The girl really is on fire. Since releasing her 2009 album, The Element of Freedom, Keys became a wife, a mother, began co-managing her career, produced her first Broadway play, directed her first short film, executive-produced a TV movie, designed her own shoe line and launched a storytelling app for children. If that wasn’t enough, the “Empire State of Mind” singer, who has sold over 35 million albums and won 14 Grammy Awards, completed a new CD, her most personal to date. “This is me stepping into my complete womanhood,” says Keys, “my journey to becoming fearless.”
Girl on Fire is indeed fearless. Featuring deeply autobiographical songs like “Brand New Me” and the title track, which includes an “Inferno Version” with Nicki Minaj, the album boasts collaborations with Bruno Mars, Frank Ocean, Emeli Sandé and John Legend. With beat-heavy numbers like “New Day” and sensuous swoons like “Fire We Make,” a sexy duet with Maxwell, Keys is ablaze with creativity.