Prince

Prince

*To promote his new album “HITNRUN,” released this month via Jay Z’s Tidal service, Prince sat down with Entertainment Weekly for a rare interview.

The 57-year-old musician spoke about the album’s “experimental” vibe and shared how he’s managed to keep his creativity flowing for nearly four-decades. (“HITNRUN” is his 38th studio album.)

“It’s something you grab from the air, tap into,” he told EW. “Science can’t explain it….Everything is a grid. You have to build off that.”

The conversation also turned to some of Prince’s favorite musicians now. His tastes range from folk singer Joni Mitchell to 14-year-old Willow Smith:

  • Joni Mitchell: “She’s genius, the way she tells a story, paints a picture with just a few chords—she puts so much in there.”
  • Erykah Badu: “Those last couple records, she was just too ahead of her time—they’re fantastic. And she’s hilarious, so smart.”
  • Kendrick Lamar: “Kendrick is the truth. That’s new, that’s now. What he’s doing, no one else is even trying.”
  • Esperanza Spalding: “I thought I could play bass until I met her. Not even close! [Laughs] She just kills it, man.”
  • Beyonce: “I ain’t mad at anything she does. Anything. Those are great songs.”
  • Janelle Monáe: “Brilliant. She’s so original. I honestly think she could run for president one day. And win.”
  • BØRNS: “We were just listening to ‘Electric Love.’ I like that you can’t tell what it’s inspired by.”
  • Rita Ora: “She is a force of nature, that girl—the way that she walks into a room. She’s got it.”
  • Willow Smith: “I love what she’s doing, her and her brother [Jaden]. I want to meet them. It almost happened, but it didn’t work out. I want to see what she’s making in five years.”
  • Tori Kelly: “She’ll make it because she does the work. They’ve got her out there on the road playing, really learning.”