Watch Ne-Yo and Johntá Austin Battle on Instagram Live

The songwriters are the latest artists to join in on Instagram Live's hottest trend.


Image via Getty/Michael Tran


Now that social distancing is the new norm, a handful of popular musicians are taking to Instagram ​​​​​​Live to battle each other with their respective greatest hits. The latest duo to step into the proverbial ring are Ne-Yo and Johntá Austin.

Ne-Yo first asked his followers if they wanted to see the songwriters battle, writing on his Instagram Story, “Anybody wanna see me and @therealjohntaaustin go at it tonight??”

Looks like it’s @NeYoCompound vs @johntalsr tonight! 👀

— Rated R&B (@RatedRnB) March 29, 2020

Austin responded to the tweet, writing, “Y’all requested. My brother & I will oblige. Great night ahead!”

Y’all requested. My brother & I will oblige. Great night ahead!

— Johnta Austin (@johntalsr) March 29, 2020

He also shared the ground rules for the challenge, a bit about his respect for Ne-Yo as a songwriter, and said that he's preparing his playlist.

I’ve been getting hit up about the ground rules. More details to follow but what we have so far...

1. Show up sober
2. 25 songs a piece
3. Songs must already be released
4. Any genre counts
5. 1m 30secs max play for each song#neyovjohnta

— Johnta Austin (@johntalsr) March 29, 2020

I don’t know if he remembers this but I told @NeYoCompound at the Def Jam Grammy party in ‘07 that LA Reid asked me which new writers I love. I said “a lot are great, but that guy Neyo keeps me up & night & focused with what he does”. Neyo’s pen is truly #sosick

— Johnta Austin (@johntalsr) March 29, 2020

Getting the playlist ready.

— Johnta Austin (@johntalsr) March 29, 2020

Ne-Yo is known for notable songs like 2008’s “Miss Independent” and “Closer,” and 2012’s “Let Me Love You (Until You Learn to Love Yourself).” Austin is credited as a songwriter on reputable tracks like Mariah Carey’s 2005 cut “We Belong Together,” Mary J. Blige’s “Be Without You” (2005), Aaliyah’s “Miss You” (2002), and more.

It looks like Ne-Yo tuned into Sean Garrett and The-Dream's battle on Saturday night. He called their battle “dope” on his Instagram Story before posing the idea of his own battle to his fans.

Watch Ne-Yo and Austin do battle now. 

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