T-Pain suffered depression for four years after Usher criticised his use of Auto-Tune.
In a teaser clip from upcoming Netflix series ‘This Is Pop’, the 'Buy U a Drank (Shawty Snappin')' hitmaker opens up on how his friend Usher told him that his reliance on the audio processing technology had "f***ed up music".
According to the 35-year-old rapper-and-singer - whose real name is Faheem Rasheed Najm - the two artists were on the same flight heading to the 2013 BET Awards and, while T-Pain was sleeping, a flight attendant woke him up to tell him that Usher wanted a word.
Looking back on the interaction, T-Pain believes the harsh criticism was the catalyst for his lengthy bout of depression.
T-Pain says: "Usher was my friend. I really respect Usher. And he said, 'I'm gonna tell you something, man. You kinda f***ed up music.'
"And then he was like, 'Yeah man you really f***ed up music for real singers.'
"I was like, 'What did I do? I came out and I used Auto-Tune.' He was like, 'Yeah, you f***ed it up.' I'm like, 'But I used it, I didn't tell everybody else to start using it.'
"That is the very moment, and I don't even think I realised this for a long time, but that's the very moment that started a four-year depression for me."
Auto-Tune is a pitch-correcting audio processor for vocals that makes any voice sound in tune but can give it a robotic tone.
T-Pain used this effect from the start of his career in 2003 and was later copied by other hip hop artists, such as Snoop Dogg with ‘Sexual Eruption, Lil Wayne with ‘Lollipop' and by Kanye West on his ‘808s & Heartbreak’ album.
Usher was not the only artist who criticised T-Pain's use of the effect.
Jay-Z on his 2009 single ‘D.O.A. (Death of Auto-Tune)’ mentioned T-Paint by name, rapping: "You n****s singing too much / Get back to rap, you T-Paining too much.”