Willow Smith: ‘It took courage to walk away from the first album’ – Music News

Willow Smith says it took “courage” to take a career break.

Following the success of her 2010 single “Whip My Hair” when she was just 10 years old, Willow was set to record her first album with Roc Nation but walked away and went on hiatus from 2011 to 2014.

She told Billboard: “It took a lot of courage for me to say ‘no’ because everyone was supporting me and trying to support me and expecting me to do it. I was just going to dig myself a deeper and deeper hole if I didn’t fight back as soon as I did.”

Roc Nation co-chairman Omar Grant said: “We’re invested in the artists long-term careers. Giving her that space and knowing how young she was and how long she has on the track…c It’s good for her to take a break and find herself.”

Willow, 21, now directs her career as she sees fit and she is happy to have been able to work in the rock genre.

She said: “I wanted to go for rock. I didn’t want to go for pop punk. I didn’t want to go for what’s necessarily popular right now. I wanted to go to the heart of rock music, which for me is a deep outcry – maybe about pain, maybe about joy.”

Roc Nation Co-Chair Shari Bryant said: “We want to make sure we’re supporting and not manufacturing an artist. If an artist says to us, ‘That’s the state I’m in today’ today, and that’s where my passion lies,” from a label perspective, it’s up to us to support that. Willow has always shown nothing but pure authenticity. She’s been an entrepreneur. She’s been involved in every project. Once it comes up, it’s like, how could you deny it?”

About Elizabeth J. Swartz

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