Recasting the iconic “Lady Marmalade” lineup has essentially become the pop music lover’s equivalent to fantasy football, as fans regularly plug in the various female singers of today to see how they would stack up against Pink, Christina Aguilera, Maya and Lil’ Kim.
So when Ed Sheeran revealed he wanted to recreate the powerhouse billing with all-male artists like Justin Bieber and Bruno Mars for his forthcoming “No.6 Collaborations Project” album, some people on the internet were understandably protective.
The British singer-songwriter revealed the “silly idea” was the seed that grew into his fourth studio album in a sit-down interview with Charlamagne Tha God released on Tuesday.
“This project actually started with one idea I had which was — you remember ‘Lady Marmalade,’ right?” he said during the interview. “This is such a silly idea — I had an idea of doing that, like you could get Bruno, Bieber and me on a record, how fun would that be?”
“The first person I rung was Bruno and he was just like, ‘Let’s just do a song together, just us,’ and that’s how it happened,” Sheeran continued. “So then I did a song with Bruno and I did a song with Bieber and these individual songs started happening and then it turned into a project … It was a really good experience putting the record together.”
As “Lady Marmalade” has become something of a sacred song for fans of the genre and an important milestone for women in pop music, people on the internet wasted no time in cutting down Sheeran’s idea.
Sheeran has yet to reveal the full track list for his album, so it’s unclear whether the collaboration actually came to fruition.
But he did end up releasing his own song with Bieber, “I Don’t Care,” which has dominated the charts in recent weeks. Mars doesn’t appear on the track, but the “Finesse” singer is expected to pop up elsewhere on the album.