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Music on the Road

P. Diddy: 'I'm a team player'

By Joanne Ross
CNN Entertainment Correspondent

 

NEW YORK (CNN) -- You can call him Sean Combs, or Puff Daddy, or P. Diddy, but there's no debating the musical success of the 31-year-old hip-hop impresario.

His latest production is called "We Invented the Remix," and many in the industry say he did. He was one of first to blur the lines between R&B, hip-hop, rock and soul, and he does it again with fresh recordings by artists like Busta Rhymes, Usher and Mary J. Blige, as well as some of his own new music.

CNN caught up with Diddy at Urban Aid 2002 in New York, where some of the biggest names in R&B and hip-hop raised funds and awareness for HIV prevention initiatives among young people.

CNN: Where are you musically right now?

P. Diddy: Right now I'm making a lot of records, doing a lot of shows, and I'm happy and truly blessed. Blessed to be here, but the most important part of this is we are here for the AIDS crisis and AIDS awareness and that is one thing we have to get across to everybody.

CNN: Tell us about your tour right now?

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Singer Usher joins P.Diddy in his latest video 'I need a girl part 1' (May 9)
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P. Diddy: Right now I'm on tour with 'N Sync, and I'm doing some things with Ja Rule. You are basically going to be seeing me all over the place, just having fun, a whole lot of fun. Putting on great shows. You are never going to see the same show twice.

CNN: Does your own music get sidelined when you're constantly collaborating with others?

P. Diddy: I think I'm best with other artists. I don't think I'm best by myself. You know, I'm at best with a team and sometimes you have to be real with yourself with that, I'm a team player.

CNN: What direction are hip-hop and R&B are going in?

P. Diddy: It's only going up, it's only rising to the top. It's getting more creative, more soulful, more urgent -- it's a sign of the times. You are going to get different messages in music, more heartfelt musical influences to match what is going on in society.

CNN: How has music shaped your life?

P. Diddy: Music is like the air I breathe - [that's] the best way I can describe it. I'm happy people are still listening and dancing to my records that I produce. I have nothing but good feelings, and whenever I can do positive with the power I have, that's what I'm going to do.

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