JUSTIN TIMBERLAKE talks about himself on Apple Music and talks about the emotions of the upcoming album

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Justin Timberlake talks to Zane Lowe on Apple Music 1 to celebrate the release of his new single, Selfish.

Justin chats with Zane Lowe and gives a preview of what fans can expect from his upcoming project, “Everything I Thought It Was.”


Justin Timberlake talks about his next album and the origin of the title…

I think there are moments of great honesty, but also a lot of fun on this album.

I think the title of the album came from there, from everything I thought it was. I was playing it for the people around me. They were like, “Oh, that sounds like everything we know you for.” And then another friend of mine said, “This sounds like everything I thought I wanted from you.” It was as if this phrase, one way or another, was in the air. And I thought about how some songs are more introspective and some are more like what I think people know me for.”

On recording 100 songs and having to whittle them down to 18 for the album…

I worked on this album for a long time and ended up with 100 songs. So it was necessary to reduce them to 18 and then… yes, I’m really excited about this album. I think every artist says this, but it’s my best work.

Music as a container and the inspiration for the single “Selfish”…

This is the beauty of music… it is a container that helps us, as human beings, to express ourselves. Even if you didn’t write it, you find a relationship with that emotion, which led me to the first single. And in writing that song, the moment it happened was two in the morning. A friend of mine, who’s also my musical director, who’s probably a friend of the whole family in LA, Adam Blackstone, was doing these little jazz nights at a place in Los Angeles. He invited me to come and said, “Hey, man.” He said to me: “Do you want to come and sing something?”. And I just randomly said, “Oh, yeah, let’s do Donny Hathaway’s cover of Lennon’s Jealous Guy.” And, by the way, if you’re a gen-Zer right now, you have no idea who I’m talking about!

We were talking about the song and something you don’t often hear from men, when they express an emotion that makes them vulnerable. And then, growing up the way I grew up, they teach you not to do it. And so… it seemed like a really honest song to me. The lyrics started coming out honestly. And when I listened to the entire album I thought that, of all the songs I will include, from a production point of view, it is probably the simplest (despite being “complex” in its simplicity).

When he first performed the song in Memphis, the day before his mother’s birthday…

It was a great feeling. The fans in the room heard a fragment of it, it was nice to sing it live. And it was interesting too. There was a guy near the front who kept saying, “Again, again, again.” And I’m like, “Look, man, there’s a curfew. Sooner or later we will have to leave here!”. It was really nice! I had the show planned, and it could have been a listening party or something, but then, if you’re there, why not play the song live? So I worked with the band and we played it live. The whole evening was so full of soul and love… the atmosphere in the room was truly special. Even as far as the Orpheum, the theater in Memphis, my mother took me there when the Broadway shows were on tour.

There’s a snippet of a video I posted where I’m sitting in the seats the day before rehearsal and I’m staring at the stage. And I was trying to remember there was a show, I think it was Cats or something, I must have been eight or nine… I remember we had seats on the floor, and it was really astonishing to me to see a production like that in a theater at that time. Yes, I had a lot of nostalgia, a lot of memories that came back. And it was also very special, because the night after the show was my mother’s birthday.

On being able to express oneself with music and being satisfied with the emotions that come from the album…

It’s a really good feeling, the thoughts, emotions and feelings that came to mind while writing these songs and the people I collaborated with and was able to share these moments with. In some songs I feel like I was able to look into the past and have a real, unrefracted perspective of what was, because you always hear that there is never truth, there is only the perspective of each of us about what happened, but to actually watch it and be able to metabolize and verbalize my perspective on it, I don’t think I’ve ever done that before.


The interview is available here: https://music.apple.com/it/station/justin-timberlake/ra.1724854969


The video for the single, directed by Bradley J. Calder (SZA, Tinashe), highlights the introspective side of the song: pulling back the curtain on the production process and blending the lines between performance and reality, it is a raw and honest portrait of Justin as an artist and person.


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Christopher Johnson

Christopher Johnson is a dedicated writer and key contributor to the WECB website, Emerson College's student-run radio station. Passionate about music, radio communication, and journalism, Christopher pursues his craft with a blend of meticulous research and creative flair. His writings on the site cover an array of subjects, from music reviews and artist interviews to event updates and industry news. As an active member of the Emerson College community, Christopher is not only a writer but also an advocate for student involvement, using his work to foster increased engagement and enthusiasm within the school's radio and broadcasting culture. Through his consistent and high-quality outputs, Christopher Johnson helps shape the voice and identity of WECB, truly embodying its motto of being an inclusive, diverse, and enthusiastic music community.