Although her upcoming album, Ill Na Na 2: The Fever, is named after her 1996 debut, Foxy Brown, a.k.a. Inga Marchand, says the vibe of the project is more similar to that of her last LP.
"I didn't go in [to record] with the notion of wanting to do something different from my last album," Foxy said on Monday, "I wanted to keep it similar to Broken Silence because that was hailed as my best album. It was critically acclaimed and I picked every beat and wrote every lyric. It was my life on paper," she said. "People gravitated towards that [and] I was like, 'If it ain't broke, don't fix it.' Give them what they want."
Foxy was so intent on keeping Fever in the same flow of her last album, she even made a sequel to one of its most talked-about cuts.
"It's called 'The Letter,' " she said of the song, which she recently recorded with her good friend and R&B legend Luther Vandross. For the chorus of the tune, Vandross provided lyrics from his classic love ballad "Superstar" ("Don't you remember you remember you told me you loved me?").
"[This new song] is a continuation of the first one [with Ronald Isley]. I'm saying, 'Dear mommy I apologize/ Another year's passed but your baby girl survived.' [It's about] everything I've gone through," Foxy explained. "I've been labeled as the most controversial female rapper. [People say], 'You never know what Foxy is doing, [or] she's at it again. My image is so misunderstood. People meet me and be like, 'I can't believe you're so demure' or '[you're] so well spoken.' The song kind of explains the differences and similarities between Inga and Foxy."
The Brooklyn MC also analyzes herself elsewhere on the album (see "Foxy Brown Battles An 'Ill' Fever, Performs With Anita Baker On New LP"). This time she does so while teaming up with Lauryn Hill on "Everyday People."
"We're talking about the difference between Lauryn's image and [my] image, but we're so much alike it's scary," she said. "People would never think so. She and I have been friends for years but I don't talk about that. [On the song] we talk about [having] dark skin when there was a time when being dark-skinned wasn't cool. Especially when we came out, there wasn't anybody that looked like us in the videos."
Foxy's boyfriend Spragga Benz, along with Shabba Ranks, Capone-N-Noreaga and P. Diddy make appearances on the album, as do her protégés, Fox 5 and Kori.
Diddy and Lyor Cohen recently joined forces to release Foxy's new LP and future releases on Bad Boy/Def Jam (see "P. Diddy, Def Jam CEO Lyor Cohen Kiss And Make Up, Go Into Business Together"). A similar deal for singing group 112 is also in effect.
Fever's first single is called "I Need a Man," and was produced by 7 Aurelius. It features his new artist, singer M.
Little X will be directing the song's video later this week.
The album drops on May 6.