Anastacia is finally back with her new album Heavy Rotation following a few years off to recharge her spiritual batteries, and to wed her very own Prince Charming.Gone are the man-hating lyrics and in is a new, happy go-lucky girl ready to take on the world once again with her empowering vocal talents. I caught up with the first lady of music to chat about SPROCK music, working with Ne-Yo and of course, her endless glasses collection.
Hey Ruth How are ya?
Im good thanks, how about you?Very good thank you!
What have you been up to recently; anything exciting?Well all day long I have been doing phoners, I will admit thats not exactly the highlight of most peoples life but it definitely the highlight of mine! Its a sunny day and you can stay out of the window and look at the sky so blue!
Boo, its raining where we were but at least you saved the best until last! So tell me a little bit about your new album Heavy Rotation.
Wow, I love the way you say rotation because it sounds far more exciting when you say it than when I do it. I end up sounding Reggae when I try to sound like you! But anyway, I think for me this album is quite different from the last album as the last album was my new invention of SPROCK music (Soul, Pop and Rock) and the music was very rock and guitar orientated and it was quite and intense album to begin with because of course I was surviving cancer so a lot of the moments in the songs we very different
This album is very inspired by my time off and my marriage and my friendships and my new record company and being able to feel like I have to chance to make new sound which isnt very common for new artists.
Well the album is incredible! But where do you get the inspiration for your songs from and is there a certain process you go through when writing?
Thank you! Im glad you said you liked it - I find it hard to believe that everyone who says they like it does actually like it though! Ha-ha! This album has been really fun to do and part of it is being able to have a lot of time off from the music business to recharge my batteries and I feel like I can focus all my Anastasia energy on a new project.
I just got married last year which was weird because I was the last person on earth to think I would get married! If I had dreamed of it as a child I would have probably been able to plan more but I never thought it was on my cards and Im still in a little bit of a fog and a phase in my life where Im really happy and grateful and appreciative.
As well as being proud of being a wife and proud of having a new record label and Im really honoured at this point so to be honest the music that Ive written reflects where I am in my life now as I feel really light and peaceful and Im going got love promoting this album at a time when were in a crazy recession where everyone is really depressed and freaked out and Im going to be like La la la la laaaaa! skipping along and being happy and singing because thats how I feel!
I love it! Thats what we all need . Never change! Is there a certain routine you go through when youre writing all these incredible songs?
The interesting thing is that I really dont follow the rules of other people who write songs. I can write a song anywhere. Usually I go to where the producer is because its harder to move a producer out of his element. It really doesnt matter to me what time of day it is or where I am; I can do it.
I usually only start writing an album when I start working on them so the minute I get into the room with the producer I start writing. We start to click and get to know with each other and then they play me some ideas they might have had so I see if I like them and then if I dont we just mess around on some instruments and then the melodies and the lyrics start coming out.
So I only write as many songs as I need. I dont have any on the back burner or anything I just think this album has the least songs I have ever written in my career! It has fourteen songs on the album and I didnt have to write three of them because two were given to me by Ne-Yo and one was by Rodney Jerkins but it was nice that way.
How did you find working with the man-or the moment Ne-Yo?
I know hes so the man of the moment and Im so not used to be down with the kids Im so against the grain Im the person who is always a little late to the party but I suppose who cares if youre late to the party, you just have to keep it going.
I think the ironic part of it is that I would have never suggested working with Ne-Yo because in my mind I never thought he would want to write songs for me which is slightly depressing because I didnt even think Ne-Yo would know who I was because he is in a totally different musical vibe than me and hes an American R n B guy and I imagined him to be like; Anastasia whos dat?
And I really didnt want to get turned down. I think the worst feeling would be asking someone to write a song for you and them to turn round and say; No. so I was so grateful that he knew who I was and then the fact that he wrote two songs. The firs tone he wrote, I Can Feel You was hands down like the perfect song that reflected how I was feeling about my life and my love life. Its been lovely working with him; he is a really charming and down to earth guy.
So have you always sung?
The weirdest part of always singing is that I thought that everyone always sang and it was always a choice of you either want to be a singer or you dont and my choice was really was that as a kid I didnt want to sing or act but as a kid I got into dancing and then I got into a couple of videos and then some producers asked me if I could sing and then all of a sudden I started working with producers and I realised that I could sing and that I might be able to make it in this business.
Who do you look up to within the music industry?
I think that the people that I relate to are the likes of Bette Middler and probably the later dates of Cher more than the early stuff because even though shes a great diva, there is something about her personality that is no nonsense and she tell it how she sees it and keeps it real at all costs but still keeps it real fake when it comes to her hair!
Love it! I always say that if I could sing like anyone it would be you!
No way! I never thought that I had a signature style or anything and I think that Im starting to get it more now because I have seen so many people try to do me that I have started to realise what it is that I sound like. When girls or guys or transvestites try to imitate me I realise that there is a certain way that I sing which is just one of those things that comes out of me. I never warm up before I sing or train my voice - the minute you see my performance its the first note I sing.
Are you going to be coming and touring the UK?
Yeah, it will probably be towards the end of the year because Im going to start with Asia and Australia firs because I can go smaller to them because I can take a smaller entourage there and then build it up to a bigger tour to the UK.
What would you say has been the highlight of your career so far?
Wow, my goodness thats a hard one. Back in the day I used to really feel that it was that moment I sung with Elton John on stage. It was so surreal, I was in America in Madison Square Garden and Im coming out on stage with EJ so whoever I was they were like Great, wonderful and they we clapping and screaming but you could tell they were looking at each other and asking Who is this woman?
My first album had just come out and had really hit in Europe, the UK and Asia and Elton just wanted to sing with me when he was recording One Night Only and my song with him even got on the DVD and that song will forever be etched in my mind when I got of stage and literally screamed out loud that I couldnt believe that just happened! I was mesmerised.
Its clear that you have done so much in your lifetime but what is there that you still want to achieve?
I dont really think there is. I never really know what Im supposed to achieve until Im achieving it and I think thats how my life has gone. I dont feel like I need to act in movies or do all this extra stuff. I would be great but I will never grace the cover or Vogue or anything but there are many things that I would love to do as a woman before my chin is gracing my Jimmy Choos and I would like to be on a cover for something other than dying.
I was always a geek with glasses and everything and so I would love to be a cover girl because without the glasses people are seeing a different side to me and I may be 40 but I sure as heck feel 20 now!
I hope I look like that when I get to that age!
You can girl, just dont party too hard and dont take drugs and have a little botox here and there.
Every musician we interview, we ask them to come up with a question for the next person we interview and Scouting For Girls want to know where you get all your nice glasses from?
I got them from a variety or stores. Whenever I saw a pair of glasses I like, I would buy them in every colour! For me my glasses were my existence as I had to use then to see and I didnt like contact lenses so the more pairs of glasses I had the more outfit choices I had.
I used to choose my outfits around my glasses and it went from the glasses to the outfits which is why sometimes my outfits were a little crazy because I was a bi tout of touch and I would have purple glasses and then I would want feathers and silk and at the time I thought it looks great but then I look back and think; What was I thinking?
Finally, can you come up with a question for the next person I interview please?
When was your first kiss? I dont think its too personal and it might give a cute answer.
Good question. Thanks. See you soon hun!
FemaleFirst - Ruth Harrison
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