The recording of Beyoncé's upcoming B'Day album was kept a secret, even from the singer's father/manager.
B makes the revelation in the new issue of Giant magazine, hitting newsstands Monday.
"I don't mind pressure," the former Destiny's Child leading lady told writer Scott Poulson-Bryant. "I'm very good under pressure. But I wanna put myself under pressure, not be pressured by someone else, or else I'm angry and it blocks my creativity. ... That's why I didn't tell anyone about this album."
According to Beyoncé, the only people who knew she was back in the studio (she was supposed to be vacationing) were her A&R guy and the producers she summoned into different rooms under the same roof: Rich Harrison, Swizz Beatz and Rodney Jerkins (see "Beyonce Asks Women To Battle Over Her For Backing-Band Roles").
"I'd go to another one and say, 'Rich got some fire, you gotta come with it, man,' " recalled Beyoncé, who recorded three tracks a day for two weeks. "It was magical. We'd just write a chorus or a verse and go into the next room and work on it. Everyone was excited to be here, just being creative. It didn't have any of that negative competition. And I was very conscious of my budget. I paid for it all myself, so I spent the least money on this project than any I've ever spent on a record, Destiny's Child included."
Along with revealing details of B'Day, the Giant cover story, titled "If I Was Your Girlfriend," also comes complete with a rather revealing photo spread courtesy of Ellen Von Unwerth, who recently shot Christina Aguilera's new album cover (see "Christina Channels Marilyn Monroe For Intimate Album Cover").
The concept is to give viewers a chance to see what it might look like if you woke up in the morning with Beyoncé on your bed and watched her get ready for the day. Pics show the singer in a sexy negligee, in the shower (complete with shower cap), and doing her hair (with curlers) and makeup.
"She dived in with us and was extremely enthusiastic about the whole concept," Giant Editor in Chief Smokey Fontaine said. "To be fearless enough to rock a national cover in curlers — at the peak of her career — is the sign of a true independent woman."
And speaking of waking up with the star, the article also includes a rare comment from the singer about her beau, Jay-Z.
"It's very easy," she said of their relationship. "He's so quick. And we respect each other. If I have any suggestions he respects it. If he has any suggestions, I respect it. It's just, I don't know, easy. And fun."
Beyoncé also addresses the other man in her life: Mathew Knowles, her father and manager.
"It took awhile for me and my dad to have an understanding," she said. "When I turned 18 and started handling my business more, he went into shock. And we had our issues. I'd say 'No' to something, and he'd book it anyway. Then I'd have to do it because I'd look bad [if I didn't]. We would fight sometimes, and it took about two years, to when I was 20, for him to realize, 'Oh, she is an adult now, and if she doesn't wanna do something, I can't make her do it.' "
The Giant interview discusses her role in the upcoming "Dreamgirls" movie as well ("I've never wanted a part this much"), including how it influenced her album (see "Beyonce's Triple Threat: New Album, Film, Fashion Line Before Year's End").
"I just felt so strong after filming it," she said. "Kind of like when you do something and you've given 100 percent."