Keri Hilson Brings Fighting Spirit To Debut LP With Justin Timberlake, Timbaland

Singer/songwriter plays a boxer in the video for her first single, 'Energy.'

No one will be messing with Keri Hilson anytime soon. She’s getting in touch with her inner Laila Ali, throwing some serious upper cuts in the video for “Energy,” the first single from her solo debut.

“Women, we’re such hopeless romantics, and we want every man to be Mr. Right,” Hilson said of the song. “This song goes from good love to bad love. You know, you kind of get drained of your energy after a while. You’ve become spent when it doesn’t work out with the person you’re in love with or you’re in a relationship with someone who doesn’t do the things you do for them.”

So now, the singer/songwriter — who’s worked with Diddy, Usher, Chris Brown, Mary J. Blige and Britney Spears, just to name a few — is fighting back and stepping out in “Energy,” which debuted this week.

“Basically, I play a female boxer who’s in a relationship,” she said of the clip. “I spar with my boyfriend at times. It starts really, really good, and as the video plays out, you see how much energy I put into this relationship or how little is reciprocated back to me.”

Hilson has already written for some of the biggest artists of the last decade (she might have even written one of your favorite songs!), but she’s taking a big step with her solo debut, In a Perfect World, due September 23. She says she tired to convey a sense of reality on the album, tackling heartbreak, success, love and failure from a woman’s perspective. “It’s my way of saying nothing in the world is perfect and no person in it is either,” she said.

But she brought some high-profile friends along to help, including Justin Timberlake and her mentor, Timbaland. “When we get in the studio, we do what we want when we want, and that’s just the kind of attitude that I take,” Hilson said of Tim. “You’ll hear just how fun it is or how free it is to take that approach to music.”