If you head on over to music producer Tricky Stewart's Twitter account, you'll see he recently tweeted about some artists he's currently working with. Among them are Mary J. Blige, Mariah Carey, and Christina Aguilera.
I admit I'm not the biggest fan of this man's work. He's done Jesse McCartney's "Leavin," Beyonce's "Single Ladies," and Mary J. Blige's "Just Fine," all of which I like. But conversely he's also done Britney Spears' "Me Against The Music," Rihanna's "Umbrella," and Mariah Carey's "Touch My Body," all which make want to throw up my Mrs. Fields chocolate chip cookies.
That said, there've been producers that Christina's worked with before who hadn't impressed me with their previous work, yet turned out something impressive when it came to working with Christina. One example is Rich Harrison, who is famous for producing Beyonce's "Crazy In Love" and Amerie's "1 Thing," yet who managed to create one hell of a foot-stomping pseudo-gospel tune called "Makes Me Wanna Pray" on Christina's Back to Basics album that in no way resembles any of his previous work. So it's possible that while this guy's catalogue isn't making me squeal with glee, he could actually end up turning out something relatively unexpected with Christina.
Considering Tricky doesn't seem like the kind of producer Christina would normally gravitate to, especially in lieu of the more electronic, futuristic sound she's trying to create for her next LP, it seems as if she's doing a repeat of her pattern with her second album Stripped. In chronicling the story of Stripped, Entertainment Weekly did a piece in which famous producer Rockwilder talked about the making of Dirrty:
"Aguilera told Rockwilder she was looking for a track that would announce to the world that she's back — but not the same as she was."
Basically, Christina had finished the rest of the tracks for the album, and needed something fiery that would get people's attention and announce she's back. She did something similar with "Ain't No Other Man", a song with bombastic horns and explosive vocals, and an intro that would perk your head up quicker than a fire truck sneaking up on you on a back road. The point is, though Tricky Stewart is miles different from people like Linda Perry, Ladytron, and Sia (all people she's confirmed to be collaborating with on this album), it's possible this departure from the "theme" could indicate she very well could be done with the album.
Sia Furler, most known for her song "Breathe Me" which has been featured on the beloved series finale of Six Feet Under and the broadcast of the 2006 Victoria's Secret fashion show, has already completed her work with Aguilera. She told Australian publication the Herald Sun all about her experience working with Christina. One of the things she mentioned was how deep Christina's knowledge was of her music.
‘‘Obviously she likes Breathe Me, that's the one everyone goes for, but she mentioned seven songs as far back as the first Zero 7 album, and songs like Destiny and Distractions, and a song called Moon from my last album that nobody ever picks as a favorite.
‘‘That won her some points, she's a listener, she knows my random album tracks nobody gives a s— about. That's pretty flattering.''
She then goes on to discuss how hands-on Christina is in the writing and recording process, unlike many other pop artists.
"I would put any of the songs we've written on one of my albums. And it's a total collaboration. There are some artists who walk in and say ‘I want to write a song about a stiletto', then walk out again.
‘‘You write the song and they take a third. That's not at all what it's been like working with Christina. Often she saves the day when we're stuck.''
"We first heard that we were one of Christina's favorite bands last summer. We were thrilled. So we went over to Los Angeles to meet her in December where she identified the type of Ladytron songs that she liked. We were impressed because she had a real deep knowledge of our music – album tracks, not just the singles."
At this point the album seems well on its way. And if the choice of producers and songwriters is any indication, it's piecing up to be just as diverse as her last two efforts. Which depending on how you look at it, is either to her avail, or her demise.