Even before Smash was cancelled at the end of last season, Katharine McPhee was making strides on her new as-yet-untitled album, out this fall on Columbia Records. She’s written with Sia and Ryan Tedder, as well as discussed collaborating with Electronic Dance Music (EDM) star Calvin Harris.
“Not every song has to be something I’ve written, but I do know it has to be something I connect to and it has to be a melody that suits me and that doesn’t feel like it’s a stretch,” says the American Idol alumnus, who cites Rihanna, Katy Perry and La Roux as current favorites. “There are so many pop songs I love where I could’ve been, ‘Oh, I wish I had that pop song.’ But if I actually got in the studio at the end of the day and recorded it, it just wouldn’t feel authentic. And that’s what it’s been about for me, maintaining the authenticity as an artist. Columbia’s been amazing about that, setting up sessions with Salaam Remi, who worked with Amy Winehouse. He’s all about who the artist is. He’s like, ‘Let’s write five shitty songs because through that process, [in] the sixth song you’ll finally find what it is that works for you.’”
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