If you think Friday Jams is your dream lineup, you've got nothing on Ne-Yo, who still has "no idea" how he ended up on the bill with some of his favourite artists.

"All I know is I got a call one day to be a part of this amazing line-up with people who means that if I wasn't a part of this crew, I'd probably want to go and see this show anyway," he says.

"So they asked, I said yes and the rest is history, I'm on my way. I've been a fan of a lot of these artists for a long time, Craig David and Sean Paul especially, so it's an honour to share the stage with these guys."

It's been a while since fans last heard from Ne-Yo, but the RnB star is promising to reward his fans with some old-school jams and a chance to help him put together his upcoming album.


Ne-Yo, whose real name is Shaffer Chimere Smith, has been absent for nearly three years since 2015's Non-Fiction. The reason, he says, is because he "had to do some real-life stuff".

"I had to find the person I was going to spend the rest of my life with and reproduce you know?" he says, referencing his marriage to Crystal Renay in 2016 and the birth of their son - Ne-Yo's third child - Shaffer Chimere Smith jnr. a month later.

He's also been focusing on acting, making a cameo in the hit movie Girls Trip and working on a YouTube Red series based on the dance film Step Up which is slated for release in November.

But now, his new album, Good Man is finally on its way and Kiwi fans will be able to help him put it together.

"I'm celebrating the fact that I've been able to touch a few different genres throughout my career and the fans are the ones who will give you the yay or nay on that. They're either going to accept the new sound or they're not," he says.

So at Friday Jams, Ne-Yo will play some classics "for the fans that have been rocking with me from [his first album] Since My Own Words".

But he says he's also got a few tracks to try out in front of his Kiwi crowd to "see if you guys are into it".

"I'm actually going to let the crowd help me finish this album so basically the ones that they like you'll hear again."

Friday Jams features Ne-Yo, Craig David's TS5, Sean Paul, Kelis, Mario, Christina Milian and Fatman Scoop. It takes place at Auckland's Spark Arena this Sunday.