Britney Spears Wallpaper
At age 11, Britney earned a coveted place in "Mickey Mouse Club." After two years performing on the popular children's TV show filmed in Orlando, Britney returned to Kentwood for one completely normal year of high school at age 14. "It was fun for awhile but I started getting itchy to get out again and see the world," she says.
A devoted fan of pop music- her favorites include Michael Jackson, Mariah Carey, and Whitney Houston- Britney once again went to New York to pursue her dream. "I had always wanted to be a singer," she says. "It's what I always wanted to do since I was little." Now a seasoned performer at age 15, an audition for an all girl vocal group led to her developing a solo career as a pop singer as well as continuing her high school studies with tutors. "I need a lot of help in geometry and Spanish!" she admits.
Britney Spears may have titled her new single "Me Against The Music," but she has rarely been more creatively in tune than she is right now. "I feel like I've hit a great new stride as an artist," she says with pride. "I've worked hard, and I feel like I've grown on so many levels."
In truth, "Me Against The Music" is hardly about declaring war against grooves. "Actually, it's about the intensity that people approach music with," Britney shares. "It's about getting totally lost in the music and pushing yourself to the edge in every way you can imagine. I love thoroughly immersing myself in music, and I wanted to capture that intensity in a song."
Britney's musical intensity and her evolution from a teen renegade into a provocative young woman are undeniable throughout "In The Zone," her fourth Jive Records collection. First and foremost, the project shows her flexing notably strong and mature songwriting muscles. She co-wrote 7 of the project's 12 sterling new compositions, collaborating with such heavy hitters as Red Zone ("Me Against The Music," "The Hook Up"), The Matrix ("Shadow"), Moby ("Early Mornin'"), and Cathy Dennis ("Toxic," "Showdown"). Also contributing hit worthy material to the album is R. Kelly ("Outrageous"), Ying-Yang Twins on “(I Got That) Boom Boom.”
Perhaps most significant is the appearance of pop icon Madonna, who lends her voice to the single "Me Against The Music." Collaborating with one of her all-time greatest musical influences was a dream come true for Britney. "The experience was beyond words or description." she says. The two forged what has become a powerful bond while rehearsing for their now-notorious performance on the MTV Video Music Awards this fall. "As we were working together, there were moments when I simply could not believe that I was standing there on stage next to her. It was never even in the realm of fantasy for me."
The musical union of Britney and Madonna within the taut, classic-funk groove of "Me Against The Music" is quite real, though, and it reveals each of them at their most kinetic and soulful. The song's accompanying video clip, directed by Paul Hunter, shows Madonna enticing Britney through a maze-like underground club, only to disappear into thin air when Britney gets close enough to touch her. The clip is rife with symbolic gestures of Madonna passing the baton pop power to Britney --- an image that the young artist finds exciting, humbling, and perhaps a bit premature.
"There is only one Madonna --- and there will always only be one," she says. "My goal is to have a career that is equally as special, but one that is completely unique to who I am. I'm honored by all that Madonna brought to this song. I really love the flow we share --- both on the track and as friends. I think you can feel the chemistry and positive energy we shared. It's completely natural and relaxed."
The natural and relaxed vibe of "Me Against The Music" is indicative of every note and beat comprises "In The Zone," an album that runs the stylistic gamut from streetwise hip-hop and electro-trance to new-wave-etched rock and well-crafted pop. From top to bottom, Britney effectively expands the parameters of mainstream musical consciousness with songs that lure listeners with infectious hooks, and then captivates them with layers of clever lyrics and deft instrumentation.
"Putting this record together was an incredible journey for me," Britney says. "I had the freedom to explore and experiment with some of the most exciting people in music. In the end, that allowed me to make a record that is a pure reflection of where I am right now."
