Janet Jackson "Gotham" magazine Interview 2010


GOTHAM: What have you taken away from Michael's death?
JANET JACKSON: When you hear people say life goes on, it's really the truth. You can't stop living. It becomes a part of you. I feel a bit selfish because there are times I feel I shouldn't be doing this, but I enjoy my work and I have to keep doing it. I have to keep my life going. There are days that are harder than others.

G: You where filming Why Did I Get Married Too? during your brothers tragedy....
JJ: There was a lot of drama going into it on my end. I actually went from Michael's service - that first service we had - and left that night to go back to work. It was tough, but at the same time it was kind of therapeutic, too. It was a good way for me to move foreward and stay busy. And I love acting - it was my first love. I had my first job at seven. I got a recording contract when I was 14, so I thought I was going to be an actress. I'm really blessed.

G: What can we ecpect from your new album?
JJ: It's going to be a little different. The writing is about life experiences. There's a part of me that's craving escapism, which is a sense of wanting to keep on moving with my work but also of coming to terms with reality. So I think it will be upbeat and light.

G: What other songs move you at the moment?
JJ: You know what makes me feel good right now when I hear it on the radio? "Empire State Of Mind" [By Jay-Z]. When I hear the chorus... it makes me smile. And I love the way Alicia [Keys] sings it. I was crazy about "Native New Yorker" [by Odyssey] when I was a kid. I was visiting my brother when he was doing The Wiz and living here with my sister [LaToya]. I was on hiatus from the television show Good Times. My mother asked me what I wanted to do with my time off, and I said I wanted to go to New York and visit Mike because I missed him so much. We would go to Studio 54 when I was just this 10-year-old kid and I would hear "Native New Yorker" and it made me feel so good and it never leaves your mind - that energy, that excitement, those endorphins being released within you.

G: What do you love about New York City?
JJ: Everything. I love the energy-the creative energy. I've been here for 12 years and I will be here for the rest of my life.

G: Talk a bit about your new book.
JJ: I hope it's inspiring for all ages. I'm talking about weight loss, confidence, self-esteem-especially in your youth. It's not an autobiography, but there are little anecdotes that I give here and there from my childhood all the way to the present that I thought would be interesting and helpful to share.

G: Is there something you haven't done that you'd like to accomplish?
JJ: At some point I would like to do theater - it's something I've always wanted to do. I'll do more films. Produce. And I would like to have children.

G: How do you stay so grounded?
JJ: I think it was the way I was brought up. I was very fortunate to see all of this before it ever happened to me through my brother, so I knew what to expect. I watched the way my brother handled it. It's also important who you surround yourself with. True friends aren't afraid to put you in check.

G: What do you like to do in your spare time?
JJ: If I want to take a break from work, I love going to the islands. I love the ocean. I also love being with my family. I love going to the movies. I love reading - right now it's "The Help" [by Kathryn Stockett].

G: New Year's resolutions - do you have any?
JJ: I want to learn a language. I haven't decided which, but it's between French, Spanish and Italian. I also want to get closer to God.

G: How do you do that?
JJ: It's in your own way. We grew up Jehovah's Whitnesses. I do believe in God. I consider myself a Christian but I don't belong to a specific religion. If something really resonates with me then I will try to apply that to my life.
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