In an exclusive interview with Billboard magazine Beyonce finally reveals the title of her new album (“4” as in her number of solo albums) and talks openly about why, at almost 30, she felt it was time for her to officially take control of her career.
According to the 29 year old pop diva, her role within the music industry is to constantly “push the limits” and hopefully “evolve” in the process. The singer’s longtime collaborator The Dream echoes those sentiments, saying “Run the World (Girls) was not a safe singles choice for Beyonce to make. That [kind of song treatment] would never happen with any other artist of her stature, male or female.”
New music aside, Beyonce also confirms her role in the 3rd remake of the 1937 classic “A Star is Born,” which is being directed this time around by Clint Eastwood.
To read the entire interview, which is pretty good, click here to visit Billboard.com.
Excerpts can be read below.
Whenever you put out a new song, it seems to generate a catchphrase. Is that something you think about?
That’s what I always want to do – I’m attracted to songs that will become a dinner conversation! [laughs] With “Single Ladies,” clearly I’d just gotten married, and people want to get married every day – then there was the whole Justin Timberlake thing [recreating the video] on “Saturday Night Live,” and it was also the year YouTube blew up. With “Irreplaceable,” the aggressive lyrics, the acoustic guitar, and the 808 [drum machine] – those things don’t typically go together, and it sounded fresh. “Crazy in Love” was another one of those classic
moments in pop culture that none of us expected. I asked Jay to get on the song the night before I had to turn my album in – thank God he did. It still never gets old, no matter how many times I sing it.
How did the creative process begin with the new body of work?
I recorded more than 60 songs: everything I ever wanted to try, I just did it. I started off being inspired by [Afrobeat music pioneer] Fela Kuti. I actually worked with the band from “Fela!” [the hit Broadway musical based on his life] for a couple of days, just to get the feel for the soul and heart of his music; it’s so sexy, and has a great groove you get lost in. I loved his drums, all the horns, how everything was on the one. What I learned most from Fela was artistic freedom: he just felt the spirit. I also found a lot of inspiration in ’90s R&B, Earth, Wind & Fire, DeBarge, Lionel Richie, Teena Marie… I listened to a lot of Jackson 5 and New Edition, but also Adele, Florence + the Machine, and Prince. Add in my hip-hop influences, and you can hear how broad it is. I also gave myself more freedom to really belt out some songs, and bring soul singing back: I used a lot of the brassiness and grittiness in my voice that people hear in my live performances, but not necessarily on my records.