What we learn from album highlights like the rambunctious "(I Got That) Boom Boom," which features the Ying Yang Twins, and "Everytime," a stark, delicate collaboration with Guy Sigsworth, is that Britney has grown into a fearless artist. "Those songs are particularly special to me, because neither of them sounds like anything I've ever done before," she says. "'Boom Boom' is so rough and edgy and fun, while 'Everytime' is so raw and spare. It's me stripped to my core as a singer and as a songwriter. It's as honest as I've ever been in my music. I loved working with Guy on that track. He made me feel comfortable and safe enough to go the full distance, emotionally and as a performer." Britney also has high praise for Moby, who worked with her on the mid-tempo "Early Mornin.'" "He's such a pure-hearted guy," she says. "He's so cool. He played me a really cool track, and I thought it was brilliant. It's turned out to be one of my favorite songs on the album."
She describes "Early Mornin,'" which unfolds with a deceptively insistent, easy-paced dance groove as a day-after-the-party jam, which balances some of the more assertive, dance floor-friendly cuts on "In The Zone." "Some songs are generally about going out and wanting to have a good time," she says. "One of the things I did while working on this album was write about a lot things like going out with my girlfriends, everyday experiences that I was going through. 'Early Morning' is about just going out and feeling bad the next day." Elsewhere on "In The Zone," Britney shows her sultry side, particularly on the steamy, turntable-ready "Breathe On Me," a Mark Taylor production that she characterizes as being "very vibe-y, trance-y. It's about being with a guy and not even having to really be with each other, but just the intensity and the anxiety between not saying anything. You don't even have to touch me, just breathe on me."
Among the more sensual songs on the album is "Touch of My Hand," on which Britney seductively floats her voice atop an arrangement of pillowy strings and languid, Middle-Eastern-kissed guitar lines. "It's tastefully done," she says of the track. "And I think it's real. It's nice and it's real. It's whatever your take is. Some people may think it's a little much, but that's where I'm at with my life. ... It's not freaky freaky, it's just a little freaky." Stepping out on a creative limb has been the basis for Britney's entire career. Dubbed by MTV as "one of the last teenage pop superstars of the 20th century," Spears enjoyed her breakthrough success at the end of 1998. She appeared in local dance revues and church choirs as a young girl, and at the age of eight auditioned for The Mickey Mouse Club. Although she was too young to join the series, a producer on the show gave her an introduction to a New York agent. She subsequently spent three summers at the Professional Performing Arts School Center. She also appeared in a number of off-Broadway productions as a child actor, including 1991's "Ruthless." She returned to the Disney Channel for a spot on The Mickey Mouse Club, where she was featured for two years between the ages of 11 and 13. Her demo tape eventually landed in the hands of a Jive Records executive who quickly signed her to the label. She toured American venues for a series of concerts sponsored by U.S. teen magazines, eventually joining "N Sync on tour. It all added up to 1999's wildly infectious "...Baby One More Time" album to make its bow on the charts at No. 1. The set not only spawned a smash hit with the title tune, but also scored with the charming ballad "Sometimes" and the funky "(You Drive Me) Crazy." Before the album finished its impressive worldwide attack of the charts, it garnered Britney 4 MTV Europe Awards, including best pop performer, and 4 Billboard Music Awards, most notably female artist of the year.
The massive demand for new Britney material was satisfied when her 2000 sophomore collection, "Oops! ... I Did It Again," was released to a Spears-starved world in May. Once again, the title cut flooded radio airwaves, as did the anthemic "Stronger" and lovely "Don't Let Me Be The Last To Know." She also racked up more awards that year by taking home an American Music Award as favorite new artist, a Billboard Music Award as album artist of the year, and 2 Teen Choice Awards. Britney would later earn Teen Choice Award honors in 2001 and 2003. Ever-prolific, the artist returned in 2001 with "Britney," a spirited, assertive collection on which she began to reveal her mettle as a tunesmith, not to mention as a vocalist of increasingly soulful depth. She earned high praise for the wickedly sultry "Slave 4 U," as well as for the forceful "Overprotected" and the gentle "I'm Not A Girl, Not Yet A Woman." The album's was quickly followed by Britney's motion picture debut, "Crossroads," which proved that she has the talent and box-office pull to be a multifaceted superstar. "One of the true joys of my life and career has been trying out new things," Britney says. "I've loved every step of this journey I'm on. I love singing and dancing and acting and songwriting... it all energizes and inspires me." It's that philosophy that has sent Britney "In The Zone," a project that shows this ever-growing and ever-exciting at her absolute best... or as she would say, "for now." "I can't imagine ever reaching the point where I've hit the wall," she concludes. "There's always something new and challenging to tackle. I can't wait to see what happens next."
