Brian Stukes/Getty ImagesNine years after her last album, Amerie is making a comeback and releasing new music today.
The two-time Soul Train award-winner is dropping a two-album project, one named 4AM Mulholland, and on named After 4AM.
Amerie found immediate success with her 2002 debut album All I Have, which went gold. She continued her hot streak in 2005 with another gold album, Touch, which included her Grammy-nominated single “1 Thing.” But after releasing two more albums — 2007’s Because I Love It and 2009’s In Love & War — she left the music business.
Why? Amerie says she wanted to write her own songs, which caused a conflict with her record label. “I experienced pushback because I’m a female who knows herself and doesn’t have problems speaking up,” she tells Billboard.
“I felt the resistance — the ‘shut up and be pretty and sing’ thing. It was never explicitly stated for me, but I definitely felt that,” she adds.
The 38-year-old singer turned to writing fantasy novels. She got married in 2011, and this past May, she welcomed son River Rowe.
The singer from Washington, D.C. says writing novels inspired her to return to music. “Writing a lot helped a lot with my songwriting,” she explains. “It helped me write a lot faster.”
Amerie also says she loves how the music industry’s digital platforms now allow fans to access music instantly.
“The speed at which everyone’s listening to things and digesting things, it allows a singer — especially if you’re independent — to get it off your chest and go to the next thing,” she says.
“You don’t feel like something’s slowing you down. That’s all I want to do — I just want to create.”
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