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VIBE spoke to Solange as she prepares her ‘80s R&B meets new wave dance-rock follow-up, about her thoughts on getting the “weird” tag, why being Beyonce’s sister has its pitfalls, going independent and how recording her new material almost drove her to the brink of insanity. READ THE REST HERE!

You recorded your upcoming album in California. [Describe.]

Yes, it was some hippy s*** [Laughs]. There were some crazy moments. One of us would start strumming something on guitar in the morning and I would come in and hear a melody and then someone would lay some drums down to it. Then someone would add some keyboards and someone else would start blowing into a beer bottle. We were experimenting in a very jam session kind of way. We would record our jam sessions, take a break, eat lunch on the lawn and then start the evening by listening to those jam sessions with a clean palette. Then we would break down the songs and give them structure. There were so many elements and things that happened during the recording process. I’m talking physically, emotionally, and mentally.

Are we talking about mental breakdowns?

There was definitely a little bit of a breakdown involved. I literally gave up my sanity for a while to do this record. To the point to where I started doing it in Santa Barbara and I had to relocate to L.A. because I was losing it. We literally were waking up in the morning and just making music all day and all night. We left the house maybe three times! It just started to wear on me in so many different ways. I started having these crazy panic attacks. I can say that I totally sacrificed so much mentally, emotionally and financially to get this record the way I wanted it to be. It’s more than an album to me. It’s a transitional time in my life. This is a dance record, but the lyrics can get pretty dark at times. It brought me closer to my family, my dude and my son. My mom, sister and brother all kept Julez for a week. Everybody canceled work when I was going through it.

Are you ever tempted to put up a middle finger to those fans that said you were just being weird to separate yourself from your sister Beyonce?

I could really care less what Suzie B. fan, who fits a certain profile and only shops at a certain place and only goes to the spots that blogs tell her to go to, thinks. Those people have never driven me. I wouldn’t take back any of the things I did because I gained the people who I needed to have on my side. The people who don’t understand that don’t have the integrity that I want anyway. I felt really good that my songs were at the “Best Of The Year-End” lists in places like Pitchfork and Spin. I get my love. It may not be what everyone else’s perception is, but I definitely get respect and I feel really good about that.

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