all things people, parties & sexy sports
November 2012

A Night with the Illustrious Alicia Keys
By Neve A. Winspeare

When in the presence of greatness, it's hard not to gush - A. Keys is pretty amazing

Life has been very good to her. She got married in July 2010 to producer extraordinaire Swizz Beatz, the couple welcomed their first child together, a beautiful baby boy, Egypt Daoud Dean later that year, she has a new perspective on life and her fifth studio album...She's Back. All pretty impressive for a few short years, you might say SHE'S ON FIRE (I love that song). I had the opportunity to meet her for the first time at the recently opened Shark Bar in Plano, Texas, and I must say she's simultaneously truly humble, genuine, sweet and spunky - just as you thought she would be. She looked amazing in her casual chic - cropped leather jacket, stalking leopard tee, symbolic bright red jeans and white studded stilettos. We were totally in sync with the "red" theme - I had on my fire red Betsey Johnsons and my "lips" dress - which A. Keys loved, by the way.

A. Keys with Cocktails and Joints CEO, Neve A.WInspeare & Publisher, Dale L. Winspeare, III

Shark Bar in Plano, Texas
She had been holding press meet-n-greets and photo ops to support the launch of her latest album "Girl On Fire," that was released on November 27. The Shark Bar was the perfect location for such an intimate affair. The backdrop was lovely. No sharks, but a large fish tank that served as the launch pad for the entire space. The room boomed with a mix of familiar songs such as "No One", "You Don't Know My Name", "Superwoman", "Karma" and of course "Girl On Fire". There's something about hearing that song pumped to the max in a large room that hits you in the soul, especially when the beat hits on the chorus. It's even more amazing when she preforms it live.

The multiple Grammy award-winning singer-songwritter who's debut album, "Songs in A Minor", went platinum 5 times over, was remarkably humble as she spoke about returning to the studio after an extended absence. The vulnerability on display was refreshing unlike many of her pop-music contemporaries. The precocious A.Keys not only sings, but writes and produces her own music. Her albums are praised not only for their musical polish, but for their lyrical depth and complexity. She's won Grammys for Song of the Year, Best R&B Song, Best R&B Album, Best Female R&B Vocal Performance and in 2002 was awarded Best New Artist.

With her "happy glow", she thanked everyone for taking the time to meet her and for making her "what she is today." Her excitement about the long awaited new album was obvious. She was forthright about being a completely different person now than when she first came out. She cautions in her song, [Brand New Me] "Oh, it took a long long road to get here, It took a brave brave girl to try. I've taken one too many excuses, one too many lies. Don't be surprised...I found a brand new kind of me."

And as gracefully and unassumingly as she entered the room, she worked the crowd masterfully and was gone.

Girl on Fire

Girl on Fire tracklist:
1. "De Novo Adagio"
2. "Brand New Me"
3. "When It’s All Over"
4. "Listen 2 Ur Heart"
5. "New Day"
6. "Girl On Fire"
7. "Fire We Make"
8. "Tears Always Win"
9. "Not Even The King"
10. "That’s When I Know"
11. "Limitedless"
12. "One Thing"
13. "101"

My Top 5 All Time Fav
Alicia Keys Songs:

1. Girl on Fire
2. Karma
3. No One
4. You Don't Know My Name
5. Superwoman

Girl on Fire (2012)
The Platinum Collection(2010)
The Element of Freedom (2009)
As I Am (2007)
Unplugged (2005)
The Diary of Alicia Keys (2003)
Songs in A Minor (2001)

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