In the past decade-and-a-half, she has released multiple albums, won armfuls of awards and accolades, become one of the American music industry’s most notable singer-songwriters, gotten married to hip hop producer Swizz Beatz, given birth a baby son, appointed new Global Creative Director of BlackBerry, etc.
At 32 years old, you’d think that she would slow down just a little considering how demanding her personal life must be. But no, there ain’t no stopping this “Girl on Fire” just yet.
In November 2012, Alicia Keys released her fifth studio album, a 13-track LP. The album debuted at #1 on the US Billboard 200 chart with first-week sales of 159,000. You can imagine how long we’ve waited for it to come to our shores – and it finally has!
The empowering title track of the same name, “Girl on Fire”, won us over big time. As you can expect, Alicia Keys brings out her strong vocals in this piece. But it’s her writing skills that continue to receive high praises from us. Check out these inspiring words:
Looks like a girl, but she’s a flame,
So bright, she can burn your eyes,
Better look the other way.
You can try but you’ll never forget her name,
She’s on top of the world,
Hottest of the hottest girls say.
Oh, we got our feet on the ground, and we’re burning it down.
Oh, got our head in the clouds, and we’re not coming down.
This girl is on fire, this girl is on fire,
She’s walking on fire, this girl is on fire.
And nice movie on getting Nicki Minaj to “break the mould” of a “standard Alicia Keys type song” with her infectious rap:
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We also loved “Brand New Me“, particularly how it playfully tugs at our heart at the very beginning with its piano-driven melody. As a matter of fact, the first half of the song comprises of nothing but Alicia’s voice and the piano. Because, you know, with talent like hers, why would you need anything else, right?
If you listened closely enough, you’d realize that “Brand New Me” ain’t no ordinary love song – it’s a way, way subdued version of Gloria Gaynor’s “Weren’t you the one who tried to hurt me with goodbye? Did you think I’d crumble? Did you think I’d lay down and die? Oh, no, not I, I will survive”. Yes, some lashing out at an ex and a declaration of independence:
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Last but not least, we can’t go without talking about Alicia Keys’ first musical collaboration with none other than her own husband, Swizz Beatz aka the defining moment for Alicia Keys’ “Girl on Fire” album. Sure, she channels a little bit of Rihanna with her “Eh, eh, eh, eh” (read: “Umbrella”) but “New Day” does stand out amongst the rest of the songs in the album. It’s also armed with some driving, hard-hitting beats enough to classify it an anthem.
And you know what they say, best to grow old but never grow up. She’s definitely all fresh and young with this one!:
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Alicia Keys has come a long and far way since 2003’s “Diary Of Alicia Keys”, but we’re not complaining. Lawsuit what? We don’t care. Pick up a copy of “Girl on Fire” from your nearest music store today!
Alternatively, you could also purchase “Girl on Fire” via iTunes here.