Interview: Pussycat Dolls
Wed, 08 Oct 2008 16:27:11
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In your twisted little mind, Doll Domination might require fishing line and a set of tiny clothes pins, but here on the chaste side of the fence it only takes five hot women shaking their groove thing in skin tight outfits while they sing songs about partying and the guy/girl power struggle. A thin line? Perhaps, but you have to draw one somewhere. Thankfully, the ladies of the Pussycat Dolls are willing to toe that line and provide us with the club-ready soundtrack to cross itshould that be what two consenting adults choose to do with their time.
After opening our eyes to the collective inadequacies of girlfriends everywhere on their debut album smash "Don't Cha," the dolls have re-formed like Stiletto Voltron to take over the globe with their recent sophomore release, Doll Domination. Catching assists from industry hitmakers like Missy Elliott and Timbaland, it's a good bet that they just might spread their dominion from one end of the planet to the other. Always quick to throw our lot in with a winner, we caught up with group member Melody Thornton for an exclusive interview. She talked to us about lessons learned, group dynamics and the gears that turn the Doll machine.
To me, you guys sound more confident coming in on this. Do you feel more confident attacking this second record?
Definitely. We were very blessed with the first single. I think we were going for something, more graduated. It's definitely done with our original Pussycat Dolls sound, but definitely more grown up.
Between the first and second album, were there any lessons that you've learned and took into the studio with you?
I think I've learned a lot since the beginning of this situation—all of this Pussycat Dolls madness. I was 19 years old when I got into the industry with the Pussycat Dolls. You can say that I've learned a lot. I've learned about people, about the industry, friendship, and what's business and what's an exception to all of the above.
Is there anything you've learned about this business that you haven't been so happy with?
Yeah, the music industry is probably the toughest. I think music is a universal language, and a lot of people love music. There are a lot of people that want to be in the music industry, so it's a lot more cut throat than the entertainment industry in general. The music industry is not as friendly as you would think. It's hard to come across people that you think are lifetime friends. You just can't be naïve thinking that everybody you meet that is nice to you is going to be a great friend to you. That's probably the biggest lesson that I've learned.
You talked about how your sound was more seasoned this time around. Did you have any ideas about sounds you wanted to experiment with this time or did the new sounds just come about on their own?
I think what we accomplished on the second album was what we tried to accomplish on the first album. Although, most people say it was straight up pop. That's pretty much what the first [album] was, but I think we kind of executed the hip hop approach this time with songs like "Takin' Over the World," my favorite song on the album, and also songs like "Elevator," that have a kind of Destiny's Child appeal. We did that song with Rodney Jerkins, so it makes sense.
Do you think that has to do with your successes the first time around and the label giving you a little more room to spread out and try these things?
The best way to answer that is that, The Pussycat Dolls is a machine. It's a huge brand, and there's a lot of people who work in the factory. Everything that we want isn't necessarily the last word. We give our opinion, but it's not the final say. It's run by people who' have been doing this their entire lives, like Jimmy Iovine and Ron Fair. We have to just trust that, and trust what their opinions are.
You mentioned Rodney Jerkins. You've also got Timbaland on here. Those are some heavyweight producers. What's it like getting into the studio and working with cats like that?
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