Ryan Leslie’s Self-Titled Debut Album is Finally Coming Out on February 10

I’ve blogged about Ryan Leslie numerous times. He’s a music producer, a singer and an entrepreneur, as well as other things, I’m sure. There’s a lot that I respect about him. I love his music and I identify with him, as an entrepreneur. He was even kind enough to write advance praise for my book, “Managing Online Forums,” which pretty much guarantees I’ll always be in his corner.

For a long time, he’s dreamed of releasing his own album. That’s the reason he got into the music industry, in the first place, after graduating from Harvard. But, it wasn’t meant to be, at first, so he stayed busy – by writing and producing for other artists and launching NextSelection, a label of sorts, where he signs and develops artists – the most noteworthy, thus far, being Cassie, who is signed to Bad Boy.

His album has been delayed, repeatedly and, one of those things that I do respect about him is that he hasn’t really complained about it. There have been hints of frustration, sure, but he’s never complained or taken a less than classy route. And his dream is finally coming true as Casablanca Records, through Universal, will be releasing his self-titled debut album on February 10. I’ve heard 9 out of 12 songs that will be on the album (legally, mind you) and 8 of them are in my playlist (i.e. the songs I want to listen to again and again). When I enjoy something, I support it. Add to that, that he supported my book with advance praise, and you know that I am going to be pre-ordering this album.

He posted a video blog today, where he held the actual physical copy of the CD in his hands and talked about what it meant to him. He admitted that this meant that other people have it to and that it has already been ripped and put online for free download. He encouraged people to listen to it and, if they like it, to please buy it legally because, if they do, he’ll go back to the studio and make more. Here’s the video:


Ryan Leslie’s Album Drops from Ryan Leslie on Vimeo.

I’m rooting for Mr. Leslie. I hope this album does really well.

Patrick O'Keefe

Managing online communities since 2000, I publish a collective of websites known as the iFroggy Network. I wrote the book Managing Online Forums and, as a public speaker, have presented for organizations like CNN, institutions like Australian National University and conferences like SXSW. More about me.

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