Years from now, hundreds of Weeks According to Prefixes down the line, we may have some idea as to what was responsible for this recent collaboration epidemic. For now, all we can do is speculate (more musicians=cheaper studio time?), and review the announcements that popped up every few hours this week.
We already knew about Kanye West’s collaborative album with Jay-Z, Watch the Throne, but this week West told Rolling Stone that “it’s going to be way more awesome than my Dark Twisted Fantasy.” It’ll also probably be more awesome than the debut EP of the Bugatti Boys, the now-official collaboration between Rick Ross and Diddy. And everything mentioned above will be way, way less awesome than this absolutely brilliant video of a surprisingly web-savvy 50 Cent hanging out with everyone’s favorite lip-syncher, Keenan.
The collaborations do not end there. Black Lips are working on their next album with Mark Ronson. Diplo (onetime Black Lips collaborator) and Passion Pit frontman Michael Angelakos are working on new material together. Danger Mouse, no stranger to collaborations, announced that he’s been working on an album inspired by Italian film music with composer Daniel Luppi (it’s set to feature Jack White and Norah Jones, amongst others). And, dipping into the surreal, Lou Reed helped Susan Boyle in the “mom-izing” of his music (as our Kali Holloway put it) by helping her with the video to her cover of “Perfect Day.”
The recently unveiled cover art for Michael Jackson’s posthumous Michael — which featured the Prince logo — led many to believe that we may soon have a Prince-MJ collaboration upon us. This proved false, along with allegations that that’s not actually MJ singing on the album’s first single, “Breaking News.” Listen here, and decide for yourself.
It wasn’t all collaborations this week (although it certainly felt like it was): Tennis, Cloud Nothings, The Streets, and Lupe Fiasco all dropped new tracks, giving us a solid sense of how Q1 2011 is going to sound — like 2010, but slightly more optimistic. Again, probably a result of that soul-nourishing 50 Cent/Keenan collaboration. Watch it below.