Yes. [Laughs] I feel like it’s probably more people experience heartache than people that’s experiencing love, and there’s probably more people who have had their heartbroken than people that have actually been in love, period, so I feel like people gravitate toward those type of songs. But with love songs, there’s a certain hope in it, even if you don’t have it right now. If you hear a good song, it makes you hopeful like, “That is out there.”
When was your worst heartbreak?
My first relationship. That’s why I wrote “Bust Your Windows.” [Laughs] I was young. I was in high school and I wrote it right after high school.
Who are these no-good guys that you’re singing about on songs like “Holding You Down” and “10 Seconds”?
I wouldn’t say that he’s a no-good guy. He did no-good things, but I know of men who are no good from my girlfriends and whatnot. I mean, they’re out there and we’ve all probably ran across them.
Are you in a relationship now?
Yeah. I’ve been in a relationship for a couple years now, so it’s old. [Laughs]
Whose idea was it for you to play the drug addict and a woman beater in “Redemption?”
It was mine. First of all, the track was really, really moody. Really, it was a different process writing that song because I worked line by line. I would write one line and then I would add onto the story the longer that I went. I wanted to make lyrics that were as moody as the track was, and I wanted to actually say something in the song. I feel like I had to for that track. The idea just kinda came as I was writing it.
Do you have a favorite record on the album?
I did a song called “Famous” with NO I.D. It’s really just my plight to be famous and just wanting that since I was a kid to even now wanting more of what I have.
What made you fall in love with singing when you were younger?
I loved the feeling I got when I sang. I loved the feeling that it gave to people when I sang. I don’t know. It was magical. I was like I was home, really. This is what I’m supposed to be doing.
There was some coverage on the blogs about your album cover being a full-body image. Is being a full figured woman still a big issue? Is image an issue?
Image in this industry is always a big issue, and I wouldn’t say so much with the people that are closest to me, but it’s always an issue. But you have to be comfortable with yourself initially for people to be comfortable with you, and I’m comfortable with myself. It’s some things that I want to work on personally, but if I never did, I wouldn’t hate myself. You know what I’m saying? I’m cool with where I’m at. It’s certain things I wanna do to be better, but I’m good. Just listen to my music. I’m cute! [Laughs] Just relax. We have people in the industry that can satisfy that, but I don’t think it’s a lot of people that can do what I do, so appreciate what it is that I do.
Have you thought about an R&B mixtape
No, I haven’t. I would do a mixtape, but I haven’t thought it though.
What’s a weakness that you would like to work on as artist?
A weakness maybe is trying to be more open to people. I’m really quiet and I like to just observe people—observe who it is in my space. If you’re not smiling 24/7, people think that you’re mean and you’re shy and that’s not necessarily a good thing, so I have to work on just letting people in a little quicker.
How are you working on that?
I mean, it’s tough because it’s the way I am, so I’m trying to change something that’s embedded in me, but every time I see somebody, I try to let them know that I’m a friendly person and smile as much as I can [laughs].
Any new artists that you’re really excited about?
I love Janelle Monae. I think she’s great. She’s definitely a breath of fresh air. She’s so cute!
Anything about the album that’s really special to you and you want people to know?
I hope when people hear this album, they see a different side of me—whatever that side is when you listen to it. I just want people to see more of me, and I’m trying to expose myself a little more and more the longer that I’m in this industry. When you’re first meeting your boyfriend or you go beyond that, you don’t throw everything out at him. You expose it the longer you’re with somebody, and that’s what I want my relationship to be with my fans.