The Underdogs are no strangers to hitmaking. For the production/songwriting duo of Harvey Mason Jr. and Damon Thomas — who have crafted songs for Britney Spears, Beyoncé and Mary J. Blige — their latest, Chris Brown's "Turn Up the Music," could be their biggest hit yet.
It isn't their first song with Breezy — the duo worked on his 2007 ballad "Take You Down" and his Jordin Sparks duet "No Air" — but on "Turn Up the Music," the first single from his fifth solo album, Fortune, they take things to new sonic heights.
"He's so well-rounded, so versatile, he can really cover anything. He kills the uptempos, he can do the urban uptempo records, he could do the ballads, he could do the pop songs. You can really come to him with any record that you think is that hot," Mason told MTV News. "He is, for me right now and for many people, the ultimate artist. He's kinda this generation's Michael Jackson, if you will."
On "Turn Up the Music," which will be on sale digitally February 14 on iTunes, the Underdogs laced Breezy with a super-charged dance groove in a similar vein to last year's hit "Yeah 3x." For Mason and Thomas, the inspiration for this record came from Brown's moves on the dance floor. "The inspiration was really him as an artist, visualizing how he dances and how he performs, and giving him something to match that energy," Mason said.
This is the first taste we get from Breezy's upcoming Fortune, a companion album to 2011's F.A.M.E., and based on what they've already heard, the Underdogs expect some big things for the new album. "The Fortune record is F.A.M.E to the next level," Mason described. "Similar material, but he's really being innovative with some of the music that you haven't heard before, taking pieces of other genres and integrating them into pop and R&B, which I think is really cool. Vocally, he sounds amazing; he's really, really coming into his own as a singer."
Thomas added: "The only way I can describe Chris and what he's doin' with this record that he's making is that he's this generation's Michael [Jackson]."