*
Mary J. Blige's 'Strength of a Woman': How overseas inspiration led to self-acceptanceThe singer talks to REVOLT TV about her thirteenth album: "It's okay not to be okay."
Apr 28, 2017

It's been two-and-a-half years since Mary J. Blige released her last effort, 2014's The London Sessions, but it would be the process of crossing the Atlantic and recording that LP (which saw her explore and master British soul, pop, and dance) that would eventually help the legendary singer heal from personal tragedy and garner the strength to create its follow-up: her aptly-titled thirteenth album Strength of a Woman, out today.

In a recent sit-down with REVOLT TV, Blige admitted that traveling both literally and figuratively outside of the box assisted her in developing the drive behind the current work, saying:

"That was me getting out my comfort zone. Before I went overseas, I was going through hell in the United States, so ['Strength'] was not always written from a perspective of me losing my marriage, this album was being written from the perspective of me fighting for my marriage, and so I found the strength in Europe."

With the LP serving as an invitation for listeners to join her in this "human experience," we spoke to Blige about the moments she feels strongest, what song she's most excited for fans to hear, what she hopes they do after consuming the album, and why "it's okay not to be okay."

Read excerpts and watch the full interview below.

Real Talk | Mary J. Blige details the making of 'Strength of a Woman'
REVOLT

ON THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN SHARE MY WORLD AND STRENGTH OF A WOMAN: The immediate difference is that Mary was definitely searching for herself; this Mary has found herself.

ON WHAT SONG SHE'S MOST EXCITED FOR FANS TO HEAR: It would probably be 'Set Me Free' because I feel like I deserve a moment to turn my two middle fingers up to everybody—not everybody! [laughs]

ON HOW SHE DEFINES STRENGTH: Strength is not always in denying yourself, sometimes strength is in just letting go; strength is not always in tensing up.

Listen to Strength of a Woman, featuring Kanye West, DJ Khaled, Missy Elliott, Quavo, Kaytranada and more, below via Spotify, TIDAL, and Apple Music.

RelatedThe 2017 BET Awards | Acceptance SpeechesStay updated!REVOLT TVInsider Access | Ludacris BMI Acceptance SpeechLive footage of BMI accepting the BMI President's Award.RevoltThe 2017 Grammys acceptance speeches you need to seeAnd the winners are...Danielle CheesmanWatch Kanye West's 5-Word Acceptance Speech For His Webby AwardHis wife Kim Kardashian won one, too.Revolt Staff12017 REVOLT Music ConferenceWe honor Queen Latifah as Lauryn, SZA, & more perform.2Ten years later: Kanye West's 'Graduation' is his career-defining albumFoundation for his legacy.3Watch this rare Jay-Z 'Blueprint'-era interviewRecorded shortly before the album dropped in 2001.4Interview | Tove LoOn flashing, female youth, honest songwriting, and more..5Kanye West's 'Graduation' vs. 50 Cent's 'Curtis'Revisiting the greats on their 10th anniversary.6Day N Night 2017 | The ultimate recapThe photos, performances, and moments you missed7Interview | MC HammerOn Tupac & Prince friendships, JAY-Z beef & more8Fabolous's 'Ghetto Fabolous' is imperfect, but undeniable An underrated debut.9'Drink Champs' | Tech N9neOn his first rhyme, uncategorizable music, and independent label.10Interview | BOSCOOn the standout tracks from 'b.', being a multifaceted woman, and