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2007 Rewind – Kelly Rowland: On My Own

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The last decade has been an extremely successful time for Kelly Rowland. Being part of the hit trio Destiny’s Child has garnered her accolades as an R&B solo artist, songwriter, actress and four-time Grammy Award winner. Over the years, Kelly has gracefully matured from a teenage girl into a beautiful Southern bombshell. She’s shown us that she’s not afraid to try new things or stand on her own. Since the disbandment of Destiny’s Child in 2006, Kelly has taken advantage of her time by seeking growth as a woman first, and artist second. We spoke to Kelly about her sophomore solo album Ms. Kelly, got her thoughts on various topics from plastic surgery to the rumor mill, and found out how it goes down when things get personal. AllHipHop.com Alternatives: How have you been? Kelly Rowland: Good, I can’t complain. AHHA: What is it like being on your own without [Destiny’s Child]? Kelly: I have to say that right now I’m really enjoying this space by myself. In the beginning, I wasn’t sure how I was going to handle it because it was towards the end of the Destiny’s Fulfilled Tour; right when we had made the decision to break away. I remember being a little sad, even when I was at home by myself, I was really sad. But, I had to tell myself, “You know what Kelly? Life has change. You have to have growth. You just have to embrace it and go for it. Make another record.” And that’s what I did. AHHA: How have you stayed so fit? Kelly: Thank my grandmother for her great genes! My mother has hips and extra hiney and she likes it. However I’d rather look like my grandmother. She’s about 77 and she’s my size. She looks good. She has beautiful skin. She has a cute figure. I thank God for her genes. AHHA: What made you switch from short hair to long hair? Kelly: I just wanted to try something different. I was actually scared that it would look crazy, but I was really excited when I tried it because it looks just like I wanted it to. I love Sarah Jessica Parker’s hair. That’s my hair icon. I try to find styles similar to people who have a face like mine. I saw hers and I liked her hair and I thought I’d try it. AHHA: How important is image to you? Kelly: To everyone else it’s real important. It does pay a huge role in your career. You can’t walk out the house looking a mess. You’ll log on AllHipHop.com rumors section and find yourself looking crazy, but that won’t be me! [laughs] AHHA: How do you feel about plastic surgery? Kelly: If that’s what you do, do it. I know if something is falling off of me, I’m going to pick it up. The older I get, if it’s falling, I’m going to pick it up. It’s an option just like extensions are! AHHA: So if you could change anything, what would it be? Kelly: I would laser off a little stretch mark I have on the back of my knee. It’s something I inherited. I put make up on it. Thank God for make up, it’s an option! ¬AHHA: Tell us about the foundation you have with the Knowles – Rowland Center for Youth? Kelly Rowland: It’s a Survivor foundation with me, Beyoncé and her family. We contributed to building a youth center for our church. Also a shelter called the Knowles Rowland Teminals building. I remember after Katrina, our church was talking about how we wanted to build a shelter for those who had been affected by Katrina and other life changing events that moved to Houston – especially for people who were moved to Houston and couldn’t rebuild their lives back up. It’s a place for people to come to and start all over again. It feels really good to be a part of it. I can’t wait for the groundbreaking which is really soon. AHHA: Anything else that you do within the community? Kelly: I do a lot of work with my church, St. John United Methodist Church. It feels good to be a part of a church family that does so much for the community. It’s funny, because you can walk into so many different churches, but when I walked into this one it just felt like home. I love our church family and being a part of it. AHHA: You’re still living in Houston? Kelly: No, I live in Miami. I love living in Miami. It’s a lot of energy – it feels good to receive the support from the people in Miami. It’s a great place to live for me. AHHA: What’s going on with the acting career? Can we expect to see you in on television or in another movie any time soon? Kelly: I sure hope so. It seems like everything keeps coming while I’m doing promotion for my new record. But, I think that what’s for me will be. That’s something that nobody can change. AHHA: How’s your promotional tour been going so far? Kelly: It’s been going well. I’m just out letting everyone know about my album, Ms. Kelly that is out June 26th. I am so excited about this record. It’s taken a year and a half to complete. I know I’ve been giving everybody two different due dates but now I finally have one. AHHA: Tell me what’s different with this record in contrast to the last? Kelly: The last record was a pop-alternative record with a dash of R&B. My new album is more R&B album but it also has some pop influence as well. It’s an R&B/ pop record. It’s still very urban. AHHA: What made you choose an alternative R&B style on your first album? Kelly: I wanted to try something different. Sometimes as an artist, you want to try something different. Like one morning, I woke up wanting to do an album that had a Sade feel to it. Instead of doing an entire album sounding like Sade, I’ve learned