But it was a conversation he had with another up-and-coming music executive that prompted him to give Usher another chance.
Reid tells The Hollywood Reporter, "He (Usher) couldn't sing... It was like, 'Damn, where's the voice? What happened to his tone? Where's the power and the range?' It was all gone.
"I wanted to drop him. I wanted to be out of business with him. I broke his heart. I broke his mother's heart. It was a very tough period in both our lives.
"Then someone said to me, 'Don't be a fool. Don't sell your stock in Usher. He's still going to be a star. He's everything you thought he was the day you signed him.'
"And that person was Puffy."
Usher recalls the showcase and admits the memory of his early voice problems prompted him to insist Justin Bieber had a vocal coach on his team when he first started mentoring the teenager.
The Yeah! singer explains, "Losing my voice f**ked me up. I had to figure it out."
Usher actually brought the vocal coach who helped him through his problems on-board to work with Bieber.