Janelle Monae took inspiration from her own vivid memories on ‘Lipstick Lover’.
The 37-year-old singer and actress – whose new album ‘The Age of Pleasure’ is set to drop on June 9 – admitted she has a “spreadsheet” full of experiences at a party, and they influenced her latest single.
She told Rolling Stone magazine: “I have a whole spreadsheet with 50 to almost 100 experiences that I had at this party. I’ve been a Lipstick Lover.
“I wear red lipsticks at the parties. I’ve had moments where if me and a girl or an energy want to engage, you’re going to see lipstick.”
Janelle – who came out as pansexual in 2018 – admitted she isn’t always the one leaving a lipstick mark.
She added: “I remember how it felt when I got kissed on my neck with red lipstick. I remember how I went to bed feeling. It was a deep rouge. It wasn’t matte. I remember the way the person looked. And I was like, ‘That’s a f****** song.’ ”
When it comes to the album as a whole, she reflected on the way the collection looks to represent her community.
She explained: “It was inspired by all of my friends, my community of folks who are from South Africa, Ghana, Nigeria, the Caribbean, Atlanta, L.A., Chicago.
“Seeing all of us together in our Blackness, in the love that we had in our eyes for each other. People from the continent fuck around with trap from Atlanta. You know what I’m saying? I love how the diaspora — we talk to each other.”
After previously being inspired by the future, she’s now keen to focus on “being present”, with her music reflecting that.
She said: “I want things to feel so true to my life. I used to consider myself a futurist. I know what that means, to obsess about the next thing. A present tourist is what I’m calling myself right now. I’m actively focusing on being present.”