Usher insisted to Renee Graham of the Boston Globe that there’s no ill will between him and Justin Timberlake of *NSYNC. “I think people may make something over a statement I made not long ago on MTV where I called Justin a (expletive), but it was a joke,” Usher says. “As friends we just play with each other. I wasn’t trying to get personal. I’m not in competition with Justin. I’m not in competition with anyone but myself. I’m a tool that has been well-sharpened; I bust my butt and I work hard. Times have changed from the days of Little Richard and Chuck Berry, where they were not recognized and another artist could come along and take their thing and run with it. Those days are past.”
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