Over-sharing may help some artists sell records, but don't expect Alicia Keys to dish on her husband, Swizz Beatz, or spill the beans on any other personal matter. The singer, whose Girl on Fire album is due out Nov. 27, tells Complex that she has her limits.
"I mean, what the hell?" Alicia says of airing out every little detail. "The whole freaking world is looking at your s**t. It’s scary. I didn't want to say every single thing because you don't want people to know that. There’s personal and there’s public, and I deserve the right to have a personal space."
Setting boundaries doesn't mean that Alicia doesn't open up on her new album. She does. Her latest single from Girl on Fire, "Brand New Me," features her singing about transforming herself, and doing so without worry about what other people might think.
"Becoming my new self, some people didn’t understand me anymore," Alicia tells Complex. "Some people who I knew for years—we couldn’t be on the same page anymore."
But Alicia says that's OK. She tells the magazine that the most difficult part of growing is learning to trust yourself. "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."
Alicia credits motherhood with sparking the shift in her life. She tells Complex that women want to straighten up their lives before they bring their new babies into the world. Looking back on when she was pregnant with her son, Egypt, Alicia says, "I refused to be in any circumstance that would give negative energy to this. That was what pushed me over the edge."
For the Complex's December issue cover story, Alicia also talks about not wanting to be perfect. She gives props to Frank Ocean for opening up about his sexuality, and she dishes tips on how guys can stay out of the doghouse.
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