Just as it appeared he was finally ready to release his sophomore album, pop singer Charlie Puth suddenly changed his plans, much to the dismay of his millions of fans. To help ease the pain, the “Attention” chart-topper has dropped a surprise new promotional single entitled “If You Leave Me Now,” and it’s unlike anything he’s ever produced before.
The completely a cappella tune features none other than Boyz II Men, one of the greatest groups in history when it comes to vocal arrangements. The track is surprisingly mature, and it shows some serious growth on Puth’s part. His fan base may still be primarily comprised of young women, but if he can score a serious hit with something like “If You Leave Me Now,” Puth could take his career to the next level and begin enticing older listeners to snap up his songs and albums as well.
Being able to spin off pop hit after pop hit is certainly a great space to occupy in the music industry, but after a while, most people outgrow the heartthrob image, and every musician needs to find new fans or grow with the ones that have stuck with them. The singles Puth has sent towards the top of the charts have all been highly-accessible pieces of music (it’s not exactly flash in the pan dance-pop), and it has wide appeal already, but the singer-songwriter clearly has even loftier goals this time around.
Puth’s new release makes up for the bad news he shared on Twitter last night, when he revealed that while Voicenotes was expected to be released in just a few days, it now won’t drop until later this year. With three songs already out from the record—lead single “Attention” and follow-up “How Long” have already come and gone—Puth shouldn’t push the collection any later, otherwise, people might forget about how much they loved those tracks, and that won’t help first-week album sales at all.
With industry legends Boyz II Men on board and a cut that shows how he’s expanded his horizons on the upcoming sophomore record, there’s a good chance that when it does arrive in May, Voicenotes could be a blockbuster of an album, and it could earn him some true critical acclaim.
After you listen to“If You Leave Me Now,” have a little fun on this Throwback Thursday with a classic interview of Boyz II Men talking about musical collaborations: