Speaking of collabos, your ex Stevie J. was co-writer on your Grammy-winning collabo with Gwen Stefani, “Let Me Blow Ya Mind.” If you by any chance or coincidence ran into Stevie J in the street what would you say to him?
Hmmm… Hi? [Laughter]. I don’t know. There’s really not much to say.
What’s the biggest change you’ve witnessed in the rap game specifically and the music world in general since you dropped your last album (11 years ago?!), and how has it impacted your return?
So many things have changed, even the way that music is. I mean there’s a lot of music out that, when I first came out, a lot of things would not have been accepted with hip hop—just even some of the sounds and collaborations would not have happened, which I like. You’re able to experiment more [now] as a hip-hop artist. I think with this album I felt that freedom… I didn’t feel like I had to stick to a certain thing and I could do what it is I felt like doing. If I heard a track, even if it was really different, I could just do what I wanted.
What’s the biggest challenge of having your own independent label, From the Ribs Music, and what’s the greatest reward?
I think the biggest challenge is, while it is good and I’m excited because I’m able to make decisions, it’s still kind of scary that I am the last person to sign off on things and make those major decisions. It’s a bit scary because I come from a major-label world where other people were able to make those major decisions. But at the same time I really like being in that position. The greatest reward is trusting myself enough to actually make it happen and get it done – that’s an amazing reward.
When you say or think about From the Ribs music does it make you hungry?
[Laughter] No, for me it’s just a play on words, my name, you know, Eve, Adam and Eve, from the rib, you know they say we came from the rib… It’s just a play on my name.
In this pop-culture era we live in where someone’s always calling somebody else out as not being “relevant” or being a “non-factor” how do you manage to stay current and relevant?
Honestly, I don’t even really take it into account. I don’t think about it. If I thought about things like that I think it would stress me out even more than I’m already stressed out. For me, as long as I’m visible, as long as I’m making the moves I’m supposed to make—especially with this album, I’ve been working my ass off – and you know getting the right looks, because I think all of that is important, it’s not something I consciously think about. That’s what you hire publicists for. That’s their job. Other than that, I can’t do anything but put out good music and make the right moves, because you can’t predict with music.
With your return to the music scene with this album, you’re giving the rap game more….
Reality. I think I’m more accessible than a lot of artists that are out, so I think more reality.
Even with the hectic day you’re in the midst of with the official album release, the one thing you plan to do for you is….
Definitely take a moment to give thanks. I’ve actually been doing that all day, but before I go to sleep I usually take a minute and say thank you, because I do definitely feel blessed. And happy.
[Photo Credit: Getty Images]