Exclusive – DJ Khaled talks his new album, Justin Bieber and fatherhood

DJ Khaled
DJ Khaled

DJ Khaled — hip-hop producer, Snapchat guru, author, record label executive and music mogul — is ready for “another one.” With his 10th album, huge summer hits and a new son, Khaled has a lot to be grateful for.

Yahoo Global News Anchor Katie Couric sat down with Khaled to talk about his latest album, Grateful, which comes out on June 23; his collaborations with the likes of Beyoncé, Rihanna and Justin Bieber, as well as his son, Asahd — who is an executive producer on the album, by the way — and how fatherhood changed his life.

Khaled has worked with the some of the biggest names in the business — from Nicki Minaj and Kanye West to Alicia Keys and John Legend. His single “I’m the One,” which debuted at No. 1 on Billboard’s Hot 100, features Justin Bieber, Lil Wayne, Quavo from Migos and Chance the Rapper.

“I do things that people can’t do,” explained Khaled when Couric asked how he gets so many superstars to work with him. “I get a high off of somebody saying, ‘You cannot pull this off.’ So I go pull it off.”

After more than seven years, Khaled was especially excited to finally work with Rihanna. He said he “damn near passed out,” when she told him she wanted to shoot a music video to go along with their record.

“You only [make a video] when you know you got a smash-hit record,” Khaled said. “And you only do that when you’ve got love involved.”

But there are still a few names he hasn’t checked off his collaboration wish list yet.

“I never got a chance to work with Eminem. … I have tried before, but I’m gonna try again,” he said. “But this time when I try again, I’m gonna make sure I have the right record. I don’t think he’s telling me no. I think I just gotta come with the right presentation.” Khaled added he’d like to work with Dr. Dre again.

Khaled said he waited until he found the right song before he asked Bieber — who he has been friends with for years — to join him on a record: “I’m the One.” Khaled is definitely a “belieber,” saying he respects Bieber and thinks he is “very talented.”

“If you look at anybody great’s story,” Khaled said of Bieber, “I guarantee you they went through some rough times and some storms. But they weathered it. … And that’s why you can’t name yourself an icon, a superstar or a megastar until you accomplish all that stuff.”

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