ESPN Music: Ne-Yo

Ne-Yo talks boxing, new 'R.E.D.' album

November, 9, 2012
Ne-YoBrian D. Kersey/Getty ImagesThe platinum-selling artist may not have been a jock in high school, but watch out for him in celebrity football games.
When a world-renowned rapper or house DJ needs a male R&B singer to lay down a hook, Ne-Yo seems to be the unanimous choice.

As it turns out, Ne-Yo's also got the hook down beyond the recording booth. While the Grammy-winning singer loves to spread the message of love when he's performing, behind the scenes, he loves to fight.

When Ne-Yo was a kid, he practiced martial arts, and then years later while fulfilling his current career ambition, he began to box as a way to stay in shape for his shows.

Since then, he's met Mike Tyson, and has dreams of doing more in the fighting world.

With that, ESPN Playbook takes you inside the mind of Ne-Yo, who just released his fifth album, "R.E.D.," which stands for "Realizing Every Dream."

(Read full post)

Nick Jonas, Ne-Yo in flag football game

June, 22, 2012
CHICAGO -- Singer Nick Jonas, actor Terry Crews and singer Ne-Yo were among the handful of celebrities playing in the annual Madden NFL Pigskin Pro-Am on a sticky Friday afternoon at Grant Park.

The event, to be broadcast on television in the fall to market the Madden game, is a flag football contest in which current and former NFL players face off against celebrities. More than 2,000 fans were in attendance.

[+] EnlargeNick Jonas
AP Photo/Evan AgostiniNick Jonas was among the celebrities playing on Friday.
"Look at my arm. I already have this burn when I caught the pass from Donovan McNabb, but it's all good," said Jonas, who just wrapped his Broadway show and is back in the studio with his brothers recording their first new CD in three years. "It's an exciting day out here. I've been having so much fun lately. It's been an incredible journey."

The athletes competing include McNabb, Marcus Allen, Cris Carter, Brett Favre, Michael Irvin, Jerry Rice, Barry Sanders and Deion Sanders. The result of the game is embargoed until the TV show.

For Ne-Yo, the game is a chance to redeem himself.

"Did you see me at the celebrity game at the NBA All-Star Weekend? That was not my finest hour," Ne-Yo said. "I'm not actually good at basketball. I love playing football. This is much better for me."

Ne-Yo said he's felt blessed and can't wait for his new CD R.E.D to come out Sept. 18.

"That means realizing every dream," Ne-Yo said. "That's 100 percent true. I'm realizing my dreams. It's a beautiful thing."