Nick Cannon released the latest single from his forthcoming mixtape Raw ‘N B: The Explicit Tape on Monday (February 14), which just happened to be Valentine’s Day.
Titled “Alone,” the song included a sample of his ex-wife Mariah Carey’s 1990 single “Love Takes Time” and served as a tribute to the iconic pop singer. But one of the lyrics resulted in a media firestorm when he sang, “As much as I want you back, it’s probably better where you at.”
The couple divorced in 2016 after eight years of marriage and are currently co-parenting their fraternal twins, Moroccan and Monroe. Still, the confession stirred up a lot of controversy for The Masked Singer host, prompting him to address it on Wednesday’s (February 16) episode of The Nick Cannon Show.
“Everybody was saying this was my song to try to get Mariah back,” he says in the clip. “That’s impossible. But honestly, the music is therapeutic for me. One of the things all my life — growing up in the church, gospel music — it helps me get through things so sometimes I get to writing and reflecting. Really the song is about reflection.
“Men, and we do this a lot, you realize, ‘I really messed up.’ I had probably the greatest situation. I had my dream girl and I messed it up. The song wasn’t really about trying to get her back, it was taking ownership of what I did as a man and owning my flaws and expressing it through song. I just out there trying to spread that Kanye West energy. Kanye trying to get Kim back though.”
As for Mariah Carey, she clearly saw the multiple headlines about her ex-husband and took a more subtle approach. On Tuesday (February 15), the “Emotions” chanteuse shared a rare selfie of her boyfriend of over five years Bryan Tanaka. She wrote in the caption, “Valentine’s marathon continues. Hour 23!”
Nick Cannon is currently expecting Baby No. 8 with Bre Tiesi, the ex-wife of NFL quarterback Johnny Manziel. In December 2020, he welcomed daughter Powerful Queen, his second child with Brittany Bell, then twins with Abby De La Rosa on June 14, 2021 and another son named Zen with model Alyssa Scott born just nine days later. He’s also the father to a 3-year-old son named Golden with Bell.
In the song, he admits Carey is probably better off with Tanaka considering he’s still sleeping around and having children with multiple women.
“Probably better where you at ’cause I’m still running the streets,” he sings. “Im still all in the sheets, having babies/Models and singers and actresses all sayin’ they’re pregnant by me/Have to pay $10,000 a week, I take of my peeps/Now you don’t worry about when I creep, you got a man next to you when you sleep.”
But that doesn’t mean Cannon isn’t friendly with his ex. Speaking to HipHopDX earlier this month, the 41-year-old said he still values everything she taught him.
“I learned so much from Mariah,” he said. “I’m going to be honest, just watching her over the years and the way she’s perfected her craft, and the way she — when I say a perfectionist and an expert, I say that with sincere admiration. She makes sure every one of her vocals are perfect. She makes sure every song is done to her satisfaction. And to watch that — I think all the great artists do that.
“I think that’s why Prince and Stevie Wonder, and all those people, have vaults full of songs that you’ve never heard. Because they’re like, ‘Yeah, that wasn’t good enough for me to release. The timing wasn’t right.’ And I’ve watched her do that. And even the way that she guides our children to utilize their voices, I’m not going to front, she taught me. She gave me a lesson or two here over the years. So I definitely take a lot from her and just her songwriting skills probably more than anything, to where she just knows how to communicate her feelings and connect with people better than anyone I’ve ever seen. The way she goes with it is bananas.”
Raw ‘N B: The Explicit Tape is expected to arrive on Friday (February 18). Until then, listen to “Alone” below.