Gwen Stefani — pop star, fashion icon, coach-turned-high-profile adviser on NBC’s The Voice — is often a grateful woman. “I’ve had numerous blessings,” she says.
“But then, there’s this unlucky-in-love situation that’s, like, a concept.”
Misery singer, 46, is often a bit mystified by it: “My parents happen to be together since high school graduation, as have my cousin and sister-in-law,” she shows. “But I understand that has negative and positive things happen.”
Indeed, recently alone provided the singer/songwriter with an amazing mixed bag. After she divorced Gavin Rossdale, her husband since 2002 plus the father of her three sons, luck shone on Stefani such as fellow Voice coach and country star Blake Shelton. The two began dating last fall, after Shelton with his fantastic wife, Miranda Lambert, separation as well.
That array of experience is reflected on This Is What the Truth Feels Like, the No Doubt frontwoman’s first solo album inside a decade, out Friday.
“It’s the first time I’ve written an increasing about being happy,” Stefani says, though she adds how the songs — several crafted as recently as January — are likewise informed by “the tragedy,” as she describes her breakup with Rossdale. “I have no idea of what else to refer to it as. The horrible thing that happened.”
It was a student in February 2015, Stefani recalls, “that I found out playing was planning to change forever. Instead of needing to die, I told myself, I’m not about to go down. I’m about to turn this into music.”
She began writing sessions in June, and “then started at The Voice in July. And everyone knows so what happened after that. … It was like, whoa — I didn’t note that coming! All of a sudden, I got saved.”
Make Me Like You singer will not, at this juncture, elaborate to be with her relationship with Shelton. “I’ve already said a lot about it,” she says, sounding a tad sheepish. Advising her beau on Voice “did intimidate me a little — to take a seat with someone just like the king of country and still have country artists and then try to put my two cents in. And with the added layer that we’re within a different place together. But it was super-fun.”
Used to love you singer, whose last album with No Doubt, 2012’s Push And Shove, sold 259,000 copies, in accordance with Nielsen Music, informed her co-writers on Truth “that I don’t love hits.” She’s longing for fans to listen to the songs live, but “I have three kids, so it is never gonna be like that it was before, an actual tour. I don’t observe how I can do this, using them at school.”
During summer vacation, perhaps? “I’d feel below par about that. ‘So now you’re planning to give up your entire summer to help you sit on a bus while I sing songs?’ ”
More soberly, Stefani says, “I see my children half the time now,” caused by her custody arrangement with Rossdale. “That, in my opinion, is devastating. At the same time, I’ve been capable of recover how I have. … I know that things are gonna keep unfolding and evolving, and I have faith that everything’s planning to get better and much better.”