Who is Kelly Rowland? Is the question Vogue Australia attempts to answer in its interview, “Kelly Rowland on life lessons, overcoming failure and growing up with Beyoncé.”
The Destiny’s Child veteran, mom, and actor met with the magazine in Australia, where she is doing “nothing,” to discuss the lessons she’s learned in her 37 years of life.
“I like to run track as if I were an Olympian. I went from doing [boxing, pilates and lifting weights] before I left to do nothing [in Australia],” Rowland said. “I [meditate] every other day, first thing in the morning or if I feel like I’m overwhelmed or anxious and I have to bring it all ‘in’, because that means I’m putting too much energy out and not giving myself anything.”
Rowland admitted to expressing herself “through my creativity, which I didn’t understand as much at first, but now I get it more than I ever have. It came from having [my son] and losing my mum. It hit a switch in me about the greatness and beauty, the quickness and simplicity of life. People just want to be happy.”
Now working on a new record, making it five years since Talk a Good Game, Rowland is ready to get back out there after focusing on being a mom. She admitted reading about how John Cassavetes told Susan Sarandon that being a mother would make her her less sensual. “I was like coming into that, people trying to say that women can’t be fly after having a baby,” Rowland said. “But J. Lo defied that and said it’s not the case, Bey did it … all these women do it and I was like: ‘Fuck it, I’m going to do that too.’ And that’s when I started to pick up the pace a little bit. Then I got into the studio and started to find the groove and now the groove is there, it’s rolling.”
Rowland’s new record will be “extremely personal.”
“If I feel it or think it and it touches me in some way, then I think it’s going to do that to somebody else, too.” The new music is all about everything she has ever experienced — love, loss, gain, friends, family, and honesty.
Back in April, Rowland joined the rest of Destiny’s Child in a reunion at Coachella. “Coachella was so much fun. The best part was ‘the secret’, then seeing people’s reaction when it was such a surprise. We rehearsed like crazy. We still love each other. We were laughing at that one day. We were getting ready, but our kids were running around. That’s the fun part; it’s the sweetest thing: They are going to be friends, because we are all so close. Coachella was awesome,” Rowland reminisced.
Recently invited to sing with Stevie Wonder at the Peppermint Club in LA, Rowland admitted she was shocked and “cheesing out on stage” with him. There even may be a Kelly Rowland-Stevie Wonder collaboration in the near future. “If the opportunity presented itself, it would be very cool, especially given what he was talking about that night and the world, that’s what brought us all together, to celebrate love and push it back into the air, because there is so much going on in the world, so much that’s disappointing … It’s safe to be silent and I think now is no time to be silent: You have to stand up, as he did and Martin did, Gloria did, so many women and men did, and this generation can’t be quiet about it, this generation is for to depending on us to change the trajectory for them.”
However, Rowland has dealt with her fair share of difficulties to overcome, including being dropped from Sony. They made a, “terrible statement saying I was no longer…some bullshit … basically saying I had no more worth. That was the hardest thing I think I ever went through, because I thought to myself, I sold so many records for you guys, with and without Destiny’s Child I sold records. Then I had a record (When Love Takes Over) with David Guetta that was number one in I don’t know how many countries and I was like, okay …”
With everything going on, Rowland said the relationship she has with her husband, Tim Weatherspoon, and her faith keeps her grounded. “At the beginning, I was scared of the idea of loving one person. I was nervous about being with one person for the rest of my life. My husband is my rock, my best friend. He believes when I don’t, believes that anything can work and that anything is possible in such a positive light.”
When experiencing pregnancy and becoming pregnant, she says, “wasn’t a shocker, as we were trying, but we didn’t know how to tell anybody, because we were just like, let’s ahhhh, um … get married, as we were wanting to bring the kid into our unit. We just go with the flow: we don’t follow anybody else’s rules. That’s the way we are.”
Weatherspoon and Rowland married in Costa Rica. “We had the most beautiful wedding with 27 people, when I said my I dos to him, it was the most tears I’ve ever had, because to confess your love like that to someone is so powerful.” Her best friends were at the wedding including, “Bey, Michelle, Solange, Angie [Beyince], La La [Anthony], and my best friend, Barbara [Rubio] and Yoshika [Berroud].”
Rowland doesn’t know her father, Christopher Lovett, but admitted she would like to get in touch with him. “I don’t know my dad. I last saw him when I was seven or eight: I haven’t seen him since then. I do want to know him, meet him, know his background for the sake of my son. I don’t know, I’m just nervous to make that phone call. Tim has spoken with him on the phone. Just talking about it gives me butterflies.”
If given the opportunity to rewrite any part of her history, Rowland said, “I would have told my mum that I really appreciate her, that she was bold, she was courageous, she was beautiful and that I wish I really told her to her face. I didn’t think she was ever really told that.” Rowland’s mother, Doris Rowland Garrison, passed away in 2014, a month after her son Titan was born.
“I think life teaches you that with life comes wisdom. So what you tell somebody you would also have to live by. There were moments when I did X Factor in the UK and I thought: ‘Do you believe it?’ And I started to kick that into higher gear, so when you tell someone something you have to live by it, otherwise you are a hypocrite. Be honest with yourself. It comes back when it goes into the universe: it’s a life…”
Vogue said, “Rowland resembles a kid in the candy store, ready to grab it all. She loves life, the smell “when Titan gets out of the tub”, she loves the sight of the ocean or a garden, and the touch of “my husband’s skin”. Her favorite taste is for anything sweet, “like pound cake; I love cake”. She says the best part of being Kelly Rowland is all of the above, plus “being brown, being like a brown-skinned girl, that’s the best part of being me.”
“Kelly Rowland on life lessons, overcoming failure and growing up with Beyoncé” will appear in Vogue Australia‘s August 2018 issue.