Ciara: 'Body Party' and Soul

The princess of Crunk&B opens up about her newfound sense of self, the inspiration behind her upcoming album, and why she thinks the hip-hop community will embrace gay NBA star Jason Collins.

BY Jase Peeples

May 16 2013 3:00 AM ET

Basketball and hip-hop stars frequently cite one another as inspirations. Do you think the hip-hop community will embrace Jason Collins like it has other athletes?
I don't see why not. At least from my perspective, because I feel like nowadays we're more in tune with individualism. Maybe it's the lens I see things through, but I just feel like we're living in the days of self-expression and we're seeing more of that on many levels. Whether it's the person who you are, what you like to wear, or what you like to do. It's just so cool when you meet people who are different than you are. That can give you a different perspective, a view point on life, or inspire you. I mean, what would the world be like if we were all the same? I think it would be very boring.

You've also been a vocal supporter of antibullying campaigns. However, you’ve experienced a fair amount of bullying yourself since you hit stardom. How do you personally cope with negativity that comes your way?
You have to know that you're going to be faced with people who are going to try to throw things your way. But I feel like people only have as much importance in your life as you give them. If you say something is important, then it's important. If you say it matters, then it matters because you have to live your life for you.

In addition to the new album, you’re gearing up for a brand-new tour. Can you give us any hints about what we can expect to see? Do you have any surprises in store?
Of course, what would I be without any surprises, darling? [Laughs] I'm in the process of putting it all together, but this go-round, with the whole energy kick that I'm on right now, I definitely want to turn things up a notch. I always want to challenge myself, so that never stops. But I always hope that when I do a show, my fans leave thinking they had a good time, a great experience, and were able to feel a little more connected to me. That's what’s most important to me.

Watch the full music video for Ciara's "Body Party" below.

Tags: Music

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