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January 19th, 2017

Keeping Her Eyes Open

Kelly Rowland talks about raising a black son in Trump’s America and whether Destiny’s Child will reunite.

Growing up in the ’90s, it was amazing to see the trio of powerful, creative women in Destiny’s Child launch their career. From the first time I heard “Bills, Bills, Bills,” I wanted to be as confident and cool as the young women singing about refusing to pay for some scrub’s flip phone. I admired Beyoncé Knowles and Michelle Williams, but what made Rowland shine was her empowering attitude, determination, and powerhouse vocals.

In 2002, each member of Destiny’s Child began to pursue solo careers, something that has continued for the past fifteen years. Rowland stood out because of her ability to be genre-fluid; she showed she was able to transition from hip-hop to pop to R&B and EDM seamlessly, care of collaborations with Nelly and David Guetta and her own material. In 2009, she boldly made the choice to cut ties with longtime manager and father figure Mathew Knowles to instill full creative control in her profession.

When it comes to Rowland’s career, one thing is clear: she’s never been afraid to take risks and try new things. Rowland has four solo albums under her belt (with a fifth on the way), led a TV search for the next big girl group on Chasing Destiny, and had a recurring role on Empire as a young Lucious Lyons’s mother. Now a mother to a two-year-old son, Rowland has gone down another career path, this time as the author of Whoa, Baby!: A Guide for New Moms Who Feel Overwhelmed and Freaked Out (and Wonder What the #*$& Just Happened), a book she co-wrote with her OB-GYN, Dr. Tristan Bickman. Rowland wanted to provide comfort to new mothers who didn’t know how to handle the physical and emotional effects of post-pregnancy.

2017 is looking to be a big year for Rowland with the release of her book, an album coming down the pipeline, and even a makeup line for women of color. I spoke with her about living in a Trump world, the impact of her new book, and reflecting on Destiny’s Child.

ILANA KAPLAN: What was your reaction to the news that Hillary Clinton didn’t win? Were you expecting it?

KELLY ROWLAND: I was stressed. I kept rubbing my head and touching my heart and trying to figure out how this happened. It was disappointment, wonder, and anxiety. I just went and had a glass of wine. I couldn’t wrap my head around it. All I could think about was women, my friends, a job in the future I might want to have … do I want to have another child? I thought about my nieces, my family, and this country. It terrorized me for a second. I was really praying for the best and trying to be hopeful. I was trying to find a silver lining somewhere, which is really tough. I was trying to figure out what I could do to not be a lazy citizen. Don’t sit by and watch things happen. You see things coming on in the news and there’s different information, you need to listen and keep your eyes open. Once you have the knowledge, and you realize there’s a responsibility to change it, you have to act right in that moment.

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September 8th, 2016

Kelly Rowland on Her New Album, Movie and Book: Exclusive

Kelly Rowland has been sharing her spotlight lately. Since releasing her fourth solo studio album Talk A Good Game in 2013 — which featured the deeply emotional track “Dirty Laundry” — the singer-songwriter has been spending more time showcasing her talents outside the booth. Just this year, Rowland executive produced BET’s Chasing Destiny, a docu-series which helped the “Dumb” singer create newly-formed girl group June’s Diary. Still doubling as an A&R and mentor to the quintet, Rowland continues to groom the ladies into stardom while juggling a recurring role on Empire, recording for Michelle Obama’s Let Girls Learn anthem “This Is For My Girls” and, most importantly, being a mother to her two-year-old son, Titan.

During Budweiser’s Made In America festival this past weekend, the music mogul and burgeoning businesswoman gave Billboard an exclusive on her forthcoming album, the Lifetime movie she’s starring in and why 2017 is her year.

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Title: The 10th Date
Character: Margot
Airdate: 01.28.17
Synopsis: Margot unsuccessfully tries to fight her growing attraction to a famously controversial reggae musician she is assigned to interview. As the ladies navigate the ups and downs of modern dating, romance, exes and friendships, they learn what they really want out of life and love.
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Title: Whoa! Baby
Author: Kelly Rowland
Release Date: 03.28.17
Synopsis: In Whoa Baby!, Rowland and her ob-gyn Dr. Tristan Emily Bickman team up to cover everything a first-time mom needs to know: the gross physical stuff, the hormonal and emotional stuff, and the just plain weird stuff. Whoa, Baby! is often hilarious and always honest and down-to-earth.
Purchase: Click Here