LAS VEGAS — Back in January, Britney Spears announced her split from fiancé Jason Trawick. Breakups are hard enough as it is, but having millions of people know about it probably makes it 10 times worse. So the pop star decided she had “no choice” but to write about, sharing her heartache with fans on her brand-new album.
But Britney Jean isn’t all about heartache. Spears touches on subjects including lust (“Tik Tik Boom”), fame (“Alien”) and falling back in love (“Passenger”). For that last track, though, she got help from another pop superstar who, coincidentally, also went through a very public breakup.
“Passenger” co-writer Katy Perry famously wrote about her breakup with husband Russell Brand on her own album, before going on to find love again with boyfriend John Mayer. So we asked Spears how the collaboration came together.
“We actually didn’t get in the studio together,” Spears said when we sat down with her at Planet Hollywood Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas on Tuesday. “My people and her people worked it out, but I’m a huge fan of hers. I think she’s an amazing vocalist and she has a beautiful voice,” she added. “And I love the song. From the moment I heard the song, I was like, ‘This is really beautiful.’ So I was really proud I was able to do it.”
The 10-track Britney Jean album largely focuses on the breakdown of a relationship, most notably on tracks like “Till It’s Gone,” an intense dance song about not knowing what you have until you lose it, and “Don’t Cry,” which closes out the album as Britney bids her love one last goodbye.
“Basically, what [the tracks are] talking about, your love is gone [but] you’ll never forget it. The time goes by and time heals, and all those wonderful beautiful breakup things that you say,” explained Britney, who is set to kick off her two-year Las Vegas residency later this month.
And it turns out writing down all those “wonderful” breakup lyrics actually helped Britney get over her three-year relationship with Trawick.
“It was very therapeutic, yeah. I got over it really fast,” she said with a laugh.