With her new album Here out today, Shoboy and Nina had the pleasure of sitting down with Alicia Keys to talk about her inspiration behind the album, which judge on “The Voice” she would choose as her coach, and what artist she would want to work with it if it were her last song ever.
Here can best be described as raw, honest, and unapologetic and it’s all due to this change that recently happened in her life, basically saying how annoyed she was with herself and she needed to do something about it. But it’s all been a big process for her, “I remember a moment when I looked at myself and I did not know who I was.” She was looking for the girl who used to say how she felt and not have to censor herself because of the judgment she might get.
“I actually wrote a list of all the things that I was, like, annoyed about. First thing on my list, I was annoyed at myself,” Alicia explained, “I’m annoyed that you feel like you can’t just honestly just be clear about what you feel, but you’re so concerned about what everybody might think or take from it or who’s going to be offended, that you can’t even say your truth.”
That was Alicia’s turning point and she hasn’t looked back. But the one thing that she realized the most was how much she depended on other people’s opinion and since she’s front and center in the spotlight, it becomes a big ‘mind-f’, “I needed to un-f myself.”
Alicia expressed how the music industry can push artists to be something that they’re not, but in her case, it’s a family affair. Between her music and her husband, producer and recording artist Swizz Beatz, they have created a 5-year-old musical genius, their son, Egypt. While Shoboy was happy that he was potty-trained at the age of 5, Egypt is producing music for artists like Kendrick Lamar. Alicia said he woke up one morning beatboxing a song and said it was the new song for the movie “Kung Fu Panda 4”, the only problem is that there is no such movie, yet. She had him write it down and play it out and that’s how he started making music.
Alicia is one of the four judges on the TV competition “The Voice”. She has inspired so many young artists and they have the toughest part on the show, which judge to choose as their coach. Their whole career can depend on it… so we put Alicia in the hot seat and asked her if she was a contestant and the other 3 judges turned their chairs for her (Adam Levine, Miley Cyrus, and Blake Shelton), who would she choose as her coach?
“I think I might choose Miley,” Alicia said, “the thing about Miley is that she really is a free spirit.”
Miley’s a straight up hippie with a powerful voice!
Alicia has brought up the fact that the average American lives to be about 76-years-old. That sounds like a long life. But if you think about it, that’s only 28,000 days. That sounds a lot shorter than 76 years.
So, if Alicia was making her last song ever, what artist would she want to collaborate with?
It was a hard question for her to answer, but once she thought about it, she knew the answer and actually plans on making it happen, for real! “Me and Adele. I feel like we have a lot of similarities and obviously we both are very strong.”
–Kristen Accardi/Shoboy in the Morning