After a 15-plus year hiatus, legendary R&B singer El DeBarge has resurfaced with his new album, appropriately titled, Second Chance. His fifth studio album released under Interscope records is a dedication to the singer's struggles over the years and a tribute to his legendary falsetto, but as he continues to make unforgettable love songs the ’80s vocalist has evaluated his relevance to hip-hop and has combined the two on his latest album.

Featuring rappers like label-mate 50 Cent and Fabolous, DeBarge is crossing into an untouched audience and producing more than just samples on rap albums. With his upcoming mixtape, Switch Up the Format, DeBearge shows he can mix it up and give hip-hop what it’s missing.

"People think that hip-hop is a copycat and just merely a derivative of something else that already was," Debarge said. "But hip-hop is really authentic. It’s a breed of its own, [but] it emanates from the same source R&B emanates from [and] the same source good music emanates from, soul."

But before talking a mixtape release date, XXLmag.com caught up with DeBarge and got his opinion on some hip-hop classics – all sampled by him of course. — Amber McKynzie