Q&A with Ciara

It seems like yesterday "Goodies" and "1, 2 Step" were destroying MTV. We talked to Ciara about how her album Jackie stands as her artistic statement, motherhood, tour, and her favorite things!

--Adam Downer

GGM: Jackie features a lot of producers and many different kinds of sounds. Why was it important to you to mix it up like that and have all those different flavors?

C: You know, this album to me is really important. It marks the most special time in my life thus far, and it also marks one of the most crucial times to me as an artist. I’ve been very blessed to put out music and albums with a fair amount of success, but this album is really about growing. It’s about being as clear as I can possibly be. I’ve been able to learn over the years that you have to do exactly what you feel and you have to do what you feel. Don’t do anything and have reservations about it. If you’re gonna make an album, make an album exactly how you wanna make it. Talk exactly how you wanna talk.

I was really specific with the producers I chose to work with. I really did have a vision for this album. The producers like Dr. Luke, Polow da Don and Harmony in particular—I have more producers on the album but I focus on those three because I spent the most time with them individually—all brought their individual flavors to the table, and I feel they were able to bring out the best in me as an artist. It’s so cool you said that!

GGM: This album is named after your mother, and it’s your first album since the birth of your son. How has motherhood influenced Jackie?

C: Motherhood has influenced my album in such a great way. Again, it marks the most special time in my life, being a mom. My mom’s name is Jackie, so I now know what it’s like to be in her shoes, have that perspective. It’s game-changing! I now have to think about someone else when I make decisions. Not only am I working hard for me, but I’m working hard for someone else. My goal is to be the best Mom I can be and always be an example of how you should believe in your dreams, do anything you set your mind to, that sort of concept. think being with my son has allowed me to be in touch with my truest feelings. It’s allowed me to not be afraid of expressing what I feel and what I want. It’s given me a clear mind.

GGM: I missed your show when you came to New York at the Best Buy Theater, but I heard it was awesome! I know you haven’t toured in a while. How do you like being back out on the road?

C: Oh my gosh, I was definitely a little nervous because on top of preparing for my tour, I was also doing promo things, running around, preparing for the album, chilling with NBC. But everything has been amazing. I really feel like this is my best tour thus far. Even though I’ve had tours in large arenas and everything, there’s something about the energy of this tour. I feel super connected with my music in a way I’ve probably never been. Maybe with my first album I was as connected, but it was a different energy because I was just starting, hadn’t been around the world, and there was this pure passion of me being a young girl getting ready to earn her stripes. Now it feels so good to be where I am mentally and spiritually, and the energy has really been working.

GGM: Can you tell me a favorite album of all time?

C: Michael Jackson's Thriller. I feel like I’m cheating if I tell you the Greatest Hits, so I’ll say Thriller.

GGM: What are you listening to right now?

C: I’m into oldies. I’ve been listening to Sade, Al Green. My favorite song of all time is Al Green's “How Can You Mend a Broken Heart.”

GGM: Have you seen any good movies recently?

C: I’ve been out of the movie scene recently, but a couple of my favorites are The Godfather, B*A*P*S with Halle Berry. I also love The Notebook, and Benjamin Button.

GGM: Can you tell me a favorite restaurant in Atlanta?

C: I love Houston’s. It’s not only in Atlanta, but I love that.

GGM: Have you read any good books recently?

C: I was just telling myself I need to get reading again. That, I have all the time for, in the planes, but actually I’m about to start learning Spanish, and that I’m excited about!

GGM: If you had to pick one song you’ve released as your favorite, which would it be?

C: Aw man, that’s hard! I can tell you that my first song of my career, "Goodies," is one of, if not my number one favorite. It was a very special time for me. 

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