Interview with Janelle Monáe: “I consider myself a free ass motherfucker.”

What the album cover means to her:

I don’t like to talk over my art. So I think it’s best when people see the cover that if they look at it and examine it that they feel that it means this to them, they should embrace that. It means a lot to me, but I prefer not to disclose what that is because I want the conversation to keep happening. I want people the artist to be questioned and I want it to be questioned. I want people to help me to see it differently. You know sometimes when you talk over your art you don’t get that. It’s layered, it’s complex. Just like we are.

Janelle Monae Dirty Computer
Photo: WMG

On showing skin in the „Make me feel” video:

I think this album is deeply vulnerable and honest. And one of the things I wanted to make sure of is that I was focusing on not self-editing myself. I have a tendency to not write things because I overthink them and I didn’t wanna do that with this project. I wanted this project to be as free of an expression of who/where I am right now as possible. And so what you see is the celebration of individuality, the celebration of freedom, of love, self-love and I consider myself a free ass motherfucker. And that’s what you saw. I hope that’s what everybody was able to see when they watched“Make me feel”.

How she feels about people telling her that they liked her wearing suits instead of showing so much skin: 

Oh, I think people should stop to tell women what they can do with their bodies. They don’t own our bodies. And I have always been about agency. And I don’t like when people use my image – or have in the past –to defame or denounce other women, who show skin. I wore suit and tuxedo to pay homage to my working class family. And also to resist any notion that just because I am a women I have to show skin. I think it’s about ME having the choice. It’s about agency. So if I wanna show skin, if I don’t wanna show skin –that’s my right. And there are many ways we can dress and still be confident and strong. I think if the whole world would wear tuxedos and suits, I’d be naked.

Why she chose Grammy nominated song writer Julia Michaels as a collaborator on “Make me feel”: 

Oh, she is a phenomenal songwriter. I love her own solo work as well. She’s been doing a tremendous job in the States and around the world. She and I were just able to connect woman to woman and I think she is a brilliant talent. I was just happy to work with Julia Michaels. I’d love to work with her again. She is very talented!

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Melissa Wilke

Editor-in-chief | After two years in PR, I now work as an Account Manager in an advertising agency in the beautiful city of Duesseldorf. I’ve been blogging for 7 years on several websites and started working as a freelance writer for music magazines in 2013. I believe in the social value of music and its power to change the world for the better. My favourite bands/artists are Green Day, Enter Shikari, Linkin Park, Marmozets, SWMRS, Lana del Rey, Paramore, Foo Fighters, Nirvana and too many more to list them all.

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