8:22pm PT by Erin Strecker, Billboard
Janet Jackson Addresses New Album Report
More than six years after her last record (Discipline), Janet Jackson is reportedly back in the studio at work on new music.
The news comes from vocal producer and engineer Ian Cross. Cross helped engineer Jackson's last three studio albums, and in a new interview, he opened up about the collaboration, saying, "The new album is going to be great. It's a process. There's a lot in store, yet to come."
Not long after Cross' interview went viral, Janet Jackson herself responded to the rumor with a boss tweet (that technically neither confirmed nor denied anything): "If there is a new project, you'll hear it from my lips," she tweeted.
Cross talked at length about his work with Jackson in his Barefoot Sound interview. "Janet [Jackson] and I had a little bit more of a special relationship because we became friends naturally,” Cross said. “You meet a lot of people and you become friends with a couple of them, but sometimes there is one person you become really good friends with. She asked me to work on an album with her called Discipline in 2007 and, again, just do the same thing, produce the vocals. That led to her hiring me full-time to work with her. That’s where I’m at now.”
"The Janet Jacksons of the world can’t just spend their time in one studio in one city anymore…we’ve been working in Qatar. We’ve been working in Paris, the Middle East, and now we feel like we can work anywhere," he said. (BTW, Jackson's husband, Wissam Al Mana, is a Qatari businessman, which helps explain her city-hopping recording schedule.)
Jackson was last on tour in 2011, with Number Ones, Up Close and Personal.