Britney Calls In the Wedding Planner
29 June 2004 (WENN)
Britney Spears is so excited about her engagement to dancer Kevin Federline, she's already met with a wedding planner. The 22-year-old singer stunned her fans on Friday when her spokesperson confirmed rumors that she and her beau of just two months were engaged. The surprise was compounded by the fact that 26-year-old Federline already has a two-year-old daughter called Kori with former love, Moesha actress Shar Jackson - who's due to give birth to their second child next month. But according to America's Star magazine, Spears has been pressing ahead with plans, setting the wedding date for November 20, with 200 guests, five bridesmaids and five groomsmen. One of the few factors reportedly left undecided on the matter is whether the couple will wed in Los Angeles or Spears' native Louisiana.
Britney Engaged to Dancer?
21 June 2004 (WENN)
Pop beauty Britney Spears is reportedly marrying her dancer beau Kevin Federline despite his pregnant ex-girlfriend Shar Jackson's angry protests. The "Toxic" singer - whose marriage to pal Jason Alexander was annulled after just 72 hours earlier this year - is allegedly flaunting Federline's two- carat diamond engagement ring even though actress Jackson is eight months pregnant with their second child, according to British newspaper the Daily Star. An insider reveals, "They nearly eloped in Europe. At the last moment Britney got cold feet and decided that she didn't want to make the same mistake again. So now they're planning a big wedding and reception in a few months. Marrying Britney will be his ticket to easy street." Jackson has furiously argued, "You both smoke, you both drink and you both cheated on significant others after three years. you guys are made for each other. But there are two kids. She better be prepared to babysit."
Britney Gets a Harsh Message from Beau's Furious Ex
13 May 2004 (WENN)
The pregnant ex of Britney Spears' new beau is telling the pop beauty she's welcome to her man - because they both smoke, drink and "cheat". On April 26, former Moesha star Shar Jackson learned that her boyfriend of three years, dancer Kevin Federline - father of their two-year-old daughter Kori and July-due son - cheated on her with Spears. Federline then told devastated Jackson that he was going to Japan to shoot a Coke commercial, when in fact he joined Spears in London, where she kicked off her European tour. And in an exclusive interview with Us Weekly, Jackson - who was briefly hospitalized for stress-induced weight loss during Federline's trip to Europe - lays out a few harsh facts for the ex-girlfriend of Justin Timberlake. She says of the singer, "She can't wreck a home by herself, but if you're a real woman and you find out someone you're seeing has extra baggage, you say, 'Go home and take care of your business.' If she and Kevin want to be a couple, then that's fine with me. But there are two little kids she better be prepared to babysit. They might be perfect for each other. You both smoke, you both drink and you both cheated on significant others after three years. You guys are made for each other. Have a good life."
Spears Linked To Another Attached Man
29 April 2004 (WENN)
Britney Spears has been romantically linked to a new man - who has a seven- months pregnant girlfriend. The 22-year-old singer - who hit headlines last year when reports emerged she was dating her married back-up dancer and father-to-be Columbus Short - has now been linked to dancer Kevin Federline, 22, who has a two-year-old daughter and a son on the way with former Moesha star Shar Jackson. The pair were seen partying together at various Hollywood hotspots last week, as well as enjoying a beach outing together and spending private time at Britney's Beverly Hills Hotel bungalow before she made her way to London to kick off the European leg of her Onyx Hotel tour. But their liaisons have left 27-year-old actress Jackson less then impressed. On Monday, she told America's Us Weekly, "I just found out (about Britney) today. He called me and said he didn't want me to read about it somewhere before he told me. He's going to come over tonight and we're talking about it. We haven't broken up - yet." But Jackson, who met the pop superstar two years ago at 'N Sync's Challenge For The Children basketball game in Las Vegas, refuses to get angry about the situation. She says of Britney, "I don't have a problem with her. She's great. But now I should have a talk with her. Being seven months pregnant, I can't afford to be stressed out."
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