Ella Mai credits Chris Brown as the first star to promote “Boo’d Up”

10 Summers/Interscope RecordsElla Mais debut album, due Friday, features Chris Brown, and she credits Breezy with being the first star to promote her breakout hit, “Boo’d Up.”

“Chris Brown was the first celebrity or musician to really tap into ‘Boo’d Up’ and say, ‘Wow I really love this song,’” she tells Billboard.” “He was on his Instagram story playing it before it blew up.” 

Brown is featured on the song “Whatchamacallit” on Mai’s new album, and she says it was a joy recording with him. 

“He was so excited to be in the studio with me and he was telling me what a fan he is of my music, which is insane because I’m such a huge Chris Brown fan,” she gushes. “It’s supposed to be the other way around!”

The album also features John Legend on the song, “Everything,” and H.E.R. on “Gut Feeling.”

“John Legend — who is a legend, no pun intended — I’m excited for everyone to hear us on a track together, because I don’t think it’s a collaboration that anyone expected,” the 23-year-old British singer comments.

“I met H.E.R. at the BET awards in June. I really wanted her on the album because as females in R&B, especially both coming up as new artists, a lot of the time everyone in the world and in the media can pit you against each other and make it a competition,” she continues.

“She brought me out when she was opening up for Chris Brown to do ‘Boo’d Up’ in New York. I played her [‘Gut Feeling’],” Mai remembers. “She loved it and sent me back her verse maybe a couple days later.” 

As Mai prepares to release her album on Friday, she’s continuing as one of the opening acts on Bruno Mars’ 24K Magic tour.

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