Janelle Monae covers Billboard

Get ready queens, Janelle Monáe is primed and ready for her return!  After dropping the oh so funky lead single Q.U.E.E.N.S. a few weeks ago, the Kansas City native is gearing up to release her sophomore effort, Electric Lady in September.

This week Monáe covers Billboard and discusses her upcoming album and her friendship with the purple one himself, Prince.

“We are great friends, and he is a mentor to us, to me,” she tells Billboard. “It’s a beautiful thing to have a friend — someone who cares about your career, and wants to see you go far and to push boundaries and shake up the world — give whatever they possibly can to the cause.”

Electric Lady, Monáe’s follow up to her smash 2010 debut The ArchAndroid, will feature guest appearances by Erykah Badu, Miguel, and her pal Prince.

“It’s not every day that he collaborates. I’m honored and humbled that he trusted me. He is forever my friend, and I am forever indebted. I can’t say too much else about it,” she told the music rag.

With so many heavy-hitter’s Monáe’s label hopes Electric Lady will not only give the fans what they want, but will finally earn the quirky songstress some solid radio spins as well.

“This album has a lot of songs that can get played on mainstream radio,” Atlantic Records Group chairman/COO Julie Greenwald told Billboard. “Before, we got a lot of attention in the press, on the blogs, on the video networks. But we didn’t crack the code at radio. So if you connect that last dot, it’s going to be a significant improvement from the last album cycle. Which is really going to put her music in so many people’s homes.”

Regardless of whether or not radio will catch up to her magic, Janelle Monáe isn’t worried. She’s sticking to her only goal: to thine own self be true.

“My goal wasn’t to be the most famous person overnight — it was to make music on my own terms, develop myself and understand if my words were necessary to young people like myself and to make my family proud.”

Check out an excerpt of the interview on the Billboard site or pick up a copy on newsstands now.

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  • Orange Starr Happy Hunting

    The best music is seldom played on general radio, matter fact radio is always behind and stuck on spinning commercial wackness a lot of the time.
    Stay true Ms.Monae and those that have ears to appreciate the musical feast you be serving will surely be fine dining.

  • Yas

    Working with Prince. That’s a good look Janelle. :) Looking forward to hearing them jam.

  • as she gets more famous her music gets more stale……sigh

  • Naturalista

    Is Ms Monae still natural? Her hair looks permed in recent pics

  • RenJennM

    I’m super excited that she’s working with Prince because a lot people thought he didn’t like her at all. When she did the BET performance in honor of him a couple years ago, a lot of people didn’t like it and got a bad impression of her. People also assumed Prince was unsatisfied with her performance. Shoo, I also thought he didn’t like her! But it’s nice to see that he does in fact see her talent and creativity.

    Oh, and she looks gorgeous on that cover by the way, as usual!