Speaking to Ace about discovering the ‘Born This Way’ hitmaker on BBC Radio 1Xtra, Akon said: “Now that one [Lady Gaga] bumped right into me … it was crazy man. The relationship is still solid, that’s still my little sister.”
Whilst Gaga has Akon to thank for spotting her talent, the 46-year-old Senegalese-American singer owes his success to the Fugees, as a young Akon appeared on 1995’s ‘Fu-Gee-La Sly & Robbie Remix’ from their seminal LP ‘The Score’.
He recalled: “The Fugees is how I came into the business … when I moved to New Jersey, the Fugees became my family … that was like my clique, I was a part of the original refugee camp.”
Meanwhile, Akon recently released new Afrobeat record ‘AKONDA’, which is one of several albums he is releasing in 2019.
The first was the Latin LP ‘El Negreeto, which was released earlier this month, and he then has a hip-hop and R&B album called ‘Konnect’ on the way, plus collaborative record ‘The Konnection’, set for release in December 2019, which will include guest artists such as Nicki Minaj, Pitbull and Ty Dolla $ign.
He said: “This year I’m dropping three albums back-to-back.
“I always wanted to do this.
“Everyone says it’s impossible.
“Well I’m putting out different albums of different genres: I’m putting out a Latin album, a hip-hop album and an Afrobeat album.”
The ‘Lonely’ hitmaker admitted he finds the music industry much “easier” than it was 15 years ago, because streaming services such as Spotify and Apple Music make it so simple to get music out into the world.
He said: “I’m enjoying it a lot more now than I did back then. Back then it was a little different because we worked harder.
Today is actually easier, because of the platforms and how the digital age kinda caught up to music and technology.”