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Willow Smith: ‘Making myself uncomfortable made me a better artist’

Willow Smith has learned she needs to make herself uncomfortable in order to evolve as an artist.
The 17-year-old daughter of Will Smith and Jada Pinkett Smith has just released her second studio album The 1st, which displays a significantly more mature sound than her debut offering ARDIPITHECUS, which hit shelves in 2015.
And in an interview with Rolling Stone magazine, Willow opened up about how she has evolved as a singer since first making an appearance on the music scene.
“(My parents) would always tell me (to learn an instrument) so through my younger years I rejected that idea because it was so potently put onto me,” she explained. “I rejected it until two years ago when I realised that what I want to do musically and as an artist can’t have limits. I need to learn music theory.
“Even with my voice, I had gotten to such a place of comfort with my voice, but then I realised that if you want to keep evolving for the rest of your life, you have to make yourself uncomfortable… I’ve been trying to put myself in more uncomfortable positions musically and this is really the first step.”
As such, Willow chose the name The 1st for her record, to represent the new stage of her life and the new freedom she has obtained through pushing herself.
“It’s the first time I’ve put myself in these musical situations that I’ve never experienced and also these human social situations I’ve never experienced… Me doing this album was me realising my own craving for other people or certain reactions … I realised that freedom is love,” is mused. “Real love is giving someone 100 per cent freedom. The 1st is me realising not what love truly is, but getting closer to that (realisation).”

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