utmost respect to all parties involved. Climax was inspired in the room without any subconscious or conscious outside influence."