Rapper A$AP Rocky is not the only artist who is covering Complex magazine’s December 2012/January 2013 issue. Singer Alicia Keys also graces this issue. On the cover, A. Keys shows a lot of skin in a fluffy white dress. In the process of recording her new album, Girl On Fire which arrives November 27, A. Keys met with Complex’s senior editor Rob Kenner in London to do an in-depth interview for her cover story. She opens up and talks about a lot of personal things. This issue goes on sale December 4, but some highlights are below:
On competing with herself and not wanting to be compared to the other music greats:
“I’m competitive with myself in the sense that I want to get better,” she says now. “It’s not that I’m obsessively dissecting myself, but there’s a critique that happens. I am very driven. I’m not comparing myself to other people. I don’t wanna be like her or him. I want to be my best.”
On her song “Brand New Me”.
“Don’t be mad that I’m different,” Alicia explains about the song. “Don’t be mad that I’m changed. Don’t be mad that I’m grown. You can’t affect me the way you once did. You can’t be mad. Like, how could you be mad?”
Inspirations behind her new album:
“Before making this record, in some ways I felt like a lion locked in a cage,” she wrote. “I felt like a girl misunderstood that no one really knew. I felt like it was time to stop making excuses for any part of my life that I wanted to change. Once I made that choice I became a girl on fire, the lion broke free!”
On starting so young and being in the industry most of her life:
“Because I started so young, so much of my life has been like catching up to myself—or trying to run underneath myself so I’m not falling. I finally stepped back and was able to look at it all and say ‘Wow.’ No complaints. I’m glad to be where I am and have this life. But it could be different. I don’t want to have the type of life where I’m not living or I’m always working or always fitting into whatever perfect box. I don’t want that type of hectic life. I don’t want people in my life that encourage that in any way. I’m not my old self anymore.”
On changing herself for the better:
“Becoming my new self, some people didn’t understand me anymore. Some people who I knew for years—we couldn’t be on the same page anymore. That’s OK because that’s part of growing, too. The hardest thing is to trust yourself, to know that what you’re feeling is valid. A lot of times we dismiss our feelings. I realized that I can trust myself and say, ‘No, I’m not comfortable with that.’ That was the toughest part. When I finally had the bravery to do that, that’s when I started to feel on fire.”
Read this interview in its entirety over at Complex.
Source Complex | Photography by Gavin Bond
Follow me @donbleek88