“The world reacting to Drake’s involvement so negatively, I just wanted nothing to do with it. That was a very sad experience for me,” Shebib told the magazine. “I was naïve to the politics surrounding Aaliyah’s legacy and a bit ignorant to Timbaland’s relationship and everybody else involved and how they’d feel… But ultimately, I wasn’t comfortable and didn’t like the stigma,” he said. “I was seven songs deep. [Aaliyah’s] mother saying ‘I don’t want this out’ was enough for me. I walked away very quickly.”
If 40 sounds even more bummed than Drizzy about the falling out, that’s because Aaliyah’s camp first approached him, not the star. “Aaliyah’s label Blackground — the Hankersons, her uncle and cousin — came to me and said if she was around she’d want you to do this [posthumous] project,” 40 revealed. “I’ve been obsessed with Aaliyah forever, and I know Drake has his relationship with her. But that opportunity was mine. Drake said, ‘Can I do it with you?’ and I was like, ‘Of course, we’ll do it together.’”
There doesn’t seem to be any resentment between the two — if there is, they’re hiding it well — and who knows, we could hear those other seven tracks some day. After all, Drake teased one of them in a recent Instagram video.
Read the full interview over at Vibe.