to balance it out and put hints in it. I have a song with a Sade feel to it. It’s called “Better Without You.” She’s a person who inspired me. Therefore, I got to pay homage. I love her. AHHA: Your new single with Eve is starting to pick up. How did two hook up? Kelly: I’ve known Eve for a long time. She was on a TRL tour with Destiny’s Child a while ago. When we did the first drafts for my album, it didn’t come out the way that I wanted it to. I liked it but I still wasn’t crazy about it. I love Eve and I wanted to do a single with her. I didn’t care if it was the first, second, or third single. I just wanted it to be one of my singles. Sean Garrett brings this record in. We started to write together and flowing off of each other. I told him, “I see Eve on this,” because it needed an MC feel to it. She did the record the next day. It came out hot! AHHA: Who else is on the album? Kelly: Snoop and Tank. AHHA: Is your song with Tank a ballad? Kelly: Yes. It’s a song called “The Show” and he’s singing like he wants every woman on earth. AHHA: Who are some of the producers that you’ve worked with on this album? Kelly: Scott Storch, these up and coming producers from L.A. named Kenny & Charlie who set the foundation for the record, and Billy Mann. The writers are Sean Garrett, Solange Knowles, Lonnie Burrell and me. AHHA: You did some writing as well? Kelly: Yes. A lot of times I give credit to so many other people for writing and they’re like, “Kelly, you know you did some writing on this record too”. AHHA: How do you go about choosing who will be on your album as far as writers and producers? Kelly: I’ll think about who I want to work with first. Then I have help from A&R as well. If there is some new producer somewhere and know that I want to try something new then I’m like, “Let’s get them.” It’s important to search for that new talent. For example, Timbaland wasn’t always Timbaland. He’s worked under someone else at one point in time and eventually stood on his own. It takes a lot of courage to do it, because it can be a hit or miss. AHHA: You’ve toured all over the world, what has been your most memorable place? Kelly: I’d have to say Australia. I shot a video there and it was so beautiful. It was right by the water. It was awesome. AHHA: What was it like when you heard the crazy rumor that you were hiding that Mathew Knowles was your dad? Kelly: We knew it was coming because I call him my dad. Someone once said we look a like. I’m blessed. I have three parents: my mother Doris, momma T (Tina Knowles) and dad (Matthew Knowles) – thank you Jesus for three parents. Someone heard me call him “Dad” and that started it. I’m not worried about it because it’s not true. I happen to be in a unique situation. I don’t know my biological father and I don’t know where he is. God does put people in your lives for a reason and I thank God for him. He filled the void. AHHA: How do you feel when you here rumors about yourself? Kelly: I have learned to develop thick skin. Opinions are like butt holes; everyone has one. It doesn’t bother me now. But when you talk about my family, I’m ready to fight. AHHA: How do you feel about your personal life being in the public? For example, your situation with your former fiancé Roy Williams where you let people know what was going on between you two, and then things not panning out as planned. Kelly: My personal life is personal. [laughs] I’m not talking about anything personal anymore not with relationships or whatever. I’ll spring up on everybody like, “I’m married”, and I’m not anywhere near being married. With everybody else knowing everything, you have to keep something to yourself. That’s what that relationship taught me. It was a learning lesson. If I could do it all over again, I would do things totally different, but everything happens for a reason. Now I have an extra bit of knowledge! AHHA: Are you single? Kelly: I’m single; I’m doing a little bit of dating. I don’t want to date anyone in the industry. I just want a regular hardworking man with goals! I’ve been through the stages with someone in the industry thinking they would understand my schedule. I know there’s a man out there waiting to treat me right who will be with me along the way, and I’ll love him back just the same. I just have a unique schedule and right now just isn’t the time. The timing has to be right. I think eventually he will show. And we’ll be [sings] so happy together! AHHA: Well I’m not sure how often you check our rumors section, but Illseed recently made mention of your latest promo work on your new album and that he has a huge crush on you! Kelly: Tell him I said hello. He’s a regular hard working man! I like that. AHHA: How did it feel to see your former Destiny’s child band mate LaToya take on a solo career do her thing? Kelly: I am proud of her. I spoke to her just recently. She’s doing big things and I am so proud of her. She has an album and her fabulous store, Lady Elle, and she’s just doing big things! I am just so proud. AHHA: Do you talk to LaTavia? Kelly: I wish I could hear from her just to know that she’s doing alright. Last I heard she was writing. She’s a good writer and a very good actress. I wish her the best. AHHA: What’s in the future for you Kelly? Kelly: Hopefully, selling a lot of records. I put together a good album. I love it. I can’t wait to tour. Maybe a family; I am really ready to be someone’s wife, and I’m ready to have children. I give myself about five years or so.

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