Ne-Yo has been writing songs since the age of 10, but was too scared to play them to anyone other than his own family until after he had left high school.
Ne-Yo has been writing songs since the age of 10.
The 'Sexy Love' singer has composed songs since he was a child but admits he did not have the confidence to let anyone other than family hear his music.
The star, now 30, exclusively told BANG Showbiz: ''I started writing songs really early, round about ten years old. I would take the poems I would write for girls that I liked but wasn't brave enough to give them, and I would take those poems and put them to a melody and they became songs.''
It was after high school Ne-Yo realised he did not want to be ''one of the crowd'' but to follow his own path.
He added: ''All through high school I was a guy that wanted to be part of the cool crowd, but I realised that the majority of the cool crowd were just following one specific person, and it would only teach me to be a follower.
''So that was a wake up call for me, like I'm not going to follow these people for no reason, I'm not going to spend money on a pair of jeans when I don't have it just to impress you. It was more cool to be me and just do what I wanted. And as soon as I realised that I grew the confidence I needed.''
In celebration of MasterCard's 15th year as partner of The BRIT Awards, Ne-Yo is giving music fans the chance to join him on his forthcoming tour. Enter the competition at Somethingforthefans.co.uk