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UNCF's 35th Annual An Evening With The Stars - Show

Usher‘s finally opening up about how his relationship with Grace Miguel has changed his life for the better.

The crooner has been pretty veiled about his involvement with Grace, especially since they started seeing each other during his separation from Tameka Raymond. That changed during his recent chat with Billboard, when he gave Grace lots of praise for ugrading not just his career but his life in general.

“I have an incredible partner and manager. She has helped me through some of the hardest times in my life and my career,” Usher gushed. “She’s someone who has been able to support and understand all of who I am. Not just as a dancer or as a performer or as a singer, but as a humanitarian and a businessman and as a person.”

Usher revealed that Grace has encouraged him to take some more time to really get out and have more fun. Not that going to all of the hottest clubs and parties isn’t a blast, but there’s tons more to the world than that.

“One thing that has come from having a great partner like Grace is being able to cherish the places that I’ve gone,” he said. “We see the monumental sites, go to the museums, eat in the best restaurants. I’m that guy now! In the past I’d do what I have to do and get on the bus to the next city. Life has become a vacation.”

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Taking some time to stop and smell the roses is cool and all, but that still doesn’t Usher’s taking too much down time between appearances. He’s simply squeezing more into his already busy schedule.

After dropping tracks like “Good Kisser” and “She Came To Give It To You” this year, its clear that he’s gearing up for an album. Unfortunately, Usher couldn’t supply an ETA on his next full project because he needs a little more time to get his thoughts together.

“I just ain’t ready,” Usher explained. “Meaning I have more that I want to say and more that I want to do. My process is pretty different. L.A. Reid will tell you, it takes two albums to make one with Usher.”

Usher’s gotten lots of opportunities to work with some of the greats in his time, and he credited his work with Diddy as laying some foundation for his style as an artist.

“My time with Puff, it gave me chutzpah. I got to see performers like Tupac Shakur,” Usher reminisced. “I got to perform onstage with The Notorious B.I.G., be in sessions with him and Craig Mack. I got to be part of the driving force that was Bad Boy, that was Puff.”

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Now that he’s had a few years in the game himself, Ursh has also gotten the chance to nurture new talent. Well before his days on “The Voice,” he brought the world Justin Bieber; the entire population (minus the teenyboppers) has been cursing that decision from day one. While the Biebs can throw out a catchy track, his antics outside of the studio have made us collectively roll our eyes.

Although Justin makes Usher face palm from time to time, he said he’s going to be as supportive of his protegé as possible. Of course that doesn’t mean he’ll co-sign everything Justin does.

“He’s making his own decisions and it’s important to show support,” said Usher. “I can say I’m not happy with all the choices my friend has made, but I’m supportive of him. I try my hardest to give as much positive reinforcement as I can.

To clarify, he added, “I’ll punch him in the f—ing chest when I need to, and give him a hug and kiss when I need to. It’s more than just mentoring. I love the kid.”

We wonder how many times Usher’s had to punch Justin in the chest this year.

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READ MORE:

Usher Goes Where No Man Has Gone + More Moments From The 2014 MTV Video Music Awards

Usher Weighs In On Justin Bieber: ‘I Hate Some Of The Things I Hear’

Usher Stages An Intervention With Recently-Arrested Justin Bieber

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