Don’t apply the terms urban music or hip hop – or any label at all – to producer, singer, musician will.i.am.
The Black Eyed Peas member says he doesn’t want to get trapped into any old narrow definitions with his upcoming solo album #willpower. In the age of the internet and YouTube, he sees music as wide open and "the people that love it are the people that love it," he says in an interview with CBC’s Laura Thompson.
Going solo doesn’t mean going it alone. Will.i.am collaborates with several other artists, including Britney Spears, David Guetta, Ne-Yo and Justin Bieber to create new music. He recorded three songs with teen idol Bieber – but only one made it to the last cut of #willpower, he says.
Five remixes of the first single from the album, titled This is Love, are launching this week.
With his solo projects, will.i.am says he has discovered he has an eye for directing. He talks to CBC about why he likes to come up with video concepts and control the process of making them and how collaboration inspires him.