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Saturday, November 15, 2008

Alicia Keys Plays Hard-To-Get

Alicia Keys Plays Hard-To-Get

Alicia Keys (Reuters)

Eleven-time Grammy winner Alicia Keys, who's in contention for five American Music Awards including Artist of the Year, will join Kanye West to perform live in Hollywood during the gala show next month.
Meanwhile, she's pursuing her other career on the big screen, co-starring in "The Secret Life of Bees".
www.parade.com
Q: You were determined to do the film even though it conflicted with the tour for your album 'As I Am'. How did you get it all together?
A: It wasn't easy, but I did both because the movie was really important to me. I was traveling back and forth from live performances to the film set on a lot of overnight flights. Finally, my body just broke down. I got very sick and I had to end up cancelling some shows, only a couple so it wasn't the end of the world. But it was worth it.
You're a piano virtuoso, but you had to learn a new instrument, didn't you?
Yes, my character plays the cello. So while some of the other actresses were risking getting stung by bees, I was getting calluses on my fingers. The cello was a different experience that was beautiful and challenging. I love it now. I'm still studying, so I'm definitely not ready for a duet with Yo Yo Ma yet. Maybe I'll put it in my next album.
You grew up in a tough New York neighbourhood. How did the other kids feel about you studying classical piano?
I didn't walk around Hell's Kitchen drawing attention to the fact that I was a musician. It wasn't the kind of place where you would go, 'Guess what, guys, I play Beethoven!' But a lot of my close friends knew and they thought it was cool.
In the film, your character is being courted, but she can't bring herself to take a walk down the aisle.
You can see how much she loves the man that she's with, but fear stops her. She was playing super hard-to-get, which works every time, it drives men crazy, not that I've ever done it.
Are you ready for marriage?
There's almost a stigma to it at this point in a lot of ways, to me. A lot of people have been saying to me, 'Oh don't get married, it ruins everything.' And I'm like, 'Damn, really?' But I definitely want to have a family.
"Secret Life of Bees" is your third film. Are you feeling more comfortable as an actress?
I don't know if comfortable is the word because I don't know if you're ever really comfortable. I think part of it is kind of being a little uncomfortable. And that sometimes lends itself to the best because it's OK not to be comfortable. But I'm comfortable in really reaching for the things that I believe in. I'm definitely comfortable in that.
Did you get a kick out of recording the soundtrack song "Another Way To Die" for the new James Bond film?
I saw the film, it's really good. "Quantum of Solace" is a dope title, but I still have no idea what it means. It's a duet with Jack White, which was fun. I've always been a big fan of the White Stripes, and for us to combine this kind of rock and soul feeling was cool. Jack actually really took the lead on it because he's a big, big Bond fan.
You've had a reputation as something of a workaholic who wants to have a say in every aspect of your career.
I just want to know what's going on with my money, where it's going, how it is being spent। I don't give a damn if people hate me. I'm never gonna be one of those stories you read about where someone had all this and ended up with zero because so many people took advantage of them.

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