Jhené AikoDuring her first appearance at SXSW, the pintsized songstress held her own in a room full of vets.
Growing Apart (To Get Closer)
“We immediately start talking some other stuff. I can’t have a regular conversation and everything always relates to either astrology or government, and [Kendrick’s] the same way. This is before we started recording. We were just talking about a whole bunch of offbeat type of topics. We talked about this documentary Zeitgeist where they pretty much break down the connection between astrology and religion. They talk about 9/11 and the Illuminati.
“And then we were like, ‘What are we recording to?’ [At the time] Taebeast had just dropped his beat tape so we both sat down and agreed on the same exact track. They looped the track for me and I started writing the hook. It only took me 15 minutes ‘cause ‘Growing Apart’ to me is one of the most thought-provoking songs [for me]. I still write new stuff to it because it extracts deep thoughts.
“At one point, [Kendrick] picked up my notes thinking that it was his stuff. He was like, ‘You write like me. I thought this was my song.’
“After I laid my hook, he just went straight in and it was so painless. We took a quick picture on Photo Booth and we put out an unfinished version, which was pretty dope. He’s very productive in the studio and that was a big motivation to me.”
“Q likes to smoke a lot. I smoke. And Kendrick doesn’t. So, when it comes to having a loud presence in the studio, it’s actually the opposite I feel. When they’re working, because Q is high, he’s a little more laid back, and Kendrick is a little more talkative. As far as the energy level they were both pretty much the same.”
“Q called me up like, ‘I have another one.’ He was saying I put him on to a lot of girls. ‘Cause all the songs we do are sexual, or sexy. We came in and it was the same thing. He pretty much knew what he wanted me to say and what type of hook he wanted, we just went in there and did it. They’re super fast workers. They’re very productive in the studio. We got in there and knocked it out.”
“We did both ‘Soulo Ho3’ and ‘Terrorist Threat’ on the same session. For ‘Terrorist Threats,’ he was like, ‘Okay, I need you to rap.’ I’m like, ‘Oh, okay.’ It’s weird because I don’t like to hear my talking voice for some reason. I would rather sing, but he definitely convinced me to it. In that session, he played me pretty much the whole album and I was just like, ‘Wow. I think you’re a genius.’
“[For the video], I was supposed to be there the first day. When they shot with Danny and Ab I think I was out of town. It was real random. They called me up like, ‘Would you be able to come tonight to downtown L.A?’ I said, ‘Cool, whatever,’ but I was actually having a long, long, long day. I was really tired. So, I came down there and we were just in downtown L.A, burning money, making sure nobody came and tried to stop us. We were sneaky with it ‘cause it was after hours, so security was looking at us weirdly. And they see flames going up and stuff like that, but it was cool.”